Foreclosures are a powerful tool that Banks and Creditors use to force individuals out of their homes to satisfy the unpaid mortgage. Once a homeowner defaults (fails to timely pay) on their mortgage, the Bank has the right to foreclose on the home. Upon the filing of the necessary paperwork, the home is scheduled for auction at a Sheriff's Sale. Once the home is sold, the former homeowner must evacuate. Additionally, the former homeowner will still be liable for paying any remaining debt on the home following the sale. Therefore, if your home is sold through the foreclosure process, you will be forced out of the home and still required to pay the unpaid balance.
Bankruptcy is a powerful tool that homeowners can use to prevent or immediately stop the foreclosure process. In most cases, once a person files Bankruptcy, all actions to foreclose on the property must immediately stop. This is because, in most instances, the filing of Bankruptcy creates an "Automatic Stay" which operates as an injunction against any action to collect a debt from the debtor and prevents the enforcement of any lien against the debtor or the debtor's property. A creditor who violates this injunction can be held in contempt and required to pay damages to the debtor.
In a Chapter 13 Bankruptcy case, debtors are allowed the opportunity to repay their mortgage debt over a period of time, under the protections of the Bankruptcy court. In a Chapter 7 Bankruptcy, debtors who are substantially behind on their mortgage or do not wish to keep their home are allowed to freely give up the home free and clear of any remaining debt that may be owed on the home.
If You Are Facing Foreclosure, you may only have a Limited Time to Stop It.
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