Can I be held liable for a personal injury occurring at a home I previously owned?

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Can I be held liable for a personal injury occurring at a home I previously owned?

I bought a house in FL 10 years ago. It was fenced and gated. I had the gate motorized a year later and it had a button so the gate could be opened from inside the gate without using the car remote. I sold the house 4 years ago. A guest of the new owner, who knew the location of the button reached through the gate to open it and the gate caught her hand. The insurance company is apparently balking at paying. Her lawyer and the current homeowner’s lawyer now want to get a deposition from me. I’d like to cooperate, but wonder if I can be held in any way liable?

Asked on July 13, 2011 under Personal Injury, Virginia

Answers:

FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Typically once a property owner sells his or her residential property where he/she are no longer on legal title to the parcel and someone gets injured, liability as to the former property ceases in most jurisdictions.

The above answer also depends upon the fact that the personal injury occurred after legal title to the property is transferred to the new owner and the former owner after property transfer had no actual contact with the injured person when the accident happended.

The deposition that you are requested to attend is most likely a fact finding mechanism to see if the current proeprty owners knew or should have known about a dangerous condition as to the gate and your knowledge of the gate's condition before property transfer and changes to the condition o the gate after property title transfer.


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