Case Study – Daniel’s Conversion Claim
Daniel’s car was towed illegally by Too Good Auto and Wrecker.
One winter day, Daniel was almost home when his car started to swerve in the snow. He pulled off the road and walked twenty minutes home. Early the next morning, he returned to get the car, but it had been towed to Too Good Auto and Wrecker. A friend drove him to Too Good. When he arrived to collect his car, the owner charged him $412 for the tow and a day’s storage. Daniel was furious, but he needed his car for work. He paid. Daniel felt Too Good made money from illegally towing cars. So, he came to Courtroom5.
STEP 1 – Daniel Gets Training
Daniel learns what is required to state a claim that won’t be defeated by a motion to dismiss. His goal is to make Too Good pay, and put them out of business. He wants a jury award of actual damages plus $50,000 in punitive damages.
STEP 2 – Daniel Forms A Strategy
Daniel gets training on litigation to decide on a strategy to meet his goal. His strategy is to avoid common pro se mistakes so he can make it to a jury trial. After taking a course on research, he now knows that he has a claim for extortion and conversion.
STEP 3 – Daniel Makes Good Use Of Case Law
After taking a course on legal research and analyzing the elements of his case, Daniel searches his state’s case law. There he finds appellate cases with similar claims and defenses to those in his case. He knows he’s going in the right direction.
STEP 4 – Daniel Presses His Case
In his complaint, Daniel properly asserts all the elements of each claim. He defeats a motion to dismiss his claims and conducts discovery based on a solid analysis of his case. In discovery, Daniel finds evidence that Too Good tows cars illegally as a business practice. Daniel defeats Too Good’s motion for summary judgment. Daniel takes his case to trial and wins. The jury awards the punitive damages he requested.
Too Good is not out of business but is likely to change its habits.