Bizarre, cautionary tale, gift contracts, gifts, Glasgow, gold diggers, Homer Simpson, Law, Ned Flanders, odd, presumption against gift, Rinsers, Scottish law, STV, the dangerous of receiving gifts, the dangers of rinsing, unusual, you can be sued for accepting a gift
So yesterday I came across this article from STV about a wealthy man suing an ex-girlfriend for the cost of a designer handbag and a designer pair of shoes. Basically the man said the arrangement was a loan and he expected to be paid back and the woman claimed that they were a gift (although she had signed an agreement to pay the man back) Make what you will of the article but the article itself is not actually what interests me.
From reading the article I gathered that in Scottish law it is up to the recipient of a gift to prove that what they have received was in fact a gift, in other words if someone gives you a gift and then later claims it was a loan and takes you to court to sue you, unless you have proof that it was a gift you will have to pay them back. I have looked into this and it’s true, in Scot’s law there is a presumption against gifts.
I am the only one who thinks this is a bit unfair? Also, it’s not really the type of information that you are likely to know without looking it up.
So do we now need gift contracts? Have you ever made anyone sign a statement agreeing that a gift they have given you is a gift…I’ve never seen that happen at a birthday party.
You should be wary of getting into relationships with gift givers. If you’re new boyfriend or girlfriend treats you to a romantic weekend in Paris you may have to them pay them back for it.
I guess there is a silver lining, people who get ‘rinsed’ can now get their stuff back when they realise what has happened and people who loan each other money or items and then don’t get their stuff back can sue eachother. Imagine how much stuff Ned Flanders could claim from Homer if they were real and lived in Scotland?
So what if your neighbour gives you their old lawn mower because they have bought a new one? Or someone treats you to a weekend away? or a wealthy relative pays your school fees? Or your parents buy you a car?
My advice would be to not accept anything that you can’t afford to pay back because at some point down the line you may well end up having to pay for it. Either refuse or at least have a pen and paper handy next time you are lucky or unlucky enough to be given a gift. I might make sure any future benefactors (not that I expect to have any) are recorded on video stating that they are giving me X,Y,Z as a gift.
Gone are the days of no take-backsies.
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