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View Full Version : Mower stolen from shop while in for service!!


CentralAL
04-16-2012, 10:00 PM
Hey guys, I visited here all the time a few years ago while I was shopping for my first, and what I thought would be my only zero turn. It's been a while since I've been on here and had to register under a new name. Here goes....my Lazer was stolen from a local shop while getting serviced. I had to sign a service ticket when I dropped the mower off. I was told "sign here saying that you are leaving your mower with us for us to do the following work (with the items listed that we had discussed)" NOT ONCE did they disclose that I was releasing them from "losses due to theft, fire, acts of God, etc." My mower, along with a few others, where stolen from their shop and basically I've been told....sorry about your luck buddy. Thankfully I had a seperate insurance policy other then my homeowner policy. I really just want them to pay my deductible, $250, but they want no part of it. Are their hands clean??? Everyone I've talked with says no, but I'm no legal expert, but if they're not liable, what keeps them from doing an inside job every 2 or 3 years and pocket some cash? Any ideas??

lazor-cut
04-16-2012, 11:07 PM
did you file a police report???
I would reread the contract to see what you ACTUALLY signed for!

I know the feeling my mower was stolen in a case kinda like this one! http://www.lawnsite.com/showthread.php?t=359137 my buddy posted that!

weeze
04-16-2012, 11:20 PM
wow...i'd never go there again for sure. i'm not sure what you signed but to me if it was stolen from their shop then their insurance should pay for you a new mower.

sehitchman
04-17-2012, 12:22 AM
They are required to provide reasonable care. Locked doors, gates, security system. If not, then you could win in court.

easy-lift guy
04-17-2012, 04:54 AM
They are required to provide reasonable care. Locked doors, gates, security system. If not, then you could win in court.

I also agree with this point, otherwise no vendor would allow new equipment in such an establishment. I would review the release again for specific coverage. You may win in small claims court, really depends on how far you care to proceed. I have similar reasons for not selling my products in certain retail locations as well. I hope you recover your losses.
easy-lift guy

southgalawns
04-17-2012, 05:06 AM
You have to weigh your options, pay the 250 deductible, or pay filing fees, time from work and lawyer fees.
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JB1
04-17-2012, 06:30 AM
I know some mowers were stolen from a dealer here and the dealer replaced them.

Mowingman
04-17-2012, 06:31 AM
If you did not sign any kind of release when you signed the shop work order, then notify your insurance company. They may very well go after the shop to reimburse them for the full amount they paid out. Let the insurance go after them. You still get your money and a little satisfaction, if the insurance company wins. If they lose, the shop may still be out a good bit of money paying lawyers to fight the ins. co. lawyers.

32vld
04-17-2012, 07:50 AM
They are required to provide reasonable care. Locked doors, gates, security system. If not, then you could win in court.

This means a company can have you sign releases, and you will win in court. Thing is a lawyer will cost more then the deductable.

If you can afford it you should fight it in court. They can be scaming you. Sold your mower, claimed it was stolen.

clydebusa
04-17-2012, 07:57 AM
The shop should of filed the police report. All the above is so true, I would request the police report and insist they pay for the mower. If the shop was smart they would sell you a new mower at cost and apply the value of the old mower to it.

Ducke
04-17-2012, 08:28 AM
Something stinks in this story and I think its the dealership.
1) Contact the Police and file a report on the stolen mower and the shop.
2) Contact a lawyer and have a letter sent to the shop stating your intentions.
Sitting back and wishing is not going to get anything done action is what is needed. It may cost you a few dollars but why let them get away with something like this. If they didn't do it themselves I bet their going to get reimburse by their insurance company for your lost mower.
I say fight it don't let them bully you.

Glenn Lawn Care
04-17-2012, 08:39 AM
I think their insurance should pay for a new mower for you! File a police report if you haven't or if they haven't yet. I would never go their again and make that clear to them!

CentralAL
04-17-2012, 08:49 AM
The shop has filed a police report. I picked up a copy yesterday at the pd. My insurance agent has asked for a copy of the police report and said they will pay off the remaining balance of the mower, then cut me a check for the difference. The shop, is still telling me that when I signed the service ticket, I released them from all liability. It's really just the principle of the whole thing though. I would have thought all shops had garage liability...I guess that's why I don't get paid for thinking.

32vld
04-17-2012, 08:46 PM
The shop has filed a police report. I picked up a copy yesterday at the pd. My insurance agent has asked for a copy of the police report and said they will pay off the remaining balance of the mower, then cut me a check for the difference. The shop, is still telling me that when I signed the service ticket, I released them from all liability. It's really just the principle of the whole thing though. I would have thought all shops had garage liability...I guess that's why I don't get paid for thinking.

Your problem is not that your mower was stolen.

Your problem is you are taking their word as gospel that they are not liable instead of seeking out a lawyer.

tonygreek
04-17-2012, 10:49 PM
The shop, is still telling me that when I signed the service ticket, I released them from all liability.
Based on...? Does the ticket have anything on it along the lines of an indemnity clause?

CentralAL
04-18-2012, 08:55 AM
Hard to read, but here goes...."While the manufacturer may warranty the goods sold to the customer, we make no warranties, express or implied, including any implied warranties of merchant ability or fitness, with respect to such goods. Not responsible for loss or damage in case of fire, theft, or any other cause beyond our control. I hereby authorize the above repair work to be done along with the necessary material and hereby grant you and/or your employees permission to operate the unit as necessary for the purpose of testing and/or inspection. An express mechanic's lien is hereby acknowledged on the above unit to secure the amount of repairs there to. (There is a minimum charge of .5 labor on repairs)

Green Grass
04-21-2012, 01:01 PM
Hard to read, but here goes...."While the manufacturer may warranty the goods sold to the customer, we make no warranties, express or implied, including any implied warranties of merchant ability or fitness, with respect to such goods. Not responsible for loss or damage in case of fire, theft, or any other cause beyond our control. I hereby authorize the above repair work to be done along with the necessary material and hereby grant you and/or your employees permission to operate the unit as necessary for the purpose of testing and/or inspection. An express mechanic's lien is hereby acknowledged on the above unit to secure the amount of repairs there to. (There is a minimum charge of .5 labor on repairs)

Almost every dealer you go to when you sign the repair order it has this same clause on the bottom where you sign. It is the same from a car dealer to a mower dealer.

clydebusa
04-21-2012, 01:42 PM
Almost every dealer you go to when you sign the repair order it has this same clause on the bottom where you sign. It is the same from a car dealer to a mower dealer.

This is true!

Wish you could post the name of the place, so no one else would go. But I realize this thread would die then.

igotdiesel2
04-21-2012, 10:09 PM
This is a similar story. A few years ago my Brother in law lost his 70 Challenger in a fire at a body shop. Their insurance paid for the value of the car at the time of the fire 95% restored. all it was in there for was paint. If the fire would have happened 1 day before and the car got smacked by the wall falling down because of the fire they would have owed him nothing because it was not in their secure building. No fenced in area to store cars waiting to be repaired. So I would say their insurance is responsible for your loss. As long as the doors were locked and the windows were shut, they did everything they could do to prevent this from happening right? -Jason

nearbroken
04-21-2012, 11:34 PM
Subrogation... Here is what is going to happen, regardless of whether you attorney-up: You file the claim with your insurance and pay the deductible; the insurance will conduct their own investigation; the insurance co.'s team of lawyers will get involved automatically to see if they can hold the shop liable (they aren't doing you a favor; they're trying to recover their own Loss); you get a check for the depreciated value less any outstanding lien (unless you have a policy / rider which entitles you to something more).

I would also check with your lien-holder (the company which loaned you the money to buy the mower) if you do, indeed, still owe money on the mower. They may not care so much that the mower was "stolen;" however, they may have a dog in the fight since the shop lost a mower with which they still have an interest - they may argue that you don't have the ability to sign a hold-harmless clause. [Just a thought, though; I'm not an attorney]

Beyond the above, I might recommend phoning a reputable (lol, reputable) attorney's office which offers free first-consultations. While it may not be feasible or cost-effective to actually pursue a full-out legal action, you might be surprised by how inexpensive it would be to have the attorney send a 1-page letter to the shop to show you're serious... a little legal posturing goes a long way.

Btw, a small-claims suit in most jurisdictions is fairly cheap and informal. In my experience, the defendant (the shop) is the only party which needs to pony-up the money for an attorney. Be careful, though, because you could be responsible for their costs if you lose in court.

nepatsfan
04-22-2012, 06:33 AM
It's a terrible thing that happened but why is it the shops fault? You did sign the paperwork saying that it wasn't their responsibility, why would you go back after something that they clearly stated in their contract wasn't their fault? If you chose not to read the contract before signing(which a lot of us do)that is your fault. I'm glad you have insurance but if they were stolen, what is the dealership supposed to do, they had a clear contract of exactly what they were responsible for.

Keep in mind, I really do feel for you getting your mower stolen. I hate thieves! I have had things stolen myself. I would just pay the $250 and move on. It sucks for everyone involved, including the dealer.

GreenI.A.
04-22-2012, 06:48 PM
While it might seem the deductible is only $250, the claim could cost much more in the long run. With most policies when you file a claim your premium also increases for a number of years as well as your company is now seen as a liability. It is not uncommon for the deductible and an increase in premiums over years to cost more than the actual claim.

Like someone mentioned above, your insurance company will usually fight to protect their interest. While they may initially have you pay the deductible, they may choose to go after the other company and their insurance to get reimbursed. If your insurance wins, then your claim will be removed and your deductible reimbursed. This is often the case when we are talking a large claim for a vehicle, personal injury, or property damage. But how hard is hour insurance going to fight for the relatively small claim of a lawn mower?

Also I didn't see it described above, but what were the circumstances of the mower being stolen? Was the building actually broken into at night? Or was the mower left in an outside locked pen at night. Was it stolen during the night while they were closed or during the day? The reason I ask is that back when I was in high school I had a stereo stolen in the middle of the day while my truck was at the mechanic. The gate to the pen was shut but not locked as they were open, some one walked into the pen and stole a couple radios. the shop was liable as they did not properly secure our materials by keeping the gate locked during the day. Had the thief jumped a locked gate then the mechanic would not have been liable.

nepatsfan
04-23-2012, 07:17 AM
While it might seem the deductible is only $250, the claim could cost much more in the long run. With most policies when you file a claim your premium also increases for a number of years as well as your company is now seen as a liability. It is not uncommon for the deductible and an increase in premiums over years to cost more than the actual claim.

Like someone mentioned above, your insurance company will usually fight to protect their interest. While they may initially have you pay the deductible, they may choose to go after the other company and their insurance to get reimbursed. If your insurance wins, then your claim will be removed and your deductible reimbursed. This is often the case when we are talking a large claim for a vehicle, personal injury, or property damage. But how hard is hour insurance going to fight for the relatively small claim of a lawn mower?

Also I didn't see it described above, but what were the circumstances of the mower being stolen? Was the building actually broken into at night? Or was the mower left in an outside locked pen at night. Was it stolen during the night while they were closed or during the day? The reason I ask is that back when I was in high school I had a stereo stolen in the middle of the day while my truck was at the mechanic. The gate to the pen was shut but not locked as they were open, some one walked into the pen and stole a couple radios. the shop was liable as they did not properly secure our materials by keeping the gate locked during the day. Had the thief jumped a locked gate then the mechanic would not have been liable.
I would agree with this. If he just left your mower out back overnight or something unlocked, I would think that they were negligent. If it was in a locked fence or something, then I would say the whole contract thing falls back on the owner. Either way, good luck.