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LADYLAWYER
LADYLAWYER, Lawyer
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what are the laws in indiana on personal property eviction

Resolved Question:

what are the laws in indiana on personal property eviction?? I have an REO property that has personal property left behind...
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  LADYLAWYER replied 3 years ago.

Hello,


Thanks for choosing Justanswer.com! I look forward to helping you with legal information today.

 

Here is the statute on that: http://www.in.gov/legislative/ic/code/title32/ar31/ch4.html

 

Notice the statute uses the phrase "reasonable person" without defining that phrase. The statute leaves the phrase undefined because there can be no abstract definition of reasonableness. What is reasonable depends on the situation.

The General Assembly made the procedure of (e) permissive rather than mandatory: "the landlord may remove...." The General Assembly left an open question about a landlord's ability and liability for disposing of the tenant's property in the following circumstances:

  1. When the landlord has an order finding the property abandoned but does not send the property to a storage facility.
  2. When the landlord does not seek to get an order finding the property abandoned.

I foresee more problems for a tenant successfully suing a landlord under #1 than #2 but it is still annoying that the General Assembly could not have made this simple statute a bit more certain.

I see landlords having liability in the following:

  1. The property has sufficient value to justify a lawsuit;
  2. The landlord does not seek a court order finding the property abandoned; and
  3. The landlord acts unreasonably in declaring the property abandoned and then disposes of the property.

The best practice is to do nothing without a court order.

 

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Customer: replied 3 years ago.
this is not a landlord situation....It is a REO property....bank owned....home is vacant and abandoned personal property inside....is there a process in indiana that I must follow before trashing this home out??
Expert:  LADYLAWYER replied 3 years ago.
The bank IS the landlord in this situation. Did the bank have to evict the previous owner/tenant after the sale of the home, or did the person just leave on their own accord? How long ago did they leave?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
no...they were already gone....i am assuming they have been gone for months becasue of condition of yard...but I am not sure
Expert:  LADYLAWYER replied 3 years ago.

Thank you. The above statute would still control. The bank could technically ask the court for an order finding the property abandoned, but an argument could be made that the foreclosure would suffice. As the statute says, the property MAY be moved to a storage facility if notice of both of the following has been personally served on the tenant at the last known address of the tenant:
(1) An order for removal of personal property issued under section 2 of this chapter.
(2) The identity and location of the warehouseman or the storage facility.

 

The botXXXXX XXXXXne here is that if the bank wants to be completely protected, they should ask the court for an order of abandonment. After they get the order (which should only take a couple days), they should then send it to the "tenant" at his last known address, along with the address of the storage facility where they plan to move it. In 90 days, the storage facility has a legal right to sell the property to pay for the storage of it.

 

The other option is just to trash the property. The chances of the owner/tenant coming back and suing the bank for this is slim to none.

 

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