Can Filing Chapter 13 Stop Foreclosure on Your House?
Yes, it is possible to stop a foreclosure and save your home by filing for chapter 13 bankruptcy. Chapter 13 gives you more time to catch up on mortgage arrears and stops the mortgage lender and all creditors from any debt collection activities, including foreclosing on your home.
Can You Stop a Foreclosure Once it has Started?
Absolutely! Your attorney can utilize emergency measures to put forth a “barebones filing” that saves on time and executes a temporary automatic stay. This will stop the foreclosure process in its tracks until further review and approval of the complete filing, at which time the stay will be in permanent place for the duration of the case.
Filing for Chapter 13 is a powerful tool enforced by federal bankruptcy courts that puts borrowers in charge of debt repayment –without liquidating any of their assets. That means if you qualify for Chapter 13, you can stop a foreclosure and keep your home.
If you have received a Notice of Default and/or the bank has scheduled your property for foreclosure in Massachusetts, call 978-452-1116 now. Whether you want to keep your home or not, an experienced bankruptcy and foreclosure defense attorney like Greg Oberhauser can protect your rights and ensure your best interests don’t get railroaded by the lender/s. To keep your house and stop foreclosure in its tracks, time is of the essence. Do not delay; call a Massachusetts Chapter 13 lawyer today.
Do I Qualify for Bankruptcy?
To determine if you qualify for chapter 13 bankruptcy, you will need to take the Means Test. In general, if your monthly income for your family size is above the state’s median and you have a few hundred dollars of monthly disposable income for a repayment plan, you will qualify for Chapter 13, but not Chapter 7.
Chapter 13 Filing Requirements
Aside from the Means Test, there are no other financial requirements under 13, except that your unsecured debt cannot total more than $419,275, and your secured debt cannot exceed $1,257,850. These are current limits for 2019. Please note that these numbers change under bankruptcy law every 3 years.
Chapter 13 and Mortgage Payments
To save your home in chapter 13, your past due mortgage payments will be rolled into your monthly Payment Plan that lasts for a period of from 3 years to 5 years. This is called “curing” your mortgage.
You also need to be able to make your current mortgage payments if you want to “cure and keep” your home. In some jurisdictions, your current mortgage payments will be paid by the chapter 13 trustee along with the other approved monthly disbursements (“the Plan”). In others, you will continue to pay your monthly mortgage directly to the lender.
Mortgage Arrears: Chapter 13
It is vitally important that you make all of your payments on time, every month to ensure your plan remains in effect. Call us or your bankruptcy lawyer the moment you miss or think you’ll miss a payment. Together, we can figure out if your Plan needs to be changed.
Your chapter 13 bankruptcy attorney can negotiate with your mortgage lender for more reasonable terms and propose that all interest penalties be removed from the amount owed. Thus, chapter 13 can result in reducing the overall amount of your mortgage by Plan’s end.
Additionally, by reorganizing your debts under the chapter 13 priority rules, your unsecured credit card debts can be paid off at a deeply discounted rate, such as 20 cents on the dollar.
Many filers need not pay these creditors at all and the debts will be discharged by the end of the Plan Period, which is either 3 or 5 years. This reorganization of your debts means you’ll have an easier time paying off your arrears over the repayment period while making current mortgage payments.
Why File Chapter 13 to Repay?
Chapter 13 allows you, the debtor, to impose a debt management plan upon your creditors. Once your Payment Plan is approved, it is enforced by federal law in federal court.
- All creditors are kept from filing lawsuits.
- Creditors and collectors are barred from calling, mailing and otherwise contacting you about debts.
- Secured Lenders are barred from pursuing foreclosure.
- Interest stops running.
- Late fees and penalty interest is wiped out.
- The court will enforce the plan against uncooperative creditors.
- No tax obligation is triggered by debt forgiveness in Chapter 13.
- You can eliminate that part of a lien greater than the value of the asset as at the beginning of your chapter 13 case. For your home, it must be a junior lien.
Recommended Reading: Reducing or eliminating liens in Chapter 13.
Get Help Filing Chapter 13
If you’re delinquent on your mortgage and believe you could afford your home payments if you had more time and your other debts were restructured and reduced, then filing for Chapter 13 is well worth your consideration.
Don’t be nervous about coming in for your bankruptcy consultation. Any experienced bankruptcy attorney will be able to recognize your financial situation for what it is: a series of unfortunate events that happen to people all the time.
The important point and focus of any legitimate consultation is to evaluate all of your bankruptcy and debt relief options by comparing and contrasting the benefits of each one.
If you are looking to stop foreclosure with chapter 13, call my law office today. With expertise and the right plan, you can get your house out of foreclosure, keep your home and put an end to collectors coming after you for consumer debts.