I'm not sure how to answer that question, if the goods are actually his then so be it I will give them back but it feels like they are not given everything that I have looked at so far. If I rented a house and then left some stuff in it at the end of the term the landlord would be entitled to keep it, sell it or whatever. Surely if these guys rented the premises and the stuff is left there and it is not listed on an inventory or mentioned anywhere else in any form of agreement then the same rules would apply. They are paying rent and he is just expecting to store his fridges and shelves and freezers and desks etc. that's rubbish surely. He cant say it still belongs to him 6 years later. The other partners are of a view that those items were part of his contribution to the partnership. The business failed and it owes money, they are selling its assets to clear the business debts how is thatwrong and why should I loose out?
I would like to know what legislation would cover this kind of situation. This guy has a reputation for scaring people with letters from lawyers and just walking away with their money or stuff or whatever. Its just not right surely :(
Has he provided any proof?
proof of what exactly?
Of ownership of shelving?
You purchased it, do you have a receipt?
it is clear that he bought the shelving in 2006 but there is no trail of what has been happening to them since then
my view would be that he has simply left them at the shop as part of his contribution to the partnership
surely he cant just leave them there for 6 years with no paperwork to say that they are his and then simply step in and say he wants them back?
Yes but you have a receipt or evidence of payment?
Yes I think it is reasonable that he paid for them in 2006, that could not be in question.
But when you purchased them you have evidence?
sorry are you refering to me having evidence of MY purchase of the shelves from the business?
sorry, yes i have a purchase agreement
When did he 'lend' them to the business?
he is aware of my desire to purchase them and at the time of purchase I wrote to him and asked him to confirm that he was happy to sell them. His lawyer stated that he had "no interest in stock and associated matters". I then went back again and he said the same thing.
he knew I was buying them and made no effort to claim ownership at that time
You have this in writing?
in an email from his lawyer yes
Ok - then I do not think it is an issue.
He knew your interest, he said he was not bothered about them
One would have expected at that stage he said, oh no, they are mine
He did not,
You went onto purchase them
I have sent his lawyer this information and he says it is irrelevant, that he was not referring to the shelving he was refering to the stock. But he knows how much I paid and that figure included the shelving in the calculation
He has not shown proof of ownership or that it was lent to the business
Therefore on this basis I think there is no claim
If there is it is between the ex partners and him
the calculation was clear
Can I clarify anything for you about this today please?
is the interference with goods act relevant here?
No, because one would have expected an objection far earlier on
I cannot find any legal reference to what happens when a premise is leased and the landlord leave property on the site
It would have been reasonable to object when he knew your interest
i get that logic it is where i started from, however, do I have any legal cover for that assumption
Yes because in effect he gave up his right. But in any event he has not provided proof he owns it and not provided proof that he lent it to the company
The burden is on HIM to show this
Not you to disprove it
So the burden of proof of ownership is his? can I insist on seeing a legal document / contract. The fact that he bought themin 2006 is not sufficient proof that he owns them now.
I took the view that when he determined the "he had no interest in stock or associated matters" that he essentially made the other partners bailee in respcet of those goods and they were free to dispose of them as they say fit.
hence my consideration of the interference of goods act
Yes all burden is on him
although as i say they maintain that these goods were his contribution to the partnership
He still needs to prove all this.
can I insist on a legal document or can he just say that he lent them and thats the end of the conversation?
He can't just say he lent them. If it went to Court he would have to PROVE it
i know im labouring the point but can he rely on a verbal contract if one existed which I am told it did not. It would come down to his word against the other partners and as third party I would be kind of stuffed and he WILL claim costs against me if I fail in court
he has a lot of moeny and I do not :)
If there is a verbal contract he would need EVIDENCE of this, ie the person he agreed it with
that is what I figured :)
sorry to be a pain here I know you want to head off. This is a small thing but its important to me and could crucify my business. Many thanks for your time :)
Can I clarify anything else for you about this?
I think you have gone above and beyond allready :)
Thanks. Can I help with anything else today?
you can wish me luck :) he really does not like to loose
he has a lot of money and a lot of lawyers
Good luck of course.
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You asked when he "lent" the goods to the business. This was back in 2006. Does the period of time have any relevence. I need all the arguments i can get?