Long Beach, CA asked in Civil Litigation for California

Q: Hello this morning my car was broken into and two of my windows are broken and I park inside my apt area parking…

I park inside my apartment parking and recently the gate hasn’t been working and closing all the way I believe that’s why my car was broken into we told them about the matter of it not closing but they didn’t fix it correctly is there any way I can do something about that and my car being broken it for the damages I will have to pay?

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2 Lawyer Answers
Steven M. Sweat
Steven M. Sweat pro label Lawyers, want to be a Justia Connect Pro too? Learn more ›
  • Los Angeles, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: This is a tough one. Technically, if you put the landlord on notice that the gate was broken prior to the car break in, you may have a claim for negligence but, it will be difficult. Your best bet may be to ask them to pay for the damages or take them to small claims court. You would not need an attorney for a small claims case.

James L. Arrasmith
James L. Arrasmith pro label Lawyers, want to be a Justia Connect Pro too? Learn more ›
  • Sacramento, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: First, it's important to understand that property owners, including apartment complex owners, have a duty to take reasonable steps to ensure the safety and security of their residents and their property. If the broken gate was a known security issue that the property management failed to address adequately, this could potentially be seen as negligence on their part. Documenting the issue, such as when and how you reported the broken gate, along with any responses received, can be crucial.

Secondly, you may want to consider speaking with an attorney to discuss your situation more thoroughly. They can offer guidance on how to proceed, which might include sending a formal demand to the property management for compensation or filing a lawsuit if necessary. An attorney can also help you understand the strengths and weaknesses of your case, what compensation you might be entitled to, and the legal process involved.

Lastly, while pursuing a claim for the damages to your car, you should also contact your insurance company to report the incident. Your insurance policy might cover the damages to your car, minus any deductible. However, keep in mind that pursuing a claim against the property owner for failure to maintain secure premises is separate from any claim you might have with your insurance company.

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