Law Office of Carol Ryder and Associates



Many people report enormous trouble with their lenders when they attempt to do a mortgage modification. Then, in the middle of this, the homeowners receive a Summons and Complaint that the lender has filed for foreclosure anyway. We can help at whatever stage you are in, and the mortgage modifications will be overseen by attorneys and, at times, the court itself, and AFTER you have been served for foreclosure is usually the time to make your best deal with the lender IF you hire an attorney quickly after being served. Do NOT neglect to file a timely Answer, due 20-30 days after you have been duly served, just as the bright paper on the documents indicates-this is statutorily required, not something the lender does as a "favor" nor self-serving. They usually would prefer you don't file a timely Answer, in fact.

Essentially, the foreclosure process is a dual track system in New York, where the lender files a formal Complaint and serves the borrower and anyone else with an interest in the home. .THAT MUST BE ANSWERED BY YOU IN 20 DAYS, no matter what. If you were not hand-serve, 30 days but do NOT delay. This is the litigation track, and the "train" must stay in the station while you work on the other track at the same time, the Foreclosure Settlement track, an automatic Stay.

 The filing of the Summons and Complaint paperwork triggers the other track, the Foreclosure Settlement Conferences ("FSC"). This means, regardless of how many times the lender lost your papers before, THIS time, in the FSC, the court is holding the lender's attorneys' feet to the fire, with a court Referee supervising the process, setting deadlines for paperwork and decisions. While this FSC "track" is proceeding, meaning, you are actively participating in the FSC, giving paperwork on-time to the lender's attorney*, and showing up for scheduled FSC, the other "train" , the foreclosure process, stays in the station. This means that the lender can't take any steps toward foreclosure, the FSC gives an automatic Stay on the litigation track.

The courts' ultimate goal is to save your home, and your attorney can make a formal analysis of why it is better to settle than to foreclose and present that to the lender along with your documents, such as your mortgage modification application, pay stubs, etc.. Or, your attorney might prepare one if the lender comes back with a mortgage modification offer that is not feasible. 

There are a number of options but in any case, do not believe rumors that you will get a giant principal reduction and 2% for 40 years. In some cases, yes. Same for you receiving a large amount of money from the lender settlements with the government. In many cases, you are not eligible for those or you are but if you don't ask, you on't receive anything, since the lenders often are not voluntarily informing you of your right to receive these funds. In fact, you may be entitled to part of  settlement money and that is separate and has the mortgage modification process goes on as usual. You need an attorney aware of what you are entitled to in order to fight to preserve your home and receive a mortgage modification that takes into consideration everything you are entitled to.. 

49 State AG Settlement

This settlement was reached with the 5 largest lenders and offenders, Chase, Bank of America, Wells Fargo, GMAC/Ally and Citimortgage. It includes their predecessors in interest, meaning, the lenders they bought and/or merged with. 

You may be eligible BUT you have to notify the lender you want to be considered for the 49 State AG Principal Writedown. The "have to" is not required but in operation, we have found if you don't ask you won't receive it. 

There are also a number of hoops to jump through making you ineligible for the principal write down  for this program. You must be underwater, and the mortgage must not be a FNMA (otherwise known as Fannie Mae) or Freddie Mac. These are government agency-owned loans that are serviced by others. You can look to see if your loan is one of them by looking on the FNMA or Freddie Mac Websites. These are listed below: for FNMA - FannieMae  for Freddie Mac


If you are eligible but are having trouble getting your share, contact the Attorney General . The AG especially wants to know if folks in the neighborhoods most impacted by the mortgage crisis receive their fair share of benefits. E-mail us and we will give you the current contacts there.

This page is being updated November 2014, but there currently is more information on

Please call anytime, even Sundays, Saturdays and evenings. Do not delay-very tight deadlines are involved and we even welcome weekend calls (631) 386-6903; (516) 512-8941 rather than frightened (naturally) victims waiting until Monday.