Foreclosure Defense

For many Americans, being served with foreclosure papers is one of the most financially traumatic experiences of their lives. Having to deal with banks that are unwilling to work with the homeowner or won’t return their calls can be incredibly frustrating and stressful.

Our firm offers a free consultation with a foreclosure defense attorney to discuss your options when it comes to facing foreclosure. There are many questions that people have when it comes to the foreclosure process. Below are some common questions and answers relating to the foreclosure process.

Frequently Asked Foreclosure Questions

Question:  What happens if I don’t respond to the foreclosure action within 20 days of when it is served on me?

Answer:  The bank will typically file a clerk’s default against you which may give up your rights to defend yourself in the action, and also speeds up the time which you will be forced out of your home.

Question:  If I hire an attorney to defend me in the foreclosure action, how long will the foreclosure lawsuit last?

Answer: The time frame may vary depending on what your defenses are, but it is common for people to be remain in their homes for more than a year while the foreclosure lawsuit is litigated.

Question:  What if I respond to the foreclosure action myself and explain why I couldn’t make my payments?

Answer:  Responding to a lawsuit in this manner will usually help the bank prove the case against you.

Question:  If the bank wins the foreclosure lawsuit, and gets my house, can they sue me for additional money?

Answer:  Yes. Your house is the collateral (asset) that secures the loan (note). If the amount they sell the house for doesn’t cover the amount you owe on the loan, they can sue you for the deficiency (the difference).

Question:  If I file bankruptcy, will that stop the foreclosure process?

Answer:  A Chapter 13 bankruptcy will stop the foreclosure and allow you to catch up on your past due payments over a 3-5 year period. If you file a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, it will usually delay the foreclosure process, but it won’t permanently stop it.

Question:  What is the latest date I can file a Chapter 13 bankruptcy to save my home during a foreclosure action?

Answer:  A Chapter 13 bankruptcy can save your home as long as it is filed before the house is “sold on the courthouse steps.”

Question:  What is a short sale?

Answer:  A short sale is when the bank agrees to allow you to sell your house for less than what the loan amount is for. Beware though; the bank commonly puts language in the agreement that will allow them to sue you for the deficiency.

Question:  What are some of the factors a bank considers when agreeing to a loan modification?

Answer:  The strength of your current financial situation as well as whether it is your primary residence are key factors. You are more likely to get a loan modification if it is your primary residence rather than a vacation home or rental property.

Question:  I owe less than what my house is worth. Will I get that additional equity if the bank forecloses and sells my home?

Answer: Usually not. The house is “sold on the courthouse steps”. Usually, the bank buys the house for the amount of their loan. However, it is possible that someone else could buy the house for more than what you owe, but it is unwise to count on it. The best thing to do if there is a substantial amount of equity in your home would be to sell your house yourself prior to the foreclosure lawsuit being concluded.



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