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  • What Is Foreclosure And What Generally Leads Clients To This Point?

    Foreclosure is the action of taking possession of a mortgaged real estate when the consumer fails to keep up on their mortgage payments or when a homeowner fails to pay the mortgage. Foreclosure is a legal process by which the owner forfeits a right to the property and the lender proceeds to reclaim the real estate in court. Foreclosure can also result in a deficiency balance after the foreclosure of the property. If the property does not sell for the whole balance, including principal, interest, late fees, attorney’s fees, auctioneer fees, and advertising fees, or if the total amount is not paid at the foreclosure sale, a deficiency balance may present itself.

    When Someone Is Served With A Foreclosure Summons, How Long Do They Generally Have To Respond?

    When someone is served with a foreclosure summons, they have 20 to 30 days to respond. In Maryland, a series of documents need to be filed by statute. One of them is known as the final lost mitigation notice. When the final lost mitigation notice is received, there’s a deadline to file for mediation. For some clients, they may have forfeited a right to request mediation and the foreclosure sale will be scheduled immediately. However, typically, you will see a 2 to 4-month wait in Maryland for the foreclosure process to proceed. Only then can the consumer halt the foreclosure.

    Can I Delay A Foreclosure From Going Forward?

    You can delay a foreclosure from going forward. In Maryland, you can delay foreclosure through various means. For instance, you may mile an application for a loan modification during the review process of the loan modification application. One option is also to seek a realtor and attempt a short sale. The third option is to apply for a deed in lieu process. Another option is to pay the total amount necessary to reinstate the mortgage balance. Finally, one further option is to sell the property. If someone decides to sell the property, they must hire a realtor to ensure the property sells for the full balance due.

    Walk Me Through The Foreclosure Process And What Generally Happens If You Aren’t Able To Delay Or Stop It?

    The foreclosure process in Maryland starts with a notice of intent to foreclose. A notice of intent to foreclose is typically sent 45 days after default. That would also include a lost mitigation application. The lender’s law firm then files an order to docket the foreclosure. This process can take place any time after the 45 days from the notice of intent to foreclose, or 90 days in default. The lender can then file a preliminary lost mitigation affidavit or a final lost mitigation affidavit. The lender must wait 28 days after filing the order to docket before filing the final lost mitigation affidavit. Then the lender must wait 30 days before scheduling a sale. The filing of the lost mitigation affidavit includes the mediation request form, the homeowner must file a mediation request form with payment within 25 days of receipt. If the homeowner does not request mediation, the sale can occur 45 days after the homeowner has been served with the order to docket or 30 days after the final lost mitigation affidavit.

    If the homeowner requests mediation, the circuit court forwards the request to the Office of Administrative Hearing. The Office of Administrative Hearing then will schedule a mediation hearing within 60 days. The homeowner may file a motion to stay or dismiss with the circuit court, only if they have a valid defense. Thereafter, the lender can schedule a foreclosure sale. The notice must be provided no later than 10 days of a foreclosure sale and the homeowner has the right to clear the default by reinstating the loan anytime up to one business day prior to the foreclosure sale. Once the foreclosure sale has occurred, the lender must file a report of sale with the circuit court. The report of sale must be filed within 30 days after the sale. The court then issues a notice that the sale would be ratified within 30 days. If the homeowner wishes to file exceptions to the sale, exceptions must be filed within 30 days after the clerk’s notice. The circuit court can then ratify the sale and then the court appoints an auditor to file an auditor’s report with the court. The auditor’s report would show a deficiency or a surplus from the sale.

    If the auditor’s report shows the deficiency, the lender can file a motion for entry of a deficiency judgment. If the auditor’s report shows a surplus, the auditor can recommend how the proceeds should be distributed. The purchaser from the foreclosure sale can then file a motion for entry of a judgment awarding possession. After the entry of a judgment, a purchaser can send an eviction notice and file a writ of possession. Following that, the sheriff can execute their writ and evict the homeowner.

    Once My Lender Begins Foreclosure Proceedings, Do I Have Any Chance Of Still Saving My Home At This Point?

    You have several opportunities to save your home during the foreclosure process. You can still file a request for mediation, which would delay the foreclosure process. In addition, prior to the mediation hearing, you can file a completed loan modification application or a request for a deed in lieu. Both a loan modification and a deed in lieu can save your home. An alternative option to save your home during the foreclosure process is to reinstate the mortgage or sell the property. In addition to these options, you can also file a chapter 13 bankruptcy to stop the foreclosure sale and repay any mortgage debts. During the chapter 13 process, you will generally require approval from the bankruptcy court. A chapter 13 bankruptcy plan would also involve a plan to gradually repay mortgage debt over 36 to 60 months.

    For more information on Foreclosure Defense In Maryland, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling
    (240) 997-5775 today.

    Jillian Kindlund

    Call Now For A Complimentary Case Evaluation
    (240) 997-5775
    Former Chapter 7 Trustee

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