The Franklin County Sheriff Sale Process
Franklin County is most populous county in Ohio and contains the state capital, Columbus. In Franklin County, the Sheriff Sale process is initiated when the mortgage lender (such as Wells Fargo or Bank of America) obtains a final judgment in a foreclosure case. They will then ask the sheriff to move to appraise and sell the property.
Before the Sheriff Sale can actually take place, the Franklin County Sheriff has to complete two tasks:
- First, they must have the property appraised by three impartial parties
- Second, they must advertise the sale in a local newspaper for at least three consecutive weeks prior to the sale
The property cannot be auctioned for less than 2/3 of the appraised value. It is critical that you keep yourself informed about the sale, since your lender will not necessarily update you on the details of the sale. The best way to stay up to date is to take the initiative and get in contact with the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office (614-525-3333) to discuss the aspects of the sale directly.
For a more in depth look at the sheriff sale process take a look at our Ohio Sheriff Sale Timeline.
What Are My Options for Stopping a Franklin County Sheriff Sale?
There are some methods of delaying or even stopping a Sheriff Sale.
- Filing a Stay of Execution of Judgment. In order to have a judge stay the sale, you must file a Notice of Appeal within 30 days of the judgment. If that is successful, you can then file a Motion to Stay Execution of Judgment with the judge. The judge has discretion when it comes to staying a sale and will often require you to post a bond.
- Filing for Bankruptcy. Under most circumstances, filing a Bankruptcy Petition will entitle you, by federal law, to an Automatic Stay. This stops most actions by creditors including the Sheriff Sale process. Bankruptcy is not something to pursue lightly and you should seek out an attorney with expertise in bankruptcy filings so you can properly assess your options.
- Applying for a Loan Modification. If you complete a loan modification application and submit it at least 38 days before the sale, the lender must, by federal law, halt the sale and review the application. The process cannot continue if you are making payments on a loan modification.
- Pursuing a Foreclosure Defense. If you forgo an appeal or bankruptcy, then you will have to show another legal reason why the sale should be stopped. This is going to require a foreclosure defense. It is important to hire an experienced Ohio foreclosure defense attorney to analyze your case and assess your options for defending against the foreclosure.
My Lender Is Still Conducting the Sale While My Loan Modification Is in Review. How Can I Stop This?
By federal law, your lender is not allowed to conduct a sheriff sale while they are also reviewing a completed loan modification application. In fact, they cannot do any of the following:
- Pursue a Sheriff Sale
- File a foreclosure complaint
- Apply for a final judgment of foreclosure
If your lender is pursuing illegal foreclosure actions, it is imperative to contact an attorney to help you fight back. Don’t allow your lender to take away what is yours while violating the law.
If your home is scheduled for a Franklin County Sheriff Sale, contact the lawyers at DannLaw. We are experienced in foreclosure defense, bankruptcy filings and loan modification. Let us help you keep your home.