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Foreclosure and Loan Modification Blog

Who Are the "Unknown Parties" In Your Foreclosure Case?

Homeowners who fall seriously behind on their mortgage often notice something strange when they are served a foreclosure complaint: under defendants, alongside their name, there are other “unknown” defendants listed. Who the heck are these “Unknown Parties”, and why are they on your complaint? 

Before I answer that, let's look at an example of a foreclosure complaint from a recent client of our firm in Collier county, Florida (my bold):

“VERIFIED MORTGAGE FORECLOSURE COMPLAINT

Plaintiff, U.S. Bank National Association, sues Defendants (Names Redacted); Any and All Unknown Parties Claiming By, Through, Under, and Against the Herein Named Individual Defendant(s) Who Are Not Known to be Dead or Alive, Whether Said Unknown Parties May Claim an Interest as Spouses, Heirs, Devisees, Grantees, or Other Claimants; Unknown Party #1, Unknown Party #2, Unknown Party #3 and Unknown Party #4, the names being fictitious to account for parties in possession, and alleges...”

You can see from that excerpt that US Bank is suing homeowners in a foreclosure lawsuit. After the owners names, they also list as defendants “Any and All Unknown Parties (who)...May Claim an Interest” in the property. They use language that covers any possible way that a person could have an interest in the subject property, such as “Spouses, Heirs, Devisees, Grantees”.

You Could Be In Foreclosure And Not Even Know It

Many homeowners find that something strange happens when they stop paying their mortgage: nothing much. After missing payments they get letters from their bank telling them that they have to pay up or else lose their home. They don't pay because they can't, but still nothing happens for a long time.

Some homeowners go many years without making a payment, falling behind by tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars, and yet their house isn't sold at a foreclosure auction, the sheriff doesn't tell them to vacate the premises, and they're not thrown to the curb. Sometimes the collections calls even stop!

However, just because nothing seems to happen doesn't mean that the gears of foreclosure aren't turning or that the bank forgot that your loan isn't performing for them. Rest assured that they haven't forgotten about you and the money you owe them.

Attorney Demands Bank Proves Reason For Denying Loan Modification

Disclaimer: These results should not be taken as a guarantee, as each case is unique. We have helped over 7,000 homeowners, here is one of their stories.

Everybody needs help from professionals sometimes. That's especially true for people trying to save their home from foreclosure. Despite many homeowners best efforts, they're not able to get the results they want on their own because they lack the knowledge and experience needed to do so, and the consequences of failure are unacceptable. So they seek outside help.

That's the case with a recent client of ours who retained us to help them avoid foreclosure. To protect their privacy, let's call this couple the Livelys. The Livelys have a home in Bronx County, New York and they fell behind on their mortgage payments in August of 2013.

Solo Loan Modification Attempt

Since they wanted to keep their home, but didn't have the massive amount of cash ($91,251.00) needed to reinstate their loan, the Livelys applied for a loan modification which, if successful, would have gotten their loan back to normal and eliminated the threat of foreclosure. They submitted an RMA (Request for Modification Assistance) to Ocwen, their mortgage loan servicer.

The Truth about a New York Foreclosure Settlement Conference

Should you miss work to attend a foreclosure settlement conference? When you’re facing foreclosure in New York, it seems to consume your entire world. When you’re at home you’re thinking about how to save your home. When you’re at work you think about the same thing. Yes, and when you’re watching the Knicks beat up on the Lakers, fighting your mortgage lender is still on your mind. However, is a New York foreclosure settlement conference really worth your time?

What is a settlement conference?

In response to the foreclosure crisis in New York and around the country, the state implemented mediation programs to help homeowners avoid foreclosure. Its mediation program, or foreclosure settlement conference, you and your lender meet face-to-face to negotiate an agreement. According to the 2009 law, you have to meet the following criteria to participate in a conference:

How Does the new New York Foreclosure Law Affect You?

Some lenders attempted to circumvent New York’s three-year foreclosure process by robo-signing foreclosure documents. Robo-signing involved lenders having employees sign foreclosures they never read and using fake signatures to attest to the validity of the foreclosure. The latest New York foreclosure law, which went into effect in August 2013, requires read foreclosure documents and put away the fake signatures. Now lenders must have attorneys swear that all foreclosure documents are real and accurate. As a foreclosure defense attorney in New York will tell you, the new foreclosure law can help or hurt you. 

No More “Shadow Dockets”

A lender who intends to foreclose on your property must provide you a letter at least 90 days prior to filing a foreclosure complaint in court. In many cases, a lender sends you the letter. However, it doesn’t file the complaint. This leaves you in legal limbo worse than watching a 16-inning baseball game with every player striking out. It’s not that you want the foreclosure process completed so you lose your home. You want to start fighting to save it.

After the complaint is filed, your foreclosure attorney in New York has 30 days to file a response to the complaint. If the complaint isn’t filed, your case ends up on what’s known as a shadow docket of pending foreclosures. It’s not a real court docket. Instead, it refers to your case being in limbo for months or years. As a result:

NY Foreclosure Summons and Complaint: Are You in Danger of Losing Your Home?

If you live in New York and have missed more than 3 mortgage payments. You are at serious risk of foreclosure. You have probably heard the news that New York's foreclosures are moving at a snail's pace, but the the fact is: they're speeding up.

Foreclosure Process in New York

New York State Capitol

Foreclosure Process in New York

If you live in New York and are facing a foreclosure or are in the process of foreclosure, do not give up hope of keeping your home. The foreclosure process is New York is lengthy, taking generally 445 days, or 15 months, from the date the owner misses the first mortgage payment to the foreclosed sale of the home. Throughout this period, lender or loan servicers must file and send the proper paperwork, giving the homeowner plenty of time to find alternative and viable options to regaining control of the process.

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.

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