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  1. #1

    Unhappy Unlawful Locking of a Self Storage Unit in California

    My question involves an eviction in the state of: California

    OK this whole situation started off when one of our 3 storage units were robbed. there is an video of the robbery.
    The burglar looks just like the storage owners child but of course local police say. but that's the owners son why would he rob there own storage’s? so they wont even look into it. we sell at the flea market weekly so a lot of what was stolen was our stuff we made our money with so we fell behind 3 months on each storage .we then had a meeting (DEC 15th 2011 ) with the storage owner and made an agreement that we would have till the end of February to catch up. Sept 27th 2011 is when our storage was broke into we were all up to date. so by January 18th we are only 1/2 a month behind on two of the storage and now 3 1/2 months behind on the third unit. we go to our unit on January 19th and they are all red locked and owner calls us and says he wants to talk to us the next day at 8:30 in the morning so we show up at 8:27 first thing he says when we walk in the room is. you called the cops on my son you have 3 days to get all of your stuff out of all 3 units. So of course we say that’s not possible since it is the only storage facility in our town with units available and we had just gave them all our money. well for one we never called the cops on his son. all we had done previously to that is submit an crime stoppers tip saying we had witnessed his son in same clothes as the burglar which was true. (local cops wouldn’t look into it so we made them) crime stoppers is 100% anonymous. so we leave storage facility with owner yelling and cussing at us telling us "were thru just watch" and he also stated he was going to send our notice that day. but yet at that moment he already had one locked sense DEC and the other 2 locked for the past 2 days without any notice we tell him were going to sue him if he doesn’t open our storage’s. His wife who is also owner says if we can afford to file a case why cant we pay them. But yet never gives us option to pay. so we go directly to police office to talk to the chief. the chief finds out that no officer told the guy we called them. they just assumed and told the cops it had to be us cuss they had been having problems with us not paying which was not true we were infact more then 1/2 caught up. so we call the storage facility and go in there. the manager calls the owners and they say we cannot have our property no matter what. so we currently have no money 3 locked units we are denied access to without any notice of lien or anything at all with a owner saying he is going to sale all of our stuff. The police chief said he cant help us because its civil matter and legal aid advocates cant help us and no lawyers will call us back because we have no money. And sense we store all we sale on eBay and at flea market in storage we also have no way to generate money. we need help because all we own is in there and that is how we make an living. We want to file on Monday if possible so that we can file before he sends notice so we have proof of fact he locked us out ahead of time. And also we have an police report for him threatening us when he said were thru just watch and on friday we served them with an written demand for access to our storage for no less then 14 days which is how long legally we would have once we received an notice in the mail in which they have not even sent yet stating that this is there only notice that they have 3 days to comply or we will take legal action. that we generated on http://www.courts.ca.gov/11145.htm

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
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    OH10
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    13,407

    Default Re: Unlawful Locking of Unit - Self Storage Unit California

    Without specific knowledge of CA law or your contract, I think they can prevent you from having access, if you are delinquent on your bill. I suspect your stuff may be coming to Storage Wars in the near future.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Posts
    9,270

    Default Re: Unlawful Locking of Unit - Self Storage Unit California

    You're defaulted on your rent, they are within their rights to do what they have done. All your mutual allegations about what happened doesn't really alter the base issue.
    Pay up your rent and move out.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Unlawful Locking of Unit - Self Storage Unit California

    ok and what if as i stated they wont accept a payment because they are retaleating against me. and they are also violating the california self storage act by locking my storage . they are suppost to send me notice and wait at least 14 days from date that is noted in notice till they can lock and then if i would like i could appose a lien. but they have not even sent me a lien paper so i cant even apose it. even the local chief of police says its illegal but its civil im just trying to find help on what to file or how to get my property back not money. the california self storage law is [here, sec. 21703]

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
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    73,023

    Default Re: Unlawful Locking of Unit - Self Storage Unit California

    Quote Quoting krazywhyteboi
    View Post
    ok and what if as i stated they wont accept a payment because they are retaleating against me.
    You mean, what if you lie? Then the judge could ask you to put your money where your mouth is, quite literally, by paying what you owe. You already know that the storage unit owner would be happy to accept payment.
    Quote Quoting krazywhyteboi
    they are suppost to send me notice and wait at least 14 days from date that is noted in notice till they can lock and then if i would like i could appose a lien. but they have not even sent me a lien paper so i cant even apose it.
    The notice is not "We'll lock you out if you don't oppose this notice" - it's "We'll lock you out if you don't pay." The law allows you to file a notice in opposition to a lien sale, which will help you protect your property from sale while things are worked out in court (See Sec. 21710). If you file a lawsuit you can try arguing to the court that you should be permitted to access the unit during a properly provided notice period, and that if the owner won't allow you to do so such that you can retrieve your property he should be liable for the value of the property he is improperly keeping out of your hands. I can't promise how a judge will respond to the argument, but given that you say you don't intend to pay your rent your options seem somewhat limited.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    27,025

    Default Re: Unlawful Locking of Unit - Self Storage Unit California

    how about this section:

    21702. The owner of a self-service storage facility and his or herheirs, executors, administrators, successors, and assigns have a lienupon all personal property located at a self-service storagefacility for rent, labor, late payment fees, or other charges,present or future, incurred pursuant to the rental agreement and forexpenses necessary for the preservation, sale, or disposition ofpersonal property subject to the provisions of this chapter. The lienmay be enforced consistent with the provisions in this chapter.
    That says they have a lien simply because your property is there. They do not have to apply for a lien nor do you have the option of contesting it. You can oppose a lien sale but not the lien.

    .we then had a meeting (DEC 15th 2011 ) with the storage owner and made an agreement that we would have till the end of February to catch up
    and the proof of this is?

    if you want the property rather than the money (which is all you would get if the landlord effects an illegal sale of the property) follow the following:

    21709. Prior to any sale pursuant to Section 21707, any personclaiming a right to the goods may pay the amount necessary to satisfythe lien together with one month's rent in advance. In that event,the goods shall not be sold, but shall be retained by the ownerpending a court order directing the disposition of the property. If acourt order is not obtained within 30 days following the date of thepayment pursuant to this section, the claimant shall pay the ownerthe monthly rental charge for the space where the property is storedpursuant to the terms of the rental agreement. If the claimant doesnot pay this rent, the owner may sell or dispose of the personalproperty in accordance with Section 21707. The owner shall have noliability for the sale or other disposition of the personal propertyto any claimant who fails to secure a court order or pay the requiredrental charge as set forth in this section, provided the owner hasfully complied with the requirements of this chapter
    the problem:

    if the landlord is not going to follow the law, there is little you can do to stop them from selling the property within. If they proceed with an illegal sale, you would be able to recover the value of the property illegally sold but you won't get the property back. To keep the property, you are going to have to pay all of what is owed plus a months rent.

  7. #7

    Default Re: Unlawful Locking of a Self Storage Unit in California

    i would gladly pay them , BUT THEY WONT ACCEPT IT! their exact words were NO THEY CANT HAVE THEIR STUFF BACK PERIOD ! - this is what the manager told me. so what do i do now? how do i abtain a court order to get my property released ?? only small claims forms i can find is requesting momey .. i dont want money just my stuff

    i would gladly pay them , BUT THEY WONT ACCEPT IT! their exact words were NO THEY CANT HAVE THEIR STUFF BACK PERIOD ! - this is what the manager told me. so what do i do now? how do i abtain a court order to get my property released ?? only small claims forms i can find is requesting momey .. i dont want money just my stuff

  8. #8
    Join Date
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    OH10
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    Default Re: Unlawful Locking of a Self Storage Unit in California

    You request the police go with you to take a report that you are trying to redeem your possessions, however they are refusing payment in an attempt to steal them. If they refuse, take a few witnesses.

  9. #9
    Join Date
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    Default Re: Unlawful Locking of a Self Storage Unit in California

    Quote Quoting krazywhyteboi
    View Post
    so we currently have no money 3 locked units we are denied access to without any notice of lien or anything at all with a owner saying he is going to sale all of our stuff. The police chief said he cant help us because its civil matter and legal aid advocates cant help us and no lawyers will call us back because we have no money.
    Quote Quoting krazywhyteboi
    View Post
    i would gladly pay them , BUT THEY WONT ACCEPT IT!
    You would pay, but they won't accept the money you don't have?

    If you in fact have the money and they won't accept it, sue them. Then you can honestly tell the court they won't take your money and, if the court suggests you pay right there and then, you can hand the guy the money you owe.

  10. #10

    Default Re: Unlawful Locking of a Self Storage Unit in California

    your right when i first wrote this we didnt have the money but ... now we do . i am on my way to the office now ... to attempt to pay the out standing bill .... but if they still wont except the money do you know what form or how i go about filing a law suit ???

    (little more detail
    i have a copy of the contract the manager gave me this morning .. i have been payin 100 for one unit and 115 for the other two per month.. but the contract states my units are only $80 each per month. ? i have recepits for the amounts i have been paying! for the last few yrs .

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