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Deficiency Judgment

debt judgments property legislation

An assessment of personal liability against a mortgagor, a person who pledges title to property to secure a debt, for the unpaid balance of the mortgage debt when the proceeds of a foreclosure sale are insufficient to satisfy the debt.

Legislation enacted during the Depression still restricts the availability of deficiency judgments in several states. In some jurisdictions, deficiency judgments are proscribed in certain situations, while in other states, they are limited to the amount by which the debt exceeds the fair market value of the property. Waiver, the intentional relinquishment of a known right, of the benefits conferred by antideficiency legislation contravenes public policy and is ineffective.

A sample deficiency judgment.

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