What do I do if I am served with a foreclosure on my home?
Foreclosure is a legal process to force the sale of a property to repay an amount owed. Often, a lender will sue to foreclose when a borrower (homeowner) stops paying the mortgage for multiple months.
The lender's attorney begins the foreclosure by filing a Complaint in state court. You will likely learn about the lawsuit by receiving the Complaint in person, by hand delivery. If you do not accept the hand delivery, the Complaint will be posted on your door.
You then have 20 days to file an Answer. If you are served with a foreclosure Complaint, you should speak with an attorney as soon as possible to learn about your options.
At this stage, you do not need to move out of the property, but it is important that you respond to the lawsuit by the deadline. If you don't file an Answer, the lender can ask the court for a “Default Judgment.”
A Default Judgment means that the lender will get what they requested. If you file an Answer, then the lender can't get a Default Judgment.