I got sued for $202,000
I own, a moving and storage business, and i have now for coming up on six years. Weve had a very large operation, weve had a small operation and everything in between, but in my first year of business we moved a client. It was a totally normal move, nothing out of the ordinary whatsoever, just a regular home that were moving from one home to another. A couple days later, we receive a call from that client saying that their home was broken into and they suspect that our movers stole the items. So we get a bit more detail and we find out that our movers were instructed to move all the furniture items to the new home, but leave all the electronics. You know tvs laptops all the electronics in the entire home, which is a bit strange and unusual. Most people have us move literally everything, including tvs, thats, our specialty to move literally everything. But you know whatever we do, what the client asks. Well, the home, the old home that was left with all the electronics was then broken into that night and everything was stolen and they feel that, because the movers were aware that everything was left at the old home, they had to be the ones who stole it. Well, we said if you feel that theyve stolen, you should file a police report, because we have as much information as you do. We dont think that they stole. We have as much information as you.
You should file a police report. This was a big hassle, but we provided all the information needed. We talked detectives all the movers met with a detective which was extremely stressful in itself, because the detective did that classic thing where hes, like the other guy, said the other guys confessed. They said that you all did it when none of them confessed. All of them were like. We have no idea what youre talking about, and this ended up being absolutely nothing. There was no case there was. There was nothing. There was movers who moved to home thats. It and a claim that things got stolen later and we thought it was over with didnt hear anything more from the client. Now more than five years later, we receive a lawsuit in the mail. We look at this. We dont even recognize. The name were like what even is this for we search in our database. Look up. The name were like. Oh, this is the guy who said that things were stolen like after the movie was a weird situation. So lets talk about what exactly hes suing for theres a few pieces here, so first hes trying to sue for breach of contract, so the thought process was: he signed a contract for moving services, not a contract to have his home broken into. I know it sounds weird so from what i can tell i mean im, not a lawyer, because the moving contract didnt say hey on top of moving.
You were also going to break into your house hes saying its a breach of contract. There was no contract to break into his house. I guess is the claim thats thats, my interpretation of it anyways. Of course this is a huge stretch and a side note here. The actual move went fine. Like i mentioned earlier, there wasnt a single issue with the actual work completed either way for this count, the request was two thousand dollars not including damage in missing property of twenty seven thousand dollars, and then he said hey. This is bad and all, but lets cap this at 150. 000. For this count, you know lets be reasonable. You know at least 27 000 lets cap it at 150, 000 and then the next item hes suing for is negligent infliction of emotional distress. So heres a quote directly from it: plaintiffs, emotional duress and mental anguish, all of them as a direct result of the defendants providing services as promised and providing professionalism as promised and advertised, but failed to provide. So basically, we didnt live up to our moving services as promised, and because of that he has had mental anguish for the last five years and again, let me tell you, the job went totally fine. There was no claim there was no issues whatsoever. Everything was moved safely. How much does he want for this 150, 000, of course, for the mental anguish. Then the final item is property damages this ones, the most straightforward things are missing and he wants twenty five thousand dollars for it.
That figure still seems a bit high to me for some leftover electronics at an empty house, but you know who knows maybe he had a hard drive full of rare nft waifus that we didnt know about. I dont know what he had in the house now to the summary twenty seven thousand dollars for property damage: twenty five thousand dollars also for property damage. I think that thats, some kind of typo and a hundred fifty thousand dollars for emotional distress now what happens from here they wont accept the settlement. I have to hire a lawyer and the lawyer takes a look at everything and he says: oh, we need to file a motion to dismiss this case and dismiss each and every charge and he outlines all the reasons as to why each and every charge should be Dismissed so first off all, but one of the claims are beyond the statute of limitations too much time has passed, so you cant even do anything if there was some kind of legitimate cause, then, on top of this property damage, the claim here, doesnt outline what was Actually damaged or missing, so there simply isnt enough info for the claim and the criteria isnt met for emotional damages, so you cant, claim anything there without hitting the criteria and the count for quote wrongful conduct is an action that actually doesnt even exist. The only thing thats left is the alleged burglary, but the problem here is whats called the scope of employment.
So if you hire someone and they do something illegal as part of their job thats – the employers fault – you were directing them to do something illegal. But if you hire someone and then they go off and do something illegal, thats, not part of the job thats, not the employers, fault, theres, tons of case law, with this exact issue and its not the employers fault. So this means all of the counts should be reasonably declined by the court. So the lawyer writes this up and sends it off to the court, and then we wait a few weeks for the court to respond and the case was dismissed. It was completely dismissed. They said yeah this doesnt. This makes no sense. It was a total about two months at this point of back and forth of the lawyer and spending thousands of dollars and hassle a huge amount of headache and hassle. Now the next step was to attempt and get our attorney fees back because of this erroneous lawsuit. From what i could tell. This has a very slim chance due to the fact that he was representing himself. He didnt hire a lawyer. He was filing all of his own paperwork, so we send out the form and guess what we won attorney fees back now. What does this mean in an ideal world ill get paid back, but who knows if hell ever actually pay, but whats really more important. Here is, if he tries to sue again well, be able to say, take a look at this were already settled, theres, nothing more! You can do here, which is an amazing piece and at the end of the day, really.
This is just an unfortunate reality of owning a business. If you own a business and you serve enough customers, you are going to get sued its just what happens everyone i know who has a successful business even if youre, honest and righteous you get sued. This makes me wonder, though, like how do those shady businesses possibly run and operate, and how are they not just constantly stressed because in all of my businesses, i constantly am trying to do the best work possible and i still get sued. I still get sued trying to do everything correctly. So if youre running shady business, like your life, has got to just be terrible dealing with all this dealing with all this crap. So luckily, despite it being an erroneous lawsuit and a whole lot of hassle and thousands of dollars spent that who knows if ill ever get back, luckily it was just completely dismissed and were done with it, and they cannot refile so thats.