Mortgage Servicing Fraud
occurs post loan origination when mortgage servicers use false statements and book-keeping entries, fabricated assignments, forged signatures and utter counterfeit intangible Notes to take a homeowner's property and equity.
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Our home was foreclosed early in Jan of this year, we have been blessed with finding a home to move in to.  Truly we can't afford utilities in both homes so the foreclosed property had the utilities turned off.  I drained the heating system.  I thought I had some time to move our things out, apparently not? I found a letter in  the mail box from New England Properties of Foxboro ma.  saying that we vacated the property and they put new locks on and now I can't get the rest of our belongings.  These are the same folks that offered us cash for our keys.  I told them I only needed a short amount of time to get the rest of our things out, I'm going to try and talk to them again today, I cannot afford a lawyer at this time and am seeking some kind of advise once again from this informative forum

thank you

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Seems to me that the lock-changing phase is a bit early.  Just because there has been a foreclosure sale does not necessarily mean that the title to the house has passed to another party. At this early stage, I would think the title would still be in your name, and if it is, you have the right to enter the property.

 

Hopefully someone more familiar with the MA foreclosure timeline will chime in with something more definitive.

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srsd
http://www.stopping-banks-foreclosures.com/foreclosure-faq.html


I don`t know if this will help you or not Rick.  You might find something about the questions you have at this site.  I don`t understand anything about foreclosures but this has answered some of my questions.

1. What is foreclosure?

The legal process that banks and mortgage companies use to force the sale of your home to repay a debt; usually the mortgage on your home. Even if one payment is missed the lending institution can take the property back and then sell it to repay the money owed them. A foreclosure notice is typically filed after three or four payments are missed.

Up 2. What is the foreclosure process and how long does it take?

Each state governs the foreclosure process differently. As a minimum, the law requires that the borrower receive sufficient warning or notice before the foreclosure can take place. Other rights and responsibilities may be outlined in the mortgage or loan documents you signed when you purchased the home. Here is a complete list of each state's foreclosure process

Up 3. Do I have any options and if so, how much time do I have to exercise my options?

You have several options available to you as long as you own your home. Once your house is sold, whether by you or through foreclosure, many of your options disappear.

Knowing what your options are, puts you in a much stronger position to deal effectively with the foreclosure process. Armed with the right information, you may be able to save your home from foreclosure and, in some instances, avoid the foreclosure process altogether.

Up 4. I get letters and notices from people claiming they can help me save my home - are they for real?

When foreclosure documents are filed they become a matter of public record and many people review these records for various purposes such as compiling lists to sell to bankruptcy attorneys, investors, real estate professionals and other people interested in either purchasing your home or . . . helping you save it.

Some of these offers are probably legitimate but, none of them have your best interest at heart. Never forget that these offers come from people who are in the business of making a profit from your foreclosure situation! See more information below on scams and how to avoid them.

Up 5. So, how can I keep my home?

The best place to start is to familiarize yourself with your state foreclosure process, forbearance and other options available to you, and then, contact your lending institution to discuss your options .

If your lender is unwilling to work with you then I highly recommend hiring a 3rd Party Foreclosure Specialists. These are experts who know the laws in your state and can quickly convince your lender to work out a repayment plan to save your home.

Up 6. I would rather sell my home than lose it to foreclosure . . . is this possible?

Yes! It's called the Compromise Sale or the "Short Sale" and a foreclosure notice does not prohibit you from selling your home as long as you own it. However, you must act quickly and select the right real estate professional, one well versed in these type of sales. Use this link to locate one near you: Realty Services

Up 7. I don't want to keep the house nor bother with trying to sell it. What would happen if I just walked away?

There is a legal process for walking away from your home or forfeiting your property. You should seek the advice of an attorney and a real estate professional well versed in this area because you could face catastrophic consequences if you just walk away.

Up 8. What happens when the bank forecloses?

While the actual process may vary from state to state, typically a trustee is appointed and announces the sale by aution of your home by informing the public. The usual announcement includes the name of the lending institution, who the borrower(s) is/are, the amount of overdue debt, and your total indebtedness.

After a specific period of time, the trustee opens the bidding process, (in some states your lending institution may do this). Then, either someone purchases the property or it reverts back to the lending institution. Once the property is sold or reverts back to the lender, the eviction process begins!

Up 9. What does "Short Payoff" mean?

Your lender agrees to accept less than the total owed in exchange for releasing the mortgage as a lien on the property. (it's also called pre-foreclosure sale, short sale, pre-sale and compromise sale).

WARNING! There may be serious tax consequences

Up 10. Can they sell my house for less than what I owe?

Yes! Banks are not in the business of owning or selling homes and they do not like to foreclose on property because it's expensive and they usually lose money. They must prepare the home for sale, hire a real estate agent to sell it, and until it's sold, it remains a non-producing asset on their books. The lending institution would rather take a loss on the home than have it remain on their books as a non-producing asset. (see next question on profit)

Up 11. They sold my house for more than I owe, do I get any money?

Yes! Any amount over the total debt owed will be paid to you upon the transfer of ownership (closing).

However, if they sell it for less, the balance is called a deficiency and your bank can use whatever means they deem necessary to collect the outstanding balance. Most states treat this as an unsecured debt (just like credit card debt) and give the bank (or creditor) the same legal rights to pursue you, usually by suing you in court.

Up 12. Who can bid on my home at the auction?

Anyone, including yourself can bid at the auction. However, some states require a cashiers check in the amount of the purchase price or bid, some states require a deposit and the ability to fund within a specified period of time as required under the terms of the contract. See these State Foreclosure Processes

Up 13. What happens if no one bids on my property?

The bank simply takes possession of your property, through eviction if necessary, and then hires a real estate agent to sell the property.

Up 14. How does a Sheriff's Sale work?

If you fail to pay your property taxes the city to whom the taxes are due can foreclose through a Sheriffs Sale. Some cities will use this option after one year of non paid taxes while other cities may wait 3 years or more. Additionally, any creditor or lien holder can use this option once you default on a loan. However, any overdue taxes are paid first, then first, second, etc. mortgages are paid before any other leins or judgments can be paid.

Up 15. If I'm evicted, how many days notice do I get?

Typically you'll get 3 days notice! Most banks will start the eviction process immediately after the foreclosure process but the FHA, HUD and VA are usually much slower. If you own rental property, your tenants will normally be given 30 days notice. If you need more time than given, contact your lending institution immediately to ask for an extension.

Up 16. Do I really stand a chance of saving my home from foreclosure?

Yes! If your willing to fight for it. Knowing and understanding what options are available to you is the first step. The most utilized option is Bankruptcy. Other options include refinancing and reinstatement of the loan using one of these options.

Your success depends on you implementing the proper option in a timely manner.

Up 17. I've missed a few mortgage payments, now what happens?

Foreclosure may occur. This is the legal means that your lender can use to repossess (take over) your home.

When the actual foreclosure happens you must move or you'll be evicted anyway. Also, you may still owe the lender if they sell the house for less than you owe. You do have several options but because foreclosure or a deficiency judgment could seriously affect your ability to qualify for credit in the future, you should avoid foreclosure it if all possible!

Up 18. I received a foreclosure notice, what should I do?

  1. Contact your lender immediately, explain your situation and why you are having trouble making your payments. Provide them with your monthly income and expenses . . . be honest! Do not not ignore the letter!
  2. Do not move out of your home! If you do, it may be considered abandoned and cause you to not qualify for assistance.
  3. Contact a HUD-approved housing counseling agency. Call (800) 569-4287 or TDD (800) 877-8339 or go online for the housing counseling agency nearest you. These services are usually free of charge.
  4. If you bought your home with a Veterans Administration (VA) guaranteed loan, see Veterans Services for more information or call the VA office nearest you.

Up 19. What options do I have once I've received a foreclosure notice?

The most popular options are:

Special Forbearance
Your lender may be able to arrange a repayment plan based on your financial situation. Your lender may even provide for a temporary reduction or suspension of your payments. You may qualify for this if:

  • You have recently lost your job or source of income or;
  • You had an unexpected increase in living expenses.

You must furnish information to your lender to show that you would be able to meet the requirements of the new payment plan.

Mortgage Modification
You may be able to refinance the debt and/or extend the term of your mortgage loan. This may help you catch up by reducing the monthly payments to a more affordable level. You may qualify if you have recovered from a financial problem but your net income is less than it was before the default (failure to pay).

Partial Claim
Your lender may be able to work with you to obtain an interest-free loan from HUD to bring your mortgage current.

You may qualify if:

  1. your loan is at least 4 months delinquent but no more than 12 months delinquent;
  2. your mortgage is not in foreclosure; and
  3. you are able to begin making full mortgage payments.

When your lender files a Partial claim, HUD will pay your lender the amount necessary to bring your mortgage current. You must execute a promissory note, and a Lien will be placed on your property until the promissory note is paid in full. The promissory note is interest-free and will be due if you sell or leave your property, or when your mortgage matures.

Pre-foreclosure Sale
This will allow you to sell your property and pay off your mortgage loan to avoid foreclosure and damage to your credit rating.

You may qualify if:

  1. the "as is" appraised value is at least 70% of the amount you owe and the sales price is 95% of the appraised value;
  2. the loan is at least 2 months delinquent prior to the pre- foreclosure sale closing date; and
  3. you are able to sell your house within 3 to 5 months (depending on what your lender agrees to).

An additional benefit to this option is the assistance you will receive with the seller-paid closing costs.

Deed-in-lieu of foreclosure.
As a last resort, you may be able to voluntarily "give back" your property to the lender. This won't save your house, but it will help your chances of getting another mortgage loan in the future.

You can qualify if:

  1. you are in default and don't qualify for any of the other options;
  2. your attempts at selling the house before foreclosure were unsuccessful; and
  3. you don't have another FHA mortgage in default.

Bankruptcy
Consider this option carefully. Bankruptcy Information

Up 20. How do I know if I qualify for any foreclosure alternatives?

A housing counseling agency can help you determine which, if any, of these options may meet your needs. You should also discuss the situation with your lender.

Up 21. What about foreclosure scams?

You can usually spot a scam because it sounds too simple or too good to be true.

If you're selling your home without professional guidance, beware of buyers who try to rush you through the process. Unfortunately, there are people who may try to take advantage of your financial difficulty.

Be especially alert for the following:

Equity skimming. In this type of scam, a "buyer" approaches you, offering to get you out of financial trouble by promising to pay off your mortgage or give you a sum of money when the property is sold. The "buyer" may suggest that you move out quickly and deed the property to him or her. The "buyer" then collects rent for a time, does not make any mortgage payments, and allows the lender to foreclose. Remember that signing over your deed to someone else does not necessarily relieve you of your obligation on your loan. See Question 22; Avoiding Scams

Phony counseling agencies. Some groups calling themselves "counseling agencies" may approach you and offer to perform certain services for a fee. Most of the time these services are things you can do such negotiating a new payment plan with your lender, or pursuing a pre-foreclosure sale.

If you have any doubt about paying for such services call a HUD-approved housing counseling agency. Do this before you pay anyone or sign anything. See Avoiding Scams

Up 22. How can I avoid foreclosure scams?

Follow these precautions:

  • Don't sign any papers you don't fully understand.
  • Make sure you get all "promises" in writing.
  • Beware of any loan assumption where you are not formally released from liability for your mortgage debt and contracts of sale.
  • Check with an attorney and a real estate professional or your lender before entering into any deal involving your home.
  • If you're selling the house yourself to avoid foreclosure, check to see if there are any complaints against the prospective buyer. You can contact your state's Attorney General, the State Real Estate Commission, or the local District Attorney's Consumer Fraud Unit for this type of information.

Up 23. So, what are the main points I should know about Foreclosure?

  • Don't lose your home and damage your credit history if you can help it.
  • Call or write your mortgage lender immediately.
  • Stay in your home to make sure you qualify for assistance.
  • Arrange an appointment with a HUD-approved housing counselor to explore your options.
  • Cooperate with the counselor or lender trying to help you.
  • Explore every alternative to losing your home.
  • Beware of scams.
  • Do not sign anything you don't understand.
  • Remember that signing over the deed to someone else does not necessarily relieve you of your loan obligation.

Up 24. Can the bank just kick me out of my house?

No. Only a court order, called eviction, can force you to leave your home. The lender must file a foreclosure notice first, and then, only after the foreclosure process is complete, can the bank start eviction proceedings.

Up 25. What is the actual foreclosure process?

It's a two-step process: pre-foreclosure and formal foreclosure. The process is basically the same for every state. See State Foreclosure Process for your state's specific procedures.

Pre-foreclosure

  1. You miss a payment (it usually takes 3 or 4 missed payments to kick off a foreclosure process)
  2. The bank sends you late notices and, if you fail to respond, they attempt to contact you (in writing or by phone) to resolve situation.
  3. You continue to miss payments and, you and the bank, fail to agree upon payment arrangements.
  4. The bank invokes the acceleration clause and demands the mortgage or lien be paid in full. Now you are legally obligated to immediately pay the full amount plus back interest, late fees, and any legal fees incurred by the lender.
  5. You have made no payments or arrangements acceptable to the bank.

Note: Once you reach this stage, the bank will not accept your regular monthly payments but will instead, demand much higher payments to bring your loan current.

Formal Foreclosure Process

  1. You receive a formal foreclosure notice, either by certified mail, or in many states, by the local sheriff.
  2. The lender begins foreclosure action in court.
  3. Legal notices are published in local papers.
  4. You still have not been able to reach a payment or settlement arrangement with the lender.
  5. Your notice and waiting periods expire.
  6. The court holds a hearing regarding the bank's claim.
  7. The court issues a foreclosure order. This gives the bank the legal right to sell the home.
  8. Legal notice of actual foreclosure sale and advertisements published in local papers.
  9. You still have not been able to reach a payment or settlement agreement with the lender.
  10. The house is sold at auction to the highest bidder or not sold and the bank takes possession of the home.
  11. You move out or the bank or new owner evicts you.
  12. You are notified of any debt still outstanding as a result of the sale. (i.e. the home is sold for less than you owe)

Up 26. How long does the foreclosure process usually take?

It depends on your state and how aggressive the lender is. It could be as quick as 60 days or longer than six months. See your state's foreclosure processing times.

Up 27. What actually happens during an eviction?

This varies by state but generally it follows one of two paths . . .

First path:

  1. You receive a notice to vacate the premises within 72 hours.
  2. You leave within the time limit.

Second path:

  1. You receive a notice to vacate the premises within 72 hours.
  2. You fail to leave
  3. The bank or new owner goes to court to ask for a hearing to decide if and when you should be evicted.
  4. At the hearing the judge decides whether or not you should be evicted and if evicted, how long you can stay before moving out. (offering to pay rent will often sway the judge to grant you more time)
  5. If the judge decides you are to be evicted, most states allow you 10 days to appeal the decision.
  6. Once the court orders your eviction and you have not moved out by the court designated date, the bank or new owner may obtain an execution of the eviction judgment which gives the sheriff the right to physically remove you from the premises.
  7. The sheriff gives you between 24 to 72 hours (depending on your state) notice to move.
  8. You still refuse to move so, the sheriff physically moves you. (resist now and you face being arrested)
  9. Anything left in the house is packed and moved into storage. (to get your stuff back you'll have to pay the storage fees and any additional associated fees)
  10. The locks on your former home are changed.

Up 28. How long does the eviction process take?

The national average is 8 weeks from the day you are given the eviction notice until a sheriff shows up to move you. It could take six months or more but . . . be prepared because it could be as soon as a week!

Up 29. How many people actually lose their home to foreclosure?

About 5% to 7% are unable to save their homes! Most people either refinance or file a Chapter 13 Bankruptcy. About 20% are able to reinstate their existing mortgage.

Up 30. What is the Soldiers and Sailors Act?

This was an law passed during World War II to protect active duty military members from financial difficulty. One portion of the law may be able to stop foreclosure for anyone on active duty if they meet certain requirements outlined in the Soldiers and Sailors Act.

Up 31. Who gets the money when the house is sold at auction?

First, all real estate taxes are paid. Then first, second, third etc., mortgages are paid. Next comes any lien holders or attaching creditors. Finally, you'll get any money left over after all debts are satisfied.

Up 32. What does merged debts mean?

This applies only if you have a second, third, or more mortgages! If the lender holding your first mortgage forecloses then the second, third and so forth lenders no longer hold any right or title to your home. Although, you will probably still owe them money, they have no security interest in the home nor any right to foreclose on the home.

However, if you buy your own home back at the foreclosure auction, the debt may "merge" back (reattach) to the property, as if the foreclosure never happened.

Note: If you file chapter 7 bankruptcy prior to the foreclosure sale and receive a discharge (released from all debts) you will not owe any money and the lenders will no longer hold a security interest in your home.

Up 33. What is the redemption period for buying my house back?

This varies by state. Many do not have a redemption period except when your house is sold at a sheriff's sale or for back real estate taxes. See State Foreclosure Process for redemption periods.

Up 34. What's the difference between a foreclosure and a sheriff's sale?

Foreclosure sales are auctions held by the mortgage holder while a sheriff's sale is held by a lien holder or attaching creditor.

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srsd

If they put a lock on your door before the time is up, you might need to contact the sheriff and let him know what has happened and if there is anyway possible, check and see if you can find someone to look at this legally. You might can get a case against them.  It seems like someone would at least look at your case and not charge you anything just to see if there is anything that can be done because it will mean money in their pocket as well as yours. Call some lawyers in your area....the worse they can do is say they won`t look at it for you.

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Rick-

When they stole my house in Mass. in 2004,  I lost 2/3 of my things, I asked for more time also, but I had 48 hours to get out. The blind judge would not do anything. The AG would not do anything. Community Legal Assistance would not do anything. No lawyer would take my case, due to the deep pockets of the other side.

After the eviction, all I could do was email lots of people in the legal system and media to tell them about the problem. 

I recently found this attorney who may be able to help... I would have told you about him earlier but I did not see from your postings that you were in Mass.. Maybe now he can help you,  as the legal system seems to be waking up in 2008.  People from this forum, total strangers offered me more help than anyone including nearly all of my family. I am in Mass., if you need any help moving etc let me know. He may be able to get you some more time to get your things back. Looking back I should have broken into my house to get my things.  After you get settled and want to fight again, this may be the attorney to help.

There has to be a way to fight these crooked corporations as they execute their chain of fraud... Maybe Boston or Mass. will sue them Cleveland-style, maybe this AG will do something meaningful to help the consumers who elected her.


Try this attorney:

http://www.quatlaw.com/foreclosures.html

http://massachusettsconsumer.blogspot.com/

"For some mortgages that are not used to purchase property — such re-finances or home equity loans — the failure of the lender to comply with TILA could actually permit you to rescind the entire loan under certain circumstances. 

Even if the foreclosure or repossession has already occurred, you may have a substantial claim for damages if the creditor did not follow applicable law.  

Let Attorney Quat review the facts of your case — at no charge — to determine whether legal action is appropriate. Don't let repossession or foreclosure happen to you without giving us a call.

call now

 

There is never a charge to evaluate your case. Call us today at 866-907-1220."





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Thanks again for the advice, I've emailed Attorney Quat,  as well as called him.  Hopefully he can assist. 
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noodles
Way To Go wrote:

Seems to me that the lock-changing phase is a bit early.  Just because there has been a foreclosure sale does not necessarily mean that the title to the house has passed to another party. At this early stage, I would think the title would still be in your name, and if it is, you have the right to enter the property.

 

Hopefully someone more familiar with the MA foreclosure timeline will chime in with something more definitive.


Rick,
You need to call your County Court House, you want to ask them about Evictions.

1. Ask them What the State law is concerning, an Eviction.
2. Ask them How many days does a person have to get their belongings out of the home, before their personal property is taken over.

When you call them, you dont need to go into specifics, and reveal to them that you have been foreclosed upon.
All you need to know is the LAW, of HOW MANY DAYS, you have to GET YOUR THINGS OUT OF THE HOUSE, AFTER BEING SERVED WITH AN EVICTION NOTICE.


********
you were served with Foreclosure papers, but were you served with any papers telling you you have 15- 20 -25 days to get out of the home? If not THERE IS A PROBLEM.

What they have done is illegal.

If the Foxboro Real Estate Company has changed the locks on your home, and you haven't received any "eviction" notice they've got a problem and you can sue them for their illegal activity.


If you were served with an "eviction" notice, & Foxboro Real Estate decided to collect on the home, and its belongings BEFORE the expiration of the eviction notice, that is illegal too. And they've got a problem and you've got a legal case against them.


I would also highly consider, calling your local Police Department, and filing a report for STOLEN Property.
Your personal belongings have now been stolen, since you cannot get to them.

that is theft, and prosecutable, (nothing you'd have to pay for, if the D. A. becomes involved.) and You can also bring suit against them for unlaw retention of personal property, this is where you would sue them to replae everything they have stolen, and yes you would need a lawyer for this.


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noodles
Rick,
Please read post #3, and then paragraph #8:
It says right there:
 
"Once the property is sold or reverts back to the lender, the eviction process begins!"
 
An eviction is a process, that MUST be done through the legal methods, by "NOTICE" of Eviction, served upon you from the County Sheriffs department.
 
and "EVICTION NOTICE" ALWAYS gives you a time period as to how many days you have to REMOVE all of your belongings from the home.
 
btw,
I'm glad you have found a place to live, and not become another statistic in a homeless shelter.
hopes this info helps you some.
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Thanks again for all the great info, the real estate company? that put the locks on the door to my home has yet to give me the correct combination so I can get my remaining personal belongings out of the home, when will this nightmare end?

The A*& hole actually said to me that if I lived in N.Carolina he would have me removed by putting his fingers up my nose and throwing me on the front lawn!

fyi......the loan i got into was an ARM / no income verification, kinda makes sense since I was not working and that was why I tried to get some cash from the equity in the house,

I am in the process of finding the paperwork regarding the "so called" NO INCOME VERIFICATION loan which I believe the BROKER said I earned 40 or 50 K per year

I know this is the most informative forum on the subject because each time I visit I am motivated to FIGHT BACK

Thank you all again...

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Rick, frankly, I've forgotten your history but I know that the MA AG has 150 or so pro bono attys at her fingertips down there. If you haven't already made a phone call....

Hang in there..
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Ohio
Rick,

Check your mortgage/note for the paragraph that addresses their right to enter and secure "abandoned" property. They DO have the right to secure abandoned property in this manner.

I would Inform them their assumption the property was abandoned was wrong...put them on notice and demand a set number of days to make the property accessible to you for removal of your property. I would give them no more than 5 days.

I would send this to them by certified mail so you have a record they received your notice. Make a copy of the letter and keep it with your receipt of delivery.

If you have not been served with an eviction or any court order telling you to vacate you have every right to be in that property.

2nd thing...

Rick wrote:

fyi......the loan i got into was an ARM / no income verification, kinda makes sense since I was not working and that was why I tried to get some cash from the equity in the house,

I am in the process of finding the paperwork regarding the "so called" NO INCOME VERIFICATION loan which I believe the BROKER said I earned 40 or 50 K per year


Be careful here......if you knew about this and closed anyway you are a willing accomplice to mortgage fraud. I don't want you to get yourself into trouble.


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Rick:

It is very important to distinguish that many foreclosing lenders (and buyers at auction) will do a variety of corrupt and dishonest things to INTIMIDATE YOU into abandoning the property prematurely.  If you simply LEAVE, then the owner simply comes in and changes the locks.  No court action is required for ejectment or eviction.  The foreclosing lender or buyer gets IMMEDIATE possession of the property.

One does NOT need to look at the promissory note, mortgage, deed of trust and/or security instrument to discovery this (though checking the instruments is a good idea).  Once a property has been FORECLOSED, the buyer is the OWNER and is therfore entitled to the incidents of ownership, ultimately to include POSSESSION.  The provisions of the mortgage, deed of trust, and/or mortgage security instrument probably do NOT apply, because you are no longer the OWNER.  But the law in most states usually does NOT allow an owner to remove occupants from a property except through a court supervised ejectment or eviction procedure.

Thus, the BUYER immediately begins a campaign of coercion and intimidation, to get you to VOLUNTARILY LEAVE.

(I am speaking globally here as opposed to any particular knowledge of YOUR foreclosing entities OR of the specifics of Massachusetts foreclosure practice!)

This seems to have WORKED!

It is unclear to me precisely how abandonment is defined under Massachusetts law.  It seems to me that there is some question as to whether you actually surrendered occupancy.  The sketchy facts you outline here make it appear that you may have.  But your occupancy may very well turn on intention

For example, suppose that instead of moving to another home you had locked your home and gone for several weeks to visit a dying relative, fully intending to return.  It seems almost inconceivable to me that the foreclosing entity or owner could enter the property and eject you without court action.  Massachusetts is a very pro-consumer state.  I think that you would find that absent a court order and the involvement of the sheriff, you could not be ejected. 

This is NOT to say that you could depart and stay away indefinitely without facing eviction or ejectment.  There is likely to be a process for alternative service by posting and/or publication and if you stayed away too long you might come home to find that the purchaser at the foreclosure sale had obtained a default judgment against you in a proper court supervised eviction.

But if you think about a spectrum of various kinds of new owner self-help, it is most readily apparent that seizing your home withour court action while you are away from home shopping or at work is clearly out of bounds and doing so while you were away for the weekend or on a brief vacation or house hunting expedition seems out of bounds, too. 

By contrast, if you removed EVERYTHING except your toaster and turned off all of the utilities one might very reasonably conclude that you had abandoned the property as your residence and that the presence of the toaster wouldn't give you an ongoing right to intermittantly show up and use the property OR to deny the new owner possession and occupancy.

Your facts seem to me to be in a murky middle ground.  I am saying this based upon lay reasoning rather than Massachusetts law.  You need to take your own counsel and determine what the Massachusetts law actually SAYS.     

My GUESS is that you are going to discover that you probably could have STAYED in the property for a much longer interval and that it would have taken some time to have you actually lawfully evicted or ejected.  You probably COULD HAVE enterred into an agreement to surrender possession SOONER and without eviction or ejectment.  In securing a new home and moving some of your things, you very well may have abandoned the property and the lockout therefore may have been lawful.

This is a rather classic example of WHY people need to consult with a LAWYER as to their rights.  When you undertake a course of action without knowledge of or reference to the law, you may quickly discover that you have prejudiced your own rights.

Absent some strong case law showing that you were still in possession as a consequence of your remaining possessions in the house, I think you are in a pretty tenuous position.  The new owner can arguably assert that you ABANDONED the property left behind.  The corollary is that your intention to continue to occupy the property until you completed moving your things might very well be determinative.  And you MIGHT even have the right to move back in and stay another three months!

You cannot KNOW your bargaining power without understanding Massachusetts law relating to ejectment/eviction and abandonment.  GET SOME HELP AND FIGURE OUT WHAT YOUR REAL RIGHTS ARE.  IF YOU ARE STILL OCCUPYING THE PROPERTY, YOU MIGHT BE ENTITLED TO REMOVE THE NEW LOCKS AND REOCCUPY.  OR YOU MAY HAVE A VALID CAUSE OF ACTION AGAINST THE NEW OWNER.

But use what you learn to help guide you to a reasonable SETTLEMENT.  This is NOT something you want to be LITIGATING about.  You just need to have your things restored to you so that you can move on with your life! 
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Originally posted by Ohio
Be careful here......if you knew about this and closed anyway you are a willing accomplice to mortgage fraud. I don't want you to get yourself into trouble.
Ohio is RIGHT about this!  If your mortgage broker or an employee of the mortgage lender prepared FALSE representations as to your income and added these representations to YOUR MORTGAGE application and you then SIGNED that application, you were making a REPRESENTATION to the Lender as to your income.  FALSE representation on a mortgage application is a serious Federal crime!

You need to understand that no matter what you were TOLD, that it is the documents YOU SIGNED that are the final arbiter as to the contractual circumstances of your application and loan.  There have been "low doc" and "no doc" loans around for years.  There is a LEGITIMATE market for these.

For example, a borrower might have income that is difficult to document (e.g. a waitress or a bartender) OR there may be reasons that a borrower might not WANT to share the documentation. 

I had a mortgage customer who was partner at a major Wall Street investment banking concern.  This was a partnership rather than a corporation.  Each partner received proportionate share of partnership profits to include capital gains and losses on thousands of securities.  I understood from this borrower that his tax return was several hundred pages.  He didn't want to show us his tax return and we didn't want to wade through it.  In a low doc or no doc program, the borrower simply makes representations about their income.  In this case our customer was refinancing a property on Beacon Hill that appraised in excess of $800,000 and he was refinancing something like $500,000.  We had also established that he had over $250,000 in CASH in the bank.  This was a VERY EASY loan to make.

But the no doc and low doc programs were really NEVER intended to facilitate MISREPRESENTATION of income, though this is precisely what dishonest real estate brokers, dishonest mortgage brokers and dishonest loan officers often encourage prospective borrowers to DO.

So just because they told you it was OK and that EVERYBODY DOES IT, ANY false representation of income on the mortgage application you SIGNED at the outset and again at closing is a FEDERAL CRIME.  I would STOP talking about it on public message boards IMMEDIATELY! 
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Ohio

William A. Roper, Jr. wrote:

One does NOT need to look at the promissory note, mortgage, deed of trust and/or security instrument to discovery this (though checking the instruments is a good idea).  Once a property has been FORECLOSED, the buyer is the OWNER and is therfore entitled to the incidents of ownership, ultimately to include POSSESSION.  The provisions of the mortgage, deed of trust, and/or mortgage security instrument probably do NOT apply, because you are no longer the OWNER.  But the law in most states usually does NOT allow an owner to remove occupants from a property except through a court supervised ejectment or eviction procedure.

A judgment in foreclosure and the actual sheriff sale are two separate processes...in my state anyway.

There is no "buyer" until the sale. If the sale has not happened yet and the redemption period has not expired the homeowner has every right to remain in the property.

Rick did not specify the property has been sold on the court house steps yet...he only stated it was foreclosed which could just mean the bank got their judgment and the sale has not occured at this point.

Not knowing what has actually transpired makes it difficult to say one way or the other.

I was looking at it from the post-judgment/pre-sale perspective. 
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Ohio:

I do NOT dispute your distinction, but bear in mind that foreclosure practice varies quite widely from state to state.  I had THOUGHT that RIck had previously reported in another message thread that his property had actually been sold at a foreclosure sale on the courthouse steps.  But I certainly might be mistaken about this!

I was the president of a Massachusetts mortgage banking concern two decades ago.  But we NEVER had a single foreclosure!  So I do NOT want to hold myself out as a subject matter expert with respect to Massachusetts foreclosure law or practice.

Neither do I have any great knowledge or understanding of Massachusetts eviction or ejectment law.  What little I knew is mostly forgotten and what little I recall is so old that it may no longer valid.  (I haven't resided in Massachusetts in two decades.)  Other contributors to this Forum may have a better current idea of Massachusetts foreclosure law.

I would AGREE with you that self-help by lockout would NOT be available pre-sale EXCEPT by contractual provision in the mortgage, deed of trust and/or mortgage security instrument relating to abandonment.

But I am going to bet you a cup of coffee here that Rick will report to us that the sale had already taken place.  
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Ohio
I just wanted to point out which way I was looking at it. No dispute by any means on my part regarding our different responses to Rick's post.

I primarily wanted to point out that when not enough info is given by the poster the feedback will be mixed. 

There just aren't any pat answers to most of the questions asked because of all the varying possibilities that could exist from one case to the next.

It's hard to cover all the bases but God love us..we give it our best shot!
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Ohio:

I thought that you posts added a very nice dimension to the discussion even if it turns out that Rick's house was already sold at a foreclosure sale.  I view all of these discussion threads as an occasion to muse about various issues to a larger constituency than the person seeking help by his/her post.

I think that our themes are well complementary.  The KEY point is that either at foreclosure decree or post-sale, the alleged defaulted borrower has certain rights under the laws of a particular state (possibly to include appeals).  Voluntarily moving from the property very often CHANGES the dynamics is ways that favor the foreclosing mortgage investor or buyer at a foreclosure sale.

Several folks here, most notably moose, have from time to time encouraged borrowers to find the basis for a sound settlement (where the allegedly defaulted borrower gives up some rights for real consideration, like a clean early departure) and have discouraged litigation where the allegedly defaulted borrower has other than a compelling case.  I AGREE with this.  But even such agreement requires sound counsel from someone schooled in the law to assure that this new agreement doesn't give away the store or yield or compromise too much.  Admittedly, the allegedly defaulted borrower cannot readily afford to spend a great deal on an attorney as he or she seeks to put his or her hands on the funds for a rental deposit.  But reviewing a proposed agreement and discussing rights is a lot LESS expensive than litigation and court appearances.

I certainly would not want to encourage someone to leave their personal property at peril post-forclosure by waiting until the 11th hour.  But a headlong rush to depart may create new perils (such as the lockout) and even sacrifice some legitimate bargaining power.  It would seem that there is more than a little merit to continue sleeping at the subject property until one's personal property is out of harm's way!  
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Ohio:

Also, I hope my suggestion of a high stakes wager -- the cup of coffee -- didn't come across as overly arrogant!  (I am always looking to profit from an occasional friendly wager.)  
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Joe B
WAR-

     I don't know, but a cup of coffee at Starbucks appears to me to be pretty high stakes!!

     I thought both Ohio's and WAR's posts were appropriate for Rick to consider. I hope he comes back to let us know how things progress.

My $.02

JB
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Ohio

The coffee wager was within my betting limits....now had you wanted to wager a gallon of gas THAT would have been a bit arrogant!

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Apparently you haven't checked out the price of a cup of "coffee" at Starbucks lately OH When I was decorating shopping malls for Christmas (in my previous life) I walked into a Starbucks in CT and asked for the strongest thing that they could put together - the malls were a night gig obviously.

That cup of coffee, back roughly in '95, cost $9.00.
 
I'm not sure if it was the caffeine or the sudden fits of laughter that occasionally escaped me throughout the night that kept me awake through the shift...

Keep an eye on WAR - if he makes too many bets like that and starts winning them we may need to see if he's figured out a way to turn coffee into some form of alternative fuel
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Ohio
I love coffee....but $9.00?? Holy cow! Did you save the cup?!

I bet you did see stars while you shelled out the bucks! I wonder if that's how they came up witht he name!

Not laughing at you...laughing with you!
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Today,

I went down to my house to feed the animals and see if the new combination given me by the Foxfire real estate co. (mike abbot / new england realty foxboro, ma.) the combo to the lock on the door still does not work....as if he knew it would not,

on the back steps were another notice to "72 HOUR NOTICE TO QUIT AND VACATE PREMISES"

it says:

dear mr. smith?
please be adivised that this office (HARMON lAW OFFICE) represents deutsche bank national trust company, as trustee for long beach mortgage loan trust.  deutsche bank national trust co. as trusstee for lon bechas loan trust is the owner of the property situated at (said address) you are notified to vacate the premises within sevevty two hour of your receipt of this notice.


deutsche bank national trust company as trustee for long beach mortgage loan trust is not waiving any rights under this notice to qit and vacate by accepting tpayments from you subsequest to the date of this notice.  all payments accepted subsequest to the date of this notice are accepted for use and occupancy only and not as rent.  the acceptance of said payment shall not in any way create a new tenancy.

please be advised that should this matter proceed and a court action is necessary, we will askt the court to award dmages representing the fiar market value for your use and occupation of the premises from the time of the foreclosure until the time you are ordered to vacate.  this amount is for use and occupancy not rent. 

the reason set forth for this notice to quit and vacate is that you continue to hold over in occupancy of the said premises after foreclosure of the mortgage.  the uis the new owner of siad premises.

PLEASE BACATE THE PREMISES WITHIN SEVERY TWO HOURS OF YOUR RECEIP OF THIS LETTER, OR WE SHALL BRING A COURT ACTION TO EVICT YOU FROM THE PREMISES.  YOU ARE NOTIFIED TO BRING THIS ORIGINAL NOTICE WITH YOU TO ANY SUBSEQUENT HEARING TO CONTINUANCE.

deutsche bank national trucst company , as trustee for long beach mortgage loan trust 2006-6

by its attorney

joe smoe equire


PLEASE BE ADVISED THAT THIS OFFICE IS ATTEMPTING TO COLLECT A DEBT AND THAT ANY INFORMATION OBTAINED WILL BE USED FOR THAT PURPOSE.

---------------------------------

this looks like the letter i found in the mail box, no postage on either.....telling me to get out, it was thrown on the back steps,  just thought i would take some time to fill you folks in that have given of their time to help me out, again thanks and sorry about misplelled words,

i look forward to your thoughts,

sincerely
rick

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I recall already having posted something about INTIMIDATING YOU TO VACATE THE PROPERTY.  My LAY reading is that they are claiming that the property has been sold, but were ACTING AS IF you were still occupying at least up to some point.  I think that I pretty much covered this in my prior post.  YOU HAVE RESEARCH TO DO.  I see no indication from your post that you have made any effort to ascertain Massachusetts law relating to eviction / ejectment.  Nor is there an indication that you have spoken with an attorney.  Negotiating without knowing your rights and the law seems to me to be a proposition assured to leave you in a WORSE position.

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At some point, Rick, you might want go back and check to see if Commonwealth Auction Associates to see if they handled your property auction, Rick. I can't imagine that Harmon gives ALL of their foreclosure auction business to Commonwealth, even though Mark Harmon owns both HLO and Commonwealth, but you never know.

Then you need to go back and re-read your note to see exactly what is supposed to happen to any payments that you made post-default. Depending on the wording of your note the clock may have had to reset if they accepted any payments post-default.

FYI, Harmon has already settled two CAs for FDCPA violations and I believe that Mark Harmon has had a verdict go against him and Realty Funding - yes he also owns a private mortgage lender - for FDCPA violations up here in NH as well. Peter Wright handled the Realty Funding case if I remember correctly.

So one of the big questions you should be asking now is whether the property sold for any more than you supposedly owed on it or did Deutsche buy it for what they said was owed. Of course, Deutsche has the most cases that have been bounced out of Ohio courts for not being able to prove ownership of the note if I'm not mistaken. WAR might have more up to date data on that...

Something else you need to look into is whether there is any redemption period or not either per your note or per MA foreclosure statutes. Heck, touch base with Atty Gary Klein in Boston if you can and see what he says. He handled at least one of CAs against Harmon I think.
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Thanks two both reply's to my situation with Deutche Bank / Mike Dillion / New England Realty Group Foxboro / and now Harmon Law Office.

I will adhere to the advise at this forum and talk to / seek legal assistance and find out more about the eviction / process.

I've had the opportunity to speak with others in this town that had to leave their home after foreclosure and they said they had many months to relocate (i realize each case will be different)  I now have some time to devote to this matter again.  Work in the N.East has been slow for me.

When I read about Mortgage Servicing Fraud for the first time I understood or at least thought I did that my property was grouped togeather with hundreads of others and broke up into 'shares" hedge fund? and sold to or at wall st.? thus the inability to prove ownership? This is something I believe I read here and will look back at the posts and read some more.  I would just like the opportunity to lean slightly against these folks after I receive the legal information I need.

fyi no payments were made after the sale of the house.  my neighbor who is a realtor went to the auction, HE WAS THE ONLY one their, not to bid but there to see and hear what was about to happen.  According to Washington Mutual and Deutche and the law firm handling the foreclosure Stanton and Davis of Marshfield Ma. I owed something like $340,000 when the house went to auction which took place in front of my home.  The bidding started at $150,000 and the "bank?" bid $245,000" and the auction ended.  Thats when within a day or so the locks were changed and we were told to leave.

The furnace in the house stopped working during december, knowing that the home was being foreclosed (no work no money wife also just lost job) I drained the heating system and started moving my things 1/2 mile up the road to our temporary dwelling.  Not being able to afford electricity in bothdwellings and certainly not being able to fix the furnace and heating system I saw no alternative but to start moving things out.  So i hope this answeres a few questions as I often don't put enough info regarding my situation on the site. 

So, to recap I have received two notices ...one from New England Realty Group and then the second one left at the house yesterday from harmon  Law Offices, simple letterhead and not a court eviction notice, which I believe I read was the law in massachusetts.  My point is that it take along time to leave a home you've been in for 49 years and I just want as much time as I can get ...living there or not....under mass. state law to take my 49 years worth of stuff and leave.

Thank you for your support and replies,

Rick


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The Massachusetts Uniform Fraudulent Conveyance Act and                                 Bankruptcy

                       
                               

The Massachusetts bankruptcy courts have shown a particular                                 willingness to invalidate foreclosure sales. Because of this propensity,                                 numerous additional steps should be taken if a lender forecloses in                                 Massachusetts. The U.S. bankruptcy courts for Massachusetts have ruled that all                                 the statutory procedures outlined above may be insufficient to guard against                                 invalidation of the foreclosure sale if the borrower files bankruptcy after the                                 foreclosure. If the sale took place for less than market value, it may be ruled                                 to be a fraudulent conveyance, under section 548 of the Bankruptcy Code, which                                 commands that reasonably equivalent value must be obtained before the                                 foreclosure sale will be left undisturbed by the bankruptcy court. Reasonably                                 equivalent value is market value.

                               

The invalidation of a foreclosure at less than market value can                                 also be accomplished through the application of the Massachusetts Uniform                                 Fraudulent Conveyance Act. Therefore the lender should take further precautions                                 by appraising the property at the time of foreclosure, by advertising it in the                                 real estate section of the newspapers, by mailing a notice of the sale to                                 anyone who expressed an interest in buying the property, and by notifying real                                 estate brokers in the immediate vicinity that the property is for sale. All of                                 these steps should be taken if the lender wants to be sure to avoid future                                 trouble from the borrower's bankruptcy petition after the sale, or a suit to                                 set the sale aside under the Massachusetts Uniform Fraudulent Conveyance Act.                                

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Rick-


What did attorney Quat say?
Harmon law is a foreclosure mill and as Mike has said they have been sued several times recently for violations of the law as they foreclose and evict.

Commonwealth Auctions is owned by Harmon Law

Here is a case where this fact is part of the case:
http://www.craigmacauley.com/cases/2003/02-10-03%20In%20re%20Plant.pdf

This is a big conflict of interest in making sure their auctions are carried out according to the rules the state licensed auctioneers must follow, a lawyer could help you compare the facts of your auction with this info to see if they made any errors which could help your case .

The 72 hour notice to quit is a standard notice to quit given by the landlord (or new owner after an auction) for evictions in Mass. and the next step is to sue in the local court to evict you.

You do not have to vacate until they take you to court and get the court order.
Then you get a 48hour notice to quit and the sheriff comes to change the locks and move you out.

Since the realtor already changed the locks they did not have legal authority to do so and tried to make it look like you abandoned the house to cover what they did.
If you legally abandoned the house why would they have Harmon Law involved?

Given the recent awareness of illegal foreclosures and the potential conflict of interests in the auction process with Harmon and Commonwealth, you have many legal options. Do not let he fact you have no money for legal fees deter you. You have just been financially raped. There are ways to get legal help if you have no money.
 
There is a redemption period in Mass. to get your house back and other defenses but without a lawyer the judges will not do anything for you.

I found the same quote you posted re Fraudulent Transfer law
http://www.mass.gov/legis/laws/mgl/gl-109a-toc.htm

right after I went through the same thing as you, but in 2004 all the lawyers ran away from a fight with the big companies.The difference today is it is 2008 and the lawyers and judges are waking up to the problems. If you cannot find one, email me with your contact info and I will help you find a lawyer. 
Attorney Quat advertises on his website that he does foreclosure defense, but there are others that can help you if he cannot for some reason.

Try Gary Klein also:
http://www.roddykleinryan.com/

Also contact The Attorney General's office, they may be able to mediate the problem for you or refer you to an attorney.

Also the Mass bar assoc.
http://www.massbar.org/public-and-community-services/need-a-lawyer



How do I know all of this?
I went through the same things as you in 2004.




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AP, I do believe I remember you... Always wondered what happened with your case....Nice find on the Plant case, btw.

I'm curious as to why Harmon is now involved as well if Stanton and Davis handled the foreclosure.

Rick, I may have a name or two for you to start with as far as attorneys to check with. I'm going to go dig now.


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Aprioremailer,

Hi and thanks, Att. Quat at the time I called said he could not help based on what I was able to give him.  I am in the process of gathering all paperwork I can from beginning to end, to give to an attorney that will help us out, thanks for your help again.

Rick

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Unfortunately, that's all I've got for you at the moment, Rick. They most likely will not be able to help you directly but ask either of them for possible referrals. They are both familiar with Mortgage Servicing Fraud issues but they may not be equipped to handle cases as complex as MSF cases. They may be able to point you in a direction though.

Good luck!

Walter Oney Law

Fitchburg, MA  01420

voice:  (978) 343-3390

                              email:  walter.oney@oneylaw.com
 
 

Law Office of Paul A. LaRoche

Garner, MA  01440

voice:  (978) 632-1633

                                  email:  larochelaw@aol.com

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i'm very happy to say that although my home has been foreclosed on, I continue to fight back because of this great web-site.....i obtained a law firm in boston ma. to potentially help me.  laws are written....and laws are changed.....we are in a crisis in this country and we all need to NOT GIVE UP!!!!!   fight back for as long as you possibly can for without your efforts THEY WIN and that is not what this great site wants to read about.  Thanks once again to this great web-site



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