Will Judicial Foreclosures Become the Norm in New Hampshire?

If HB 270 is passed in New Hampshire, all future foreclosures will go through the court system.

By , Attorney

Depending on state law, a foreclosure in any given state will be either judicial (through the courts) or nonjudicial (without court supervision). Some states require foreclosures to go through the court system. In other states, the lender may instead choose to take a series of out-of-court steps set out in the state statutes in order to foreclose. Nonjudicial foreclosures are typically much faster and less expensive than judicial foreclosures.

Currently, foreclosures in New Hampshire are usually nonjudicial. But that could soon change if HB 270 is passed into law.

How New Hampshire Foreclosures Currently Work

In New Hampshire, the nonjudicial foreclosure process is simple and straightforward. A lender has to take only two steps to complete one: First, the lender has to personally serve or mail the borrower a notice about an impending foreclosure sale—called a "notice of sale"—at least 45 days before the sale. And two, the lender must publish the notice in a newspaper for three weeks before the sale.

How HB 270 Would Change Foreclosures in New Hampshire

If passed, HB 270 would require all New Hampshire foreclosures to go through the state courts. The lender would have to initiate the process by filing a civil action in superior court.

The bill would also modify New Hampshire's redemption period law. Currently, New Hampshire law doesn't provide the borrower with the right to redeem after a foreclosure. If passed, the new law would give the borrower a 90-day right of redemption following a court's order of foreclosure.

How to Keep Tabs on HB 270

Currently, the bill has been referred to the finance committee for review. You can track the progress of HB 270 on the LegiScan website.

Effective date: February 14, 2019