Friday, August 07, 2015

Florida Appeals Court: Vacating A Foreclosure Sale Without First Giving Winning Bidder Notice & Opportunity To Be Heard Violates His Due Process Rights

A Florida appeals court recently ruled that a trial judge violated the due process rights of a winning bidder at a foreclosure sale when it improperly set aside the sale without first providing the winning bidder with notice and an opportunity to be heard. The court found that the winning bidder has a protectable legal interest in the property purchased at a foreclosure sale, even though the certificate of title (ie. the instrument conveying title to property in a foreclosure sale in Florida) had not yet been issued.(1)

For the ruling, see Residential Mortgage Servicing Corp. v. Winterlakes Property Owners Association, Inc., Case No. 4D14-1109 (Fla. 4th DCA July 8, 2015).
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(1) The court sets forth the basis for its ruling in this excerpt:
  • "[A] third-party purchaser has a protectable legal interest in a parcel purchased at a foreclosure sale. This status bestows on the purchaser due process rights, and when a sale is vacated without notice to and an opportunity to be heard by the purchaser, due process is violated." Skelton, 157 So. 3d at 472 (internal citation omitted); see also Avi-Isaac v. Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., 59 So. 3d 174, 177 (Fla. 2d DCA 2011) ("A purchaser at a foreclosure sale is entitled to notice and an opportunity to be heard on a motion to vacate the sale.").

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