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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Posts
    344

    Default Storage Facility Owner Sold Goods Without Any Notice

    My question involves personal property located in the State of: tenn

    My mother was renting a storage unit, she fell behind as she has before but caught it up to the point were things were not in danger. I went to go get my winter clothes and when we got there there was another combination lock in place of my lock. we talked to the owner and heconfirmed he sold it a week prior, this was the wedsnday before last. when we told him we did not know it was up for auction he said he sent a certified letter and would get back to us with the number. he of course did not, the power office said they would have evidence that he did and we just plain diddnt receive it. I am one million percent sure it was not sent because i was checking the P.O. box, questioned her about the storage often enough, and she continued to pay him after it was supposedly sold. she owes me 200, 150 on the locker, she had given him 100 to kill some of the above numbers off at the end of august but she did not receive a reciep like she usually does. he took a two month vacation. when he gets ready to clamp down for non payment he adds his lock. there was no lock on it from him days before i last saw it. hes been back peddling the whole time, what is my legal recourse, what is his obligation, and how do i go about pricing the items we lost, what they'd be worth now or if bought new?

    I hope this is the right section for this question, my apoligees if not.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Posts
    9,890

    Default Re: Storage Facility Owner Sold Goods Without Any Notice

    His liability to you ended when he sent the certified letter (which it would behoove him to have the receipt of mailing). It's not his fault that you didn't pick up the certified letter from the po box (which you would need to do in person, they'd just stick a call slip in there).
    Once she was delinquent, partial payments don't mean anything officially until she makes up all the stuff she is behind on.
    You can try going to small claims on the fact that he didn't MAIL the notice, but if he can dig up the receipt you'll lose.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Key West, FL
    Posts
    2,350

    Default Re: Storage Facility Owner Sold Goods Without Any Notice

    You need to review exactly what the rental agreement says and what, if anything, there are in state regulations of storage businesses. See if he followed the law and if he did, see if he followed the contract. If you can prove to a court that he did not follow the law and/or the contract, then you can sue. I would sue for replacement costs of the storage unit locker.
    I would also find out the exact timeline for everything.

    When a bunch of things happen along a timeline (like a case I am doing now) judges and juries are appreciative of nice large charts spelling it all out, or at least a listing easy enough to read. It helps to visualize the case and understand relationships.

    I would also sue for any payments made after the storage company took control of the unit.

    You have no standing though. Your mother would have to sue in small claims. You could certainly testify as to your own personal knowledge and having two people testify is always better than one.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Posts
    344

    Default Re: Storage Facility Owner Sold Goods Without Any Notice

    he aint got the reciep he diddnt send it out because we loked at our mail and never found it, he couldnt find it less then a week after sale, and he just had a massive heart attack which had him out of commision for 60 sum days.. and our agreement stips that we gotta only be so far behind and he received his money to correct that receipts for payment will show that.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Behind a Desk
    Posts
    74,848

    Default Re: Storage Facility Owner Sold Goods Without Any Notice

    If mom sues him, he'll have the obligation of establishing that he provided proper notice.
    Quote Quoting Tennessee Code, Sec. 66-31-104. Owner's lien on stored property.
    (a) The owner of a self-service storage facility and the owner's heirs, executors, administrators, successors, and assigns have a lien upon all personal property located at a self-service storage facility for rent, labor, or other charges, present or future, in relation to the personal property and for expenses necessary for its preservation or expenses reasonably incurred in its sale or other disposition pursuant to this chapter. The lien provided for in this section is superior to any other lien or security interest, except those which are perfected and recorded in Tennessee in the name of the occupant during the term of the rental agreement and except any tax lien as otherwise provided by law. The lien attaches when personal property is placed in the leased space.

    (b) The rental agreement shall contain a statement in bold type notifying the occupant of the existence of the lien and the method of its enforcement. The rental agreement shall also include the late fee, if any, and when it may be imposed. If the rental agreement contains a limit on the value of property stored in the occupant's storage space, the limit shall be deemed to be the maximum value of the property stored in that space.

    (c) The owner may also impose a reasonable late fee on the occupant for each month the occupant does not pay rent when due. For purposes of this section, a reasonable late fee is not more than the greater of twenty dollars ($20.00) a month or twenty percent (20%) of monthly rent. Any late fee imposed by the owner pursuant to this section is in addition to any other remedy provided by law or contract.

    (d) The owner shall provide adequate notice to the occupant before a late fee is imposed. Adequate notice is provided if the rental agreement complies with subsection (b) or if a notice is sent to the occupant at the last known address and notifies the occupant that a late fee may be charged for any month in which the occupant does not pay rent when due.
    Quote Quoting Tennessee Code, Sec. 66-31-105. Enforcement of lien.
    The enforcement of the owner's lien against an occupant who is in default may be done in accordance with either or both of the following procedures:
    (1) In the case of short term default, denial of access:

    (A) Upon the failure of a occupant to pay the rent for the storage space or unit when it becomes due, the owner may, without notice, deny the occupant access to the personal property located in the self-service storage facility or self-contained storage unit, and the owner without notice, not less than five (5) days after the date the rent is due, may enter and remove the personal property from the leased space to other suitable storage space pending its sale or other disposition; and

    (B) The owner shall notify the occupant of the owner's intent to enforce the owner's lien by written notice delivered by hand delivery, by verified mail, or by electronic mail to the occupant's last known address; or
    (2) In the case of long term default, which is a continuous fifteen (15) days, the owner may enforce the owner's lien in accordance with the following procedures:

    (A) [Deleted by 2011 amendment.]

    (B) The occupant shall be notified in writing;

    (C) The notice shall be delivered by hand delivery, by verified mail, or by electronic mail to the occupant's last known address;

    (D) The notice shall include:

    (i) An itemized statement of the owner's claim showing the sum due at the time of the notice and the date when the sum became due;

    (ii) A demand for payment of the sum due within a specified time not less than thirty (30) days after the date of the notice and a statement of the approximate additional expenses which may be incurred between the date of the notice and the date of the sale;

    (iii) A statement that the contents of the occupant's leased space are subject to the owner's lien;

    (iv) If the owner elects to deny the occupant access to the leased space or elects to enter and/or remove the occupant's personal property from the leased space to other suitable storage space, a statement so advising the occupant shall be included in the notice;

    (v) The name, street address and telephone number of the owner or designated agent whom the occupant may contact to respond to the notice; and

    (vi) A conspicuous statement that unless the claim is paid within the time stated, the personal property will be advertised for sale or will be otherwise disposed of at a specified time and place, not sooner than sixty (60) days after default;
    (E) Any sale or other disposition of the personal property shall conform to the terms of the notification as provided for in this section. If the personal property is advertised for sale and the sale is not consummated, the owner shall give written notice to the occupant of other disposition of the personal property;

    (F) Any sale or other disposition of the personal property shall be held at the self-service storage facility or at the nearest suitable place to where the personal property is held or stored;

    (G) After expiration of the time stated in the notice and if the personal property has not otherwise been disposed, the owner shall advertise the sale of the personal property. Such advertisement of sale shall include, but not be limited to, the publishing one (1) time before the date of the sale of the personal property in a newspaper of general circulation which serves the area where the self storage facility is located. The advertisement shall include:

    (i) A statement that the contents of the occupant's leased space shall be sold to satisfy the owner's lien;

    (ii) The address of the self-service storage facility and the number or other description, if any, of the space where the personal property is located and the name of the occupant; and

    (iii) The time, place, and manner of the sale;
    (H) Before any sale or other disposition of personal property pursuant to this section, the occupant may pay the amount necessary to satisfy the owner's lien and the reasonable expenses incurred under this section and thereby redeem the personal property. Upon the payment and satisfaction of the amount necessary to satisfy the lien, the owner shall return the personal property and thereafter the owner shall have no liability to any person with respect to such personal property;

    (I) The owner may buy at any sale of personal property to enforce the owner's lien;

    (J) A purchaser in good faith of the personal property sold to satisfy the owner's lien takes the property free of any rights of persons against whom the lien was valid, despite noncompliance by the owner with the requirements of this section;

    (K) In the event of a sale under this section, the owner may satisfy the owner's lien and the expenses of such sale from the proceeds of the sale but shall hold the balance, if any, for delivery on demand to the occupant. If the occupant does not claim the balance of the proceeds within one (1) year of the date of the sale, such balance shall be deemed to be abandoned, and the owner shall pay such balance to the state treasurer who shall receive, hold and dispose of same in accordance with the provisions of the Uniform Disposition of Unclaimed Property Act, compiled in chapter 29 of this title;

    (L) If the property upon which the lien is claimed is a vehicle and rent and other charges related to the property remain unpaid or unsatisfied for sixty (60) days after the maturity of the obligation to pay rent, the facility owner may utilize either of the following options:

    (i) The facility owner may have the property towed. If a vehicle is towed as authorized in this subdivision (2)(L)(i), the owner shall not be liable for the vehicle or any damages to the vehicle once the tower takes possession of the property; or

    (ii) The facility owner shall contact the appropriate division in such manner as the division prescribes for the purposes of determining the existence and identity of any lien holder and the name and address of the owner of the vehicle, as shown in the records of the division. Within ten (10) days of receipt of such information concerning any lien holder and the owner of such motor vehicle, as shown in the division's records, the owner shall send a written notice to any such lien holder and to the owner, if such owner is not the occupant, by verified mail, stating that:
    (a) Such vehicle is being held by the facility owner;

    (b) A lien has attached pursuant to this chapter; and

    (c) Payment shall be made within thirty (30) days after notification to satisfy the lien. The vehicle owner or lien holder may pay the balance owed and take possession of the vehicle. If the owner or lien holder does not satisfy the lien, the facility owner may sell the vehicle in any manner, including but not limited to, public auction;
    (M) The owner's liability arising from the sale is limited to the net proceeds received from the sale of the personal property;

    (N) The owner is not liable for identity theft or other harm resulting from the misuse of information contained in a document or electronic storage media:

    (i) That are part of the occupant's property sold or otherwise disposed; and

    (ii) Of which the owner did not have actual knowledge; and
    (O) An owner shall not be entitled to any remedies provided by this chapter, including but not limited to, enforcement of a lien against an occupant, if:

    (i) The requirements of this section are not satisfied;

    (ii) The sale of the personal property located in the leased space is not in conformity with subdivision (2)(G); or

    (iii) There is a willful violation of any provision of this chapter.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Posts
    344

    Default Re: Storage Facility Owner Sold Goods Without Any Notice

    what do u mean by electronic mail? as in sending my mom an email?

    another issue, hes sent certified mail in the past when it was not caught up but they always had stiuplations on how to save the stuff. im afraid that he may reference an earlier certified letter that we had already nulified with back pay. im not sure if my mom has any of the paper work, i know he does so it might be easy for him to manipulate. i also know that when she gave him a large amount at the beggining of september she did not get a receipt back and we nor could anyone who had anything to do with his businesses or property contact him for about 60 days do to his medical emergency

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