Foreclosure, A Complex Legal Issue
If you have missed a mortgage payment or are otherwise falling behind on your mortgage, the bank will have you believe that foreclosure is a simple issue. The bank will tell you that you missed a payment, so unless you can make up the deficiency or they agree to modify your loan they will be able to foreclose and take your home. While this may hold true for an unrepresented individual, it does not have to be the case.
What the bank doesn’t want you to know is foreclosure is not as simple or as straight forward as they make it out to be. Just because you have missed a payment or are behind on your mortgage the bank is not automatically entitled to take your home. In addition to the terms contained within the note and mortgage, the bank must also adhere to numerous federal statutes such as the Truth in Lending Act (TILA), Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA), Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), and Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) just to name a few. If the bank has violated even one of these federal statues, or a term within the note or mortgage, the bank could be prohibited from foreclosing or at the very least be looking at an extremely costly litigation battle if they want to take your home.
If you are facing foreclosure and want to save your home or just avoid being personally responsible for any deficiency that may occur from the sale of your home after foreclosure it is extremely important that you retain an experienced foreclosure defense attorney to defend your case. Even if the bank has told you that you missed a payment and there is no defense to them foreclosing, involving an experienced attorney can provide you extra time in the property and help you to avoid being personally responsible for any monies owed on the note. Involving an attorney also increases the likelihood that they will work to modify your loan and allow you to retain your home. When you combine an experienced attorney’s ability to spot issues in the bank’s compliance with the terms of the note and mortgage with the bank’s possible violations of RESPA, TILA, the FDCPA and the FCRA it becomes much more likely that you will save your home.
If you are facing foreclosure and are serious about saving your home, it is imperative that you retain an experienced foreclosure defense attorney today. Foreclosure is a complex issue and retaining counsel can be the difference between saving and losing your home. If you are behind on your mortgage, have missed a payment or even fear that you may fall behind on your mortgage and will soon be facing foreclosure contact any one of our three Ohio offices for a free telephone consultation today.
When Should I Hire An Attorney To Defend Against Foreclosure?
If the bank has stopped accepting your mortgage payments, returned payments or sent you a notice of foreclosure, it is likely that a foreclosure lawsuit is eminent and you are in danger of losing your home. However, what most people do not know is that you are in danger of losing more than just your home, but could also be held for liable for any deficiency that arises from the foreclosure sale. If the bank has stopped accepting your mortgage payments and you feel your home is in danger of being foreclosed on you need to hire counsel immediately to ensure the best chance of saving your home and avoiding liability for any deficiency should your home be foreclosed on.
It’s a common misconception that you are not really at risk of losing your home until a foreclosure sale is eminent. Most people believe that even if the bank has stopped accepting mortgage payments or sent a notice of foreclosure they do not need to secure counsel, but can simply work with the bank to get the loan modified and avoid losing the home. Often times this puts home owners at a huge disadvantage as banks will pretend to work with clients to get the loan modified, while simultaneously pushing forward with a foreclosure action. This results in many individuals not securing counsel until a foreclosure sale has been scheduled. Unfortunately, once a foreclosure sale has been scheduled there is very little even the most experienced foreclosure counsel can do, and often times bankruptcy must be filed to have any chance of saving the home once the sale has been scheduled.
If the bank has stopped accepting your mortgage payments, or sent you a notice of foreclosure, securing counsel right away preserves the highest number of options in defending the foreclosure. Additionally, if you secure counsel early enough in the foreclosure process, (generally as soon as the bank stops accepting mortgage payments or sends a notice of foreclosure) you likely will be able to utilize the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act and other means of federal litigation to go on the offensive and secure the maximum amount of leverage to obtain the best possible outcome in attempting to save your home and avoid bankruptcy or any liability for a deficiency should the home eventually be foreclosed on.
If the bank has recently stopped accepting your mortgage payments, returned mortgage payments, just sent you a notice of foreclosure, or you are at any point of the foreclosure process give our office a call today and we can answer any questions you may have and evaluate your options to help you find the best way to save your home and avoid any liability should foreclosure occur.
Help with Loan Modifications
If you are facing a possible foreclosure or about to fall behind on your mortgage payments and are interested in keeping your home one of the best options to consider is a loan modification. Loan modifications allow home owners who are struggling to afford their mortgage payment because they have hit a rough patch to be caught back up on their payments either through extending the loan, lowering the interest rate or various other methods. While a loan modification is something an individual can apply for on their own, the process can be time consuming and take months before it is completed. Accordingly, it is in the homeowner’s best interest in most cases to obtain assistance with the process.
You can get an out of state loan modification company to help you with your loan modification however, I have found that many non-lawyer modification companies can charge significant amounts of money while not providing much if any help. These companies have also been the target of numerous lawsuits and you should check with the BBB before hiring one of these companies. Most importantly it can be very hard to recover your funds, and hard to reopen your case if your property is now scheduled for sheriff’s sale because the company you hired has not provided adequate service. For this reason, I recommend if you are going through the loan modification process in Ohio that you hire an attorney licensed in the state of Ohio to help you through the process.
In addition to just helping complete the loan modification process, our firm can provide additional assistance that is crucial in the case that you are unable to get your loan modified. These services include defending any foreclosure litigation, attempting to bring federal litigation against the banks to right any wrongs you may have suffered from their handling of the loan, and working to secure a deed in lieu or short sale as a last option to preserve your credit and help prevent having to file bankruptcy.
If you are facing foreclosure and are serious about saving your home, it is imperative that you take the proper steps to secure a loan modification but also prepare incase a loan modification cannot be secured. Getting a loan modified is almost always the best way to stop you from losing your home, and an option that should certainly be explored. However, all loans will not qualify to be modified and if you fail to secure a loan modification it is imperative that you have proper representation to help with the other facets of foreclosure defense. If you are behind on your mortgage, have missed a payment or even fear that you may fall behind on your mortgage and will soon be facing foreclosure and want to explore obtaining a loan modification contact any one of our three Ohio offices for a free telephone consultation today.