Foreclosed Properties Raise Injury Liability Issues

April 27, 2015 – In The News
New Jersey Law Journal

Michael Viscount was featured in the New Jersey Law Journal article, “Foreclosed Properties Raise Injury Liability Issues.” Full text can be found in the April 27, 2015, article, but a synopsis is below.

Foreclosures are on the rise in the state of New Jersey. These foreclosures bring on many different disputes, including the question of who is responsible for injuries on unkempt foreclosed properties.

In one case, the bank who took over the property after a foreclosure was deemed not responsible for a man’s injuries after tripping on neglected sidewalk on the property.

Another case in the same year ruled that the bank which had taken over a foreclosed property was held accountable for the injury of a woman inside of the building.

According to Michael Viscount, the difference lies in the clear ownership of the property.

In the former case, Viscount explained, the bank was the mortgage holder but did not maintain the property to the extent to which it would be considered a mortgage in possession. Thus, the previous owner was still technically liable. In the latter, the bank was clearly the owner and was therefore responsible, although they did not maintain the property whatsoever, he explained.