Can I takemy dadto small claims court if he sold my belongings without warning?

I moved out of my dad’s house to move into my boyfriends house. I had everything I owned as far as clothes, 30 pairs of shoes, jewelry, purses, camping gear, my sons toys, school artwork, everything very important. They have only been there for 2 months since I officially moved and until this weekend I haven’t had the time due to work and not having a big enough vehicle to get everything. I made arrangements with my friend for this weekend and I just found out, without notice, that he apparently threw everything in the garbage. Can I take him to court?

Asked on March 7, 2012 under Bankruptcy Law, Washington


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

From what you have written, it seems that you would have the basis for a legal action against your father for "conversion" of your belongings due to the discard of them without your permission. Most likely your recourse would be small claims court.

You have to prove liability (wrongful act by father) and damages (fair market value of the items thrown away). Before you bring a legal action against your father, I suggest that you sit down with him and ask why he did what you say he did. Perhaps he may have an explanation.

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