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if i pay the tractor off can he change his mine and still take the tractor.
Response: Yes, he can because the tractor is in his business name. However, it is more than likely that you would prevail in any lawsuit regarding the tractor even if you do not have any written agreement with him using Promissory Estoppel and the implied contract theories of Unjust Enrichment and Detrimental Reliance. You will argue that it will be unfair not to enforce your verbal agreement with your friend because you have already incurred expenses (made payments) because of the agreement and that he cannot be allowed to back out now and that fairness demands that your verbal agreement be enforced. Promissory Estoppel is closely related to implied contract theories of Unjust Enrichment and Detrimental Reliance. Using Unjust Enrichment theory, you would argue that your friend cannot be allowed to back out of an implied/oral contract because there is no written agreement because your friend would retain the tractor without paying for it. Using Detrimental Reliance, you would argue that because you have relied on the verbal agreement with your friend to your detriment by incurring expenses (28 payments) that you would not have incurred absent the agreement, that he should be forced to give the tractor to you or reimburse you for the payments already made.
him sending me a email saying that he would sign it over to me when it's paid off. does this help my case.
Response 1: Yes, it does help your case. Make sure that you print and save the e-mail.
if i pay it off and he won't sign it over to me. can i take him to small claims court and get the $7500.00 dollars the court allows
Response 2: Yes, you can take him to Small Claims Court.
I do not know if you would win or not since I will not be the decision maker in your case. The Court would determine whether you would win or not based on the facts presented at the hearing. All I can say is that based on your narrative here that you have pretty good chance of prevailing--of winning.
This is my final response to your question and follow-up questions.