Foreclosure Defense Lawyer Near Me in Bucks County
Mortgage foreclosure can happen to anyone. Unforeseen circumstances and unfortunate financial situations can push homeowners behind on their mortgages and eventually cause their homes to be foreclosed upon. Luckily, Pennsylvania offers opportunities for mortgage borrowers to work things out with their lenders through a mortgage foreclosure program or a conciliation conference. Mortgage borrowers who are facing the threat of foreclosure should seek the help of an attorney to ensure that they can make educated decisions about the future of their property.
The skilled lawyers from Young Marr & Associates are eager to help mortgage borrowers who are dealing with imminent foreclosure on their homes. These Bucks County foreclosure lawyers are able to help their clients understand every aspect of the foreclosure process and ultimately achieve a fair and manageable outcome. An initial consultation to discuss your options is free and confidential. Contact Young Marr & Associates today by calling (866) 781-4058.
Formal Notices of Foreclosure in Bucks County
According to the mortgage foreclosure instructions outlined in Pennsylvania Rules of Civil Procedure Sections 1141 through 1164, mortgage borrowers must receive certain notices at the beginning of the foreclosure process. These notices are:
- “Act 6” – This notice informs mortgage borrowers about the model that has to be followed in Pennsylvania foreclosures. This notice will state the intention to foreclose the property within 60 days of nonpayment of a mortgage payment.
- “Act 91” – This notice provides Pennsylvania residents with information about the Homeowners’ Emergency Mortgage Assistance Program.
After receiving these notices, the mortgage borrower has 30 days to answer the notice with the intention of setting up a payment plan or curing the default and the fees associated with it. If the mortgage borrower fails to respond to the lender with a solution, then a lawsuit will be filed against the borrower. This lawsuit will be known as a judicial foreclosure proceeding — the lender will become the “plaintiff” and the mortgage borrower will become the “defendant.”
After the filing of the foreclosure complaint, the mortgage borrower will have 20 days to file an answer. If the borrower fails to file the complaint, their home will be included in a sheriff’s sale. At least 30 days before the sale, the borrower will receive a notice of the sale.
Bucks County’s Residential Mortgage Foreclosure Program and Conciliation Conference
The state of Pennsylvania offers a mortgage assistance program to residents that are facing the threat of foreclosure due to unpaid mortgages. Pennsylvania’s mortgage foreclosure program offers borrowers up to $60,000 to repay their loan and avoid foreclosure. This program may last up to 36 months following mortgage delinquency. Participation requires mortgage borrowers to pay up to 35-40% of their monthly income towards their mortgages.
Philadelphia residents who are facing foreclosure may also participate in a conciliation conference, during which they can meet with lenders to discuss possible alternatives to foreclosure. This meeting will be mediated by a housing counselor.
During this meeting, possible solutions to foreclosure will be discussed; these solutions could include forbearance, in which the borrower receives an extension granting them additional time to pay their missed payments; a loan modification, which will adjust loan conditions to make it easier for the borrower to pay; or a payment plan, which will allow the borrower to pay what they owe on an agreed-upon schedule.
There are statutes that have been passed by the Pennsylvania legislature intended to protect homeowners from corrupt or usurious lending practices. These laws are:
- The Loan & Interest Protection Law – This sets a cap of 6% on the interest that banks can charge on loans.
- The Homeowners’ Emergency Assistance Act – This helps mortgage borrowers seek financial, housing, and legal assistance when faced with imminent foreclosure and makes borrowers facing foreclosure aware of financial aid.
How to Avoid Foreclosure in Pennsylvania
Mortgage borrowers who are facing foreclosure can improve their chances by answering all of the notices they receive in a prompt and thorough way. Mortgage borrowers should also respond promptly to the foreclosure complaint filed against them by their lenders; they should hire an attorney immediately to help them understand the process and how they can make the best defense for themselves.
Successful defenses will pertain to the lender’s fault as part of the foreclosure. For example, if the lender failed to credit payments made by the borrower or failed to honor grace periods, a successful defense can be made.
Another option for mortgage borrowers facing foreclosure is to declare bankruptcy, either through Chapter 13 or Chapter 7. Chapter 13 bankruptcy gives borrowers a chance to catch up on missed mortgage payments, known as “mortgage arrears.” Following the declaration of a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, debtors will make plans to deal with past-due payments.
When a borrower declares Chapter 7 bankruptcy, they will not be allowed to catch up on missed payments. However, this type of bankruptcy buys time for the borrower by issuing an “automatic stay,” which will temporarily postpone foreclosure proceedings.
Contact Our Bucks County Foreclosure Defense Attorneys
An attorney from Philadelphia foreclosure law firm Young Marr & Associates can help mortgage borrowers facing foreclosure to understand the foreclosure process and what options they may have to mitigate their losses. To schedule a free and confidential initial consultation, contact Young Marr & Associates by calling (866) 781-4058 today.