About 4 years ago I was in the process of renovating my new home. At about that time, my neighbor had a very rusty and corroded (I have pictures to prove this) outdoor faucet break and it caused damage to the inside of their home. They were not home at the time so upon discovering the leak we knocked on the door and shut off the water using the shutoff valve. We don’t know what caused this leak. Now they are accusing me of the damage and are asking $500 as compensation, although they have provided no evidence or documentation to prove their allegations. Am I liable and do they have a case at this point? Would it be worth it to go to small claims court?
I’m curious what your neighbors think their claim against you would be. Based on the description above, they should be thanking you for having less damage than they otherwise would.
However, your best move may be to do nothing. One generally goes to court to get money from someone, not to avoid paying someone, so the ball is in their court to sue you. If they do, you respond, but if they don’t, then you just have a polite disagreement.
One thing you should look into is the applicable statute of limitations. Even if you had damaged their house, there’s a legal time limit on how long they have to bring a claim in court, and four years might be too long, depending on your state’s laws.