North Dakota Amends its Abandoned Property and Foreclosure Provisions

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On March 21, 2019, North Dakota Governor Doug Burgum signed into law a bill, Senate Bill 2205 (SB 2205), which amends the abandoned property and foreclosure provisions in North Dakota.  The changes made by SB 2205 go into effect on August 1, 2019.

Some of the key provisions of SB 2205 include the following:

  • Provides that in a sheriff’s certificate of sale, if the property is subject to redemption, it must contain a statement to that effect and provide the applicable redemption period;
  • Excludes abandoned property from the North Dakota provision that provides that a party in a foreclosure action or the successor of a party may redeem from the foreclosure sale within 60 days after the sale;
  • States that if at the time of the commencement of a foreclosure action and at any time before the sheriff’s sale the mortgagee, or after the sheriff’s sale the holder of the sheriff’s certificate of sale, reasonably believes that the property is abandoned, the mortgagee or holder of the sheriff’s certificate may allege abandonment in the complaint or petition the court to determine abandonment;
  • Allows a court to eliminate the redemption period in a foreclosure judgment if the court determines that the real property is abandoned;
  • Clarifies that a court may consider remedies to prevent waste in a foreclosure action or upon a petition for abandonment;
  • States that actual service of notice before a foreclosure is not required if the property is abandoned or if service by mail has been attempted three times and the attempted service is returned as refused or unclaimed; and
  • Specifies the requirements for when an affidavit can be used as prima facie evidence of abandonment of property, including what information must be provided in such affidavit.

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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