What to do?
I run a small sole trader biz from home running an IT consultancy / PC repair service, etc, in my spare time.
I always cherry pick the best jobs and go for the ones that look like they'll cough up on time when the work is done.
However, I've got a PC sat here- a job for a customer - HDD replacement as the original had failed, O/S re-install & RAM upgrade. That was months ago and he hasn't responded to phone calls - he knows the job has been completed & he knows what moolah he owes me for all the parts and the labour. I've even sent him a bill in the post.
The PC is just sat here cluttering up my little workshop - am I within my rights to now keep it? I've given him plenty of time now.
I was planning on popping in to my local CAB on Tuesday to see what they say.
If i remember correctly then you have given plenty of warning, and he has failed to pay within the agreed times, you are within your rights to with hold the item until he pays. Whether or not you use it as a personal PC is a different matter which I am unable to tell you due to lack of knowledge.
The Torts (Interference with Goods) Act 1977 provisions apply any time after the goods are ready for collection, subject to any terms imposed at the time the goods were left with you for repair.
If you are in possession of a customer's goods and he/she is under an obligation to collect them (e.g. because you have repaired the goods for the customer), you are entitled to sell the goods if they remain uncollected and are not otherwise the subject of a dispute. Before doing so, you must satisfy two conditions:
1. You must first send the owner of the goods written notice of:
their obligation to collect the goods;
details of the goods to be collected and the address at which they are held;
your name and address;
details of any sum of money owing in respect of the goods at the time the notice is sent (e.g. repair charges, storage costs).
This notice may be delivered direct to the owner, left at his proper address or posted to it. The 'proper address' means:
in the case of a limited or public limited company, the registered office or principal office;
in any other case, the last known address of the owner.
2. If the notice does not result in collection of the goods, you must send the owner, by recorded delivery post or registered letter:
the same information as in the notice above, plus
notice of your intention to sell the goods if they remain uncollected, and the date of the intended sale.
The period between the issue of the second notice and the date of intended sale must be reasonably sufficient for the owner to reclaim the goods. If any money is owed to you, this period must be at least three months.
If the owner still does not collect the goods by the date stated in your second notice, you can sell them. You must give the proceeds of the sale to the owner of the goods, but you are entitled to keep any money owed to you, including the cost of the sale (e.g. advertising).
If the owner of the goods is not at the proper address, you can still go ahead with the sale after you have taken reasonable, unsuccessful, steps to trace him/her.
Best of luck..