How JustAnswer Works:

  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.

Ask Marsha411JD Your Own Question

Marsha411JD, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 18499
Experience:  Licensed Attorney with 29 yrs. experience with Real Estate
Type Your Real Estate Law Question Here...
Marsha411JD is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

I have been living in a home since last October. The owner

Resolved Question:

I have been living in a home since last October. The owner had just bought the house at an auction for 5000.00 and was repairing it when we moved in. In January an officer of the court served us papers of some kind of foreclosure with the name on it of the previous owner (Not the lady that purchased the home at the auction due to unpaid asssociation fees) but the guy that owned the house before her. She assured me not to worry and toss the papers. Last week i was served the papers again. My question is if someone purchases a home at an auction is it possible that the house can still be foreclosed on? I am worried that i will be kicked out, I have 2 small children. How can i find out definitively if the house is under any danger and this lawsiut has merit?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Real Estate Law
Expert:  Marsha411JD replied 2 years ago.


Thank you for the information and your question. First, just to be clear about what your landlord got when she purchased the house from the HOA who had foreclosed for unpaid association fees, she got the house subject to any mortgages that were on the house. In other words, the title was clouded by these mortgages. So, she will have to settle those mortgages before she will own the property completely. However, if you want to make sure you have the complete picture, you will want to contact the mortgage holder or their law firm that would be on the papers you received.

As for you being kicked out. There is a Federal law called Protecting Tenants at Foreclosure, which states that as long as you are a bona fide tenant (meaning you are paying rent to a landlord that you are not related to), then you have a certain amount of protection from eviction. Under the law, if the property is foreclosed on by a mortgage lender and there is a sale of that property after foreclosure, then the tenant has the right to stay to the end of their written lease period unless the person purchasing the property is going to use it as their primary residence. If they will use it as a primary residence, then the tenant will have 90 days to move from the unit after recieving notice of the owner's purchase and intention. If there is no written lease, then the tenant still gets at least 90 days to move.

You can see more about the Act, at:

So, no one can come one day and force you out. They have to use the process and your legal position is this Act.

Please let me know if you need any clarification. I would be glad to assist you further if I can.

Marsha411JD, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 18499
Experience: Licensed Attorney with 29 yrs. experience with Real Estate
Marsha411JD and 4 other Real Estate Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

I tried to contact the law office and they informed me that since i am not the defendant they cannot offer me any information. And when i ask the landlord she simply says dont worry about it. Is there a specific way for me to find out if the house has a clouded mortgage? She is listed as the owner in the clerk of court docs but the law office assures me that the lawsuit has merit. is there something in the court docs i can see? Any way to find out? Anything you can help me with would be greatly appreciated. I understand i have rights but its very hard to come up with deposits and cost of moving in just a couple months. Thanks!

Expert:  Marsha411JD replied 2 years ago.
Hello again and thank you for the reply. Other than speaking to the law firm for the plaintiff, and looking a public records there isn't a lot you can do other than to hire an attorney to do a title check, which you really need not do. The long and short of it, is that you have the rights that I described and no one can take those away from you. It is required that lenders serve tenants with foreclosure paperwork only as a matter of notice, and not because the tenant is a defendant or because they are going to be forced out of the house immediately.

Since you are not a party to this process, all you can do, unless you have a month to month lease and want to leave before you are served notice of the foreclosure, is to wait and be forearmed with the knowledge that you have the law on your side.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

ok last question i promise! When looking at public records what exactly am i looking for to see who the actual owner is? When i call the law office is there a specific question that i can ask to get the info that i need. Again thanks for your help i really appreciate it

Expert:  Marsha411JD replied 2 years ago.
Well, that is why I said you need an attorney to do a title opinion. This is not something that a layman can do. It takes a lot of training and the clerks won't do this for you. If there is a mortgage that is unpaid, which I am sure there is if the HOA dues were unpaid, then there is going to be a foreclosure. So, I really think you would be wasting your time and money to hire someone to do this. There is no doubt that the filing is proper.

What you might want to keep in mind is that these processes take a very long time in most cases. Also, once the property is foreclosed on, and there is a deficit, then your landlord can buy the house from the mortgage company. So, you may be worrying about nothing that will directly affect you in the end. But there really is no way for you to know with certainty, since you are not a party to these proceedings. Again though, worst case scenario you have to the end of your written lease, or 90 days after someone other than your landlord might buy this property to live in. This could be a few years from now.

JustAnswer in the News:

Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.

What Customers are Saying:

  • Mr. Kaplun clearly had an exceptional understanding of the issue and was able to explain it concisely. I would recommend JustAnswer to anyone. Great service that lives up to its promises! Gary B. Edmond, OK
< Previous | Next >
  • Mr. Kaplun clearly had an exceptional understanding of the issue and was able to explain it concisely. I would recommend JustAnswer to anyone. Great service that lives up to its promises! Gary B. Edmond, OK
  • My Expert was fast and seemed to have the answer to my taser question at the tips of her fingers. Communication was excellent. I left feeling confident in her answer. Eric Redwood City, CA
  • I am very pleased with JustAnswer as a place to go for divorce or criminal law knowledge and insight. Michael Wichita, KS
  • PaulMJD helped me with questions I had regarding an urgent legal matter. His answers were excellent. Three H. Houston, TX
  • Anne was extremely helpful. Her information put me in the right direction for action that kept me legal, possible saving me a ton of money in the future. Thank you again, Anne!! Elaine Atlanta, GA
  • It worked great. I had the facts and I presented them to my ex-landlord and she folded and returned my deposit. The 50 bucks I spent with you solved my problem. Tony Apopka, FL
  • Wonderful service, prompt, efficient, and accurate. Couldn't have asked for more. I cannot thank you enough for your help. Mary C. Freshfield, Liverpool, UK

Meet The Experts:

  • Tina


    Satisfied Customers:

    17 years of legal experience including real estate law.
< Last | Next >
  • Tina's Avatar



    Satisfied Customers:

    17 years of legal experience including real estate law.
  • Barrister's Avatar



    Satisfied Customers:

    15 years real estate, Realtor. Landlord 26 years
  • Dimitry Esquire's Avatar

    Dimitry Esquire


    Satisfied Customers:

    JA Mentor, multiple jurisdictions, specialize in business/contract disputes, estate creation & admin
  • Ray's Avatar



    Satisfied Customers:

    Texas Attorney for 29 years dealing in real estate
  • LawTalk's Avatar



    Satisfied Customers:

    I have 30 years legal experience. Additionally, in CA I held a Real Estate Broker's license.
  • Ely's Avatar


    Counselor at Law

    Satisfied Customers:

    Qualified attorney in private practice including business, family, criminal, and real estate issues.
  • P. Simmons's Avatar

    P. Simmons


    Satisfied Customers:

    12+ yrs. of experience including real estate law.