Foreclosure Defense Law
Foreclosure Defense Attorney- Arvanitakis LawForeclosure can be overwhelming and stressful. Sometime there is even confusion as to what foreclosure is and when it starts. For instance, I have encountered clients that thought that the bank had already repossessed their home at the time they were served with the foreclosure complaint. Not so.
What is Foreclosure?
Foreclosure is a judicial process the lender and/or its servicer has to undergo in order to take back its collateral (home) when a homeowner is in default. A homeowner has to be in default for at least 120 days before the lender can start the foreclosure process. In the meantime, the lender will mail the homeowner Notices of Default and Notices of Intent to Accelerate the loan to alert the homeowner that they have defaulted on the loan and the lender is calling the whole loan due. This notice must also list options for the homeowner to avoid foreclosure. If the homeowner continues to be in default, then the lender will seek judicial intervention by filing a foreclosure complaint.
In Florida, once you are served with a complaint, you have 20 days to file an answer and/or affirmative defenses. Otherwise, you run the risk of being defaulted and a default judgment will be entered against you. When this happens, it will accelerate the foreclosure process and you will be foreclosed upon quickly. Therefore, it is critically important that you speak with an attorney right away once you are served with a foreclosure complaint.
Hire an Experienced Foreclosure Defense Attorney
An experienced foreclosure defense attorney can buy you time during the foreclosure and help navigate a settlement in lieu of a foreclosure judgment. Through the process of discovery, your attorney can examine your loan documents to determine if there was predatory lending or any TILA or RESPA violations. As your foreclosure is defended, it is paramount that you also engage in loss mitigation, which can include any of the following: obtaining a loan modification, doing a short sale, or a deed-in-lieu. If the house is simply unaffordable and it is worth less than what you owe, it makes economic sense to either sell it or do a deed-in-lieu of foreclosure or enter into a consent judgment with a deficiency waiver. Your attorney will explain all options to determine which option is a good fit for you. Settling out of a foreclosure is also less damaging to your credit report.
All of the above options are much more favorable than simply doing nothing and walking away from your home. Once a final judgment of foreclosure is entered against you, not only will your home be sold at a public auction, the lender has the right to file an action against you for the deficiency if the lender has not recouped its full loss from the sale of the home. A final foreclosure judgment and additional litigation can be very detrimental to your credit which can haunt you for 7 to 10 years. Thus, simply doing noting and failure to defend and participate in a settlement will put you in a disadvantage.
I’m here to help. Call me to schedule a free consultation if you are in default or have been served with a foreclosure complaint. I will evaluate your case and financial situation and consult with you on possible options to help you determine the best way forward.