If my friend was responsible for watching my purseand it was stolen because she forgot, does she owe me the cash lost?

A friend was asked to watch my purse while I was performing on an outdoor stage and she was side-tracked and had left it on a wall in a very populated city. She had forgot about it for over 45 minutes. When she realized that she had left it on the wall my purse had already been stolen. We were able to track down the guy that stole my purse down but he got away with the $170 in cash from my wallet. Is my friend responsible for paying me back? What if she refuses? What legal actions can I take?

Asked on December 2, 2011 under Bankruptcy Law, Hawaii


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

Good question. If your friend undertook the responsibility of watching your purse while you were performing on an outdoor stage and she was was careless in watching it where the purse was stolen and its contents taken including the $170.00, she would be responsible for repaying you the money taken assuming you can prove:

1. that there was $170.00 in the purse;

2. she agreed to watch the purse for you;

3. she was careless in watching the purse for you resulting in its theft.

If she refuses to pay you the money, your recourse would be small claims court.

Query: Would you want to run the risk of losing a friendship over the $170.00 by filing a small claims action against your friend?

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