Self storage tenants have many reasons for not paying their rent and storage operators are often sympathetic to their circumstances. Owners will enter into arrangements with tenants to delay a scheduled lien sale for a partial payment and a promise to bring the rent current within a few weeks. Unfortunately, tenants frequently are unable to fulfill this promise and their stored property is ultimately sold at a lien sale.
Tenants who enter into such agreements will often try to buy even more time by offering an excuse as to why the rent cannot be paid. One of the more unusual and audacious excuses for failure to bring an account current was offered by a tenant in a wrongful sale of stored property lawsuit against the self storage operator. The tenant alleged that he was “detained and unable to pay the rent since having to use the cash on hand for a bail bond man.” The tenant’s legal problems are unfortunate but are not a legal defense for not bringing his rent current. The tenant’s allegations against the storage operator are not typical in wrongful sale litigation but fortunately, the trial court concluded they did not constitute a legal basis for wrongful sale liability. The trial court issued an order dismissing the suit just a few months after it was brought.