What do I do if a business (that is no longer in business) keeps promising to give me refund but has not done so?

UPDATED: Oct 13, 2014

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What do I do if a business (that is no longer in business) keeps promising to give me refund but has not done so?

I have a signed agreement between me and the girlfriend of the businessman that I will receive my refund about 6 weeks ago. I have texted, called, emailed multiple times. When he finally answers, he said he planned on giving me the refund still, but has trouble because he is no longer in business. I told him to give me a check or something similar through mail by the 2nd of this month (about 10 days ago). I have tried to contact him multiple times after this, including online and his friends. When he answers, he said he is angry that I contacted his friends about business matters and didn’t mention anything about the refund. There has been no answer since.

Asked on October 13, 2014 under Business Law, Pennsylvania


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

1) Did the girlfriend have an authority to sign an agreement on his behalf? If she did not work for him or the business, then no--her agreement is worthless and does not bind the businessman or his business. Being a "girlfriend" does not give one any legal standing.

2) Was the business an LLC (limited liability company) or corporation? If so, then the businessman is not personally liable--only the business is. But if the business is out of business and has no operations and funds, it will almost certainly never pay you, and if it doesn't, you have no further recourse.

3) Even if the business was not an LLC or corporation, so that the businessman is personally liable, if he will not pay you voluntarily, to get the money, you'd have to sue him and win (prove in court that he owes it to you), which may or may not be economically worthwhile, depending on how much is at stake.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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