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Phillips Esq.
Phillips Esq., Attorney-at-Law
Category: Bankruptcy Law
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Experience:  B.A.; M.B.A.; J.D.
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My wife and I were behind in our payments for our mortgage

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My wife and I were behind in our payments for our mortgage for many months and missed a property tax payment. The mortgage company created an escrow payment, and over time, accumulated more than $6,000 in "surplus" funds in that account.    We recently filed Chapter 13, including this mortgage account in the bankruptcy filing. A few weeks afterward, the mortgage company (Chase) sent us an "escrow analysis" telling us of the $6,000 surplus, and saying they would return it later in May iif our account is current. We have only had one scheduled Chapter 13 payment so far, and we made it as scheduled. But on the phone, Chase's reps say that "contractually" our account is not current, and they will not be returning the surplus. Their reps said something about "pre-petition" and "post-petition" payments due. They said it doesn't matter that we are current within Chapter 13 -- they don't have to return the surplus.    Are they right? Steve<br /><br />I should add that I need an answer that helps me in a concrete way.  A "yes," "no" or "it depends precisely upon ___" would work.  <br />But I can't afford to pay for a more ambiguous answer.  Thanks.
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Bankruptcy Law
Expert:  Phillips Esq. replied 4 years ago.

Thank you for giving me the opportunity to assist you. I encourage you to ask me for clarification, if you are not clear with my Answer.

 

My wife and I were behind in our payments for our mortgage for many months and missed a property tax payment. The mortgage company created an escrow payment, and over time, accumulated more than $6,000 in "surplus" funds in that account. We recently filed Chapter 13, including this mortgage account in the bankruptcy filing. A few weeks afterward, the mortgage company (Chase) sent us an "escrow analysis" telling us of the $6,000 surplus, and saying they would return it later in May iif our account is current. We have only had one scheduled Chapter 13 payment so far, and we made it as scheduled. But on the phone, Chase's reps say that "contractually" our account is not current, and they will not be returning the surplus. Their reps said something about "pre-petition" and "post-petition" payments due. They said it doesn't matter that we are current within Chapter 13 -- they don't have to return the surplus. Are they right? Steve

 

Response: Yes, they are right. It appears here that you have been giving conflicting information by Chase Bank Representatives. I agree with the Representatives on the phone that contractually that your account is not current. You were behind on your mortgage payments for months and subsequently on your tax payments and this is why you have to go into Chapter 13 to save the home. Technically speaking, you are still not current on your mortgage with Chase even though that you are current on your Chapter 13 payments. You are paying the amount in arrears with Chase through your Chapter 13 plan. Unless and untill you successfully complete your Chapter 13 plan, you would still be owing Chase the past due amount. Thus, Chase is under no obligation to return the escrow surplus to you at this time.

Phillips Esq., Attorney-at-Law
Category: Bankruptcy Law
Satisfied Customers: 13133
Experience: B.A.; M.B.A.; J.D.
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