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Legal defenses to foreclosure can save your home

In our previous post, we gave an outline of how the foreclosure process works in Florida. Today, we will discuss how homeowners may be able to defend themselves in foreclosure proceedings and possibly get the case dismissed.

When you receive notice that your lender is foreclosing, it is often frightening and overwhelming. It may seem like losing your home is inevitable. But it isn't. The law requires lenders to follow certain procedures when issuing a mortgage and when suing for foreclosure. Failure to adhere to these procedures can get a foreclosure claim thrown out of court.

At the very least, they can be leverage on the homeowner's side. An attorney with experience defending against foreclosure may be able to use these errors to negotiate a settlement that can bring some financial relief.

Among the illegal procedures that an attorney can uncover are:

  • Invalid or missing mortgage documents. The bank must have properly executed mortgage documents when it files for foreclosure. Sometimes, lenders try to go ahead with invalid docs, or with some of the documents missing.
  • Lack of standing. As in other litigation, in order to sue, the bank must be the allegedly injured party. But whether the party that files for foreclosure is the one that has standing to sue is not always clear.
  • Problems at closing. The lender may have violated the law all the way back at the closing stage. For example, it may not have provided all necessary disclosures, or it could have charged an illegal fee.

Homeowners who would like more information should consult an attorney.

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