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Showing posts from August, 2011

Tenants' rights after foreclosure

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In the recent case of Bank of New York v. Bailey, 460 Mass. 327, (SJC-10801, August 4, 2011) the court ruled that a tenant has the right to challenge the title of a owner who obtained their title to the property from a foreclosure.
While this is considered by some as a landmark ruling, it shouldn't be a surprise to lawyers who are familiar with landlord tenant law. In order to evict a tenant, the plaintiff must claim that they have a superior title to the tenant. In order to have a superior title, the plaintiff must have a valid ownership interest. In the Bailey case, the plaintiff claimed that a foreclosure deed, on its face, established their superior title and that the tenant couldn't contest this. If a deed by itself is sufficient to establish title, what stops a person from forging a deed and then trying to extort money from a tenant by starting an eviction case? I believe that it is unconstitutional to evict a person without allowing them the opportunity to challen…