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Foreclosure & A Summary Judgement


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Can a bank foreclose on a piece of investment land that was to be developed and still get a summary judgement against you for the entire loan amount?  And I say loan amount loosely b/c the entire loan amount was NOT paid out...The bank did get the land back but it was quite a bit under the value that it was originally appraised at b/c of the market at the time of foreclosure vs. when the loan originated.  There were a number of partners but somehow I'm getting stuck with the full weight of the judgement.  Does that even sound right???  Thanks in advance for the feedback and comments.  Only happy and positive comments please, you may only tell me good things that I want to hear LOL... <-- My attempt at humor in the midst of a potential melt down :)

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Now that we got the humor out of the way, lets get down to brass tacks.

I really do not know where you are at in the process so some of this advice may or may not be helpful.

Here is a website where I got my information. Others who know SC law better may chime in: http://www.nolo.com/legal-encyclopedia/deficiency-judgments-after-foreclosure-south-carolina.html


To answer your first question, are deficiency judgements on mortgages legal in SC. The answer is yes. This means that even if they get the property, if it does not sell for the full amount of the mortgage plus fees, they can go after you for the difference.

In order to do so, they have to state in the foreclosure complaint that they intend to obtain a deficiency judgement. If they do not state it in the original complaint, they waive their right to it later. So if you are in court and fighting against such judgement, that would be the first place I would look. If the judgement has been handed down, you might be able to get it vacated in the appeals process if the time for appeal has not passed. If the appeal process time has passed, then you are probably out of luck because you should have brought that up at trial.

If the foreclosure sale was within the past 30 days, you can also demand that the court do an appraisal on the property to determines its true value. If the value is more than what the bank sold the property, the deficiency is limited to the difference between the mortgage and appraised value. If more than 30 days after the sale, then you have probably waived the right to an appraisal.

Finally, they are going after you because when it comes to judgements and most mortgages, all parties are jointly and severably liable. They bank therefore has the choice to go after the person for the full balance that they will have the easiest time collecting from. You can go after your partners yourself (assuming they have not declared BK) but the bank is not obligated to do so for you. You can also try to settle your share with the bank leaving them open to go after the partners but you would probably have to come up with your share in full in order to do that.

Sorry I do not have better news.

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First thank you for your reply.  I must say first that the property is not in SC but in FL.  To the best of my knowledge the deficiency judgment has been awarded.  And I believe that I have passed the appeal period.  I was not an equal partner in the deal lol, my friend was more so trying to help me get in on a RE deal that went very far south.  Most of the other "partners" involved did a BK when the project first went bad.  I was kind of the last guy standing.  I kind of had an attorney but he REALLY dropped the ball <-- really a long story.  As far as settling the debt I wouldn't even know how to calculate "my share"...would it just be the value divided by the number or original partners?  Do the banks typically try to get the FULL value of the deficiency or are they inclined to negotiate?  I would be open to working something out but I just don't want to be the only one holding the bag...Also, if the appeals period has passed does that mean that its a completely DEAD option or is there always an opportunity to pick up the fight...I don't have ANY money for an attorney but once I saved some for that I was considering that option.  How do I even find out the status, b/c to be honest I only heard about this (its been about 1yr now) b/c one of the partners called and was like hey by the way the bank has you as the sole person on the deficiency judgement.  Kind of knocked the wind out of me needless to say, felt totally helpless and powerless to do anything...


As always I appreciate all input, advice and direction :)  

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Basically, because Florida is a judicial foreclosure state, I am sure they can get deficiency judgement real easy once the property is sold, the judgement is almost automatic. Also looks like if they served one of the owners, they can get a judgement on all.

To add more bad news, since the partners all declared BK, you are solely on the hook. With friends like that, who needs enemies.

Now the good news. If all of your assets are in South Carolina, they would need to localize the judgement first. I do not know if the bank is collecting from you or not so I have no idea if they had done this. They can attach any Florida property you have without localizing the judgement.

Even after a judgement, a debt can still be settled and banks settle these all of the time. Honestly, they probably only collect about 20 cents on the dollar for these because so many people are simply pushed to BK. If you simply tell them you are considering the BK route (which would leave them totally holding the bag) but am willing to consider settling this, it might convince them to take what they can get and walk away. Make sure to get any settlement in writing however.

Let this be a lesson that the only ship that does not sail is a partnership.

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@WhoCares1000 -


Thank you so much...this is such a scary experience.  But to be honest I think the ignorance makes things so much scarier.  Its such a big first step to look under the bed to see if there is a monster And while there may be a monster it may not be as bad as you first thought.  Certainly I'm not saying that my situation is grand but learning about what my options are sure does help and allows me to make some kind of plan.  You are totally correct about partnerships LOL...It has been a major major lesson..this forum and the people on have been a tremendous blessing to say the least!

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