Consumer Protection Law
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The only possible explanation for this theft is that there is a dishonest employee working at the bank (it would be very difficult for a member of the general public to get into the box because of the security procedures to even get into the room where the safe deposit boxes are kept). Because of this, the bank and the police will need some time to investigate the matter to see if they can determine who the dishonest employee is. If the bank is unable to make that determination, then you should be prepared for the bank to refuse to pay the claim to you and to turn around and make accusations at you and your wife again just as the police did in your first interview. Because of the secure nature of these boxes, the only way the bank will permit any recovery is if they are able to find a thief in their employees and if they are unable to do so after a reasonable length of time and you then are getting no further information, then I strongly suggest that you contact a local attorney who can prepare and file a lawsuit against the bank for the loss or theft of your property. Legally, if the property was in their possession and now it is gone then the bank is negligent and a court will most likely make them pay for the claim unless they have some hard evidence that either you or your wife were involved (I am not saying that you are -- I am saying that the bank is going to get more and more aggressive in their accusations against you and your wife if they are unable to locate a thief in their own employees in a reasonable amount of time). You need a lawyer who specializes in insurance property claims (that way you can look into a claim with your house insurance as well as the banks insurance). A very good part of a claim in your case will be the fact that this happened to someone else recently and if you have their contact information then your lawyer may even be able to bring claims against the bank for the both of you together (and possibly find even more people who have had the same thing happen to them). Here is a link to the lawyer referral service in your county -- they can give you several names of lawyers to speak with and you can then choose one that you are the most comfortable with for this case -- http://www.getareferral.com/Alameda_County_Lawyers.cfm
Please let me know if you have further questions.
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Hi Madam Leagalease,
Thank you for your response.
The case now went to detectives and they called me and my wife and held a preliminary interview and they have asked same questions as were asked by the police but in a much polite and elegant manner.
We do not have any updates on the case yet after that.
We have learned that the other victim when returned the call from detectives received an answer saying that they would call them in a week or so.
At this point of time, do you want us to proceed and approach the insurance based attorney from your suggested link or wait for a preliminary response from Bank/Detectives?
Some friends are also suggesting to hire a private detective?
Your thoughts would be greatly appreciated.
Hello again RK -
We do not represent customers in an offline capacity - it is against the rules of the website and not a personal decision. The link I gave to you above for the Alameda County attorney referral service is for you to contact an attorney in your local area -- you have to go to their website and call them and ask for a referral to an attorney who handles such banking matters.
At this point you may want to wait a few weeks to see if the detectives get back to you or the other people who had the same problem -- if there is a dishonest employee, then it will take them a while to catch that person (it will not happen overnight). If you do not hear from the detectives after a few weeks then you should contact a local attorney through the website I referred you to in order to take up a claim against the bank.
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