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TJ, Esq.
TJ, Esq., Attorney
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 11779
Experience:  JD, MBA
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I have been leasing a warehouse space years. On

Customer Question

I have been leasing a warehouse space for three years. On again off again I have had to tackle issues with the Landlord from leaking roof, to the neighbor in the next unit flooding my space, to installing my own air conditioning system, to never getting any kind of mainteneance at all according to the CAM fees i had to pay every month. None the less, they renewed my lease and i made payment.
But the first of the month, they ceased the unit and locked me completely out. they removed the property within immediately and put the unit up for rent. I was notified in an email that one of my vehicles were towed from the property and they gave me a name of the towing company. i contacted that towing company, and they had no knowledge of my vehicle. I had a second vehicle in the storage, insured but not on the road, a show car worth more than 250k, and theres no mention of that at all. Within the unit I had nearly 600k in assetts....tools, vehicles, personal items, pretty much my life. With my offices there as well, all relevant paperwork was contained and i was not allowed to gain access to get it.
During a conversation on the phone with one of the receptionists in the lawyer office handling this, she mentioned there was a court date set for me to appear, but i never received any notice at all. I was never told the lease was not going to be renewed, nor given any amount of time to recognize why they did this, or where i could retrieve my property. i have several questions as to what my direction should be at this point.
Submitted: 6 months ago.
Category: Real Estate Law
Expert:  TJ, Esq. replied 6 months ago.
Hello and thank you for the opportunity to assist you. My name is ***** ***** I will do my very best to answer your legal questions. However, there must be other important facts that you haven't yet shared. Most importantly, what is the landlord's argument to evict you? You wrote that the lease was renewed, and that you continued paying. If so, do you have any indication of why the landlord would take this action against you?
Customer: replied 6 months ago.
up until the renewal of the lease there was a certain amount of rent that has been kept back to cover expenses of happenings that I had mentioned, although it was all paid in full in order to renew the lease. The Landlord im pretty sure with everything that hapened wanted me out in no uncertain terms.
Customer: replied 6 months ago.
I am in Virginia by the way.
Customer: replied 6 months ago.
The property was removed the same day as lockout. 2 of my vehicles within the warehouse were removed as well. 1 is a 2013 Range Rover Evoque, and the second is a 2013 Nissan GTR show car....built and assessed at 245k value.
Customer: replied 6 months ago.
hello?
Expert:  TJ, Esq. replied 6 months ago.
Hi again. So the lease was renewed, and the rent is all paid? I'm not following why the landlord is evicting. What is his argument? He can't evict you "just because." What did he indicate to the court?
Customer: replied 6 months ago.
he didnt indicate anything to the court to my knowledge. The unit was taped up, with no trepassing signs, locks were changed, and ADT called and cancelled alarm system.
Customer: replied 6 months ago.
several of the other neighbors in the area said they did this same thing before to other tenants they wanted out.
Customer: replied 6 months ago.
I want to know how to file suit on this myself, and can i report the vehicles as stolen?
Customer: replied 6 months ago.
The lawyers for the leasing agent wont return my calls. The one receptionist told me a name of a towing company they use after badgering her on the phone, I checked with them, they did not tow the vehicles. And she didnt know where my property was taken.
Customer: replied 6 months ago.
The last time I used this Just Answer lawyer version, I was charged and really didnt get any help. I have pre paid here again, and its been an hour, and we havent gotten to any answers yet.
Expert:  TJ, Esq. replied 6 months ago.
Hi again. I am typing a response right now. Please bear with me. I apologize for being a slow typist.
Expert:  TJ, Esq. replied 6 months ago.
Hi again. You can certainly report the vehicles as stolen, though it's probably unlikely that the police will agree. I suspect they'll tell you that it's a civil matter between your and your landlord. The exception would be if the landlord claims that he never removed the vehicles and has no idea who has them. In that instance, it would seem that the vehicles really were stolen by a third party, so that warrants investigating. But if the landlord took them, then the police will not likely get involved because they aren't in a position to make a legal determination as to whether the landlord had the right to take the vehicles or not. And even if the landlord is in the wrong, it wouldn't be criminal because there is no intent to steal. The landlord's argument is likely that he either has a landlord's lien on the vehicles, or that you were trespassing and so he had a right to remove the vehicles. In order to file a lawsuit on this yourself, you will need to draft a complaint, file it with the court, and then serve the complaint and a summons on the landlord. Because of the value of the vehicles, this would be handled in the Circuit Court rather than the General District Court. You could sue for conversion and trespass to chattels. But I strongly recommend that you retain an attorney. This isn't a small claims type of case, and you would be in way over your head. Handling this case yourself would be like a non-dentist opting to drill his own tooth and fill his cavity himself. In other words, it would be a very, very bad idea. I would put your chance at success without an attorney at less than 1%. This type of case requires an expert who understands the law, as well as the rules of procedure and evidence. More than likely, you'd never even get the chance to argue over the merits of the case ... instead, you'd likely lose due to a technicality early on. But you certainly do have the right to sue without an attorney if you wish. You can see how a complaint looks like here: http://www.readthehook.com/files/article-documents/news-patriciacook-complaint.pdf Obviously, you'd have to tweak the complaint to fit the facts in your specific case. Once you do that, then you take that to the court clerk, pay the filing fee and ask for a summons. Then you'll either need to have the sheriff serve the landlord, or you'll need to hire a private process server. The sheriff should be sufficient, however, and he's likely cheaper. Does that answer your question? Please let me know if you need clarification, as I am happy to continue helping you until you are satisfied.
Customer: replied 6 months ago.
Having trouble retaining a lawyer due to the fact they removed all of my office paperwork, and belongings. Ive requested that they forward me copy of original lease, and renewed lease and they ignore me. I guess ill just keep looking for an attorney until I get one interested.
Customer: replied 6 months ago.
are you on here tommorrow?
Expert:  TJ, Esq. replied 6 months ago.
Hi again. You should be able to find an attorney easily enough through the state bar. Try this: http://www.vsb.org/vlrs/index.php/public/vlrs/ Yes, I will be online at some point tomorrow. In the meantime, please remember to provide feedback. And of course, feel free to contact me at any time, and I will respond when I come online.
Expert:  TJ, Esq. replied 6 months ago.
Hello again. I didn't hear back from you, so I'm just checking in to make sure that you don't need more help on this issue. If not, then please remember to provide a positive rating to close out this question (and please remember that your positive rating is the only way that I'll get credit for helping you, so I greatly appreciate it). Thank you!
Expert:  TJ, Esq. replied 6 months ago.
Hello again. I didn't hear back from you, so I'm just checking in to make sure that you don't need more help on this issue. If not, then please remember to provide a positive rating to close out this question (and please remember that your positive rating is the only way that I'll get credit for helping you, so I greatly appreciate it). Thank you!

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