On November 18, 2015, after a three day jury trial in Gwinnett Superior Court, attorneys Christopher J. York and Daniel H. Park of McGahren, Gaskill & York obtained a full defense verdict on behalf of their clients in the Superior Court of Gwinnett County.
This matter concerned a foreclosure sale of the Plaintiff’s home, which was sold at the foreclosure sale of August 5, 2014 at the Gwinnett County Courthouse. The Defendants are investors in real estate that purchase and resell foreclosed properties. They purchased the property at the August 5, 2014 foreclosure sale.
The Plaintiff filed the lawsuit alleging wrongful eviction, trespass, conversion, and negligent misrepresentation. The Plaintiff alleged that, subsequent to the foreclosure sale, the Defendants entered the property and caused approximately $50,000 worth of personal property to be stolen from the home. The Plaintiff sought to recover $100,000 in compensatory damages, as well as punitive damages and attorney’s fees.
Much of the case centered on whether the Plaintiff had actually abandoned the property prior to the foreclosure sale, and on the Defendants’ actions subsequent to the foreclosure sale. Evidence was presented that the Plaintiff entered into a lease for a different property months before the foreclosure sale and that she had hired movers to move a large amount of her personal property, also months before the foreclosure sale. The Plaintiff alleged that she lived at both properties leading up to the foreclosure sale, leaving a lengthy list of valuable items in the home that was about to be foreclosed over. The Defendants testified to the fact that the home was abandoned, with only trash left behind, on August 5, 2014, and that it remained abandoned, in the same state, when they first entered the property on August 10, 2014.
After presentation of the evidence, Defendants moved for a directed verdict, which was granted as to the count of negligent misrepresentation, and as to all counts as to the individual Defendant. The Court charged the jury on wrongful eviction, trespass, conversion, and punitive damages. After nearly 5 hours of deliberations, the jury announced a verdict in favor of the remaining company Defendant on all three remaining counts.