Can I be legally sued for a past due amount on a storage unit?

I had a car in storage starting 8 years ago and stopped paying 6 years ago because I was overseas for so long and didn’t plan on returning for several more years. I was contacted by the company and told them I no longer wanted the car and to get rid of it. Now 6 years after I stopped paying they contact me again asking me to come and get it or send paperwork stating I no longer wanted it. I checked state law and I don’t know why they have held it so long without payment of any kind. I no longer have my agreement either since I thought this was a settled issue.

Asked on July 24, 2012 under Bankruptcy Law, Florida

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

Yes, you can be sued on a past due amount, even if the creditor had not contacted you for years. However, it may be too late for the creditor to act in this case. You indicate that you stopped paying 6 years. The statute of limitations, or time to sue, for breach of  a written contract (such as the agreement governing use of the storage unit) is only 5 years in FL. That time period runs from when you breached the contract. If you breached it more than 5 years ago--especially if you clearly indicated at that  time you had no intention of paying or of using the unit (so they cannot somehow claim that they had been holding the car but deferring billing on your instructions), it should be too late for them to take legal action against you or to force you to pay any past due amounts.


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