In February, the antique shop owner informed you that she was transitioning from consignment to booth rent. You informed her that you would come to retrieve your items in a few weeks, but you experienced a pulled muscle that delayed your visit. In March, you reinjured your leg and tore a muscle, further delaying your ability to pick up your belongings. However, the shop owner assured you that she would box up your items and take pictures of them. You requested her to mail you a check for the sales you were owed from 2022, as well as an inventory of the remaining items.
In May, you tried to contact the shop owner through messages and visiting the shop but received no response. When you finally visited in June, you discovered that your items were displayed for sale in your own display cases, marked down by 50% because you had not retrieved them. This was surprising to you, as the shop owner had not contacted you since March. Given your health issues, personal circumstances, and plans to sell your house, you proposed that she sell your items at 50% off (excluding furniture) since everything was already out and you were not using her display cases. She agreed but only paid you for the sales made in 2022, not for 2023.
Recently, when you visited the shop again, you found your items boxed up, and the shop owner was using your display cases for her own merchandise. She informed you that you would not get your belongings until you paid for storage. You objected, stating that the display cases were not for sale and that you would not pay for storage. You also questioned how she priced the display cases since they were never tagged. She provided you with an invoice covering only June to September, but it appears that she had started marking down your items from February without notifying you. Additionally, she began charging a $200 monthly storage fee in July without informing you.
According to her calculations, she claims you owe her $405.89 for storage fees from July to September, after subtracting the amount from the items you sold at a reduced price and her 30% commission. You estimate that you may be out approximately $800 due to her tactics, lies, and lack of proper invoices. Furthermore, her claim that she paid you through June contradicts her reasoning for charging storage fees.
Given the complexity of the situation, it is advisable to seek legal advice to understand your rights and options. Provide any evidence you have, such as invoices, messages, or photographs, to support your case. A lawyer can help you navigate the situation, assess the validity of the contract, and determine the appropriate steps to resolve the issue and potentially seek compensation for any losses you have incurred.