What do I do if I can't afford home any longer and I received court papers to go for foreclosure? 22 Answers as of February 26, 2014

Ask a Local Attorney. 100% Anonymous. Free Answers.

Free Case Evaluation by a Local Lawyer: Click here
GARCIA & GONZALES, P.C.
GARCIA & GONZALES, P.C. | Richard N. Gonzales
I am assuming you have contacted a real estate broker and tried to do a "short sale". If not, call a real estate broker and tell them you can no longer afford the payments, and you want to do a short sale. After the short sale, most mortgage companies will not bother you even though they received less than what was owed. If they do contact you for payment on the deficiency, you can look at the option of doing a bankruptcy then.
Answer Applies to: Colorado
Replied: 2/25/2014
Eranthe Law Firm
Eranthe Law Firm | Cate Eranthe
If you received court papers, you should go and see a knowledgeable local real estate or bankruptcy attorney immediately! You need advice based on more information than can be put in these posts. Most foreclosures in California are non judicial and will not involve the court process. If the court process is involved you are at greater financial risk and there could be a money judgment not just having to leave the house. The usual foreclosure involves notices that spell out how much time you have and when the sale date will be. If you have other debts that are unpaid, you may want to consider a bankruptcy. Depending on your situation you may be able to catch up on house payments or just let it go. The timing of this is important and you should get professional help. Important: Do not abandon the house so that it becomes a hazard or you will be liable. Also make sure to keep your insurance policy in effect until you are certain that the title has changed and is no longer in your name. Otherwise you could be liable if someone is injured on the property.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 2/25/2014
Tokarska Law Center
Tokarska Law Center | Kathryn U. Tokarska
There is insufficient information here to answer that question and what you seem to be seeking in asking it I think constitutes legal advice, something we are forbidden to offer over the internet. Most attorneys will offer a free consult. Go see at least one. Provide them information about your situation. A bankruptcy attorney might be able to help you save the home, but this depends on details such as why you are not able to afford the home: budget issues, income issues, other debts, loan modification issues or a combination of these. I am concerned that you state you were provided with court papers since most foreclosures in California are done non-judicially, maybe you mistook the documents as court papers. In either case, unfortunately what you say brings to mind more questions for you rather than an answer so take the time to see someone in an interactive way where you and the attorney gets to ask and answer some questions to come up with a plan for you to deal with this development.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 2/26/2014
Heineman Law Office
Heineman Law Office | Jeff Heineman
In general: If in Idaho, you can live in the home up to 10 days after the foreclosure sale occurs. If you don't leave, the new owner can have you removed and ask the court for you to pay its attorney fees and costs. Also, you could still have some liability with regard to homeowner association dues and other matters depending on when the lender that forecloses changes title to the property.
Answer Applies to: Idaho
Replied: 2/25/2014
Janet A. Lawson Bankruptcy Attorney
Janet A. Lawson Bankruptcy Attorney | Janet Lawson
You should see a lawyer about bankruptcy. Even f the lender can't come after you for a deficiency balance, you can avoid the tax consequence by filing bankruptcy. After bankruptcy the tax can be avoided by filing IRS form 982.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 2/25/2014
    Law Office of Michael Johnson
    Law Office of Michael Johnson | Michael Johnson
    Contact an attorney you may be able to modify your mortgage and get rid of the debt.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 2/25/2014
    Meister & McCracken Law Firm, PLLC | Joanne M. McCracken
    Your best option to avoid a deficiency judgment and possible income taxes on the "forgiven" debt is to talk with a bankruptcy attorney to learn about your options and the protections offered by the bankruptcy process.
    Answer Applies to: Arkansas
    Replied: 2/25/2014
    The Law Office of Darren Aronow, PC
    The Law Office of Darren Aronow, PC | Darren Aronow
    You should see an attorney to see if you can remain in home for a few years while defending the foreclosure in court. Legal fees will usually cost less than a mortgage.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 2/25/2014
    Kirby G. Moss PC | Kirby G. Moss
    If you can't afford it any longer, you can look into a short sale(get a realtor who does them) or a deed in lieu of foreclosure(seek legal advice). You also could explore the possibility of a loan modification if you meet the requirements of your lender. If none of these options work, then a Ch7 bankruptcy will relieve you of any responsibility on the mortgage after surrender of the house.
    Answer Applies to: Indiana
    Replied: 2/25/2014
    Detroit Lawyers, PLLC
    Detroit Lawyers, PLLC | Nick Best
    The first step would be to reach out to your mortgage company to see if they would be willing to modify the loan. By restructuring the terms of the loan, the bank may lower your monthly payment into an amount more manageable. If this is unsuccessful, a number of individuals have saved their homes through filing a Chapter 13 bankruptcy. A Chapter 13 Bankruptcy allows you to catch up on your past due payments through a payment plan. In addition, mortgage companies may be more willing to negotiate a plan modification while you are in a Chapter 13. If you have a second mortgage on your properly, you may be able to strip the entire lien in a Chapter 13 bankruptcy. Finally, it may make the most sense just to walk away from your home. If you are concerned about a large deficiency balance, it may be worth considering filing a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, which will discharge that debt.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 2/25/2014
    The Law Office of M Grater LLC
    The Law Office of M Grater LLC | Mark O. Grater
    One thing you can do, if you are a Connecticut resident, is to request mortgage mediation when you receive the foreclosure papers. You might be able to lower the mortgage to something you can afford. As to other options, I strongly recommend you consult with an attorney.
    Answer Applies to: Connecticut
    Replied: 2/25/2014
    Garner Law Office
    Garner Law Office | Daniel Garner
    How you respond will depend on how long you want to stay in the house. A foreclosure may be worse for your credit record than a bankruptcy. If you want to avoid both, offer to surrender the house and be prepared to move out as soon as you are required. If you want to stay in the house as long as possible, file a bankruptcy just a few days before the court orders the foreclosure, making sure that you get prompt notice of your bankruptcy to the creditor's attorney. That will stop the foreclosure from proceeding for a minimum of 30 days and probably longer.
    Answer Applies to: Oregon
    Replied: 2/25/2014
    Michael B. McFarland, P.A. | Michael B. McFarland
    You should consult with an experienced bankruptcy attorney promptly. In either a Chapter 7 or Chapter 13, you can surrender the property and possibly delay the foreclosure. Somewhat without a concern about potential taxes. Also, you will not run the risk of being assessed a deficiency balance if the property sells for less than you owe.
    Answer Applies to: Idaho
    Replied: 2/25/2014
    Stuart P Gelberg
    Stuart P Gelberg | Stuart P Gelberg
    Since you posted this to Bkry on Law QA, I assume you realize bkry is an option. I can't answer about other options on this website. It is limited to bkry.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 2/26/2014
    A Fresh Start
    A Fresh Start | Dorothy G Bunce
    You could try a loan modification to reduce your payments or you could attempt to sell your home to find something more affordable. Since a foreclosure will seriously harm your credit, either of these choices would be better than a foreclosure, which will haunt you for many years.
    Answer Applies to: Nevada
    Replied: 2/25/2014
    Hoang & Tran PLLC | Adam Tran
    You may need to consult with a bankruptcy attorney to discuss the options that are available to you.
    Answer Applies to: Texas
    Replied: 2/26/2014
    Patrick W. Currin, Attorney at Law | Patrick Currin
    Bankruptcy can delay foreclosure; sometimes for quite a while, but it cannot stop a foreclosure forever if you don't make the payments. A chapter 13 though, can remove a wholly unsecured second loan, which can make staying in the home more of a possibility.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 2/25/2014
    Law Office of Stuart M. Nachbar, P.C.
    Law Office of Stuart M. Nachbar, P.C. | Stuart M. Nachbar
    Contact counsel and explore your options in bankruptcy and loan modification.
    Answer Applies to: New Jersey
    Replied: 2/25/2014
    Moore Taylor Law Firm, P.A.
    Moore Taylor Law Firm, P.A. | Jane Downey
    You should or could think about moving or ask to modify your loan.
    Answer Applies to: South Carolina
    Replied: 2/25/2014
    Law Offices of Linda Rose Fessler | Linda Fessler
    If it is in California most foreclosures are non-judicial, that is, they are not processed through the Court. But even if it is going through the court, there is a lot that you can do.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 2/25/2014
    The Law Office of Mark J. Markus
    The Law Office of Mark J. Markus | Mark Markus
    Depending on where the property is located and whether it is your primary residence or not, I believe under the current laws the mortgage lenders cannot come after you for any deficiency after the foreclosure sale. However, you mentioned "court papers" so that leads me to think perhaps they are doing a judicial foreclosure where they are seeking a money judgment. You should consult with a real estate attorney in your area. If in fact you are liable for any deficiency after sale, then bankruptcy is an option you can easily explore by having a consultation with an experienced bankruptcy attorney.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 2/25/2014
    Goldsmith & Guymon
    Goldsmith & Guymon | Marjorie Guymon
    I recommend that you file bankruptcy to avoid a foreclosure if you need more time to find another place to stay. You can delay the foreclosure sale a few months to do so. Also, you can avoid any possible deficiency suit or 1099 tax liability.
    Answer Applies to: Nevada
    Replied: 2/25/2014
Click to View More Answers:
12 3 4 Free Legal QuestionsConnect with a local attorney