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Dad Called Out For Refusing To Pay For Neighbor’s Expensive Laptop That His Daughter Broke


Redditor hometowngirll is a high school student who was studying at home when she suddenly found herself with a broken laptop after leaving it out for “under a minute.”

When she discovered what caused the damage from her ring camera, she sought compensation to have it replaced by providing the evidence.

Unfortunately, it didn’t seem to be working out, and she was forced to employ a tactic that her parents strongly disapproved.

Seeking input from strangers on the internet, she visited the “Am I the A**hole” (AITA) subReddit and asked:

“AITA for sending my neighbor venmo requests every day until he pays for the laptop his kid broke?”

The Original Poster (OP) explained:

“I am a high school student and live with my family. I was doing some homework on the patio table outside and I was the only one home.”

“I went inside to refill my water bottle and came back out to see my laptop on the ground, and my neighbors kid running around the deck.”

“The neighbor lives next door in a different house, we don’t have a shared yard, so I was not expecting his kid coming around.”

“I tried to catch her and ask what had happened to the laptop and she ran away to her own house and wouldn’t talk to me.”

“I went home and checked on the ring camera and saw a video of my neighbors kid running into the yard, running under the table, pushing up on the underside of the table causing everything on it to tilt and slide to the ground, and running away, in the under a minute I’d been inside.”

“I downloaded the video to my phone and went to the neighbors house to ask him for money to replace the laptop.”

“I decided to ask for $1700 for the laptop and $159 for the lost time that I spent doing the homework that I’d have to redo.”

“I valued my lost time at the amount I’m paid at work since I’d likely have to skip a couple shifts at work to redo the assignment.”

“I went to the neighbors house and he said he wasn’t gonna pay because I shouldn’t have left the laptop out and anything could have happened like rain or something.”

“I said it was a clear day and I only went inside for a minute. Anyway ‘anything’ didn’t happen, I had a video of his kid ‘happening’ to my laptop and since she was too little to pay for it herself he had to as her dad. He said no.”

“Now this might be petty but I have his Venmo because my family and his family did a barbecue block party thing and I had to pay him for a share of the shopping.”

“So every day I’ve sent a $1859 request to him and he keeps declining it.”

“I told my family and they think I shouldn’t of left out the laptop and that I was harassing him doing that and they will replace it for me. They would use some of my college fund money.”

“But I feel like they shouldn’t have to pay. Plus I’ll need that college fund for college!”

“So I’ve kept venmo requesting him and also posted the video from the camera on the community Facebook saying:”

‘Hey any advice here? I had a neighors kid come to my house and break something expensive, on camera. Are they supposed to pay and how can I do that?’

‘The parents have been refusing to pay a bunch of times. Is there some home owner insurance to help?’

‘Sorry for dumb questions, I’m a high schooler and have never dealt with something like this before!’

“Anyway my parents found the post and got upset at me for stirring the sh*t, and for continuing to venmo request him.”

“AITA for being so stubborn about getting paid for the broken laptop?”

Strangers online were asked to declare one of the following:

  • NTA – Not the A**hole
  • YTA – You’re the A**hole
  • NAH – No A**holes Here
  • ESH – Everybody Sucks Here

Many Redditors thought the OP was not the a**hole in the situation.

“Venmo isn’t the way to handle it. Small claims court would be your answer. Or filing a police report.” – NefariousnessGlum424

“Both start with the police report in order to document the initial problem then small claims court to make them pay.”

“Parents were negligent since they weren’t supervising the child at the time.” – wkendwench

“NTA. File in small claims court, should cost like $50 and with the video, the parents will be obligated to pay.” – gamerbruh1102

“NTA, Take him to small claims court with video they will be ordered by the courts to pay.”

“Make a paper trail by filing with the police, upload a copy of the video to a private cloud so nobody can delete it.”

“But stop venmo because they can use that against you as it is a form of harassment and they might end up suing you.” – Owfxui

“NTA obviously, but it’s not working.”

“I just checked, and yes, a minor can file a suit in small claims court in the US. You might be able to get Neighbors to pay for the laptop if you inform them that your next course of action will be small claims court.”

“Give them 3 days after that, and then file a claim. It is not difficult to do.”

“P.S. I completely agree with you about charging for your time to redo your work. Not sure if a judge will agree, but it’s worth adding to your claim. Keep us posted on how this goes.” – Ficzud

“Small caveat: check your local laws first whether parents are actually legally obligated to pay for that. They’re not where I live, or only under specific circumstances.” – HoldFastO2

“NTA, but you’re beating your head against a wall. Your FIRST step should have been filing a police report, then you sue in, most likely, small claims court.”

“Don’t count on getting full value back unless your computer was brand new out of the box and it will be valued at the replacement cost for a comparable (use and age) computer, and you’ll probably be laughed at for asking for monies for shifts missed. But they should give you money to help replace it.” – Better2021Everyone

Overall, Redditors agreed Venmo was not an effective solution and that filing in small claims court might be the better option.

They also accused the father of negligence of not supervising his daughter.

Written by Koh Mochizuki

Koh Mochizuki is a Los Angeles based actor whose work has been spotted anywhere from Broadway stages to Saturday Night Live.
He received his B.A. in English literature and is fluent in Japanese.
In addition to being a neophyte photographer, he is a huge Disney aficionado and is determined to conquer all Disney parks in the world to publish a photographic chronicle one day. Mickey goals.
Instagram: kohster Twitter: @kohster1 Flickr: nyckmo