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Consignment sale fraud??

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by elgranluis, Jun 5, 2020.


  1. elgranluis

    elgranluis

    Feb 14, 2003
    Vail, CO
    Hi my bretheren TB.

    I recenty sold a relatively pricey bass (9k+) through a consignment service. Instead of using say, Ghrun or Norm´s, I decided to go local. My reasoning was that I would get to meet the guy in person, shake hands, tell stories, whatnot.

    And sure enough, the guy in charge was absolutely charming, we got along pretty well, even liked the same music! I signed a contract and went home, trusting my bass to this guy.

    Fast forward 6 months later. The "charming man" sold my bass for around 6K (did not consult me on the price). Then, communication went south. Its been a month since the last time he answered my messages.

    This guy basically took my bass on consignment back in January, sold it on march, and has had absolutely crappy communication ever since.

    Should I take him to small claims court? (he sold the bass for 6K so it still appplies) Should I just burn him on Yelp and BBB?

    The guy seemed to be a a really nice guy, legit. Thats the reson why i am holding back a little bit, However, his FB account, EBAY, and REVERB accounts all show that the guy is making business, posting items, shipping, etc.

    Shoul I go medieval on him? I mean, BBB claim, small claims court? have i given him enough of the benefit of the doubt?

    Tnanks on advance!
     
    MCF likes this.
  2. DigitalMan

    DigitalMan Wikipedia often mistakes my opinions for fact Supporting Member

    Nov 30, 2011
    Bay Area, CA
    What terms did the consignment contract state?
     
  3. elgranluis

    elgranluis

    Feb 14, 2003
    Vail, CO
    The terms are I can end the contract for 100 bucks, basically. Plus the regular % of the sale for the consignment agency. The problem is that there is no communication whatsoever !
     
  4. ajkula66

    ajkula66

    Sep 23, 2016
    NEPA
    Yelp and BBB are worthless.

    Small claims court is the way to go, but consult an attorney first since I'm not one.

    Good luck.
     
  5. garp

    garp

    Feb 7, 2009
    Connecticut USA
    I'm not an attorney, so this shouldn't be construed as legal advice. However, as I see it, there are a couple of issues to contend with here, and they all have to do with the contract itself.
    • You've stated that it was a "relatively pricey bass," but was that based upon what you paid for it, upon a legitimate appraisal, or upon some other criteria? Unless the contract specifically contained a "do not sell below $X or Y% of documented value" provision, the consignee apparently sold the bass at what he believed the market would bear. Was that barred by the terms of the contract?
    • You mention that there was poor communication. What level of minimum mandatory communication was specified in the contract? If there was no right of consignor refusal granted therein, the consignee may not have had any legal obligation to ask you: "Is a sale for around $6K okay by you?"
    • How did you learn that the bass had been sold? Was it when the consigner remitted an agreed-upon percentage of the sale to you? If so, have you already cashed/deposited that check? Did you not receive sale proceeds at all? If not, that would certainly constitute breach of contract (civil remedy), if not outright larceny (criminal statute).
    Depending on the circumstances, small claims court might not be the way to go. The Colorado Consumer Protection Act (see Colorado Revised Statutes §6-1-101 et seq.) might apply here, but you'd likely need a qualified attorney's assistance in order to make that determination. Most states' Unfair & Deceptive Acts & Practices (UDAP) statutes contain provisions for recovering reasonable attorney fees as part of any court-ordered judgment.
     
  6. redstrand

    redstrand Supporting Member

    May 18, 2007
    Saint Louis, MO
    Fool For Four Strings
    Unless you stated a minimum on the consignment form you’re out of luck. Most places will take whatever at that point. They get their cut no matter what. If you have not received your money then small claims, otherwise be diplomatic and measured while being critical. Don’t rant but lay out the facts, folks listen to that and the shops response will have to address that or look even worse
     
    dkelley, Pilgrim and mcnach like this.
  7. graphics1988

    graphics1988 Supporting Member

    Oct 26, 2014
    Ontario Canada
    This ^^^ - there needs to be an agreed (in writing) MIN amount for the item - if not, it wont stand in any court. It would be a 'he said, she said' scenario and get thrown out.
    I did sell some non-bass related consignment items and that was the first thing written down - minimum amount i would accept for the items - whatever they charge above that is their bonus....OR they work the percentage using your min amount. If not - take your loss, lick your wounds and spread the word. Court will cost ya more time/money than it worth - unless you had properly signed docs.
     
    dkelley and LBS-bass like this.
  8. lfmn16

    lfmn16

    Sep 21, 2011
    charles town, wv
    If you didn't get your money, you should definitely take him to small claims court, if you can. You need to check the limit for small claims court in your state. If you did get your money, you need to check the contract; if he's within the terms of the contract there is nothing you can do.
     
  9. DigitalMan

    DigitalMan Wikipedia often mistakes my opinions for fact Supporting Member

    Nov 30, 2011
    Bay Area, CA
    I see two problems. First, it is (was) your bass, so paying any money to pull it off the market doesn’t make a lot of sense to me. Second and more importantly, any consignment agreement should have an asking price listed as well as terms for accepting a lower price, including minimum the dealer can accept, and whether or not any price below the asking price must be approved by you. Otherwise the contract is a blank check.
     
    Wasnex, pcake, mcnach and 1 other person like this.
  10. Volker Kirstein

    Volker Kirstein Blippy the Wonder Slug

    Did you get paid? Did you cash the check? Did you agree on a minimum?

    Without further information, it's already "he said she said."
     
  11. elgranluis

    elgranluis

    Feb 14, 2003
    Vail, CO
    Thanks for all your replies. The issue is not about the price that he sold the bass for. The issue is that he sold the bass a couple of months ago (he told me so after I sent him several emails asking for an update) and then basically never contacted me again.
     
    mcnach and Rabidhamster like this.
  12. bolophonic

    bolophonic Supporting Member

    Dec 10, 2009
    Durham, NC
    If he hasn’t paid you, then you need to go after him for the money.
     
  13. redstrand

    redstrand Supporting Member

    May 18, 2007
    Saint Louis, MO
    Fool For Four Strings
    Then you need to report him for fraud. Have your paperwork in order
     
    mcnach and Gaolee like this.
  14. Killing Floor

    Killing Floor Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2020
    Austin, TX
    Maybe he was just acting nice to lure you into a web of deceit. Or worse, maybe he was expecting you to come back to his shop and he'd pull a trap door and keep you a prisoner for his private coronavirus lockdown band aboard his private yacht, after selling your bass. Or maybe instead of a yacht it's a zeppelin so once you get airborne there's no escape. There's really no limit to the resources of evil villains.
    You actually got $6,000 for a used bass during the worst economic crisis in American history? May I ask why you sold Paul's missing Hofner so cheap?
     
    elgranluis and mikewalker like this.
  15. Rabidhamster

    Rabidhamster

    Jan 15, 2014
    Is his shop closed?
     
    elgranluis likes this.
  16. murphy

    murphy

    May 5, 2004
    Toronto, Canada
    I always wonder if I am getting scammed when I consign at one place..
    I always get a call from the store saying someone there is offering a lower price...I always say ok and end up with much less than I had counted on...and the 20% consignment cut
    Doesn't seem worth doing anymore....to just get 50% of what it sells for on local Kijiji/Craigslist
     
    elgranluis likes this.
  17. murphy

    murphy

    May 5, 2004
    Toronto, Canada
    I have had to physically go to the store to sometimes discover my item sold some time ago
     
    Rabidhamster and elgranluis like this.
  18. zie

    zie

    Sep 12, 2014
    Washington, DC
    What if he sold it for more but told you 6k in order to keep the rest of the money. Do you know where he is located? This is shady. Go meet up with him and give him the talk.
     
    murphy and elgranluis like this.
  19. CyberSnyder

    CyberSnyder Gold Supporting Member

    Jun 19, 2003
    Maryland
    I Endorse Alien Audio Basses
    My guess is that he's paying past bills with future earnings, COVID happened, he already spent your money and doesn't have new revenue coming in to cover what he owes you. Take him to court. But winning a ruling is different than collecting on that ruling. I wish I had a rosier picture for you.
     
  20. dalkowski

    dalkowski Supporting Member

    May 20, 2009
    Massachusetts USofA
    This. It's law time. Good luck.
     
    murphy and elgranluis like this.

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