There are a few ways to prevent a sheriff’s sale in Ohio ; however, they require some legal knowledge from foreclosure defense attorneys to utilize.
The sheriff’s sale/auction is one of the decisive steps in foreclosure. Having a sheriff’s sale/auction scheduled implies that the bank has already recorded a foreclosure lawsuit against you and obtained a judgment from the court to sell the property.
The sheriff’s sale/auction authorizes the bank to sell your property for money, which it then applies to your loan. If the sale price is not sufficient to cover the loan, you owe a “deficiency.” If it is more than your loan, you are entitled to a check for the surplus.
Means Available to Stop a Sheriff’s Sale in Ohio
An expert Ohio foreclosure defense attorney suggests this to be the only guaranteed means to stop a sale. Federal law requires the sale to be stopped as soon as bankruptcy is filed. Chapter 13 may resolve the underlying judgment.
File an OH 60 or FL 1.540 Motion
The most complicated way of halting the Sheriff’s Sale in Ohio requires a technical motion to be filed in court by foreclosure defense lawyers to revive the case, effectively proffering you another opportunity to defend the foreclosure.
Complete a Loss Mitigation Package
RESPA may require your lender to stop a sale scheduled at least 45 days away if you have submitted a total loss mitigation package to your servicer.
File a Motion to Stay the Sale
If you have a genuine reason, the judge may permit you additional time to resolve the foreclosure that is short of the auction. Since this is not obligatory, the judge might not grant it at all.
Can an appeal stop a sheriff’s sale/auction?
Generally, NO. Filing an appeal is ordinarily not a good enough reason to put a sheriff’s sale on halt. One major reason for it not being effective is that an appeal is primarily about the judgment that was put into place – and not the fact that a sheriff’s sale was scheduled.
Further, an expert foreclosure attorney in Ohio shares the appeal must be taken within 30 days of the date of judgment in order to be effective. In the event that you successfully file a “Notice of Appeal” within the correct timeline, then you may ask the judge to stop the sheriff’s sale. First, you have to ask the judiciary that already ruled against you before you can ask the court of appeals for that same relief. The motion you file is referred to as “Motion to Stay Execution of Judgment.”
Ohio judges have very wide discretion in whether to grant stays to stop any sheriff sale/auction. Many times the court will require you to post a bond in order to stop the sale. As you will find out, surety bond companies generally want 100% cash collateral for the bond. This implies you probably must have cash for the entire amount of the bond. You will find some judges concede for very low bonds; others may demand extremely high bonds, and yet there are a few who may totally waive off this requirement. Foreclosure attorneys in Ohio who regularly work in this area can give you a good idea of what you can expect on this front.
Outside of bankruptcy, halting a foreclosure sale in Ohio requires a judge’s order. This is because a sale is only scheduled after the entire case is lost and judgment upheld. In order to stop the foreclosure and sale at this final decisive stage requires reopening the entire case, recruiting an expert foreclosure defense attorney, and then starting from scratch in the lawsuit.
Few judges are happy about letting a homeowner start from the beginning, so it’s a bit of work. For that reason, our law firm generally asks for a deposit upfront before we agree to take on a case at this later stage, in addition to our normal monthly payment.
More about stopping a sheriff’s sale/auction in Ohio
Method #1: Bankruptcy
The only guaranteed way of stopping a sheriff’s sale in Ohio is to file bankruptcy. Both Chapter 7 (total release of debts) and Chapter 13 (repayment plan lasting 3 to 5 years) provide for an immediate halting of all creditor actions, including halting a foreclosure sheriff’s sale/auction. The sheriff sale/auction is stopped the very minute you file your bankruptcy petition, even if that filing is the morning of the sale (just make sure you file a notice with the foreclosure court).
Remember, the sheriff’s sale/auction is different than the foreclosure lawsuit. If you are just being served, there might not be a need to file bankruptcy unless it deems fit for your overall situation. Also, the legal advice in Ohio states that Chapter 7 will not settle the underlying judgment if you want to keep your home. You will need to consider Chapter 13 instead. Liquidation does not authorize you for a loan modification, either.
Method #2: Motion for Relief from Judgment
A Rule 60(B) motion in Ohio is a request to the foreclosing judge to set aside the foreclosure judgment and reopen the case. The procedural mechanism is a “Motion for Relief From Judgment” pursuant to Civil Rules of Procedure. The Rule requires you to show three things: 1) That you state one of the grounds under the Rule, such as excusable neglect under (B)(1); 2) That you show a meritorious defense or claim is available to you if the judgment is reversed, and 3) That your motion for relief from judgment is timely. All three things must be addressed in your motion in order to win this motion.
In addition to this kind of motion, you would probably want to file the above referenced “Motion to Stay Execution of Judgment.” Our law firm’s foreclosure defense attorneys may be able to help.
Method #3: Loss Mitigation
Federal law (RESPA) now requires mortgage companies to stop a sale if you submit a completed loan modification package to them at least 37 days prior to the sale. It must halt the sheriff’s sale until it has responded to your request. But your application must be complete or facially complete in order to trigger this limitation. Also, we recommend that you be with your lender at least 45 days prior to the sale date under the code.
Despite this law, in our experience, most mortgage companies tend to ignore it. It is very frustrating for people to lose their homes to such a blatant violation of federal law. If that happens to you, you should immediately contact a law firm like Doucet to help. The federal law provides for damages and attorneys fees for these violations, and we have recovered thousands of dollars for our clients who lost their homes to such absurdity.
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