I would like you to assist me regarding a payment I made but never got the services I paid for.

I tried to register a company last year in February with a certain man.

I paid him P700 for registration of the company and after some months he asked me to deposit P1,000.

The total amount I paid towards company registration is P1,700 and now I want a refund because he failed to provide me with the service he promised.

Another issue is that in 2006 he promised to demarcate his plot and sell part of it measuring 40x40m to me.

He asked me to pay the deposit of P3,400 before he can start processing the demarcation issue with the land board of which I paid and do have receipts with me.

I gave him P2,000 on hand and the P1,400 was deposited to the account that he gave me.

The total amount I paid towards the plot is P3,400.

All these years he has been claiming to be busy and not finding time to go to the land board which is obviously a lie.

I have realised that this is man is a crook and I now want my money back.

The man owes me a total of P5100.

I think there’s good news and bad news.

The good news is that it should be possible to recover the P1,700 you paid this guy for registering the company.

You should first write this guy a letter giving him 14 days to pay you a full refund of the P1,700 he owes you.

Say in the letter that you’ll take legal action against him if he fails to do so.

If he doesn’t cooperate after 14 days then go to the Small Claims Court and ask for an order against him.

The bad news? I think you might have left it way too long to worry about the money you paid him for the plot.

You’ll need to check this with an attorney but I suspect that the Prescriptions Act will apply.

That says that a debt like this one is “prescribed” after three years.

In other words if you fail to start legal action within that period then a court will refuse to consider the case.

You might need to write that one off.

One final point. Why on earth did you approach someone who had already cheated you to set up your company for you?

That should have been a warning sign.

If someone cheats you once, they’ll do it again if they get the chance.

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