The actual people who trespassed, broke and entered, and stole property may have had no intent, but the bank acted with reckless disregard, and officers and executives of the bank should be charged with crimes. That’s not a legal analysis, it’s just what should happen.
And while I’ll let the legal eagles weigh in, my recollection is that there is a level of carelessness and negligence that is criminal under the law.
To take an extreme example, if I’m swinging a machete around on Saturday in the park with nobody within 10-15 feet, and - whoops! - it slips out of my hand, and goes sailing through the air and amputates a kid’s leg, am I off the hook with respect to criminal law just because I intended no harm? I certainly doubt it. By swinging the machete around in a public place, I was acting, as you say, with reckless disregard for the safety of anyone else who happened to be within range of the machete if I had an ‘oops’ moment.
Presumably under the law in the case of the OP, the questions are: what degree of care was the bank legally required to take in order to make sure they were taking possession of the right house, and did they exercise that degree of care? I may be wrong, but it’s hard for me to believe that identifying the house in question with a set of GPS coordinates would satisfy the legal standard in this instance. And that’s why it boggles my mind that that’s what the bank is presenting as exculpatory, at least in the court of public opinion.
I am stealing “Craigslist is my cite”, just so you know.
And there is a value in having the stuff available right now. If one’s luggage is in San Francisco while one is in Las Vegas, and one wishes to go see a show, it doesn’t MATTER if the luggage will arrive in a few days. The traveler has nothing to wear right now.
The duty of an airline or hotel to replace lost belongings is governed by the contract between the customer and the business. There is no such contract in place here limiting the liability of the bank for tossing out somebody’s shit (at least not in this case where it wasn’t a mortgagee.) IMHO, it doesn’t matter if the woman is demanding $100,000 to replace her stuff. She had no duty to document the contents of her home against the possibility that a truckload of men would show up and accidentally throw it out. The bank could have limited its own liability by documenting the contents of the home, and didn’t. Fuck 'em.
This is just fucking stupid, and it’s not any less stupid because you couch it as a non-legal analysis. Do you expect the bank’s officers to personally supervise each repossession? Maybe we should haul Lee Iacocca up in court every time a windshield wiper fails on a Dodge Neon, too.
This is the only right answer. This bank should be thanking its lucky stars she’s only asking for $18,000 and pay it RIGHT AWAY, because in a way THEY hit the lottery by screwing over an honest person who isn’t going to try and bleed them dry for everything they can possibly get.
At this point I hope this lady lawyers up and sues them into oblivion. Fuck that bank. What a bunch of shitty fucking shit.
I don’t know why this homeowner doesn’t just file a claim for $18K on her homeowner insurance and let the insurance lawyers deal with the bank.
Now that I look at the bank president’s actual wording, he’s saying “the GPS locator” led them to the wrong place. So they’re placing their reliance on an individual piece of consumer electronic gear in distinguishing the property they own from the property that they don’t.
The intellectual rights to that are worth at least $18,000.
There is an intermediate level between simple replacement of the loss and criminal charges. A good lawsuit would ask for punitive damages, a signal from the courts to the defendant that what they did goes beyond just trashing someone’s property, but not rising to the level of an actual crime.
This is handy, because it’s a lot easier to win such a case in court.
Sure, I can see this. As others have pointed out, it’s also the inconvenience of not having your stuff RIGHT NOW.
So… Tell you what. I’ll accept that my $50 jeans are only worth $10 now. So give me $10, and I’ll look for an exact replacement at a thrift store or garage sale. So that’s $10 for the jeans, and 8 hours of my time at $20/hour. $170 please.
ETA: This is one reason why the bank should cut a cheque for $18,000 now. And the toaster. Don’t forget the toaster.
I would assume that they put the address into a GPS and it took them to the wrong house. If it’s a very rural area and no one has street numbers on the mailbox, that’s really really wrong. If the number on the mailbox was wrong and they didn’t notice, that’s even worse.
Your user name explains this response. Corporate officers are responsible for the actions of their employees. And if Lee Iacocca didn’t take reasonable measures to insure the safety of vehicles he could be criminally liable. This includes reasonable measures to insure his employees were doing their job properly.
I’m gonna pay her off in used clothing and furniture and office supplies.
This is why I said that the punishment should make the bank sting. The penalty should be severe enough that the bank has a financial incentive not to do it again.
I am a firm believer in the idea that all addresses should be painted on the driveway curb AND should be prominently displayed above or on the mailbox. This isn’t just in case of GPS failure, but because someone might want to come visit you, or you might need an ambulance or fire truck, or hell, you might want a pizza. Now me, personally, I’d prefer to paint my house purple and just direct everyone to it that way (“Yeah, you go down Main, past the fountain, and mine is the bright purple house on the left, you can’t miss it”) but my husband doesn’t care for that idea. There should be a standardized location for street addresses! This goes double for businesses.
<pant pant> I gotta say, I love my Garmin, most of the time. Pre-Garmin, I spent far too much time slowly cruising up one street or another at 15 MPH, peering anxiously at addresses, trying to find that clinic.
This is what the lady should have done, not ask $18K. Sue the bank into the ground. Lawyer up big-time and go for massive punitive damages. Make the bank bleed, and hope it also costs a number of executives their jobs.
When I worked for the car company many a time I saw them settle with a customer when the customer was clearly wrong and should have not gotten anything.
The reason? It costs about a hundred grand to take such a case to trial. Cheaper to write a check.
I use Google Maps all day everyday. It takes me to the wrong address all the time. I’d say about 1 in 100 shows the wrong house. And I’m with Lynn about displaying addresses. Especially business’ why make it hard for people to find your place of business? You want me to show up at your house to work on time. Yet I have to drive up and down the street three times counting houses trying to figure out which one is yours.
God I get so fucking tired of the recreational outrage and cries for blood over a fucking mistake. I guess I shouldn’t be surprised that the first response to somebody doing something wrong is to hear cries of “SUE THEM!!! MAKE THEM BLEEEEEEEEED!!!”, but it’s so damn frustrating. Gosh, I wonder why our legal is choked with dumb ass lawsuits, people suing at the drop of a hat, and the cries for hyper-inflated monetary awards from idiots.
Hamlet, that was one of the stupidest things I’ve ever read anyone post on this board. That includes stuff from Clothahump.
Care to explain, because I’m not seeing how not wanting people to lose jobs or a bank to be run into the ground over a dumb mistake is stupid. Granted I’ll defer to your in depth knowledge of stupid, but maybe you could help me out.