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Barrister
Barrister, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 37028
Experience:  16 years real estate, Realtor. Landlord 26 years
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This is regarding NYS law. I'm a tenant involved in a

Customer Question

this is regarding NYS law. I'm a tenant involved in a foreclosure. Proceedings originally started in 02/2009 then ceased at time of housing crash, Owner filed bankruptcy in 2012, have not seen or heard from Owner since 2012. Foreclosure proceeding restarted again with a notice of Lis Pendens in 01/2016, summons to appear in court received 02/2016. Don't know if owner received any information since no answers were filed with court an all papers were delivered to tenant residency, notices from bank and courts sent to tenants advising house is in pre-foreclosure 3/2016. April 2016 request for Judicial intervention and May 2016 letter of referee and court date issued for July 2016 for conference. Based on public tax records property was sold for $1000.00 9/3/14 and then again in 10/16 for $1000.00. I received a handwritten note with a name and number to call it was stuck in my front door. Upon calling number, person advised that he's new owner and has been for 7-8 months, and to start paying him rent. My question is if there is in fact a new legal owner shouldn't there be official notification received and how or why is the foreclosure process still proceeding? I've been in the dwelling for 8 years, maintained all property in and out. The bank, prior owner and new owner has not been involved with property maintenance etc. What rights do I have as a tenant besides the law obligating the new owner to issue official notification to tenant giving 90 days after receipt of notice to move? Also does the fact that original proceeding started in 2009 make this expired due to the statute of limitations? Can these proceedings start over again after 7 years?
JA: Since laws vary from place to place, what state is this in? And has any paperwork been filed?
Customer: this is NY and yes all the paper work has come to the tenants residency. I'm not even sure who the owner is anymore.
JA: Have you talked to a lawyer yet?
Customer: No because I am the tenant
JA: Anything else you think the lawyer should know?
Customer: just everything in my original question/statements.
JA: OK. Got it. I'm sending you to a secure page on JustAnswer so you can place the $5 fully-refundable deposit now. While you're filling out that form, I'll tell the Real Estate Lawyer about your situation and then connect you two.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Real Estate Law
Expert:  Barrister replied 1 year ago.

Hello and welcome! My name is ***** ***** I am a licensed attorney who will try my very best to help with your situation or get you to someone who can. There may be a slight delay in my responses as I research statutes or ordinances and type out an answer or reply, but rest assured, I am working on your question.

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My question is if there is in fact a new legal owner shouldn't there be official notification received and how or why is the foreclosure process still proceeding?

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There is no requirement to notify a tenant if the property changes hands and normally the only way they would know is if there were foreclosure notices posted or mail sent to the address because they can't find the owner.

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But something smells fishy here if the foreclosure is still pending and someone is claiming to be the new owner. If this is true, that means that the old owner might have quitclaim deeded the property over to the new person and walked away. The new person is just trying to collect some rent until the foreclosure actually occurs.

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So the way to know for sure is to contact the local land records office and find out who is the legal owner according to the latest deed. That is the person who you would have to start paying rent to if they showed up because even if the house is in foreclosure, any tenant still has to pay rent up until an actual sale occurs and a new owner takes over. The tenant never gets to live for free in a property..

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Also does the fact that original proceeding started in 2009 make this expired due to the statute of limitations? Can these proceedings start over again after 7 years?

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No, the statute of limitations only expires after the Note comes due on any mortgage and it remains unpaid for 6 years. So that means for example, if the borrower had a 30 year mortgage, and then they defaulted on it 10 years in, the bank can foreclose on it up to 26 years after default.

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It is kind of an urban legend that if someone lives in a house for 5 or 10 years without paying the mortgage that they can claim it and the bank can't foreclose. The banks have a very long time to foreclose on a property even if they can't hold the original borrower personally liable for the debt.

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thanks

Barrister