2

Foreclosure and Loan Modification Blog

Florida Supreme Court Ruling Could Increase Foreclosures In State

The Florida Supreme Court has issued a ruling that could increase the number of foreclosure actions brought against homeowners in the state.

According to the Florida Bar News, as a result of the state Supreme Court's November 3 ruling,“Lenders who have had a foreclosure suit dismissed can bring new action if the borrower continues to default after the dismissal and the case is brought within five years of nonpayment.”

The ruling had to do with the statute of limitations provision in Florida that says foreclosure on a mortgage has to be brought within five years of the borrower defaulting on payments.

Does Your Bank Have the Standing to Foreclose on Your Home?

In judicial foreclosure states (such as Illinois, Florida, Pennsylvania, New York, and New Jersey), your lender is required to go through the courts to foreclose on your property. They become the plaintiff and you become the defendant in a foreclosure lawsuit.

The plaintiff must prove to the court that they are the party in interest that's legally entitled to foreclose on your home. That, in legal terminology, is called standing.

Standing is very important, and the plaintiff must have it at the time they file a foreclosure action against you. If they don't, your attorney may file a motion to dismiss the action because of it.

Does Your State Require Judicial or Nonjudicial Foreclosure?

When you do not pay your home loan payments, your lender is required to follow the laws and procedures of your state to take ownership of your home and sell it. Some states require lenders to file a lawsuit in court in order to foreclose, which is known as judicial foreclosure. Other states allow lenders to foreclose without filing a lawsuit in court, which is known as nonjudicial foreclosure. Roughly half of the states have judicial foreclosure rules and half have nonjudicial. 

The Wells Fargo Grinch Who Wrongly Foreclosed at Christmas

If loan modifications were the holidays, then Wells Fargo would be the Grinch. While the other big banks have been known to make life difficult for homeowners who are facing foreclosure, Wells Fargo's loan modification unit is among the worst. How many American  homeowners have they spoiled Christmas for this year?

Florida's "Foreclosure King" Dethroned? Not Quite.

Here's something that probably didn't make your local news: David J. Stern, the so-called "Foreclosure King" will more than likely lose his law license and will have to pay a $50,000 fine to the Florida Bar. This follows an extensive investigation and civil suit from the Florida Bar Association. While the fact is that this is the only court decision against Stern himself thus far (his companies, however, have been sued several times, and one of his companies is in the process of suing Stern for $60,000,000) surely pleased Stern, the big banks, and their cronies, it's a slap in the face to every homeowner in the nation, not to mention the homeowners in the Sunshine State who were torched by his firms' actions. 

Who is David J. Stern?

If you're not familiar with David J. Stern and the impact he's had on the state of Florida, imagine if most of the court cases in one state (the nation's 4th most-populated state, at that) were controlled by a single law firm. Now imagine if this law firm was run in the most greedy and apathetic, but least efficient manner possible. Imagine that this law firm found several ways to make a mockery of everything the legal system stands for- from missing court appearances, to forging important documents, to blatantly disregarding the most basic laws that applied to its cases. Then imagine if these improprieties didn't only cost years worth of time and resources for the legal system and the taxpayers that finance it, but they also cost thousands and thousands of families their homes and livelihoods.

How Our Attorneys Beat U.S. Bank, A True Foreclosure Stooge

If an industry insider was asked to compare the way big banks have handled the foreclosure crisis to the movies, he would not think of the highly coordinated drama of a war epic, nor would he mention the selfless heroism shown in superhero movies. Instead, he would probably compare the banks' ways to the silent ineptitude of the Marx Brothers or Charlie Chaplin; or even the destructive buffoonery of the Three Stooges.

Your Mortgage Lender Loves Slapstick Comedy

Unfortunately, the way the banks have dealt with people's homes- and by extension, their very livelihoods- is no laughing matter. Hundreds of thousands of people have lost-and are still losing- their homes because they don't know how to fight against the banks, even when the banks themselves don't have a proper handle on the foreclosure cases they've been filing.

Is Your Home Free If You Don't Pay Your Mortgage for 5 Years?

We've heard all types of questions from our clients, but one question that we're hearing often is this: "can my mortgage be canceled if I don't make my mortgage payments for 5 years?Some foreclosure defense lawyers and "foreclosure rescue" companies have been advertising that Florida homeowners can get out of foreclosure by not paying on their home for 5 years, and homeowners aren't sure whether to believe these claims or not.

In fact, Florida law does state that there's a 5 year statute of limitations on foreclosures (technically on promissory notes). Although this may seem straightforward enough, it gets a bit complicated when you delve into the specifics of the law.

What Powers Do Florida Foreclosure Laws Give HOA's?

In July, Florida recorded more foreclosure activity than any other state in the nation, according to the real estate data firm RealtyTrac. Nine of the top 10 metropolitan areas with the highest rate of foreclosures were Florida cities. Florida has ranked number one in foreclosure-related activities for three consecutive months.

While many areas of the country have experienced a drop-off in foreclosures—initial filings, foreclosure auctions and bank owned properties, the state continues to sift through the backlog of foreclosure cases.  

Most people know that mortgage lenders and local government can create liens that require foreclosure action, but many people don't know that condominium and homeowner's associations (HOAs) also can create liens that require them to avail themselves of foreclosure laws in Florida. HOAs have specific legal rights and powers over properties in the community.

This authority includes initiating the Florida foreclosure process for issues related to delinquent monthly fees, dues and special assessments.

Two Months Later: the Aftermath of Florida's New Foreclosure Law

Has HB 87 Solved Florida's Foreclosure Problems?

Florida experienced the most intense and widespread ravages of the mortgage crisis in 2008, and new foreclosures are still occuring at an alarming rate a half decade later. Even worse, Florida is a judicial foreclosure state. This means that all foreclosures have to proceed through a set process in the court of law, which can take years for each individual case. In addition to the new cases that are entering the courts daily, there are over 100,000 cases still waiting to be re-tried after the "robo-signing" scandal shut down all Florida foreclosure proceedings in late 2010. These factors combined to create a perfect storm of epic proportions in Florida's courts: so large, in fact, that there are currently over 328,000 foreclosures languishing within Florida's judicial system. 

We Fought the Law, and We Won: How Our Attorneys Stopped a Chase Bank Foreclosure

foreclosure-lawyers-defeat-chaseFlorida may be in the Southernmost part of the United States, but it was and still is the center of the foreclosure crisis. Even today, thousands of Floridians are served with foreclosure papers every month. Florida is a judicial foreclosure state, meaning that foreclosures have to proceed through through the court system in order to be completed. This combination of judicial foreclosure and the severity of the foreclosure crisis has created what is consistently the nation's largest backlog of foreclosure cases; a problem which Florida's government had not addressed until recently.

About this Blog

Amerihope Alliance Legal Services is a leading loan modification and foreclosure defense law firm with attorneys licensed in 5 states. We have helped over 7,000 homeowners fight back and keep their homes.

Click to Read Our Super Loan Mod Success Stories

Our goal is to provide valuable information to help homeowners who are trying to obtain a loan modification or to stop foreclosure. You may schedule a free consultation at any time.

Subscribe to Email Updates

Lists by Topic

see all
Quick Foreclosure Quiz

Foreclosure Process Handbook