West Chester, PA Mortgage Foreclosure Defense Lawyer
Understanding mortgage foreclosure, and how to stop it, is crucial if you have considerable debt. Depending on your situation, you may be able to halt foreclosure in court with a sound defense or by filing for bankruptcy in West Chester.
The mortgage foreclosure process in West Chester happens through the court. After receiving the initial complaint from the lender, you may enter mediation. If mediation is unsuccessful, your case may go before a judge. During your time in court, we can provide a defense showing that the lender was predatory in how they handled your loan or that the lender violated certain state or federal lending laws. Stopping mortgage foreclosure is also possible by filing for bankruptcy in West Chester. Entering bankruptcy may give you even more time to repay creditors and allow you to protect your property with federal liquidation exemptions.
To schedule a confidential and free case review with our West Chester, PA mortgage foreclosure defense lawyers, call Young, Marr, Mallis & Associates at (215) 701-6519.
Mortgage Foreclosure Process in West Chester, PA
When facing possible mortgage foreclosure in West Chester, homeowners should learn what to expect from the process. After being notified of an impending foreclosure, you can take certain steps to halt the proceedings.
The first step in the mortgage foreclosure process involves lenders filing a complaint with the court. In Pennsylvania, all mortgage foreclosures are judicial, meaning lenders cannot take your home without going through the court first. After receiving this complaint, it is necessary to respond immediately, as failure to do so might allow lenders to foreclose on your property within a month.
The next step may be mediation. During this stage, our mortgage foreclosure defense lawyers will meet with the lender to discuss possible outcomes that work for both parties. Mediation involves a third-party mediator who can help facilitate discussions between a lender and a homeowner. While in mediation, you might convince a lender to come to an agreement, especially if the lender used predatory or illegal lending practices when giving you your loan.
If mediation fails because a lender is unwilling to settle the dispute out of court and find a way to let you keep your home despite your debt, your case will go before a judge. While going to court over the possible foreclosure of your home can seem daunting, it does not mean you will necessarily lose your property in West Chester. Going to court will allow you to build a case against a lender that proves they do not have the right to take your home away from you.
Mortgage Foreclosure Defenses in West Chester, PA
There are several defenses that can help a homeowner avoid possible mortgage foreclosure in West Chester. For example, if the lender used predatory practices or violated state or federal lending laws, you may be able to retain your property despite debt in West Chester.
Violation of Lending Laws
There are laws in place, on both the state and federal levels, that lenders must follow when giving loans to homeowners. This includes legislation like the Truth in Lending Act and the Real Estate Settlement Provision. Proving the lender violated these laws can undermine their case to foreclose on your home. Federal law also protects some persons, such as military personnel on active duty, from foreclosure in some cases.
Violation of Foreclosure Procedure
There are also specific procedures a lender must follow in order to foreclose upon a property. Missteps in this area can also cause a judge to side with a homeowner to halt foreclosure.
Engagement in Predatory Lending Practices
Proving predatory lending practices can allow you to keep your home in West Chester. Predatory or unfair lending practices include basing loans solely on a home’s equity rather than considering a person’s ability to pay the loan. Other times, lenders might include hidden fees in loans or refinance loans at a higher interest rate in a predatory manner, causing homeowners to be unable to meet payments. Lenders sometimes use these predatory practices that can put homeowners in a difficult financial position, causing them to face foreclosure in West Chester.
After hearing both sides, a judge will come to a decision. If you prove that the lender acted irresponsibly, your home may no longer be in jeopardy. Instead, you may be able to repay a lender over time by making scheduled payments at a set interest rate.
Other Ways to Stop Mortgage Foreclosure in West Chester, PA
If you are facing possible mortgage foreclosure in West Chester and the loss of your house is imminent, filing for bankruptcy may help you. This can be ideal for homeowners who have gone to court in an attempt to save their property but have been unsuccessful.
In some cases, mortgage foreclosure appears inevitable. Suppose a lender did not violate any laws or engage in predatory behavior, and you cannot repay debts quickly enough. In that case, a judge might approve a foreclosure on your property. Should this happen, there are still ways for you to stop the process.
Filing for bankruptcy puts an automatic stay into place. This means that all attempts to foreclose on your property must stop. If you file for Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you will not risk losing your house through liquidation. Instead, you can pay back creditors through a repayment plan. Depending on your debt, you may be able to exit Chapter 13 bankruptcy within three to five years.
While Pennsylvania does not have a homestead exemption for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, homeowners may be able to use federal exemptions. This can allow you to safeguard your house from liquidation, even if other property or assets are liquidated, so that you can repay creditors.
Stop Mortgage Foreclosure in West Chester, PA Today
To set up a free case evaluation with our mortgage foreclosure defense lawyers, call Young, Marr, Mallis & Associates at (215) 701-6519.