What are my rights if an ex-boyfriend has kept some expensive clothes of mine?

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What are my rights if an ex-boyfriend has kept some expensive clothes of mine?

I gave him until Friday to return them or I will file a complaint. What are my chances? I can get an affidavit stating they were at his home. All so he gave me a credit card to use for 2 months. I had his permission to use it. Can he claim that I miss used it? And if so how? He could randomly say that? But he allowed me to still retain the card into the second month. He also gave my leather jackets to his granddaughter. Could she be implicated?

Asked on February 1, 2011 under Criminal Law, Wisconsin

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

There's legally and practically. Legally, somone may *not* take your clothing--or any belongings--without permission; doing so is theft and can  lead to a lawsuit and/or jail time. The granddaughter may be liable if she knew the jackets were stolen; otherwise, if you sue and can prove your case, you can get them back, but she wouldn't face other consequences. And legally, if you had permission to use a credit card, you did nothing wrong.

Practically, the issue is what can you prove? Can you prove he took and has the clothing? Can you prove he didn't buy the jackets for his granddaughter or that you did not gift them to her? Can your prove his permission to use his charge card? No matter what the law, a major issue  is what evidence exists.


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