Q: My vehicle was broken into while at a repair shop. Who is responsible for damages and theft?
The repair shop claims to have locked my vehicle, but my vehicle has no evidence of being broken into. Which makes me think whoever had broken into the vehicle must had access to my vehicles keys OR the repair shop failed to lock my vehicle.
A: It depends on the contract that you signed with the repair shop. Oftentimes, there is a disclaimer that removes any liability from the repair shop for lost or stolen items. I would take a look at that and see what it says. That should then drive your future approach.
A: An innocent third-party is not criminally responsible for the criminal act of another. There may be a wider set of circumstances, however, where an innocent third-party could be civilly liable for damages caused by a criminal act of another. I won't get into that here, since that would be a discussion of civil tort liability for criminal acts of another, and this is a criminal law Q &A.
Justia Ask a Lawyer is a forum for consumers to get answers to basic legal questions. Any information sent through Justia Ask a Lawyer is not secure and is done so on a non-confidential basis only.
The use of this website to ask questions or receive answers does not create an attorney–client relationship between you and Justia, or between you and any attorney who receives your information or responds to your questions, nor is it intended to create such a relationship. Additionally, no responses on this forum constitute legal advice, which must be tailored to the specific circumstances of each case. You should not act upon information provided in Justia Ask a Lawyer without seeking professional counsel from an attorney admitted or authorized to practice in your jurisdiction. Justia assumes no responsibility to any person who relies on information contained on or received through this site and disclaims all liability in respect to such information.
Justia cannot guarantee that the information on this website (including any legal information provided by an attorney through this service) is accurate, complete, or up-to-date. While we intend to make every attempt to keep the information on this site current, the owners of and contributors to this site make no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of the information contained in or linked to from this site.