Foreclosure Defense

A Foreclosure is when your bank files a lawsuit against you to take your home.  The process may start with a letter from the bank that you are behind in your monthly mortgage payments.  If you don’t pay, the bank will serve you with a summons and you will have 20 days from the day you are served to file a response with the Court.

Typically, this is where I come in to help my clients navigate the foreclosure process.  By defending the action, I am able to see if the bank has all of the necessary documents to foreclose.  Often, there are defenses to the foreclosure action that must be filed in the correct manner and at the correct time.  Having an attorney at this stage can be very helpful.  When I represent my clients, the bank can no longer send them letters, call them, or enter the property.  This gives my clients great peace of mind to know that I am between them and the bank.

I’d love to learn more about your situation and show you exactly how we can help.  Click the button to set up a meeting in our office to chat.  It’s completely free and you will leave with a better understanding of how to take back control of your situation.

There are alternatives to losing your home to the bank. The first alternative is mortgage modification. This is where your bank reduces your monthly mortgage payment, and in some cases, reduces the principal amount owed on the loan. Your new loan will depend on your financial situation, as well as the value of your home compared to what is owed.

Typically, the home is “under water” meaning that you owe the bank more than your home is worth. Modification allows the homeowner to keep their home and make lower monthly mortgage payments.

Another alternative to foreclosure is a short sale. This is where you sell your home for less than you owe, but it is critical to get a waiver of deficiency so your bank can’t come after you for the money.

A short sale, in the right circumstances, can really help clean up your credit. A deed-in-lieu of foreclosure is where you just give your house to the bank, but without the proper paperwork, the bank can still come after you for the money.

Also, your bank may even give you “cash for keys” or other relocation money, as part of the short sale or deed-in-lieu process. There are important considerations for each, and I encourage you to call me to discuss your options.

By far the most common ramification of a foreclosure is the damage to the credit score. However, the most damage is typically done to the credit score when the late payments are reported to the credit agencies. What is more concerning is the bank’s ability to sue the homeowner for money, called a deficiency judgment, after the bank takes the home as part of the foreclosure process. The bank has the right to take a money judgment against the homeowner, who just lost their home, for the difference between what the property is worth at the time of the foreclosure sale, and what is owed on the promissory note and mortgage. This judgment can be used to garnish wages, levy bank accounts, and seize other assets. This is why obtaining a waiver of deficiency is a critical concern for my clients, as this document means that the bank will never be able to come after my clients for any money after the foreclosure sale. Otherwise, the bank now has five (5) years from the date of the foreclosure sale to take the deficiency judgment. That is a long time to be looking over your shoulder waiting to see what the bank will do.