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Richard, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 55453
Experience:  32 years of experience as lawyer in Texas. I'm also a Real Estate developer.
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My ex landlord removed property that he said I could keep there

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My ex landlord removed property that he said I could keep there after I moved out and then took my property somewhere else and my friend across the street told me or I wouldn't o even known. Is that legal he stole my boat saying I owe him money even if I don't.
Welcome! My goal is to do my very best to understand your situation and to provide a full and complete answer for you.

Good afternoon. Your ex-landlord is not legally entitled to hold your boat hostage even if you owe him money. Only had he sued you and obtained a judgment would he have the right to take the boat in satisfaction of the judgment. You can contact the district attorney's office and file a criminal complaint...they may or may not be willing to pursue this since you originally gave the ex-landlord the authority to safe-keep the boat and want you first to pursue this on the civil side. On the civil side, you absolutely have a cause of action against your ex-landlord. You would want to file a civil suit for your damages to give you the leverage and collection options that are needed. Once the suit is filed and a judgment awarded, you become a judgment creditor, and if the losing party doesn’t then pay the judgment, you can have the sheriff serve a summons on the losing party for a debtor examination. That forces the losing party to meet the judgment creditor in court and answer questions under oath about the losing party's assets. After that information is obtained, the judgment creditor has the power to garnish wages, attach bank accounts, have the sheriff seize other personal property, and/or place liens on any non-homestead property to satisfy the judgment. It's likely as part of the judgment, the court will order your boat returned to you..and if the ex-landlord then fails to return it, he will be in contempt of court and subject to criminal and/or civil sanctions.

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Customer: replied 4 years ago.

I gave him permission to keep it at the rental where it was not to remove it from there

Thanks so much for your reply. I totally understand. As a "bailiff" he would be able to move it, but would have the duty to safeguard it. It would not have the right to use it. And, once you've withdrawn your consent to hold it, he is obligated to release it. And, you do have both a criminal and a civil claim. But, the burden of proof in a criminal case is "beyond a reasonable doubt" and for a civil case only a "preponderance of the evidence." Thus, most of the time, the criminal prosecutors will not pursue these kinds of cases until and unless you first prevail on the civil side.
Richard and 2 other Real Estate Law Specialists are ready to help you
Thank you so much for the positive rating! I appreciate having had the opportunity to serve you! If I can be of assistance to you in the future, just look me up and I will be happy to help!
Thank you also for the bonus! I appreciate your kindness!

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