If you’ve been sued in a foreclosure lawsuit, you’re probably under a lot of stress and are struggling with what to do. You may be getting a lot of letters from bankruptcy attorneys in the mail, and are wondering whether or not bankruptcy is your only option.
For some people bankruptcy is the best option in response to foreclosure, especially if they have a lot of other debt. However, not everyone is able to file for bankruptcy – and not everyone wants to. If you fall into either of these categories, another choice exists: defend the lawsuit in state court.
At this point you may be wondering, “What possible defenses do I have? I fell behind on my mortgage payments – it’s as simple as that.” Well, the picture is actually not simple at all, and most people have a lot of defenses.
Most people have defenses to foreclosure lawsuits for three reasons. First, both Pennsylvania law (Act 6 & Act 91) and the language of the typical mortgage require that lenders send a series of statutorily prescribed notices in order to legally take someone’s home, and these notices are routinely disregarded.
Second, in many foreclosures the promissory note that you originally signed when you closed on your house is missing. Check the papers that were filed in your case to see whether the Note is attached. The promissory note is evidence of your debt; without it, your lender cannot prove that it owns your debt.
Finally, most foreclosures these days involve securitized loans. These are loans that were bundled together in a large group soon after closing, turned into a security (like a stock), and sold in shares to thousands of investors. If you have one of these loans, you are probably being sued by some company you never heard of, with “trustee” in the name. There are many, many problems with securitized mortgages, and many defenses you can raise as a result – including but not limited to challenging the lender as being the correct person to sue, challenging the amount owed, and challenging whether your individual loan is even part of the trust that is suing you.
So if you are facing foreclosure, remember: you have choices. If bankruptcy is not for you, you can defend the case in state court. Call the Law Office of Emily Gomez at (412) 378-5854 to learn more.