Foreclosure Guidelines in Wisconsin

Highlights:

Judicial/ Non-Judicial Foreclosure: Both Judicial & Non-Judicial Foreclosure

Right of Redemption / Deficiency Judgment: Yes / Yes

Timeline: 90 Days, Can vary depending on individual cases

Deed of Trust / Mortgage as Security Instruments: Deed of Trust, Mortgage

 

Judicial Foreclosure process:   

If a power of sale clause is present in the Deed of Trust/ Mortgage documents, the Judicial foreclosure process can be followed. The Judicial foreclosure process involves the lender filing a lawsuit against the borrower when the latter happens to default on their mortgage loan. The court then verifies the same and authorizes the foreclosure sale where the property is sold to the highest bidder through a public auction.

In Wisconsin, the foreclosure sale can happen only after one year form the date of foreclosure order, as per the court records. But if the lender and borrower come to a mutual consent, the sale can be held earlier. Also, if the borrower abandons the property, the foreclosure sale can be held after two months and if the lender waives their right to deficiency judgments, the sale can be held after six months.

Non-Judicial Foreclosure process:

If a power of sale clause exists in the Deed of Trust or Mortgage documents, the Non-Judicial foreclosure process can be followed. The power of sale authorizes the lender or their authorized representative (referred to as the Trustee) to conduct the foreclosure sale proceedings in case the borrower happens to default on their mortgage payments. The following guidelines can be followed for the Non-Judicial foreclosure process.

If the power of sale document contains the time, venue and other foreclosure sale terms, the same can be followed. Otherwise, the following process is followed.

A foreclosure sale notice should be recorded with the county before it is published in newspapers. This notice should contain the names of the lender, borrower, their correspondence addresses, phone numbers, location and other details of the property, foreclosure sale date, time, venue,foreclosure sale terms, etc.

This notice should be advertised in a newspaper published in the county for six consecutive weeks (at least once per week). It should also be sent to the borrower in the same way that a civil process notice is served. In case the borrower is missing, a copy of the notice should be pasted on a visible area in the property and it should also be served to the occupants (if any).

The foreclosure sale is held as per the terms announced in the notice and the property is auctioned off to the highest bidder, who gets a certificate of purchase, just after the foreclosure sale.

The foreclosure sale needs to be confirmed by a court order. So, if it has not been confirmed, the borrower has time for up to twelve months by which they can reclaim their property by paying up the entire amount.