Foreclosures are never easy, and some are conducted improperly. When that happens (or even when it doesn't), some former homeowners refuse to leave the property and want to keep fighting for their homes. That's understandable – it's their home after all – but is it legal in New York? Or can the new owner kick the person out of the home through the use of force, like with the police, upon purchase the foreclosed home?
In New York, homeowners have rights, even after their home was foreclosed and purchased by another person or entity. According to the New York Real Property Actions and Procedures Law § 713, grounds for eviction under these circumstances – such that there is in a tenant-landlord relationship – are laid out. The new owner, however, cannot simply call the police to have you removed but must bring a summary proceeding to evict you. Here's an overview of what the new owner must do to evict you and what your rights are during this process.
What is the process in New York to start an eviction of a former homeowner of a foreclosed property?
In a post-foreclosure eviction, the former owner who has remained in possession of the property and the new owner of the property has no tenant-landlord relationship, but the process for eviction is quite similar to one that a landlord must follow. To begin a summary proceeding:
- the new owner must serve you or have you served with a 10-day notice to quit – this notice must be in accordance with the law; and
- the new owner must "exhibit" the referee's deed (or certified copy of the deed) conveying the property to the former owner – exhibit has been defined by the courts to be in-hand delivery.
To note, the process is different if the property in question is a cooperative because a cooperative owner actually owns shares in the cooperative corporation as opposed to real estate. First, a notice of default and termination must be provided, and then the shares and proprietary lease are auctioned to the highest bidder, which is most likely the lender but could be the cooperative corporation
After this process, the new owner commences an action in the Supreme Court for ejectment. If the Supreme Court decides in favor of the ejectment, the new shareholder can evict the former shareholder from the property.
What rights does the former New York homeowner have during a post-foreclosure eviction?
Former property owners (or cooperative shareowners) have rights during any action to evict him or her. First, after an eviction, you have the right to remain on the property for a certain but short period – you do not have to immediately exit the property, but if you do, the new owner may start a summary eviction proceeding.
During the eviction process, a former owner has a right to a hearing. At this hearing, you argue your reasons to stay. Those reasons can be based on technical matters, substantive issues, and/or equitable questions.
With the help of an experienced New York foreclosure defense attorney, you can ensure that your response to an eviction complaint is drafted property with supporting details and documentation and is filed timely. Your attorney will also have the skills necessary to effectively negotiate a settlement that works for the client as well as for the new owner.
If you face a post-foreclosure eviction in New York, contact the Law Offices of Melvin Monachan, PLLC today.