If you are behind in your mortgage and facing foreclosure, you probably are in a deep sense of despair. You may feel like there is nothing that you can do to save your cherished family home and the investment you have made in it.
You need to know that you do not have to fight this alone, and that the state of New York has many laws in place to help you prevent foreclosure. The bank can’t foreclose on your without following the absolute letter of the law down to the smallest detail. A recent victory on behalf of one of our clients shows how this works.
The law is on your side
In New York, all actions against homeowners are governed by a very specific law. The Real Property Actions & Proceedings Law (RPAPL) spells out precisely what has to happen for them to take your home from you in a foreclosure.
One of the most important protections you have is that foreclosure has to take place as part of a civil lawsuit filed in court. That means that you have the opportunity to challenge it before a judge. It is important that they follow RPAPL absolutely precisely, and your day in court is the chance to make them show that.
Our recent case
Our client was facing foreclosure. The bank asked the court for a summary judgement that would allow them to sell the house at auction immediately. The homeowner would be out on the street and lose their house.
On behalf of our client, we went over every single detail of the foreclosure proceedings with great care. We found that while the bank had served the homeowner with notice of the hearing by certified mail, they had not also followed up with a notice by regular mail. That is required under Section 1304 of RPAPL.
It may seem like a small detail, but it was enough for the court. The banks have to follow the law precisely, and take no short-cuts along the way. The court found ruled in favor of our client. Their house was not taken from them and auctioned, and the process will have to start all over again.
What this means for you
Your home is protected by New York law, and you are not alone. There is never any reason for you to give up in despair when foreclosure is being threatened. The banks have lawyers, and you should, too!
If you are facing foreclosure, it is vital that you contact an attorney experienced in foreclosure defense as soon as possible. There are many details which have to be followed precisely before they can take your home.