(Black Press file photo)

Loans or gifts? Judge rules woman must pay B.C. man back $7K

B.C. judge rules that woman must pay back more than $7,000 in advanced funds to man

Gift giving is rarely awkward and almost always a positive experience – except when it isn’t a present and instead a monetary loan expected to be repaid.

Determining whether payments totalling $7,000 were gifts or a set of loans was at the centre of a recent B.C. court decision earlier this month, in a battle between Victoria man Dinh Tran and a woman he met online who Tran said refused to pay him back.

He said that they were loans. She said that they were gifts

According to court documents, made available online Thursday, Tran met Nga Le online in early 2011. He made two visits to Le’s Toronto home that same year, as well as a two-week holiday to the U.S.

The pair’s relationship became serious, according to the documents, and Le moved to Victoria in 2012 after visiting Tran’s home, although the pair didn’t live together.

READ MORE: B.C. online divorce assistant aims to streamline paperwork

In the first half of 2012, Tran sent funds to Le 10 times totalling $13,600. Transactions included $1,450 for Le to buy a plane ticket to Vietnam and roughly $4,700 deposited directly into Le’s bank account. Roughly $6,900 in funds were spread over five electronic transfers to Le’s mother, who was living in Vietnam at the time.

While the terms of repayment were never discussed, Tran claimed that Le agreed to reimburse him for the monies. But Le disagrees, court documents show, and claims most of the advances were gifts – minus $6,000 of the funds which she repaid to Tran on June 22, 2012.

According to Justice Ted Gouge, the determining factor is what kind of relationship exists between the payer and the recipient.

If they were married, the “presumption of advancement” applies, Gouge said, which means that the payments are presumed to be gifts. If not married, there is a “presumption of resulting trust” which means the recipient is obliged to repay the sums.

While both arguments may be rebutted by evidence that suggests a contrary intention on the part of the payer, the evidence from Le didn’t establish beyond a reasonable doubt that Tran intended the payments to be gifts.

“Accordingly, the evidentiary onus carried by Ms. Le is undischarged, and Mr. Tran is entitled to judgment for $7,629,” Gouge ruled. Le was also ordered to pay Tran’s $156 filing fee and prejudgment interest set by the registrar from June 1, 2012 to Feb. 10, 2020.


@ashwadhwani
ashley.wadhwani@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

CourtGift GuideLoans

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

PHOTOS: Procession lets Castlegar seniors know they are not forgotten

A car parade travelled to local seniors homes this week.

Columbia and Western Trail reopens to the public in Castlegar

A rockslide closed a section of the trail on March 25

Kootenay morning start: Discover the history and beauty of New Denver

Here is your morning start for Tuesday, April 7

Look at hospitalizations, not recovery stats for COVID-19, B.C. professor says

Cases in hospital are a definitive count of people who have the novel coronavirus

B.C. First Nations want to launch fight of Trans Mountain pipeline approval

Last month, the Supreme Court of Canada decided not to hear five challenges about the pipeline

N95 masks on the way for Canada after 3M reaches deal with White House

The Trump White House had ordered 3M to stop shipping masks to Canada

COLUMN: The other graph that shows B.C. can beat COVID-19

Is the curve being flattened? data on hospitalizations provides a crucial answer.

Here’s how to talk to people who aren’t taking physical distancing seriously

Approach the conversation with empathy says conflict expert

B.C. clears more acute hospital beds as COVID-19 case growth slows

Province holding about 40% of beds empty for peak still to come

As 500K+ apply for emergency benefit, Trudeau says aid coming for Canadians left behind

Canada Emergency Response Benefit provides $2,000 per month

Wearing non-medical masks can stop spread of COVID-19 before symptoms start: Tam

Health officials had previously not recommended wearing them

Most Read