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Are online storage auctions legal in Ohio?

Offline Travis

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Are online storage auctions legal in Ohio?
« on: January 29, 2014, 10:45:33 PM »
We recently received the following question from Sue, a facility manager in Ohio.

I read an article online (https://auctionstx.com/are-online-storage-auctions-legal/) and the author stated that your online auction "offers a legal alternative to storage facilities who are located in states where the legality of online storage auctions is questionable." Texas laws (as touched on in the article) are similar to the sate of Ohio in that the auction must be "held at the self-service storage facility or,.....at the nearest suitable place to the self-service storage facility...". Tell me, what is your way of getting around this. If there is one, I would be very interested in pursuing this option. Thank you.

Sue
site manager


Our response:

Sue,

Thanks for your interest in OnlineStorageAuctions.com.

First and foremost I want to let you know that I'm not an attorney and that you should seek legal counsel before relying on any of this information.

After reviewing Ohio's storage lien law, it's my opinion that you could legally have your lien sale online. The language in Ohio's lien law that states "The sale of the personal property shall be held at the self-service storage facility or, if the address of the place was included in the notice as required by division (C)(7) of this section, at the nearest suitable place to the self-service storage facility at which the personal property is stored" was designed to protect the tenant and prevent misconduct by the storage facility, not to prevent the sale from occurring online.

Keep in mind that most of the lien laws in the United States were written before the internet was prevalent. Storage lien laws are being updated to include specific language about online storage auctions. I believe that it's just a matter of time before the legality of online storage auctions is clear in all states.

Other storage facilities, after seeking legal counsel, have determined (in their opinion) that online storage auctions do meet lien law requirements since the property is technically still being sold at the storage facility and because the consummated sale (the actual exchanging of funds) takes place at the facility when the buyer comes in to pay.

I hope this answers your question.

If, however, you are still concerned about the legality of online storage auctions, you can always list your auction on OnlineStorageAuctions.com and run the online sale concurrently with the live sale at your facility. This way, you can guarantee compliance with your state's lien laws while reaping the benefits that online storage auctions bring.


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