In accordance with Common Law, property holders are entitled to exclusive ownership of their personal goods. If these rights are infringed, they have the right to take legal action against any individual or enterprise attempting to deny them of their rightful ownership of property.
TRESPASS TO GOODS
The trespass to goods is the act of intentional and direct interference with another’s personal property and/or exclusive possession of goods. Deliberate destruction, use, removal, or touching of another’s goods without lawful justification all constitute actions, that when committed, hold one accountable for the act of Trespass to Goods. These goods and/or personal property may include, but are not limited to, furniture, automobiles, equipment, and a variety of chattels. If the property is damaged, no proof is necessary. However, it is necessary that the owner is in current possession of the goods in order to claim the title to sue for trespass to goods.
Conversion is the act of the intentional handling of goods that is against or inconsistent with the will of the owner, whether through withholding, misusing, misdelivering, or changing the nature of the goods, or ultimately any action that is so significantly inconsistent with the owner’s right to possession of the goods that it actually attempts to wrongfully deprive the owner of that right to possession.
Detinue is defined as the wrongful detention of goods, committed when one unreasonably refuses to surrender or return personal property to its rightful owner, only if and when the owner claims the immediate right to possession of these goods. Detinue is only applicable, however, when the owner holds proprietary interest and/or actual possession of the property. In many cases, detinue is classified within Conversion, as the two only differ in the sense that an act is considered Detinue and not Conversion when the owner specifically asks for property back, and is still refused.
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