A sheriff sale is a broad term that could mean a foreclosure or a tax sale. With the economy and the job market in slow repair, it is hard for many people to recover financially. This means that Sheriff Sales are more prevalent than ever before. A mortgaged property or property under a loan is subject to foreclosure if payment stops. Even if you are unable to make payments, the government or a mortgagor cannot snatch property from you. A mortgagor must follow proper procedure.
We at Freundlich & Littman, LLC understand that difficult situation of a Sheriff’s Sale. We also know what it takes to make a Sheriff Sale legal. While a mortgagor has the right to reclaim their property, you have rights, too. Before you panic, contact our offices to chat about your story. We are your Sheriff Sales lawyers, and we are here to help you.
The Philadelphia Sheriff’s Sale Process
The Philadelphia Sheriff’s Department provides an overview of the process of a sheriff’s sale. In the city of Philadelphia, there two types of Sheriff’s sales: “Judicial Mortgage Foreclosure Sales and Tax Sales.”
A Judicial Mortgage Foreclosure Sales mostly applies to homes and commercial properties. If you owe money on your mortgage, your mortgage company may have means to help if you are struggling to repay your mortgage. A mortgage company cannot simply foreclose on a property. They must follow strict procedures. A judgment from a court is necessary to foreclose on a residential property or commercial property. A foreclosure sale is also possible for other personal property such as motorcycles or boats.
Tax sales is a means for the government to collect taxes owed to them. For instance, if someone owes taxes to the city of Philadelphia for unpaid school taxes or taxes on a home. Likewise, sewage and water are government agencies in Philadelphia. If you owe money for these utilities, the government may put a lien on your property. If the tax is not paid, the government takes the property with a lien and sells it at a tax sale.
The government may sell commercial and residential properties as well as plots of land. If the owner owes unpaid taxes, the profits from the sale will satisfy the debts.
After The Sheriff’s Sale
The auction is complete. You have won the bid for the property. The sale is not final, however. The original owner of the property has a legal right to reclaim their property. In Philadelphia, the original owner may file a Right of Redemption. The original owner has nine months to reclaim the property. They may only reclaim the property if they pay back all the taxes owed on the property. Further, the original owner must pay any amount you paid for the property at the sale.
There are other requirements to consider. Not just anyone can show up and claim a right to the property. Even if the original owner shows up to reclaim their property, the law may prevent them from doing so. The original owner must occupy the property for ninety days prior to the sheriff’s sale. If the original owner cannot prove occupation, they cannot claim a Right of Redemption.
It is important to note that the original owner has no right to reclaim property sold during a Mortgage Foreclosure sale.
The Sheriff’s Department of Philadelphia warns buyers to beware. Check with the Department of Licenses and Inspections. Make sure there are no problems with the property. This includes the title or deed to a property. If you need to fix any errors, keep your receipts. You may be able to seek compensation from the original owner if the court permits the original owner to reclaim the property.
Philadelphia Sheriff Sales Attorneys
We are your greater Philadelphia sheriff sales attorneys. We can assist you with your property, questions, and legal issues that arise from a sheriff sale. A sheriff’s sale notice is not final. You have options available to you. You may be able to file for a Right of Redemption. Likewise, a buyer may collect for title search efforts.
If you purchased a property at a tax sale, do not spend money on it right away. If the previous owner files a Right to Redemption, they may reclaim the property. Any money spent on the property is therefore wasted. Wait the appropriate time before spending money. If you need legal advice on a Sheriff’s Sale, do not hesitate to reach out to us at Freundlich & Littman, LLC. We can help you.