Summary of Rhode Island's Foreclosure Laws

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If you are facing foreclosure in Rhode Island, it’s important to understand some of the basics, including:

  • the most common type of foreclosure procedure (judicial v. nonjudicial) used in Rhode Island
  • how much time you have to respond
  • your rights and protections in the process, and
  • what happens afterwards (for example, whether you’ll be liable for a deficiency judgment).

Below we have outlined some of the most important features of Rhode Island foreclosure law. Keep in mind that this is just a summary; we’ve included statute citations so you can get more details from the laws themselves. And be sure to check out Nolo’s extensive Foreclosure section, where you can find information about all aspects of foreclosure, definitions of foreclosure terms (like redemption and reinstatement), and options to avoid foreclosure.

Topic

State Rule

Most common type of foreclosure process

Nonjudicial under power of sale in deed of trust

Time to respond

Foreclosing party must serve homeowner with a preforeclosure counseling notice at least 45 days before foreclosure is initiated. Notice of sale must be mailed by certified mail to homeowner at least 30 days before sale and published for three consecutive weeks before sale; first publication must be at least 21 days before the date of sale; the third publication must be at least seven days (including the date of publication) before the date of sale and no more than 14 days (excluding the date of publication) before the date of sale. Foreclosing party must serve notice of sale on homeowner by mail at least 30 days before first publication.

Reinstatement of loan before sale

Not available

Redemption after sale

Available up to three years after sale. Former owner must file lawsuit to redeem.

Special protections for foreclosures involving high-cost mortgages

Homeowner can ask court to stop (enjoin) the foreclosure if loan is high-cost or predatory lending practices were used. Rhode Island Home Loan Protection Act,
R.I. Gen. Laws §§ 35-25.2-1 to 35-25.2-11

Special state protections for service members

R.I. Gen. Laws § 30-7-10

Deficiency judgments

Allowed if foreclosing party files separate lawsuit after sale.

Cash exempted in bankruptcy

About $12,725 for one person, $25,450 for a married couple under federal bankruptcy exemptions. Up to $5,000 ($10,000 if married filing jointly) under state bankruptcy exemptions.

Notice to leave after house is sold

Former owner has 20 days to respond to a complaint seeking eviction. After that new owner may go to court for a summary eviction procedure that takes two weeks to a  month.

Foreclosure statutes

R.I. Gen. Laws §§ 34-27-1 to 34-27-5

by: , J.D.

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