I have previously posted about the difficulty foreclosed homeowners face when pursuing claims for alleged wrongful foreclosure. Increasingly, foreclosed homeowners are finding the courthouse doors closed. Claims and causes of action that at one time seemed viable, due to the lack of guidance from California’s appellate courts, no longer get past an initial demurrer.
Until recently, there was slightly more hope that a foreclosed homeowner could state a cause of action in our local bankruptcy courts. That hope, too, has greatly diminished with the opinion in Cedano v. Aurora Loan Services, LLC (In re Cedano).
Unfortunately, many homeowners are still led to believe they have viable causes of action for wrongful foreclosure from inaccurate and outdated information available to them on the internet — frequently from websites operated by foreclosure consultants and others who are misguided or, perhaps, have nefarious intent.
California’s strong preference for finality of foreclosure sales, particularly when the purchaser is a third-party, make it very difficult for any homeowner to state a viable cause of action against a servicer, lender, or trustee once a trustee’s deed has recorded. Trivial, non-prejudicial defects in the statutory procedure are disregarded. The requirement of tender, except when the trustee’s deed is deemed void, prevents most foreclosed homeowners from stating a cause of action.
It is more important than ever that homeowners facing foreclosure seek qualified legal counsel at the earliest opportunity — to explore all their options simultaneously, including bankruptcy. Bankruptcy is the last, best hope for many. Otherwise, homeowners frequently become victims of inaccurate and bad advice from unqualified foreclosure consultants, realtors, and various scam artists looking to prey on them.
Qualified bankruptcy counsel, who is intimately familiar with the homeowners financial situation, can assist the homeowner in qualifying for the various loan modification programs which are available, prevent the homeowner from falling victim to a fraudulent scheme, and can develop a workable bankruptcy plan with the homeowner in the event better alternatives do not present themselves. Additionally, pre-bankruptcy planning and guidance can prevent the homeowner from making common mistakes and help to assure that if a petition must be filed, the homeowner has sufficient financial resources to retain qualified counsel.
Unfortunately, many homeowners wait until it is too late to seek appropriate help. If you are facing financial difficulties and in danger of foreclosure, the time to seek guidance is now — when the most options are available and time is not a limiting factor. Once a notice of default records, options become more limited. Once a trustee’s deed records, in nearly all cases, it is too late.
I consult with clients and accept cases involving foreclosure and allegations of wrongful foreclosure. For other types of cases I accept, please scroll my “Home” and “My Practice” pages. If you are seeking a legal consultation or representation, please give me a call at 818.971.9409. – Michael Daymude