Which? If any, House Insurance or Small Claims - Lucas Lord

I recently lost a project that I had been working on for over a year via theft.

Trouble is, it wasn't insured. This is because where I'd usually keep it, is very secure and no harm would have come to it.

In a bid to get the last feb tweeks done by and expert (and related via marriage although only met him a few times). This involved movin my project to his home so that he could do it in his spare time, with little to no costs for me to pay. (I appreciate that)

However whilst in his possession, it was stolen and after speaking with the police who have been errr pants, even despite me doing half their job by tracing the theives movements via good citizens and owners alowed me to review the cctv and tracked them for a short while only stopping due to some places (understandable) preferred the police contacting them.

Its and awkward situation because I'd like to see if he could claim from his house insurance, but this may cause family rifts, but i think this happen anyway as I'm six thousand pounds out of pocket.

My only other thought is if I'm likey to win if I took this to a small claims court.

any advice please?

Which? If any, House Insurance or Small Claims - RobJP

Insurance claim.

Who on earth would you be claiming against in Small Claims court ?

Which? If any, House Insurance or Small Claims - Lucas Lord

........

Edited by Lucas Lord on 21/09/2017 at 21:57

Which? If any, House Insurance or Small Claims - Lucas Lord

Is that important?

If I'd have put the engine in, it would’ve been much more.

Luckily I still have it at my unit and will have to find anothe she'll, not to mention the interior work that I'd done.

I'm just looking at what I could do if worst comes to the worst.

I

Which? If any, House Insurance or Small Claims - RobJP

If you're going to make a Small Claim court claim, then it has to be against someone - you are the plaintiff, they are the defendant.

So my question is that : If it was going to be a Small Claims case, then who would you list as the person you were claiming money from ?

Which? If any, House Insurance or Small Claims - Lucas Lord

I'd be looking to claim off their (person who was working on it and in possession of it) house insurance (it was on there drive of his home) if they're not able to, then as a last resort take him/them to small claims court.

Sorry if my response came across rude, but I just can't afford to loose that money as the this was a project for my parents for their upcoming wedding anniversary, so extremely emotional at the moment.

Thank you

Which? If any, House Insurance or Small Claims - RobJP

No need to apologise - my question may not have been phrased as clearly as it could have been.

As far as I see it, the problems with an insurance claim :

It was parked on the drive. It didn't have it's own policy. It's 'easily mobile', so should have done.

Basically, if you didn't have a car insurance policy in place and it got stolen off your own drive, then you wouldn't expect your house insurance to pay out - it's buildings 'and contents' insurance. Which a policy may have garden items cover on - if the lawnmower, etc is stolen - but only if an additional premium is paid and the goods were securely locked up.

As to making a Small Claims court claim, you'd have to show that the person didn't exercise 'reasonable care' of the goods. And I don't think you'd be able to do so - they could quite easily argue that you didn't take any 'reasonable care' by not having an insurance policy in place.

Sorry to say this, but I think you're going to struggle with either case.

Which? If any, House Insurance or Small Claims - Lucas Lord

The person who had possession at the time of theft also has a caravan, so thought they may have some kind of cover that may differ to the usual insurance.

They were fully aware that if not secured or blocked in properly and that it wasn't insured. My argument is, that he didn't properly take care of it despite knowledge of these risks.

He wouldn't have left HIS car/trailer/caravan so vulnerable, so why leave mine so exposed.

I didn't really have the money in the first place, I used part of my funding from a student loan (I'm a student) and had struggled through almost 2 years in order plan and pay for this.

Thank you for your advice.

Which? If any, House Insurance or Small Claims - RobJP

A house insurance policy can be extended to cover a caravan when parked at home. A car insurance policy will cover the same when it's out on the road being towed.

The house insurance policy won't cover YOUR car parked there, just as it wouldn't cover your (usual) car parked there overnight if it was stolen. Your normal car insurance policy would provide cover in such a case. Though if (for example) the house burnt down and your car was destroyed in the fire, your insurer would then look to claim off the house insurer to recover their costs. But it would still be YOU, claiming off YOUR insurance.

In this case, however, you failed to insure your goods. Unless you can show that the other person was 'grossly negligent' in their care of your property then the responsibility for footing the bill for it's loss falls squarely on you. They, in return, could quite easily argue that you were 'grossly negligent' by failing to insure your property.

You've spent thousands on doing the job, but weren't willing to spend £100 (or possibly even less, it's a non-moving project car, so no on-road liability required) on an insurance policy. You 'not really having the money in the first place' is completely irrelevant to liability.

You gambled by not taking out insurance - and lost the bet.

Your goods, your responsibility to insure those goods. Certainly not the responsibility of someone who was doing you a favour by doing work on it for free.

Which? If any, House Insurance or Small Claims - FP

"They were fully aware that if not secured or blocked in properly and that it wasn't insured. My argument is, that he didn't properly take care of it despite knowledge of these risks."

If you were making a claim against this person, clearly what you have put above is the key to what you believe is the other person's responsibility.

I think you would struggle to make this one stick. Just because you have been given parking space on someone else's property it doesn't mean that the property owner has any "duty of care". You might have a case if the person concerned had deliberately facilitated the theft, but this takes things into a totally different area legally.

As a footnote, I agree with Rob that the property owner's house and contents insurance won't cover this. And I agree that you have cut corners in protecting your assets. The golden rule when considering whether to insure something is to consider the question: could I afford to replace the item out of my own pocket or not?

I'm very sorry that we can't offer you any comfort, but maybe there is some food for thought here should you be in a similar position in the future.

Edited by FP on 22/09/2017 at 10:28

Which? If any, House Insurance or Small Claims - TedCrilly

Go and talk with a solicitor, a real one!

Which? If any, House Insurance or Small Claims - Palcouk

And threw good money after bad with a solicitor.

The OP faied to insure the property/car The person on whose drive it was parked has no duty of care (Unless it was driverable and they left the keys in it)

Edited by Palcouk on 22/09/2017 at 14:38

Which? If any, House Insurance or Small Claims - RobJP

And threw good money after bad with a solicitor.

The OP faied to insure the property/car The person on whose drive it was parked has no duty of care (Unless it was driverable and they left the keys in it)

Agreed.

If a friend of mine left their car at my house while they were away on holiday, and it got nicked, I'd expect them to claim on their insurance. Nothing at all to do with me, or my house insurance.

The fact that I've got a farm quad bike (locked up in a shed) and 2 Ivor Wms trailers (both secured) is irrelevant. I'm under no duty to secure their property to the level I secure mine to.

(Minor edit) : If, for example, they left the keys with me and I was going to do a few jobs on it, then I'd be under more of a duty of care. To lock the car. To make sure the keys were put away safely. But that's all.

Edited by RobJP on 22/09/2017 at 15:17

Which? If any, House Insurance or Small Claims - TedCrilly

I am on the face of it inclined to agree. However I guess it all depends on the OP and how much he values the definitive answer from a legal professional as opposed to heresay and the opinions of anonymous non-professionals

To me there would be no contest but hey........people are different.

Which? If any, House Insurance or Small Claims - Lucas Lord

I've spoken to a solicitor on the phone, who said I may be able to claim, but that's a solicitor who will want £100+vat to sit down and discuss. To me it soulds like he wants me to come in a pay for him to say otherwise.

What some of the guys have said seems legit, so maybe I should just let it go.

Thanks guys.

Which? If any, House Insurance or Small Claims - stevek
Let it go. If it went to court you will have to say why you did not insure it whilst outside the secure storage area. It is not a third partys responsibility to insure your goods.
The only way you could possibly move forward is if the third party was negligent in any way, i.e left it unlocked, keys in ignition etc. But I suspect this will be hard to prove if it were true.
Thats my view on it.
Which? If any, House Insurance or Small Claims - galileo
Let it go. If it went to court you will have to say why you did not insure it whilst outside the secure storage area. It is not a third partys responsibility to insure your goods. The only way you could possibly move forward is if the third party was negligent in any way, i.e left it unlocked, keys in ignition etc. But I suspect this will be hard to prove if it were true. Thats my view on it.

The OP stated there was no engine in it, so keys in the ignition would make no difference.

Which? If any, House Insurance or Small Claims - Gutted Guy

I have a very similar case with my catering trailer. My GF's brother in law took my trailer to do some work on it (adaptions) it was being changed so that my GF could use it and work was being done free.

Similar to OP I had no need to insure at my unit and would have stayed there safe. My GF and B.I.L transported the trailer to his drive. The handbrake wasn't functioning as it should, which he mentioned to me, even stating how easy it could be to steal.

My question is...if he was aware of this, why didn't he make it secure like jacking it up and taking the wheels off??

I understand it's my fault it wasn't insured. They were both aware of this and trusted that they would take care of my property and sort insurance if she was going to trade in it.

Would I be able to take either or both to court.....I understand this would be the end of my relationship, but they both don't seem to be bothered or offered any money or apologies.

Which? If any, House Insurance or Small Claims - RobJP

I have a very similar case with my catering trailer. My GF's brother in law took my trailer to do some work on it (adaptions) it was being changed so that my GF could use it and work was being done free.

Similar to OP I had no need to insure at my unit and would have stayed there safe. My GF and B.I.L transported the trailer to his drive. The handbrake wasn't functioning as it should, which he mentioned to me, even stating how easy it could be to steal.

My question is...if he was aware of this, why didn't he make it secure like jacking it up and taking the wheels off??

I understand it's my fault it wasn't insured. They were both aware of this and trusted that they would take care of my property and sort insurance if she was going to trade in it.

Would I be able to take either or both to court.....I understand this would be the end of my relationship, but they both don't seem to be bothered or offered any money or apologies.

Your property, your responsibility.

He has told you, as clear as day, that it would be easy to steal.

If you are then so negligeng as to do nothing about it, then the blame rests on you. Why should he do stuff, when you can't be bothered ? He sees you not caring about your property, so why should he care about it either ?

Which? If any, House Insurance or Small Claims - Gutted Guy

I gave it to her/them to help get her back on her feet.

I was doing her the favour of giving my trailer to her to make some money.

Put it this way, if it was the other way around, I'd have done my upmost to protect it and make it harder as it's in my care and would feel responsible for it.

If it happened, I'd try and claim from my house insurance or something to help them get some kind of compensation.

Maybe I'm too nice and naive.

Which? If any, House Insurance or Small Claims - RobJP

Ah. As you just pointed out, you GAVE it to her. In fact, you say it twice.

I gave it to her/them to help get her back on her feet.

I was doing her the favour of giving my trailer to her to make some money.

Not your trailer any more. No different to giving ... well, anything, to anyone. You might like to think, you might hope that they'll look after it.

But it is hers, to do with as she sees fit.

Which? If any, House Insurance or Small Claims - TedCrilly

To answer the question......

Certain members of this forum who are not legal professionals say no

At least one lgenuine legal professional says maybe.

The next move is yours.

Which? If any, House Insurance or Small Claims - RobJP

I think you might want to carrect that : One legal professional says "I'll say maybe on the phone, but you'll have to pay me £100 +VAT to give you a proper answer"

In the case of the second person, he says, quite clearly, that he GAVE the trailer to his g/f. He says it twice.

If he thinks he has any legal rights to it, then he's living in cloud cuckoo land.

Which? If any, House Insurance or Small Claims - TedCrilly

Are you aware of all the details surrounding the issue and are you knowledgeable and qualified enough to give sound legal advice based on a couple of sentences?

You really should extend these people a courtesy and place a disclaimer at the end of each your statements. Something like ......

Please note: "Anything I say is based on personal opinion, not legal principle. There is no substitute for professional advice"

That should do it.

Which? If any, House Insurance or Small Claims - FP

We've had people questioning the legal status of advice given in this part of the forum before. I think it's generally understood that we are all non-professionals who are interested in legal matters. As such, advice is offered informally. There's no point in starting an argument about how good the advice is and whether a solicitor is a better bet.

Which? If any, House Insurance or Small Claims - RobJP

Are you aware of all the details surrounding the issue and are you knowledgeable and qualified enough to give sound legal advice based on a couple of sentences?

You really should extend these people a courtesy and place a disclaimer at the end of each your statements. Something like ......

Please note: "Anything I say is based on personal opinion, not legal principle. There is no substitute for professional advice"

That should do it.

No, I don't have all the details. By it's very nature, this forum is one side of an argument. In addition, the question could be a highly embellished version of events.

I'm also not a solicitor.

However, the last two letters of my username, as well as being the initials of my second and surname (my name is Robert J... P.........), are also the (voluntary, unpaid) job that I did on a part-time basis for over a decade, until the local Magistrate's Court closed in 2013.

So I probably have a reasonable idea on how a court would rule in such a case. I saw similar cases on a few occasions.

In one of the cases (as an example), the plaintiff stood up in court and swore that he'd lent an old car to his girlfriend, and at the breakup had expected it to be returned. It wasn't, and he was claiming the value of the car back from her.

Unfortunately for him, she still had the same phone, and on it, in a text as clear as day, was the word 'give' regarding the car.

Just as, in the second case here, the person says, quite clearly, that he GAVE the car to his g/f. He says it twice.

In a magistrates court, that would be the equivalent of a smoking gun. It's clear, irrefutable evidence of where possession of the goods actually lies. It was a gift. Ownership was transferred, and it cannot be claimed back, only voluntarily given back.

So yes, to both of the original people on here, go get professional legal advice. Pay for it. But you're unlikely to hear any good news, and it's most likely to be a case of throwing more money away.

Which? If any, House Insurance or Small Claims - Gutted Guy

Ok, maybe a poor choice of words.

I loaned/lent it, either way, I wanted it back or if she made a success of it, could've bought it off me in instalments.

Which? If any, House Insurance or Small Claims - FP

If there is no clear proof (e.g. a signed document), establishing the status of what you claim is your property could well be a problem. You may be clear in your mind, but a court (if you're involved in legal action) will want proof.

Edited by FP on 28/09/2017 at 15:31

Which? If any, House Insurance or Small Claims - galileo

Ok, maybe a poor choice of words.

I loaned/lent it, either way, I wanted it back or if she made a success of it, could've bought it off me in instalments.

As pointed out above , you have clearly stated you GAVE it to them, that is not the same as loaned/lent. Unless you have written evidence you wanted it back, you have no case.

 

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