- A personal finance TikToker recounted a “heated” breakup with her ex, which resulted in a custody dispute over their dog.
- Erin Confortini said her ex sued her for the cost of the puppy and punitive damages, totaling $5,000.
- Although he felt that he would prevail at court, he eventually paid her to preserve his peace.
TikToker Erin Confortini, who shares financial advice aimed at a Gen Z audiencerecounted in a viral video Tuesday a $5,000 decision she said she was forced to make in the wake of an acrimonious breakup.
While petting her golden retriever, Bella, Confortini he told 2.6 million viewers that she had just turned over the money to her ex after he sued her for keeping their jointly owned golden retriever after they broke up. Though viewers told her she shouldn’t have wasted the money, Confortini told Insider that he was well spent to preserve her “peace of mind” from her.
The conflict began after Confortini and her ex split earlier this year and she was moving out of their joint residence.
“Bella was 100% my first concern,” Confortini said on TikTok. “That’s really all I cared about.”
According to Confortini, the day of the breakup got “very heated” and culminated in a police visit. When her ex came home from work, she said he would take Bella to her parents’ house and told Confortini to say goodbye to her, she recounted in the video. When she tried to leave with Bella, she claimed that her ex locked the door on her, prompting her to call the police.
Police eventually allowed Confortini to take Bella home, he said, but told the former couple to mediate the situation themselves.
Although Bella was jointly registered with Confortini and her ex, according to an American Kennel Club certificate she provided to Insider, her ex filed a civil lawsuit against her on March 6, alleging that she had purchased Bella from the breeder for $1,000 and that Confortini “never paid any compensation” for Bella, according to the complaint.
Confortini disputes this account and provided Insider with screenshots of the transactions showing he paid for half the dog, as well as screenshots of Bella’s subsequent vet and pet insurance bills, which exclusively list his name.
In a second TikTok about the sagaConfortini said she contacted a lawyer to draw up a custody agreement with her ex, before receiving her complaint. But apparently his ex had refused to sign one.
Despite the rejection online, Confortini ultimately stands by his decision to pay him
A copy of the civil lawsuit against Confortini requested the “return of the canine with pecuniary compensation.” However, “in the alternative, Plaintiff would seek the amount of $5,000 for both costs and punitive damages against Defendant,” he stated.
Confortini had several issues with the claims his ex made in the civil lawsuit against him. For one thing, Bella cost $1,200, not $1,000, and he claims the two of them had split the price equally. (He provided Insider with a screenshot of a banking app showing an ATM withdrawal of $503.75 on April 16, 2022, the withdrawal date, he said, as well as a Venmo transfer to his ex for $100 a month. above, with a puppy emoji in the description.)
TikTok commenters were largely on Confortini’s side, but some wondered if there was another side to the story.
“The reason she pays is because she knew she was wrong, yet she’s still talking down to her,” wrote one commenter.
“I can’t believe you gave him the 5k,” another person reacted.
Confortini has responded to some of these criticisms, adding that they had a sexist undertone. Finally, after weighing her options, he decided that paying her ex to stay with Bella was the best option for her.
in a third videoConfortini said she initially balked at the sum and was convinced she could win in court, though the lawyer she had been consulting said legal fees could be comparable to $5,000.
At the end of the day, she decided to write the check, saying that she was proud of herself for not letting him take the dog and for being financially independent enough to pay him.
“My peace of mind and just knowing that this is all over I think it’s worth the money for me,” he said.