A British boy of five has been handed an invoice and his parents threatened with legal action – for missing his friend’s birthday party.
Derek Nash and his partner, Tanya Walsh, discovered the £15.95 (R281) “noshow fee” invoice after it was slipped into their son Alex’s school bag.
Nash said he first thought it was a joke, but the issue has remained unresolved with the birthday boy’s mother, Julie Lawrence, threatening court action.
His partner confronted Lawrence in a series of posts on Facebook in a bid to resolve the situation.
The family confirmed their son would be attending the party at the Ski Slope and Snowboard Centre just before the Christmas holidays.
However, Nash, from Cornwall, realised he had already arranged for their daughter to go on a day trip with her grandparents.
He said: “She saw me and asked if Alex was coming to the party. At this time I agreed and said that Alex was looking forward to it.
“By this time we did not have a contact number, e-mail or an address to let [the boy’s mother] know. So on the day of the party we asked Alex what he wanted to do – and he chose to be with his grandparents.”
Alex returned to Torpoint Nursery and Infant School on January 6, but the family were shocked to receive the bill just over a week later.
Nash said: “My partner looked out for [the friend’s mother] to apologise for Alex not showing up to the party, but didn’t see her.
“But on January 15 she looked in Alex’s school bag and found a brown envelope. It was an invoice for £15.95 for a child’s party no-show fee. I asked Alex’s class teacher if [the child’s mother] had given anything to her. She said, ‘Yes, an envelope’.
“I then visited Alex’s head teacher, who couldn’t apologise enough that the teacher had passed this on.”
After being told they would not pay, Lawrence threatened to take the case to a small claims court.
She said the boy’s non-attendance left her out of pocket, adding: “All details were on the party invite. They had every detail needed to contact me.”
– The Telegraph