Can a timeshare company foreclose something I thought I didn't own anymore? 18 Answers as of February 12, 2015

We went through a Bankruptcy Chapter 7 a couple years ago. I gave up two timeshares that we owned in the bankruptcy. Now the timeshare company says that we have to sign the timeshares over to them or they will put them in foreclosure. They had all the information during the bankruptcy while it was happening and when it was over and never said a word about this? Do I even own these timeshares anymore? I signed them over during the bankruptcy. I just don't get it. Can they foreclose on something I thought I didn't own anymore? Please Help. Thank you.

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The Law Offices of Ryan F. Beach, PLLC
The Law Offices of Ryan F. Beach, PLLC | Ryan Beach
Yes, the timeshare company can foreclose. Foreclosure is a legal action that effectuates transfer of legal ownership. By listing and surrendering the timeshares in your Chapter 7 you only eliminated the personal liability for the timeshares. The filing of a bankruptcy does not cause ownership of the surrendered timeshares, or any other surrendered real property, to transfer to the lien holder(s). I am assuming the timeshares were abandoned by the Chapter 7 Trustee as assets. I am not sure what you mean when you say you signed over the timeshares during the bankruptcy, but it sounds like you still own them. Consulting with your bankruptcy attorney, or a bankruptcy attorney, would allow you understand what position your are in. The timeshare company thinks you own them and now they are doing what they need to do so that they can take control of them. Your options seem to be either sign the documents they provided to effectuate transfer legal ownership or let them go through the foreclosure process. If you are inclined to sign the documents provided, I recommend consulting with an attorney before signing and returning them. If you opt to allow the timeshares to be foreclosed, you should not face any liabilities as the debts associated with the timeshares should have been discharged by your Chapter 7. Consulting with a bankruptcy attorney so that they can review your bankruptcy filing and the timeshare documents would give you a clearer idea of the exact position you are in.
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 2/12/2015
The debt itself would have been discharged by the bankruptcy but assuming that the time share represents an ownership in property such as a deed would in real estate then you would still be listed as the owner of the property subject to any lien against the property. The lien would have survived the bankruptcy. You can just sign the papers giving up?any ownership that you might have or let them foreclose your rights to the property as would occur if it were real estate.
Answer Applies to: Minnesota
Replied: 2/11/2015
GARCIA & GONZALES, P.C. | Richard N. Gonzales
Title to the timeshare is still in your name. Either transfer the timeshare to the company, or just let them foreclose. I would have an attorney review anything you are suppose to sign BEFORE hand.
Answer Applies to: Colorado
Replied: 2/11/2015
Novakov & Associates, PLLC
Novakov & Associates, PLLC | LINDA S. NOVAKOV
If the timeshares were "deeded" properties, the property remains in your name until you either convey it back to them via a deed - or they foreclose your interest in the properties, and the Court orders a deed be signed back to them or a successful bidder by the Master Commissioner (in KY). You are no longer responsible for the debt related to the time share if the amounts were discharged, however, filing bankruptcy does not automatically return ownership of a property to a third party. If the debt was discharged, the foreclosure action would proceed "IN REM" - against the property only - no personal judgment would be granted.
Answer Applies to: Kentucky
Replied: 2/11/2015
Tokarska Law Center
Tokarska Law Center | Kathryn U. Tokarska
All that you likely did in the bankruptcy paperwork is indicated your intention to surrender the timeshares to the creditor. Whether the ownership was actually transferred away from you, this may or may not have happened. The Bankruptcy court doesn't compel the creditor to take the secured collateral, it is up to the creditor whether and when they do it. If you are being asked to sign some documents it would be a good idea to run these past your bankruptcy attorney just to be sure there isn't anything in there that creates a post bankruptcy obligation. The debt has been discharged so alternatively if you choose to sign nothing and do nothing and simply let them foreclose then all they take is the property and cannot pursue you for any deficiency (the difference between the value of the property and balance owed). There is no rule that says that the creditor must immediately take possession of the property or ever for that matter. Perhaps it would be nice to have such rules because in some instances debtors have been stuck with property that have essentially been abandoned by the creditor but lacking the funds to maintain the item and clear title so they can sell it or send it to the scrap yard. But luckily this is not typical unless the property has little to no value. Usually the creditor waits until the bankruptcy case closes before pursuing the collateral because they don't want to run afoul of the automatic stay or spend time or money on counsel to file a relief of stay and obtain court's permission to foreclose. Once the case closes however they at some point or another go after the collateral.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 2/11/2015
    A Fresh Start
    A Fresh Start | Dorothy G Bunce
    Saying on your bankruptcy petition that you intend to surrender an asset isn't the same thing as actually taking the legal steps required to do just that. It is a common mistake that people often make this assumption, but the legal system is not as simple as you might think. The timeshare lender is being nice by offering to keep a foreclosure off of your credit record. The maintenance fees made after the bankruptcy was filed are debts that would not have been included in your bankruptcy discharge and the timeshare company is within their legal rights to sue you to pay this debt.
    Answer Applies to: Nevada
    Replied: 2/11/2015
    Janet A. Lawson Bankruptcy Attorney
    Janet A. Lawson Bankruptcy Attorney | Janet Lawson
    They need to foreclose to get title. You should sign the documents (after making sure it is just a true surrender). A foreclosure will show up on your credit report.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 2/11/2015
    Ronald K. Nims LLC | Ronald K. Nims
    Timeshares generally have some type of deed ownership. The bankruptcy extinguished your liability on the debt but you continued to own the "property". The timeshare company wants to sell your timeshare to a new buyer. Since you don't really own any property, I don't see why the timeshare company can't just print up thousands of these deeds but for some reason they like to resell the same units over and over.
    Answer Applies to: Ohio
    Replied: 2/11/2015
    Law & Mediation Practice of Rosevart Nazarian | Rosevart Nazarian, Esq.
    You need an attorney to represent you. This is a complex situation.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 2/11/2015
    The Troglin Firm | William M. Troglin
    A time share involves real estate and therefore deeds are used. When you purchase a week at The Fun and Relaxation Resort, you are purchasing a percentage share in the resort and in most cases for your protection you get a Warranty Deed or some other type of title deed for your week which sets out your ownership. When you filed your Chapter 7 the schedules contained "a statement of intention" which stated your intention as to the property used as collateral on a secured debt. Your statement of intent probably stated you intended to surrender the property securing the time share. At this point you have not done anything to actually give the property back. While you have no personal liability on the two time shares the lien is still there and the time share company must do something to enforce the lien and get the property back. With real estate they have two choices 1. Ask you to sign a Deed in lieu of foreclosure - where you are signing title to the property back to the time share company or 2. Foreclose the mortgage or security deed and take title back that way. I recommend Number 1 which is the simplest way to conclude the matter. The time share company cannot charge you anything as expense for the process.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 2/11/2015
    The Law Office of Darren Aronow, PC
    The Law Office of Darren Aronow, PC | Darren Aronow
    Did you sign documents signing over during bankruptcy or just sign a notice of intent to surrender. If the latter, then you still own and they can still foreclose. However, if they never took ownership after your bankruptcy then you can still be held liable for all the maintenance fees since then.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 2/11/2015
    Law Office of Melissa Botting | Melissa Botting
    The bankruptcy process does not transfer title to real estate. In order for title to the property to revert to the seller, you either need to sign a transfer document or they have to go through a legal process to get title. They need to get title to the property to resell it.
    Answer Applies to: Texas
    Replied: 2/11/2015
    Wellman Law LLC
    Wellman Law LLC | Keith A. Wellman
    In your Bankruptcy schedules you would have been required to state whether your intentions were to surrender the timeshares or reaffirm the debts. There is nothing in the required filings that operates as a transfer of ownership. The actual transfer of ownership happens separately. You would have received a discharge of the debt, but that does not transfer ownership. They are now asking you to go forward with the process of surrendering the properties. Is there any concern about signing these over now? Perhaps there is equity in there that you could realize by selling them on the open market, which would require paying off the timeshares, but I know that can be very difficult.
    Answer Applies to: Kansas
    Replied: 2/11/2015
    David Andersen & Associates PC | Jeremy Shephard
    Surrendering the timeshares in bankruptcy did not necessarily get them out of your name. Surrendering a timeshare would get rid of your personal liability (ie: your obligation to pay on the debt) when you received your discharge. The land interest you had in the timeshare remained until the timeshare is foreclosed or deeded back to them.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 2/11/2015
    Law Office of Andrew Oostdyk
    Law Office of Andrew Oostdyk | Andrew Oostdyk
    You may have listed the property for surrender in your bankruptcy, but the creditor has not taken action to place the property in their name until now. Therefore, there are several options to transfer title including foreclosure or signing the property over.
    Answer Applies to: Texas
    Replied: 2/11/2015
    John W. Lee, P.C.
    John W. Lee, P.C. | John W. Lee
    Your bankruptcy simply discharges debt, it does not actually transfer property. Therefore, you still own the property, after the bankruptcy, until a transfer is made. A secured creditor will take action against the collateral (foreclosure or repossession) after a bankruptcy is filed. I have seen mortgage companies wait many years to conduct a foreclosure sale after the bankruptcy was concluded.
    Answer Applies to: Virginia
    Replied: 2/11/2015
    John W. Lee, PC
    John W. Lee, PC | Kim A. Lewis
    Foreclosure is the process whereby a creditor gets the property back. Signing the deeds over to the company accomplished the same thing. One or the other must happen to get the property out of your name.
    Answer Applies to: Virginia
    Replied: 2/11/2015
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