Is a bank liable for personal injury on property that is in foreclosure and awaiting a sheriff’s sale confirmation?

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Is a bank liable for personal injury on property that is in foreclosure and awaiting a sheriff’s sale confirmation?

I fell on the property that I occupy and hurt myself pretty badly. This property has been in court for over a year in foreclosure. We have had trouble with this bank for a long time and the property was actually sold and bought back by the bank 10 months ago.The bank put the sale on hold but now wants to get the confirmation. During this time could it be liable for an injury? I have existing RSD and the fall really hurt me.

Asked on April 25, 2011 under Personal Injury, Ohio

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

You state that you occupy the property and that the sale was put on hold. If that's the case, then it's not likely that you could hold the bank liable. The sale was never legally consummated; you are the occupant and are in effective control of the property...if anyone would be liable for an injury caused by conditions on the premises, under these facts, it may well be you. In addition, simply falling on property does not make the owner liable in any event; instead, there must be fault, such as some failure of maintenance or dangerous condition created by the owner. (And if the sale was put on hold and you occupy the property, the bank probably doesn't have any ability to maintain the property, so there's not likely to be fault.)

 


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