Hi! LegalGems here. My goal: To Do My Best To Assist You. Please remember, I can only provide general information,as this is a public forum.
Generally, in order to dispose of another's property, one would need to have this option as a term and condition of the contract. If they felt that the furniture was not of satisfactory condition, the proper action would be to notify the owner unless the contract specified what to do in such a situation. If a party disposes of property without permission, they are generally liable for the fair market value of the property. Did the contract state what the property was worth, or is there any way in which you can prove its value?
Sadly, the contract did not state a value and all we currently have is a photo of the piece.
A photo should be sufficient to get a third party appraisal - that would help establish value. Presumably, being over 100 years old, it would be worth the nominal $20 they are offering.
You can also ask for the cost of the appraisal if you end up going to small claims.
I understand that mistakes are made but the incredibly unprofessional manner in which it was handled has me more motivated to actually make a claim. Thank you for your help and happy July 4th!
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