Legal Memorandum: Claim for Conversion in FL

Issue: Under Florida law, what must a plaintiff show to prevail on a claim for conversion for the wrongful delivery of goods from a warehouse?

Area of Law: Business Organizations & Contracts, UCC & Secured Transactions
Keywords: Claim for conversion; Wrongful delivery of goods
Jurisdiction: Florida
Cited Cases: 199 So. 2d 139; 491 So. 2d 278; 16 F.3d 1133; 864 F.2d 721; 481 So. 2d 501
Cited Statutes: None
Date: 02/01/2001

Traditionally, a warehouse that wrongfully fails to deliver goods when requested will be liable for conversion of those goods.  See, e.g., Shapiro Bros. Factors Corp. v. May’s Moving & Storage, Inc., 199 So. 2d 139, 139 (Fla. Dist. Ct. App. 1967).  Conversion “occurs when a person who has a right to possession of property demands its return and the demand is not or cannot be met.”  Shelby Mut. Ins. Co. v. Crain Press, Inc., 481 So. 2d 501, 503 (Fla. Dist. Ct. App. 1985), review denied, 491 So. 2d 278 (Fla. 1986).  Conversion is any act that “deprives another of his property permanently or for an indefinite time.”  Marine Transp. Servs. Sea-Barge Group, Inc. v. Python High Performance Marine Corp., 16 F.3d 1133, 1140 (11th Cir. 1994).  No wrongful intent is needed for the tort of conversion.  Landsman Packing Co. v. Continental Can Co., 864 F.2d 721, 733 (11th Cir. 1989).


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