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MDLaw
MDLaw, Attorney
Category: Business Law
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Experience:  Experience in business law, contract law and related matters.
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If insurance is not required, in the event that my pawned goods

Customer Question

If insurance is not required, in the event that my pawned goods are stolen, what is the reasonable standard of care?
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Business Law
Expert:  Barrister replied 4 years ago.
Hello,

A pawning relationship is considered a bailor/bailee relationship with the pawnbroker being the bailee. The bailee in a pawnbroker relationship is strictly liable for the items once they have taken physical possession of them from the bailor. If they are damaged or stolen, the pawnbroker is liable to the bailor for the cost of repairing/replacing the items. If the pawnbroker does not carry insurance to cover theft or damage, they do so at their own peril.
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Thanks.

Barrister

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Please keep in mind that I am trying to help you understand and resolve your situation. I don't make the laws, I am just reporting or interpreting them, so the outcome may not be what you had hoped for.

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Please be patient as I am typically working with several customers at any given time. Some answers take 5 minutes, some 35 minutes, depending on the level of complexity. But rest assured, I will get back with you as soon as I am able.

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If you need additional clarification on this question, just click "Reply" and I will be happy to help you. Please give me as much detail as you can so that I can respond after receiving all the relevant details.

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Please be aware that I am not entering into an attorney client relationship, this is a public forum, and all posts are available for public viewing. There is no duty of confidentiality that attaches to any posts. With that in mind, please do not post any specific information you do not want available for public viewing. The information provided is not a substitute for a local attorney’s legal advice.

Customer: replied 4 years ago.
A pawnbroker is liable for the theft of pledged property ONLY if the theft was occasioned by the pledgee's failure to exercise ordinary care and diligence in safeguarding the pledged property. Laing v Blumauer (1880) 1 NY City Ct 238
Expert:  Barrister replied 4 years ago.
2009 LAWS OF NEW YORK
GENERAL BUSINESS
ARTICLE 5 – COLLATERAL LOAN BROKERS
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"This article is not to be construed as in any manner limiting or affecting such collateral loan broker's common law liability in cases where goods are stolen or other legal defects of title exist in the pledgor."
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I would opine that this 2009 law would overrule the 1880 case you cited.
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.

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Thanks.

Barrister

.

Please keep in mind that I am trying to help you understand and resolve your situation. I don't make the laws, I am just reporting or interpreting them, so the outcome may not be what you had hoped for.

.
Please be patient as I am typically working with several customers at any given time. Some answers take 5 minutes, some 35 minutes, depending on the level of complexity. But rest assured, I will get back with you as soon as I am able.

.

If you need additional clarification on this question, just click "Reply" and I will be happy to help you. Please give me as much detail as you can so that I can respond after receiving all the relevant details.

.

Please be aware that I am not entering into an attorney client relationship, this is a public forum, and all posts are available for public viewing. There is no duty of confidentiality that attaches to any posts. With that in mind, please do not post any specific information you do not want available for public viewing. The information provided is not a substitute for a local attorney’s legal advice.

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Another slightly less old case: A pawnbroker fully overcame any presumption of negligence arising from his failure to deliver a ring in compliance with the pawnor's demand, Seiden v Stern (1916) 95 Misc 255, 159 NYS, where the pawnbroker showed that the ring was in a safe stolen by robbers who entered the store and took the safe and other goods at gun point.

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Common law liability is not defined in "not to be construed as limiting or affecting such collateral loan broker's common law liability where goods are stolen" In other words, if the common law is that exercising ordinary care precludes liability, I don't understand how GEN'L BUSINESS ART. 5 would mean that broker is not liable.

Expert:  Barrister replied 4 years ago.
That does raise an interesting point...

I will opt out an maybe another expert will have some alternate thoughts on the matter.

Thanks
Barrister
Expert:  MDLaw replied 4 years ago.
What additional information are you seeking?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
thank you
Expert:  MDLaw replied 4 years ago.
I assume that means you do not need any additional information? Shall I have this question closed by the mods?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

I need to know what cause of action to use against the broker if it is not negligence. If negligence can be used, is the std of care "ordinary and reasonable" or is the std "absolute liability"?

Expert:  MDLaw replied 4 years ago.
Either one can be argued but obviously, you want to argue the side that is most favorable to you which would be absolute liability. It would be the pawnbroker who would want to argue that the standard is only ordinary and reasonable care. That is how litigation works. Each side presents to the court the argument as to why their legal standard should be the correct one.
MDLaw, Attorney
Category: Business Law
Satisfied Customers: 6133
Experience: Experience in business law, contract law and related matters.
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