Deal With Your Foreclosure Lawsuit

Don’t Go Unrepresented and Become a Foreclosure Lawsuit Victim!

Over the last 5 years through the housing meltdown and recent resurrection, the question remains, … where are we?  The Sun Sentinel reports, “South Florida’s housing market in 2013 was a tale of two halves.  The first was robust and frenetic, with annual home prices climbing quickly as investors and traditional buyers competed for a small pool of properties. The second was vibrant but less intense as investor buying cooled and price increases started to moderate.”

It references the Greater Fort Lauderdale Realtors report that Broward County median prices for existing homes are up 24 percent from a year ago, helping homeowners regain some of their lost equity and reduce the number of “underwater” mortgage across South Florida.  The “negative equity rate” in Broward County now stands at 25.3 percent of all homes in the county.  In Palm Beach, the rate is 24.2 percent; the national rate is 19.4 percent.  That said, slower growth is expected for South Florida home prices in 2014.  Specifically, Zillow’s director of economic research, Svenja Gudell, is quoted saying: “I think negative equity will still be with us for at least the next five years”.

Generally, an unrepresented homeowner will see their property foreclosed upon and for sale quicker than ever after having been served with the foreclosure lawsuit. At the same time, lenders continue sending letters to homeowners and investors with all sorts of pitches for loan mods, short sales and deeds-in lieu.  Then why am I uneasy?  Simply put, the pace for processing foreclosure lawsuit cases has sped up thanks to the state-wide “rocket docket” approach of most courts.  Gone are the days of simply filing responses and allowing the flood of foreclosure cases to bottleneck the case for years.  This has been replaced by a steady stream of monthly filings and resolutions through this “rocket docket” approach.  When you factor in the additional support state funding has provided the judicial systems state-wide, it’s clear the unwary homeowner and investor will be on the short end of the sticksooner than later.

Many think they have ample time to “negotiate” a loan modification or short-sale. They will hear promises made by many about the “ease” with which they can or will obtain an approval to modify or short sell. The reality is the process continues bogged down in many a bureaucratic delay foisted upon homeowners or their representatives to no end.  This is a recipe for disaster. Many a homeowner continues to be surprised when they learn they have been foreclosed upon while waiting for that magical “modification” or “short sale” approval.

Not defending the foreclosure lawsuit from the “get go” is a mistake. For one, you could lose your property relatively quickly now.  Two, you waive the right to bring defenses early on that would help you re-leverage the relationship with your bank through the litigation process (which could possibly lead to an acceptable resolution).  And three, if a foreclosure judgment is entered against you, you are now exposed to a “deficiency”. A deficiency is the difference between what the bank sells your property for at auction and what you owed on the loan.  In Florida, lenders have 5 years to file and pursue a deficiency judgment against you. Once in hand, the lender has 20 years to collect, with interest.  With a deficiency judgment in hand, they look to collect from other “non-homestead” properties, wages, and other assets. Since many lenders will often discount and sell these judgments to collection agencies, you can be assured of continuing collection efforts for years to come. If you are served with a foreclosure lawsuit, call on the Reyes Law Group and it’s knowledgeable lawyers to “defend your property and preserve your rights”!

Carlos J. Reyes  is the Principal of Reyes Law Group. He has been a member of the Florida Bar since 1988 and practices state-wide.  Carlos has been awarded a rating of “AV Preeminent” which is the highest possible rating in both legal ability and ethical standards by Martindale-Hubbell – a well-recognized legal resource. The RLG Legal Team also include attorneys  Melissa J. Ulloa and the RLG Legal Support Team to bring you a dedicated, experienced and dynamic legal team to handle your legal needs.

We also assist clients in the areas of: Civil LitigationReal Estate LitigationResidential Purchase & SalesCommercial Acquisitions & SalesResidential Landlord-Tenant LitigationCommercial Landlord-Tenant LitigationShort Sales NegotiationsLoan ModificationsCriminal DefenseCivil Rights ClaimsFamily LawCorporate Work, and Labor & Employment Law.

Call us for a FREE consultation at (954) 369-1993. Se Habla Español.

Visit our firm website and review our credentials.

We are located at 150 S Pine Island Rd #210, Plantation, FL 33324


The Reyes Law Group BLOG is intended to provide information to firm clients, friends and potential clients about various legal related topics. Nothing in this BLOG should be construed as legal advice or a legal opinion. Readers should not act upon the information contained in this BLOG without seeking the advice of legal counsel.

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Reyes Law Group

Reyes Law Group represents clients in a multi-disciplinary legal practice involving real estate transactions and litigation with a “footprint” that covers the State of Florida. Over the firm’s first 10 years, Reyes Law Group has closed over $100M in commercial closings, representing buyers and sellers in contract negotiations, due diligence, and the related title review and policy issuance related to closings. In litigation, the firm has commercial litigation experience focused on prosecuting or defending claims such as breach of contracts, partition actions, trade secret violations, and breach of non-competes. However, our firm’s MAIN FOCUS is assisting asset and loan portfolio managers, investors and private lenders with a “ 4-PILLAR APPROACH” to the legal challenges they face with non-performing assets: 1) LOAN WORKOUTS; 2) COMMERCIAL FORECLOSURES (across the State of Florida); 3) COMMERCIAL EVICTIONS; and 4) REO COMMERCIAL CLOSINGS.30+ years’ legal experience means - WE CAN HELP!

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