You do have options and may not even know it.
Christopher Legal Group has the experience and knowledge to help you find your best option.
Options To Stop Foreclosure
One of the possible benefits to filing Bankruptcy is the "automatic stay", which stops most types of legal actions against a debtor, including foreclosure. However, in many instances homeowners who are facing foreclosure do not want to, or can not, file for Bankruptcy. In these instances, our firm can assist with other means that may help a debtor avoid foreclosure and/or Bankruptcy. Possible actions may include negotiating a loan modification, short sale or a deed in lieu of foreclosure. Depending on a debtor's situation, we can evaluate whether Bankruptcy, or some other alternative, can help resolve a pending or potential foreclosure. Despite what you may feel, there are alternatives that can ease the burdens and help you get back in control.
Bankruptcy may provide relief depending on your situation and desires. For example, if you are facing foreclosure on one or more properties which you do not want to keep, a Chapter 7 Bankruptcy (if you qualify) may allow you to surrender the property and extinguish all obligations associated with the loans that secured the property. In addition, you may also be able to discharge other debts such as credit cards, medical bills, judgments, car loans (if you surrender the vehicle), taxes (in some situations), HOA dues, and many other types of obligations. You may also be able to keep your home in a Chapter 7 Bankruptcy, provided you are current on your mortgage payments.
If you are behind on your mortgage payments and desire to keep your home, a Chapter 13 Bankruptcy may work for you. A Chapter 13 Bankruptcy may also be recommended in other situations. In addition, a second mortgage can be removed in a Chapter 13 Bankruptcy. There are various factors to consider if a Chapter 13 Bankruptcy is right for you.
For borrowers who do not (or can not) file Bankruptcy, yet want to keep their homes, we also assist with negotiating loan modification agreements. A loan modification is a change in one or more of the terms of a mortgage, typically allowing a delinquent loan to be reinstated to “current” status and resulting in a new payment that a borrower can afford. The change may be permanent or for a limited time. A loan modification generally changes the: interest rate of the mortgage; term of the mortgage; and/or balance of the loan.
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Deeds-in-Lieu of Foreclosure
A Deed-in-Lieu of Foreclosure (“DIL”) allows a property owner to give a property back to a lender in full satisfaction of the obligations owed to the lender. This is not an automatic right afforded to a borrower. There may also be unintended tax consequences associated with a DIL. Depending on a particular situation, there are measures we take that may help mitigate or extinguish the potential tax issues and convince (or pressure) a lender that a DIL is in its best interest. It is common (but not necessarily an absolute requirement) for a lender to require a property to be listed for sale for a stated period of time before it will entertain a DIL request.
A Short Sale is when a property is sold for less than what is owed to the mortgage holder(s) and other obligations (such as back property taxes, HOA dues, assessments, …). The lender(s) will consider the offer for the property and the financial condition of the borrower when deciding to approve a Short Sale. Typically, we request that the lender(s) approve the Short Sale and waive any deficiency claims against the borrower. Otherwise, we remind the lender(s) of the very real threat to file Bankruptcy to ensure that any such potential deficiency is extinguished as part of the Bankruptcy. Further, in this scenario, the Bankruptcy filing by the borrower will delay the time for the lender(s) to get the property “off their books”, thus giving an incentive for the lender to approve our Short Sale proposal.
Like with a DIL, there may be unintended tax consequences associated with a Short Sale, and we provide services that my help reduce the risks associated with such tax issues.