Will I receive any payment for items that were stolen from me?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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Will I receive any payment for items that were stolen from me?

A few weeks ago my public storage unit was broken into and all of my valuable items were stolen. I filed a police report and followed all of the steps required by public storage. On top of my monthly public storage bill, I pay an extra $11 a month for insurance. Most of the items that were stolen from

my unit were birthday and or Christmas gifts. One of the items that was stolen was a Fender Stratacastor Guitar and Guitar Amplifier. That was a gift. The public storage insurance company is supposed to cover the cost of my items that were stolen. I filled out all of the required forms from the insurance company. I spoke to a man who works for the insurance company and he is assigned to my

claim. He told me that I am not getting any type of compensation for my stolen items without proof. I do not have receipts for my stolen items, I sent him a few photos and owners manual for the guitar and amplifier but other than that I do not have anything else. This does not seem right. I pay for insurance just for this purpose and it is worthless. I should get some sort of compensation. Can the insurance company legally do this and not give me anything just because I do not have receipts for my items that were stolen?

Asked on November 15, 2017 under Insurance Law, California


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

If you had insurance covering these items, as you indicate, and they refuse to pay, you could sue them (e.g. in small claims court, as your own attorney or "pro se," if the amount at stake is less than the small claims limit) for "breach of contract," or violating their contractual obligation (an insurance policy is a contract) to pay for the loss. IF you can convince a court by a "preponderance of the evidence" (that it is "more likely than not") that you had those items, you can get a judgment requiring them to pay. Your testimony by itself is likely not enough, but photos of the items (especially photos showing you holding them) and testimony from the people who gave them to you (note: they'd have to testify live in court) may be sufficient.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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