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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 69542
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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Hi, I had my caravan stored on what was meant to be a proper

Customer Question

Hi,

I had my caravan stored on what was meant to be a proper storage site near where I live. It was meant to have full security including cctv, patrols, guard dogs etc. Recently they had a break-in at the site causing damage and theft from about ten of the caravans including ours. We had damage and internal and external fittings stolen to the amount of about £2000.

The break-in was discovered late the following day by the owners, despite guard dogs and regular patrols and was then reported to the police. On my asking the owners what was found on their cctv coverage they admitted they did not have working cctv stating that a tenant operating from another business at the site had turned it off.

We let them know had we known they were not in charge of the running of their cctv and were totally reliant on someone from another unrelated business being in charge of it as well as other discrepancies in their security then we would not have stored our caravan at their facility. We told the owners we thought them responsible for the cost of damage and losses to our caravan. They then told me in no uncertain terms that I had to remove my caravan from their facility with immediate effect.

I have since written to them on two occasions stating that I think them responsible for costs and listed the cost of repairs and replaced item. I also stated if necessary I would claim through the small claims court if we could not come to settlement. They have acknowledged the two letters but are not willing to settle.

Do you think I have case. I can show with good evidence massive discrepancies in their security as well them admitting they had no working CCTV.

Regards ***** *****
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
Hi.

Thank you for your question. My name is ***** ***** I will try to help with this.

Are you paying for secure storage or just storage? How was this sold to you at the time you booked?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

I booked one month storage at the facility at £5 per week and paid £20 cash. This has been acknowledged in a reply to one of my letters. They make quite a big thing about only charging £5 per week. We only intended keeping the van in the UK for a week before keeping it permanent on friends holiday site in France.

Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
okay.

So is this secure storage? Is this how it is sold to you?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Yes secure storage, full security cctv guard dogs and regular patrols

Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
Thank you.

The starting point with these things is that nobody is liable for the acts of third parties and in particular their criminal acts.

The reason that you do have a claim here is that this company appeared to have represented to you that if you paid X sum various security measures would have been available and they were not so it is a simple matter of breach. That is certainly easier argument to raise but the problem may be that it would only attract repayment of the sums that you had paid them.

The other alternative is to sue them for the sum of the stolen items on the basis that they became baillees and so under a duty to take care of them. That isn't such a strong point as the first but is an option for you that may well succeed.

Of course, the practical reality is that if you issue against them they may well settle to get rid of the matter so would be worth considering. That is so not least because this is a Small Claims Court sum and so cheap enough to issue and they will not want to waste their resources upon defending this.

I do think that you need to warm them though of your intention to sue if they do not act by a certain date.

Can I clarify anything for you?

Jo
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 69542
Experience: Over 5 years in practice
Jo C. and other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Thanks for your help, we did state in our last letter our intention to sue through the small claims court we did not state by what date, we will now rectify this and get on with the claim.


 


Regards ***** *****

Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
No problem and all the best.

Remember that I am always available to help with your questions. Even if I am in Court I will usually pick up a question within 12 hours. For future information, please start your question with ‘For Jo C’. You can also bookmark my profile http://www.justanswer.co.uk/law/expert-remus2004/

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