How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Richard - Bizlaw Your Own Question
Richard - Bizlaw
Richard - Bizlaw, Attorney
Category: Landlord-Tenant
Satisfied Customers: 9850
Experience:  Commercial and residential leases in NY & NJ & US
18695994
Type Your Landlord-Tenant Question Here...
Richard - Bizlaw is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

On what grounds do I sue a landlord for selling and

Customer Question

On what grounds do I sue a landlord for selling and disposing of officially appraised assets she agreed to liquidate valued more then $30k on a debt of 20k. landlord also put a writ of attachment on my assets for $80k some of the items in writ are still in her possession. The Landlord attorney admits they removes the appraised value in order to get writ . , I belive attorney and landlord manipulated values of assets to interfere in a insurance settlement talks with her former Tenant that sued me . Landlord had no grounds to sue because she was fairly compensated with assets she agreed to liquidate. I think its wrongful writ attachment ? I'm trying to amend a cross complaint I don't know if its fraud , conversion and malicious persecution . I also understand that I have to argue the writ separate from the Lawsuit .
JA: Because laws vary from place to place, can you tell me what state this is in?
Customer: California and its a commercial lease anything in building woth 700 or mor has to be auctioned and put toward debt . I know its lots also want to add my insurance settled with her former tenant leaving me In pro per at the last minuet . Now that she has no hopes of getting insurance Landlord wants to dismiss lawsuit and me to dismiss cross claim . problem is landlord interfered with settlements for years and bankrupted me .
JA: Has anything been filed or reported?
Customer: yes she sued me as a partner for breach of contact . Im not her former tenants partner . I signed my own lease she terminated his . I counter sued her for breach of contract and quit enjoyment.
JA: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: she sued me for breach of contract and contamination .
Submitted: 13 days ago.
Category: Landlord-Tenant
Expert:  Richard - Bizlaw replied 12 days ago.

Hello, my name is Richard-Bizlaw and I will try to help you. Please remember I just report or interpret the law, so the outcome may not be what you hoped for.

If you were not the tenant, why were your assets attached? If the landlord liquidated assets in payment of debt owed to the landlord, why wasn't there an accounting to show how much of the debt remained unpaid?

Customer: replied 11 days ago.
I feel landlord has stolen from me under this guise of making me her former tenant’s partner. Is this is malicious prosecution? I believe she has several motives , tax , insurance claim .No landlord will not credit me. Even though in California Landlord commercial lease law where it says landlord can’t dispose of items worth (Cal. Civ. Code §§ 1946 - 1951.4,1980-1991) more than $700 without auction. Landlord and attorney finally confessed in a letter they removed the values to the official Appraisal. This appraisal was court appointed . Landlord agreed to the liquidation. she tried to blame dead defendant landlord let back on property after I left on taking assets . but the landlord master lease contacted us both and said some Items are around $5500 she has an attachment lien on these very same items. So she now is trying to claim her master lessee even though Master leasee says she had her friend remove truckloads of items after her former tenant vacated.
I think another important issue or question is do I have to submit fully amend cross-complaint? Or can I leave to amend complaint be suffice. Judge said for me to Amend Cross complaint, but I don’t want to submit an incomplete or incorrect amended complaint and risk getting denied. Do I add the new claims like civil conspiracy, conversion or causes like failure to mitigate, and unclean hands? I was left in Pro Per Nov. 2 by insurance attorney’s when they settled related Claim without my consent. Trial is Dec 2. I’m having trouble finding an attorney at last minute. Judge and clerks are just in a rush push lawsuit out. Judge fails to realize or see the writ of attachment caused cause me tremendous damage the way the case is labeled and it being filed in different courthouses. Judge failed to even see and didn't know I had cross complaint until I refused to dismiss cross complaint against Plaintiff landlord. The Defendant (LL former tenant & alleged partner) died last year but somehow the lawsuit remained open for a year case law supports a civil case is suppose to be dismissed after 90 days when no estate representative appointed . I'm not the defendant's partner and landlord writ is fraudulent she terminated alleged partners lease before I signed a lease, And alleged partner was not on property for 1.5 years after, Landlord was compensated with assets for back rent owed do to her former tenant's lawsuit and invalid Injunction tro against me. All parties agreed to the liquidation.Landlord also claims contamination damages in writ . the Landlord's father built building and operated business with hazards contamination for 50 + years. I’m getting charged for decades of contamination via a former business associate who rented building 7 years before I did. I didn’t even conduct the same type of business. The Landlord is even charging me for removal of 40 year old asbestos tile.I really need attorney but no one will touch this . Is it possible to find an attorney who can just write a motion to leave to amend complaint . The problem is i've been bankrupted by years of this lawsuits my parents offered to help pay for one attorney. my Insurance agent said i have to sue my insurance company. because they colluded with landlord
Expert:  Richard - Bizlaw replied 11 days ago.

Before I attempt to answer your question, I need to be sure that I understand the facts.

A former tenant owed the landlord back rent. That tenant had assets in the rental space that was valued by a court appraiser at over $30K. The debt owed by the former tenant was about $20K. You entered into a new lease for the premises and the landlord was to liquidate the old tenant's assets to pay the back rent owed the landlord. The landlord ignored the appraised value of the property and took the property away.

The landlord then claimed that you were the partner of the former tenant and sought and obtained a writ of attachment against your assets claiming that you owed her $80K. Is this $80K based on a new debt or some other debt to the old tenant?

You are challenging the writ of attachment and have filed a counterclaim against the landlord that you would like to amend to include all the potential claims you have against her.

If my understanding is not correct please let me know how it is not correct.

Customer: replied 11 days ago.
landlords former tenant who was there before me leased the space 7 years . 2004-2011 . I stated working with this former tenant in a work barter agreement .. for antique equipment that I restore and resale . There is some type of law for this people can trade or work for art and antiques because the value is undetermined. The former tenant is sick and has many finance, health, and tax problems and was thousand behind on rent .. The landlord terminated his lease late 2011 and her son told her to ask me to take on lease after I had helpd tenant catch up on back rent early 2012 . I agreed to a month to month lease. Land lord says she wants a year leas and i mention to her in email that it would be contingent on that her former tenant and i sign some type of agreement / partnership , but then months later it was determined that I couldn't be partner to her former tenant because of pending tax seizure and i didn't want his liabilities . I signed lease as a sole proprietor a separate business that I had to get approved by the county because I deal with antiques they run a background check to make sure you don't deal stolen good. shortly after signing lease Former tenant has to have surgery we get old agreement notarized ( had typed it out May of 2011) to submit in his medical record to establish business relationship this was days after I signed lease but his surgery was scheduled for a month. because he has no family around and he needs an advance directive and Dnr , some times business partners or work relationships can fill for family. and it would only be temporary until after his cancer treatment done. 2 weeks later county tax enforcer tells us we cant be partners and his tax agreement is pending , i let them know we had signed an agreement / partnership they said that we could just use it to prove work agreement and that that assets could be transferred to me in a standard county asset transfer agreement . Don't get me wrong tenant is no angel x convict , x crack addict and still alcoholic. Building is a hazard and was used for decades of plastic and trucking by landlords father . landlord father originally leased to the defendant . Landlord took on managing property 2008.so tenant signs asset transfer agreement to me , but still is having to many problems and is becoming more dangerous to himself and other . during all of this he is also suppose to be retiring out or vacating business because he owed me more then what the equipment was worth . for almost 3 years of work . I have to ask tenant to leave do to his health and all of the other problems mention plus the land lord starts saying she gave the lease to me and she did not want her former tenant there and he couldn't be in building unsupervised. Tenant leaves May 2012. a year later tenant had made a deal with museum who tried to get the asset transfer agreement avoided so they can take items, Then places injunction on me freezing all my assets . at the same time landlord was suppose to pass on building to master lessee , he was paying her for the whole facility she said it was on Master lessee to give me lease i was 2 months behind on rent , two month later tro injunction is still in place and my insurance company starts talking with landlord and says they will cover some rent . . Landlord starts to get greedy and decides she is going to charge me almost double then what the master leasor was paying so i went from 9600 to 19 k in rent due. Court appoints a liquidation of assets in dispute and landlord would be paid for backrent . My insurance attorneys work out agreement with landlord to have liquidation we have a court appointed appraisal. the appraisal was 64k . the back rent do is 19k but its really like 12k . so I leave around 28k - 30k in assets just incase for clean up and storage. Land lord send me statement sign where is says her tenant is former partner and that landlord will let tenant back in to pick up personal items. My insurance attorneys modify and say that any items sold would go towards debt. I vacate building after I clean it up. Landlord lets former tenant in for weeks un supervised nd lets him take most items . then in may 2014 landlord sues him and me as his partner and doesn't serve me but but attachment. on the very items I left in her possession to liquidate. Dec 2014 landlord master lessee contacts me and says Items are still there . the items are worth 5600 she then levey mey storage for the items in her possession and hold my stuff there a year until I have 20k in storage due then when i wont sign it over she tells bankruptcy judge to sell it., she has no judgement this is a prejudgment lien. so I let bankruptcy dismissed after all the assets are auction because felt it would be safer get judgment then file Bk again . So during all this landlord attorney keeps telling me to make sure insurance shows up because they should be paying for this.
Expert:  Richard - Bizlaw replied 11 days ago.

Here are the potential claims you can assert against the landlord. Abuse of process for procuring a writ of attachment based on a claim that you owed money and the assets you owned might not be sufficient to cover what was owed. Since she already had in her possession sufficient assets to pay the past due rent and that she knew those assets that she was supposed to sell were sufficient to pay the debt. That is a perversion of the claim she needed a writ of attachment.

Misrepresentation as to the value of the assets in the negotiations with the insurance settlement would be a basis for a fraud claim. Finally, for selling and taking assets worth more than the amount owed you would sue for an accounting of the profits of the sale as the sale of more assets than those needed to pay the debt would also be a conversion.

Those are the claims I think you have. However, you need to be very clear on the facts because from what you put in your post you both admit to being a partner and deny being a partner which leaves you vulnerable to being treated as a partner liable for the former tenant's debts.

If I have answered all your questions, please highly rate my answer as that is how I receive credit. If you have more questions, please let me know. If the answer was especially helpful you can provide a bonus.

Customer: replied 11 days ago.
Are these the claims for Wrongful attachment or do I have to make a claim in the civil amended cross complaint for Abuse of process for procuring a writ of attachment in the amended complaint.Can I claim Intentional or Negligent Interference with Prospective Advantage.For the Civil Claim ?
Claim 1. Breach of Contract
Claim 2. Conversion
Claim 3. Breach of the Covenant of Quiet Enjoyment
Claim 4. Intentional or Negligent Interference with Prospective Advantage
Claim 5. Misrepresentation
Claim 6. Fraud
Claim 7. Abuse of process for procuring a writ of attachment
Customer: replied 11 days ago.
Am I liable for proposed partnership that never solidified? The alleged partnership was drafted months befor but was signed and notarized to reflect work agreements as a temporary remedy due 2 one person's declining health and finance, 2 weeks later the business assets were transferred on an official california "asset transfer form document", both people believed transfer superseded the agreement/partnership. We never co signed or had joint accounts. I did have permission to sign check for 3 monthsMarch 2 2012 We created this custom agreement / partnership as a temporary alternative until we could decide on structure or even if business would continue. Shortly after we found out we couldn't be partners due to the other person's tax issues and debts as well health and I didn't want to be burdened with his liabilities.
The Agreement states that one person can change the business structure, and to show agreement of assets that had been compensated to me for work under a barter agreement but since it was amatur there was no termination clause and we thought was
just a temporary solution or suggestion.March 15 2012 , 2 weeks later we we sign Business Asset Transfer.May 2012 3 months later proposed partner (PP) vacates property because his lease was terminated months prior and a variety of other reasons.May 2013 1.5 yrs later after I clear tax issue for PP, he tries sue me, at the time I find out another third party a museum is funding the lawsuit. PP claims because he was elder he didn't mean to sign document. and places injunction against me, this was all was deemed invalid.May 2014 2 yrs later the former landlord of the property of which PP and I lease
at separate time sues her former tenant PP for breach of contract and contamination damages. PP Leased 2004-Nov 2011 , I leased March 2012-Jan 2014. PP vacate May 2012landlord terminated PP lease and Leased space to me month Feb 2012-Jan 2014. I lease under my own separate entity. Landlord said she had terminated the lease of PP if I allowed him to work in building I would be liable. PP vacated in May 2012 2 months after I signed my lease.PP rented building 7 years befor me and performed more manufacturing I was online retail and print. The landlord father caused most contamination. the landlord originally rented building to PP no restriction he had used the premises industrial manufacturing and truck repair and fueling.landlord knows I own all the assets so she used the document from the lawsuit and is saying im PP partner and Liens all my assets under this guise. her and her attorney want to try to say someone else contaminated building , to get insurance claim , even though contamination existed before me.I had left landlord assets to liquidate Jan 2014 for back rent owed caused by PP injunction
of 30k. LandLord let's PP in building unsupervised Feb 2014 for weeks where he trashes or she has someone trash building and never liquidates items and witness says she disposes of they were officially apprised by court. Recently in letter to Landlord attorney admits I may have not contaminated building but i still owe her back rent.Then says I still owe back rent for time and contamination that existed decades before I leased via proposed partnership .PP has since died and court has determined all assets are mine . Landlord is still suing me and has writ .Someone play devil's advocate Am I a partner or is landlord fraudulent , should landlord be liable for not selling and liquidated items and applying it to the back rent owed.The intent was just a proposed partnership but never solidified
Expert:  Richard - Bizlaw replied 11 days ago.

The wrongful attachment claims would be in the civil amended complaint. On interference with prospective economic advantage you have to be able to allege that the landlord knew of the prospective advantage with which she was interfering. The other claims you listed apply to the situation you describe in your posts.

Frankly the partnership issue is very unclear. You best defense is that you never held yourselves out to the world as partners and the landlord knew you were not partners it was just a medical accommodation. Your best evidence may be the determination that the injunction was invalid because the PP had no claim on your assets. That you may be albe to use as a conclusive determination that no partnership existed and the transfer of assets to you was valid. You probably can prove that no partnership ever existed but I do not think you can claim the landlord acted fraudulently by claiming you were a partner because there is evidence to support the existence of a partnership. However, I cannot predict how the partnership issue will be resolved.

If I have answered all your questions, please highly rate my answer as that is how I receive credit. If you have more questions, please let me know. If the answer was especially helpful you can provide a bonus.

Expert:  Richard - Bizlaw replied 8 days ago.

I sent you the answer to your question a few days ago. If you do not have any additional questions, please highly rate my answer as that is how I get credit for working on your question.

Related Landlord-Tenant Questions