Foreclosure Nixed When Lender Fails to Notify Homeowners

What happens when you're the last one to hear about your own foreclosure? If a mortgage lender can't find you at your last known address in order to personally serve you with a notice of default on your mortgage, it can put out an ad, called a "legal notice" in the local paper and notify you that way of its intent to foreclose. If you don't notice or respond to the ad, the lender can get a default foreclosure judgment against you and can take the house in a matter of days.

But as Scott P. Mattfeld of Waukesha County, Wis., can tell you, if the lender can't get the spelling of your last name correct and it publishes the legal notice in the wrong newspaper, you just may be able to cancel the foreclosure judgment and keep your house a bit longer, as that's just what the Wisconsin Appellate Court judge ruled for him last week.