Good news so why do I feel so weird about it?

Last night my hubby was talking to his father about a few things and one of the things that came up was money. My husband happened to mention how we are repaying the debt we owe, and that’s when they got into a non-argument. I say a non-argument because nobody was angry but the two didn’t agree on something that was essentially a really nice thing: my father-in-law wants to drop some of our debt to him. Meanwhile, my hubby didn’t feel he should do that. So they had an uncomfortable “discussion”.

This makes me feel a bit weird because though – of course –  I would love to owe less overall, somehow it seems like cheating him if we don’t pay back everything we owe. However I recognise why he wants us to forgo it.

Essnetially we owe my father-in-law $6800. About half of that is from a boat that hubby and his dad bought together, which we are paying off our half to him. While we probably couldn’t really afford to buy the boat (according to good budgeting sense), it has been fantastic for my husband and I think it kept him sane during some hard times.

Essentially we have had about 9 years of bad luck with the law. By that I mean, my husband owned a successful business and decided to sell it back then in 1998. He had potential buyers close to signing when they asked if they could send in their renovators to start work. Because the constract wasn’t signed, he didn’t want to let the builders in, so he called is lawyer to ask what to do. His lawyer told him to let them in, and the rest was history. They pulled everything down, turned the place into a construction site, then the `buyers’ failed to sign the contract. They `couldn’t afford it after all’. They couldn’t afford to pay their builder for the work he had done either.

In the end, legally it was our solicitor’s fault, so we took him to court. It took until 2005 to get to trial to find that we were in the right. However, we received next to nothing, and in fact, had just $9000 left once the case was over and everyone got paid. My husband had owed tax on the business dealings but because he hadn’t received a dime for the sale, he owed back taxes that had been accruing interest for almost 10 years. Luckily, we offered the tax office the money we had, and they settled with us regarding the rest.

However, along the way we had to borrow some money to keep the case going. My father in law gave us $3300 to pay two legal reports, and I had included that amount in our family debt total.

The thing is, my father in law has a lot of guilt because he essentially told my husband he would disown him if he didn’t fight in court for `what is right’. He had this inflated sense of `justice will prevail’, when in fact we waited nearly 10 years to receive NO financial benefit and in fact, to owe money to others. My husband wanted to move on with his life when all this happened, as he knew how flawed the legal system could be.

No I am not saying my father-in-law is to blame for what happened. He certainly is the last person to blame. But he knows that the only reason we went through with the case was due to pressure from him. So he wants to forgo the $3300 we owe for those court reports. He wants us to put that towards finally owning a home.

I don’t know if it is right or wrong to accept. Does anyone have an opinion?


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