Property Scams

submitted by Kevin Quinn, Esq.

CELJ has recently learned of several recent incidents where scammers have come to an individual’s home, insisting that they purchased the property in a foreclosure auction, and have demanded that the individual vacate the property immediately.

Neither the City of Buffalo nor Erie County have held a foreclosure auction recently.  Anyone purporting to be the owner of your property is a scammer and we recommend refraining from contact with him or her.  We certainly recommend contacting the police right away if you feel you are in danger.

A foreclosure proceeding is a very lengthy process in New York.  Municipalities and banks who initiate foreclosure proceedings are required to provide ample notices to homeowners that they are at risk of foreclosure.  Homeowners must also be notified that they have the right to obtain legal counsel to represent them throughout the course of foreclosure proceedings.

Attorneys can represent homeowners in negotiations with municipalities and banks that can help to resolve a foreclosure and keep the homeowner in their home.  Even if a foreclosure is granted by the court and a property is sold at auction, homeowners can only be forced to vacate when a new owner seeks to evict them.  If the new owner is successful at the eviction stage, the court will issue what is known as a “Warrant of Eviction.”  The Warrant of Eviction requires that the resident vacate the property within fourteen days of receiving the warrant.  If the resident fails to vacate within those 14 days, they may then be required to vacate by a sheriff or town constable.

Under no circumstances can a homeowner be forced to vacate their home without first being served with a court order.

For questions or further information, please contact us at 716-853-3087.

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