Vacating Sheriff Sales

If you are visiting this page of our website this means you have lost your home as a result of a sheriff's sale conducted in a mortgage foreclosure. Depending on when the sale occured, however, YOU MAY STILL HAVE TIME TO SAVE YOUR PROPERTY

Our foreclosure attorneys are experienced in evaluting whether there is a legal basis to vacate a sheriff's sale. The process can become quite complicated when a third party has successfully won the foreclosure auction. If we are convinced that an error occurred in the sale process resulting in depriving you of your due process rights, we will file the appropriate emergent application with the Superior Court of New Jersey to vacate the sale. 


New Jersey is a judicial foreclosure state which means that if a property owner defaults on a mortgage the lender must go to court in order to repossess the property. The New Jersey Fair Foreclosure Act provides the rules that lenders must follow before and during residential foreclosures.

One of the functions of the county sheriff is to conduct the sale of real property after entry of a final judgment of foreclosure. In New Jersey, Sheriff sales are conducted according to the local rules of each county sheriff’s department. Sales are held at each county sheriff’s office according to each sheriff’s office schedule. Most county sheriffs maintain a list of real estate properties to be sold at auction on a searchable website. Traditional paper lists are available for review at all Sheriff’s Department offices during normal business hours.

Under N.J.S.A. 2A:17-36, the county sheriff has the discretionary right to make only two (2) adjournments of the sale, not exceeding two weeks maximum for each. Thereafter, a just must approve any further adjournments. New Jersey law requires that homeowners receive notice of the scheduling of a Sheriff's sale. In addition, the Sheriff is required to publicly advertise the sale.


Once a Sheriff's sale is conducted homeowners sale have a limited time period to try to save their home. Pursuant to New Jersey Court Rule 4:65-5, homeowners have 10 days from the date of a Sheriff’s sale to file any written objection with the Court. Also, the same 10-day period governs homeowners’ rights to redeem their mortgage by paying off the full amount of the lender’s foreclosure judgment and all post-judgment advances such as property taxes and insurance.

However, a Chapter 13 bankruptcy petition filed within this same 10-day period will extend the redemption period for an additional 60-days under federal bankruptcy law. In the absence of a timely objection, redemption or bankruptcy filing made within this 10-day period then the County Sheriff will deliver a Sheriff’s Deed to the foreclosing lender or winning bidder. Typically it takes between one to two weeks for the County Sheriff to deliver a deed.


In limited circumstances homeowners may be able to vacate or set aside a sheriff’s sale if they can prove they did not receive actual notice of the sheriff’s sale date or that there were other defects or irregularities in the advertising or sale process. Because vacating a sheriff’s sale is typically viewed as an extraordinary remedy, our New Jersey foreclosure defense attorneys are very selective in the cases that we accept. We must be convinced that the homeowner has a reasonable chance of succeeding.

Contact our office today at 201-498-0400 for a free initial phone consultation. 

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