Legal Question in Bankruptcy in California

I have a home in which i was the co-signer on a loan. The primary borrower went chapter 7 and returned the asset to the lender. The mortgage is paid current; their is a 1st and 2nd on the home.

The home is currently underwater by over 100,000. It is also a rental property where rent does not cover mortage overhead.

As the bank currently owns 50% of the property now, what are my options:

(1) will they force the sale of the property

(2) if i keep making payments will nothing happen

(3) can i negotiate a loan modification on the property to bring it in balance?

Please let me know typically what happens in this situation and what would be the best option for me.


Asked on 6/07/11, 4:15 pm

1 Answer from Attorneys

David Gibbs The Gibbs Law Firm, APC

First, I think some clarification is needed before any response can be posted. You indicate that you were a co-signer on the loan(s). You also state that in his Chapter 7 bankruptcy, the borrower deeded the property back to the bank. You later assert that the bank only owns 1/2 of the property.

In all the years I've been practicing real estate law, I have never seen a bank accept anything less-than a deed transferring 100% of the ownership rights to the bank in-lieu of foreclosure. Are you absolutely sure you were still on title to the property when it was deeded back to the bank? Are you sure that the other borrower actually deeded it back to the bank, or is just surrendering it to the bank (i.e., letting them foreclose). You need a better understanding of where you stand relative to legal title and ownership of the property, and whether the bank has accepted a deed, or is just starting or has finished foreclosure of the property. Again, I have literally never seen a bank accept a deed in lieu of foreclosure unless they can guarantee they get 100% of the title interest in the property. My best guess is that the other borrower indicated in his Chapter 7 that he is walking away, and is leaving it up to you and the bank to sort it out. If you can repost with more facts, perhaps I can get you a better answer.

*Due to the limitations of the LawGuru Forums, The Gibbs Law Firm, APC's (the "Firm") participation in responding to questions posted herein does not constitute legal advice, nor legal representation of the person or entity posting a question. No Attorney/Client relationship is or shall be construed to be created hereby. The information provided is general and requires that the poster obtain specific legal advice from an attorney. The poster shall not rely upon the information provided herein as legal advice nor as the basis for making any decisions of legal consequence. As required by 11 U.S.C. 528, we must now disclose that, "We are a debt relief agency. We help people file for bankruptcy relief under the Bankruptcy Code. Assistance we provide with respect to Debt Relief may involve bankruptcy relief under the Bankruptcy Code."

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Answered on 7/11/11, 4:31 pm


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