What can I do regarding getting my money and dealing with damages regarding the sale of my house?

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What can I do regarding getting my money and dealing with damages regarding the sale of my house?

I sold my house for $15,000. All the person gave me was $700 and a car. They were supposed to pay off my taxes of $9,000 and I was supposed to get the rest, however they didn’t give me all of my money. They also came in the house and tore the floors and walls up on the second floor without a permit. I am still living in the house and I have 2 other people living on the 3rd floor.

I’m wondering if this is a theft by deception or theft by unlawful taking? Do I have a case?

Asked on May 29, 2018 under Real Estate Law, Ohio

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

It is certainly breach of contract, if they did not do what they agreed to do (i.e. did not pay the full $15,000). You could sue them for breach of contract for the rest of the money owed under the agreement.
If you can show that there is evidence that or it strongly appears that they never intended to pay you the full amount for the house, then it might be either or both of theft (e.g. by deception) or fraud (lying about what they could or would do to get you to enter into the deal), and could potentially sue based on that, too, and also file a police report.
If you did not transfer title to them yet, so the house is still titled to you, then ripping up part of the house would also be theft (if they took what they ripped out) and/or vandalism (if they destroyed it in place), so you could sue on that basis, and again also file police reports. If title was transferred already (it is already titled in their name), then they had the right to do this as the legal owners.
So depending on the specific facts, there are several possible grounds to sue, and possible grounds to look to press charges, too.


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