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Deficiency Judgements After Foreclosure

To watch today’s blog video regarding deficiency judgements, please click on the link below:

http://youtu.be/ApOfAj0nT8Y

Elliot S. Schlissel is a foreclosure lawyer.  He can be reached by telephone at 516-561-6645 or 718-350-2802, or by email to schlissel.law@att.net.

Filing Chapter 7 Bankruptcy and Keeping Your Home – Part II

foreclosure and bankruptcy attorneys on Long IslandProperty Exemptions in New York

There is a homestead exemption for homes, co-ops, condos, and mobile homes of $150,000 within the Counties of Nassau, Suffolk, Westchester, Rockland, Putnam, Richmond, Kings, Queens, New York, and the Bronx. (If the title to the house were in the name of a husband and wife, each of the parties, if they filed a joint bankruptcy, would have a $150,000 homestead exemption. Therefore $300,000 of equity in the parties’ home could be protected in a bankruptcy proceeding.)

The extent of the New York bankruptcy exemptions and the ability to use these exemptions to save the equity in a home can be further brought out by the following example. In this example a husband and wife own a home worth $600,000. They have a mortgage on the home of $300,000. They are up to date on their mortgage payments. They have credit card debt and other unsecured debt of $100,000. In this case, if the parties qualify for a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, as a result of filing bankruptcy, the parties could eliminate their $100,000 in unsecured debt. Instead of making the payments on credit cards and the other unsecured debts, they can now utilize those funds to pay their mortgage. The fact they had $300,000 of equity in their house would not create a problem because each of the parties could utilize their $150,000 exemption. (Please be advised that this only works in the counties referred to above).

Conclusion

Bankruptcy is not usually the best way to handle being served with a summons and complaint in a foreclosure lawsuit, however, in the right circumstance it is a viable option.assistance for homeowners facing bankruptcy

Filing Chapter 7 Bankruptcy and Keeping Your Home – Part I

foreclosure assistance for homeownersCan you file a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, eliminate all of your debts other than your mortgage obligation, and still keep your home? The answer to this question is, yes! If you are current on your mortgage payments when you file your Chapter 7 bankruptcy, you may be able to protect the equity in your house, if any, by using the New York Bankruptcy Exemptions. You can file a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, eliminate all of your credit card debt, personal obligations, debts to lawyers, doctors, medical debts, money judgments, car repossession deficiencies, and all types of other personal obligations in the Chapter 7 bankruptcy.

After going through the bankruptcy and eliminating all of your debt besides the mortgage, you will be in a better position to make your mortgage payments. You won’t have all the other creditors calling you on the phone and sending letters demanding payments.

Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Trustee

When you file a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, the court appoints a bankruptcy trustee to review your case. The trustee reviews your petition and thereafter asks you questions under oath at a creditor’s meeting at the courthouse. The Chapter 7 bankruptcy trustee is interested in looking into whether you have property which can be sold to benefit your creditors. If the trustee cannot find property which is not protected by bankruptcy exemptions and has marketable equity in it, the trustee will close your case and not go after your property.helping homeowners stay in their homes

The Effect of Bankruptcy on Foreclosure

foreclosure assistance for homeownersIf my debts are discharged in bankruptcy, is the foreclosure over? Even if your debts are discharged in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy proceeding, your foreclosure problems are not over. If you discharge your unsecured debts and you enter into an arrangement to reaffirm the mortgage and make your mortgage payments your problems with the bank foreclosure may be over. In most cases involving a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, the personal obligation portion of the mortgage debt is discharged (erased) but the lien portion of the mortgage on your home still exists.

The Mortgage

A mortgage actually involves two separate and distinct documents. The first document is the promissory note which can be simply described as an I Owe You (IOU). The second item is a lien. Liens on real property in the State of New York are referred to as mortgages.

The Promissory Note

The purpose of the promissory note is to lay out the terms of the financial transaction, such as the amount you are borrowing, the interest rate, and the payment arrangements. The promissory note is actually the document that creates the personal financial obligation to the bank.

The lien which is placed on your home acts as a type of collateral to secure your repaying the IOU (personal obligation portion of your debt). The lien gives the bank security in your home. Even if you file a chapter 7 bankruptcy and discharge the personal obligation (IOU portion) of your debt, the lien still exists and the bank, when obtaining the release from the automatic stay from the federal bankruptcy court, can move forward with the foreclosure on your home.

The benefit of the chapter 7 bankruptcy discharge will prevent the bank from obtaining a deficiency judgment against you. A deficiency judgment involves a situation where the bank sells your home for less than is owed and goes after the balance of the funds they are owed.

Conclusion

A discharge in a chapter 7 bankruptcy discharges all of your personal obligations, except those which are designated as non-dischargeable by statute. After you receive a discharge, the automatic stay from the bankruptcy court will eventually be lifted. Once it is lifted, the bank will still be able to move forward with the foreclosure in a New York State Court unless you have made a payment arrangement with the financial institution.

So what can you do? Meet with a skilled foreclosure attorney. Find out what your rights are, your remedies are, and the best way to proceed.homeowner advocates

New Federal Mortgage Disclosure Requirements

mortgage and foreclosure attorneyThe Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has propounded new mortgage disclosure requirements. Financial institutions and mortgage lenders will need to provide individuals and families who take out mortgages with much more detailed disclosure material at the time of closing on the loan. The new disclosure requirements replace the existing Truth in Lending Statements, HUD-1 Settlement Statements and the present Good Faith Estimate Disclosure Statements required to be provided by financial institutions.

Three Business Day Requirement

All individuals applying for loans must receive, under these new requirements, loan estimates within three business days. These loan estimate disclosure documents must provide the specific loan terms and the estimated expenses the borrower will incur at the time of closing on the transaction. A second additional disclosure statement will also have to be provided to the individuals taking out a mortgage within three business days before the actual closing takes place. This disclosure document will need to provide a detailed accounting of all aspects of the mortgage loan transaction.

Effective Date August 1, 2015

The new rules promulgated by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau will go into effect on August 1, 2015. All loans processed after that date will require the dual disclosures discussed above.

Financial institutions and mortgage companies have been modifying their procedures to deal with these new rules and regulations that will go into effect in approximately a year and a quarter. These changes to the disclosure requirements which providers need to give consumers, are the most significant changes and modifications regarding mortgage loan disclosures that have taken place in decades. It is hoped that these new disclosure requirements will educate consumers as to how much they are borrowing, how much it will cost them, and whether they can afford to take the mortgage they seek to obtain.

foreclosure advocate for homeownersElliot S. Schlissel is a foreclosure attorney. He has helped scores of New Yorkers stay in their homes and fight off foreclosures. Elliot and his staff of attorneys also assist their clients in filing Chapter 7 bankruptcies, Chapter 13 bankruptcies, and applying for mortgage modifications. Elliot’s greatest satisfaction is when he can help the families he represents continue to live in their homes.

Buyers Are Still Wary Of Purchasing Homes In New York

The housing market on Long Island did not improve in the month of January 2012. According to Multiple Listing Service on Long Island the median sales price of a home in Nassau County  fell 6.1% between January 2011 and January 2012.  This brought the median home price down from $410,000 to $385,000.  During the same period of time homes in Suffolk County fell 5.2%.  With the median price going from $313,000 to $296,800.  The volume of homes that were sold also was reduced.

James Retz, a Vice President at Daniel Gale Sotheby’s International Realty in Cold Spring Harbor, stated with regard to the real estate market on Long Island it is “showing a lot of life, but there’s still a lot of caution.”

High Foreclosure Rates

The high foreclosure rates on Long Island continue to have a negative impact on the sales price of homes.  There are simply too many homes on the market in Long Island.  When you have a lack of equilibrium between the amount homes listed to be sold and the number of purchasers interested in buying homes the market will continue to go down.

Conclusion

It is still a difficult time to sell a house and buyers who are in the market today can obtain substantial bargains.

Real Estate Lawyers

The Real Estate Lawyers at the Law Offices of Schlissel DeCorpo can help you if your home is in foreclosure or if your home is heading toward foreclosure.  We can represent you at foreclosure court conferences.  We can submit foreclosure defenses in litigation brought by financial institutions against you.  A commonly utilized pleading involves defenses such as defective foreclosures, predatory lending, foreclosure fraud, and other real estate related defenses.  We can also help you with regard to a forensic audit with regard to your mortgage.  Call us and we will discuss your foreclosure options with you.
An additional option when faced with foreclosure is filing a Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy.

Our attorneys are available to discuss foreclosures related to bankruptcy with you.  Feel free to call us.

Twenty Five Million Dollar Mortgage Settlement

The Federal Government has recently settled for 25 million dollars with Bank of America, Wells Fargo, JP Morgan Chase, Citigroup, and Ally Financial with regard to pending litigation concerning their improper activities regarding mortgages.

The cases were initially started in 2010.  Banks were initially found of guilty of signing off on foreclosures without appropriately reviewing them.  The scandal uncovered what has been referred to as robosigning.  Robosigning is where bank officials sign documents without reading them.  Sometimes as many as hundreds of these documents within a day.

Banks Broke The Law

The banks involved in the robosigning scandal broke the law.  As a result of their improper activity thousand of homeowners were evicted from their homes for invalid or nonexistent documentation.

Who Receives the 25 Million?

The exact details with regard to the settlement have not been worked out. However, it is anticipated the money will be allocated as follows:

1.         1.5 billion dollars in cash payments will go to approximately 750,000 qualified homeowners who lost their homes in foreclosure between 2008 and 2011.  This works out to about $2000 per homeowner.

2.         Banks will agree to 17 billion dollars in principle reductions concerning homeowners who have homes that are underwater and are either at risk of default or currently in default on their mortgages.

3.         3 billion dollars will be allocated to homeowners who are currently paying high mortgage raters or have adjustable mortgages.  The adjustable mortgages can be reset to very low interest rates.

4.         The balance of the settlement funds will be utilized for consumer protection programs and to establish reforms with regard to the bank servicing agency.

It is estimated that it will take between eight and ten months to set up a methodology of distributing the funds and establishing who the homeowners are that would have to be compensated.  The settlement will be thereafter put into effect for a period of 36 months.

Federal officials have suggested that the total amount of funds paid by the financial institutions will end up being as high as 39 billion dollars.

This Is Not Enough

Paul Dales, a housing economist recently stated “you are hardly skimming the surface.  It could help some people a lot, individually. But in terms of the big picture, overall economy and housing market, it is really just a drop in the ocean of the problem.  Only the five banks mentioned have agreed to this settlement, while mortgages funded by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are exempt.  This cuts more than half of the homeowners from eligibility right off the bat.”

Punishment for Banks

Experts feel that the 25 billion dollars being paid by the financial institutions will not have a significant impact on dealing with the housing crisis in the United States.  While the plan may be flawed, it is a start in the right direction!

Stopping Foreclosure By Filing Bankruptcy

Foreclosure related bankruptcy filing is one of the possible options in dealing with foreclosure problems.  Individuals and spouses can file either Chapter 7 or a Chapter 13 bankruptcies.  The filing of the bankruptcy immediately stops foreclosures from moving forward, stops debt collection practices and stops creditor harassment.  In some circumstances the filing of bankruptcy can eliminate second mortgages.  Call us and we can discuss the types of bankruptcy that are available to you and why filing bankruptcy may be in your interest and other foreclosure defense related options.

Attorneys Who Defend Foreclosures In New York

The Long Island foreclosure defense lawyers at The Law Offices of Schlissel DeCorpo have for more than two decades been representing the families in the courts of Nassau and Suffolk Counties.  The firm helps clients obtain mortgage modifications.  The firm also prepares forensic audits on behalf of clients.  If a foreclosure action is started, the firm submits written answers alleging defenses such as predatory lending, defective foreclosure lawsuits and defective mortgages.  The firm’s attorneys appear in court for settlement conferenceand pressure the financial institutions to give their clients mortgage modifications.

Foreclosure related bankruptcies are another option to deal with foreclosure lawsuits.  Either the filing of a Chapter 7 or a Chapter 13 bankruptcy will bring a foreclosure proceeding to a halt.  Either of these bankruptcies can be utilized to stop foreclosures, stop debt collection, and stop creditor harassment.  Contact the firm for a free consultation.

Mortgage Services Agree to 25 Billion Dollar Settlement For Their Improper Activities Regarding Mortgages

Seven Hundred and Fifty Thousand Americans who lost their homes in foreclosures between 2008 and 2011 will be able to qualify for up to $2000 in reimbursement from a settlement worked out with large financial institutions.

New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman

New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman played a key role in working out the settlement with the large financial institutions. However this settlement doesn’t excuse criminal activity on behalf of the mortgage services. Schneiderman has stated that he will keep pursuing his investigation with regard to mortgage abuses.

Schneiderman said “there are huge tax fraud implications to some of the stuff involving mortgages that we went on.” The large financial institutions involved in the settlement are Bank of America, JP Morgan Chase, Wells Fargo, Citigroup and Ally Financial Services.

Too Little Too Late

The $2000 dollars being paid to people who lost their homes is much too little and it is being paid much too late. Schneiderman stated that the settlement is just a down payment. He intends on pursuing interest and further penalties on the financial servicing companies.

Long Island Foreclosure Lawyers

The Long Island foreclosure defense lawyers at The Law Offices of Schlissel DeCorpo have for more than two decades been representing the families in the courts of Nassau and Suffolk Counties. The firm helps clients obtainmortgage modifications. The firm also prepares forensic audits on behalf of clients. If a foreclosure action is started, the firm submits written answers alleging defenses such as predatory lending, defective foreclosure lawsuits and defective mortgages. The firm’s attorneys appear in court for settlement conferenceand pressure the financial institutions to give their clients mortgage modifications.

Foreclosure related bankruptcies are another option to deal with foreclosure lawsuits. Either the filing of a Chapter 7 or a Chapter 13 bankruptcy will bring a foreclosure proceeding to a halt. Either of these bankruptcies can be utilized to stop foreclosures, stop debt collection, and stop creditor harassment. Contact the firm for a free consultation.

Robo-signers Indicted In Nevada

The State Attorney General in Nevada has recently indicted two individuals in a “massive” robo-signing foreclosure scam. The scammers were indicted with regard to falsification of foreclosure related documents. The State Attorney General’s office in Nevada believes that these two individuals were responsible for thousands of homes being wrongfully foreclosed on.

The individuals involved were California residents. Their names were Gary Trafford and Gerri Sheppard. They are facing numerous charges related to the falsifying of thousands of foreclosure documents in Nevada between the years of 2005 and 2008. They had been working during this period for Lender Processing Services, a mortgage servicing company. According to Nevada Deputy Attorney General, John Kellher, the “Grand Jury found probable cause that there was a robo-siging scheme which resulted in the filing of thousands of fraudulent documents.” It is estimated that Lending Processing Services is responsible for more than half of all mortgage processing in the United States. The company, which has more than eight thousand employees, has acknowledged that there have been flawed procedures with regard to the preparation and signing of mortgage related documents.

Foreclosure Defense Lawyers

The attorneys of the Law Offices of Schlissel DeCorpo blend a wealth of legal experience and legal know how concerning issues involving foreclosure defense, mortgage modifications, forensic audits, defective mortgages, defective foreclosure lawsuits and predatory lending issues.

In the appropriate situations, we advise our clients with regard to foreclosure related bankruptcies. These bankruptcies can be either Chapter 7 or Chapter 13. The filing of a bankruptcy can eliminate second mortgages, stop foreclosures, stop debt collection practices and stop creditor harassment.

Call us for a free initial consultation where we will discuss your foreclosure options as well as bankruptcy options.

Bankruptcy Filings Are On The Rise

Bankruptcy filings on Long Island are on the rise. In March of 2011, more bankruptcies were filed on Long Island than any other time in the past two years.

Change In Bankruptcy Exemptions

There was a significant change in the bankruptcy exemptions in New York in January, 2011. Individuals now filing a Chapter 7 bankruptcy can exempt $150,000.00 in equity in their home. A couple filing a Chapter 7 bankruptcy can exempt $300,000.00 in equity in their home. This means a couple filing a Chapter 7 bankruptcy can discharge their debt and keep their home even if they have $300,000.00 in equity in their home. This is the
main reason why Chapter 7 bankruptcy filings have increased.

Let’s look at an example involving the bankruptcy exemptions. Let’s suppose you
have a home worth $500,000.00 and you and your wife have a mortgage of $250,000.00 on it. You also have $50,000.00 in credit card debt, you owe a doctor $10,000.00 and have a personal loan that you didn’t pay in the amount of $10,000.00. You can file a joint Chapter 7 bankruptcy with your wife, eliminate the $70,000.00 in personal debt, and keep your home. This is provided you are up to date on your mortgage at the time you file your bankruptcy and you continue making your mortgage payments on a timely basis. Filing a Chapter 7 bankruptcy if you’re in financial difficulty may be a good idea!

Long Island and Queens County Bankruptcy Lawyers

If you have questions about filing bankruptcy, contact the bankruptcy lawyers at the Law Offices of Schlissel DeCorpo. We represent individuals filing Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcies. We will discuss with you prior to filing bankruptcy, why bankruptcy may be the best route to resolve your financial problems and also explain the various types of bankruptcies available to you. At the end of the bankruptcy we’ll help you re-establish your credit. It is important to know that under Chapter 13 bankruptcies the lien created by second mortgages can sometimes be eliminated. Bankruptcies can help you stop foreclosure proceedings from moving forward and eliminate debt collection hassles. Call us for a free consultation.

Foreclosure Defense in Valley Stream, Lynbrook, Baldwin, Malverne, Freeport, Oceanside, Long Beach, Elmont, Lakeview, West Hempstead, Hempstead, Merrick and Bellmore, New York

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