Occasionally, our Upland foreclosure defense lawyers win a victory we'd like to brag about, because it's unusual or because we managed to score a major victory for a client. In late October, we won a ruling that did both. We were fighting a foreclosure by one of the nation's top three biggest mortgage lenders on behalf of a client we can't name for privacy reasons. Just like more and more of our foreclosure cases these days, we ended up suing the lender because of its failure to give fair consideration to a loan modification. In most of these cases, we can stop the foreclosure for the short term, but have to fight in court to keep it stopped after a relatively short time. But with this client, the court ordered the foreclosure stopped throughout the foreclosure lawsuit, giving our client a year or more without worries about foreclosure.
Right after filing a foreclosure lawsuit, we ask the court for a temporary restraining order (TRO). That's a court order stopping the other side from doing something -- in this case, from proceeding with a foreclosure. Typically, we get the TRO by showing the court that the lender didn't give the borrower's request for a loan modification any serious consideration. However, TROs are often set to expire after the court decides whether to grant a preliminary injunction, which is a more long-term version of the same thing. Most of the time, the lender claims it reviewed our client in the time between the two hearings, and he or she does not qualify. Then the court typically won't grant the preliminary injunction. But in our case from late October, the court did grant it, scoring a rare victory for borrowers. Our client must still make appropriate monthly payments, but while the case is being heard, the lender can't take the home away.
Unfortunately, we can't go into details about the case out of respect for the client's privacy and our own obligations as Costa Mesa foreclosure defense attorneys. But we wouldn't be at all surprised if the ruling was in part a reaction to the "robo-signing" scandal, the ongoing revelations that major lenders are using sloppy, incorrect or even fraudulent paperwork to pursue foreclosures. That matters because it shows that lenders aren't properly verifying the information they use to foreclose on homes -- and that makes it possible that the home is being foreclosed incorrectly. That's a very serious possibility that should be reviewed by a judge whenever feasible. In addition, submitting false paperwork is a form of perjury, and many judges perceive this as disrespectful to them or the justice system. And regardless of what's in the news, any alert judge would stop a foreclosure if he or she finds clear evidence of a problem.
Many homeowners don't realize that they can get help from the courts if they are victims of an unfair foreclosure -- but they can. At Howard Law PC, we prefer to negotiate loan modifications rather than force the issue in court, but that's increasingly less possible. When it's not, suing the lender can stop the foreclosure for the short term -- and possibly for the entire duration of your case -- while the court considers your case. Just as importantly, suing ensures that your foreclosure case will be considered by a real human being, an impartial judge, rather than simply being rubber-stamped and stuck in a filing cabinet at a county office. In California, the only other way to get that assurance is to declare bankruptcy, a step that isn't appropriate for everyone. Our Oceanside foreclosure defense lawyers make sure our clients get the fair consideration they deserve before any major financial loss like foreclosure.
If you're in default or foreclosure on your mortgage and your lender's "help" isn't helping, you should call Howard Law. To set up a free, confidential case evaluation or learn more, send us an email or call 1-800-872-5925 today.