how do I get my personal items back once I leave a job and they are not returning my calls?

I worked for a plumbing company and the job site was 5 hours from my home so my employer provider a house for us to leave in during the week. I was fired and my personal belongings are still there along with my tools that I had to provide. The company will not return my calls on arranging get my items back. What do I do?

Asked on July 7, 2016 under Employment Labor Law, Utah

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

The only way to get your items back is to sue the former employer for "conversion"--a kind of theft: illegally retaining items under their control but which did not belong to them. The easiest way to do that is to file in small claims court, acting as your own attorney ("pro se"), suing for the monetary value of the items--the employer can then settle the case by returning them. You might start by sending them a letter, sent some way or ways you can prove delivery, putting them on notice that you will sue unless your items are returned within, say, 10 days. If they don't return them, file the suit.


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