COVID-19 Kessler Law Update

Sheriff Sales

Kessler Law offers Sheriff Sale bidders specialized expertise in all matters relating to the initial bidding, title matters, writs, ejectments, motions to vacate and defending motions by former owners and tenants to extend lockout periods.

The primary areas of Kessler Law’s Sheriff Sale practice include:

Title Review

Our firm will review the title commitment for the property and determine if title is clear to close.  If there are title matters that need to be cleared then our firm will work with the title agency and bank counsel to obtain the documentation necessary to clear title.  If title is unable to be cleared then our firm will negotiate vacating a sale with bank counsel or, if necessary, file a motion to vacate the sale as a result of a title defect or unannounced lien.  We will also seek to negotiate a reduction (or credit) of the bid price where liens were not advertised or announced.

Extension of Time to Close on Bid

Our firm will contact bank counsel to request additional time to close on a bid.  If a motion to vacate a Sheriff’s sale has been filed by bank counsel as a result of a bidders failure to complete their bid, then we will negotiate with bank counsel for additional time to complete the bid or oppose the motion.  If the Sheriff requires an Order to complete a sale and deliver a Sheriff’s deed to a bidder, then we will negotiate a Consent Order with bank counsel or file a motion to compel the Sheriff to deliver the Sheriff’s deed.

Hard Money Lending

Our firm regularly represents purchasers at Sheriff’s sales in closing hard money loans at the time our client purchases the property and receives the Sheriff’s deed.

Writs of Possession/Lockout of Foreclosed Owners

Our firm will file a writ when necessary to evict a prior owner.  Upon receipt of the filed writ our firm will arrange the lockout of the prior owner with the Sheriff’s office.

Ejectment Actions/Lockouts

Our firm will file an ejectment action to eject from a property persons who are neither prior owners nor tenants, such as family members, “guests”, friends of the prior owner or squatters.

Tenancy Matters/Lockouts

Our firm will serve tenants of a foreclosed property with notice of the new owner and direct that all rent payments be delivered to the new owner.  Our firm will commence non-payment and holdover actions where necessary to collect rent due to the new owner.  Our firm will serve tenants, when appropriate, with notices of rent increase and new leases.  We will also serve tenants with 60 day notices to vacate where appropriate pursuant to N.J.S.A. 2A:18-61.1L

Bankruptcy

Our firm will represent a new owner (or successful bidder) where the prior owner or a tenant of the property files a petition in bankruptcy to stay completion of a bid at Sheriff’s sale or the eviction of a prior owner or tenant. When appropriate, we will file a motion in the bankruptcy court to lift the stay and permit the successful bidder to complete the sale, evict the prior owner or evict a tenant.

Motions to Vacate (Bid Cancellation)

Our firm will negotiate vacating a sale with the bank’s counsel or, if necessary, file a motion to vacate a sale where circumstances require, such as an undisclosed and unannounced structural or environmental condition of a property where a successful bidder does not learn of the condition until after the Sheriff’s sale.  In addition, we will seek to negotiate vacating a Sheriff’s sale where a bidder determines not to complete a sale.