Louisiana foreclosures are typically completed through what’s called an “executory proceeding,” which is a process that allows a lender to seize and sell a home without having to go through the normal steps required in a typical judicial foreclosure. With an executory proceeding, the home is seized and sold rather quickly. If you want to learn more about this type of Louisiana foreclosure, what type of notice you’ll get before the foreclosure sale, whether the foreclosing party can get a deficiency judgment after the foreclosure, and more, keep reading.
Below you’ll find a rundown of some of the important parts of Louisiana foreclosure law along with citations to the statutes so you can read the law yourself.
The citations to Louisiana’s foreclosure statutes are:
You can find a link to the Louisiana Code of Civil Procedure and the Louisiana Revised Statutes on the Louisiana legislature’s website at www.legis.la.gov/legis/LawSearch.aspx. If you need help finding the statutes, see Finding Your State’s Foreclosure Laws.
The main parts of Louisiana’s foreclosure laws are summarized below. You can find more detailed articles on various aspects of Louisiana foreclosure law in Nolo’s Louisiana Foreclosure Law Center.
In Louisiana, the most common foreclosure process is called an “executory proceeding.” This type of foreclosure is possible when, in the mortgage documents, the homeowner agrees to a judgment against him or her if he or she stops making mortgage payments (this is called a confession of judgment).
Upon a default, the foreclosing party files a foreclosure petition in court with the mortgage attached and the court orders the property seized and sold. The homeowner can fight the foreclosure only by appealing or bringing a lawsuit. La. Code Civ. Proc. Ann. arts. 2634, 2638.
Ordinary judicial foreclosures are also possible in Louisiana, but they are not common. La. Code Civ. Proc. Ann. art. 3722. Since the most common type of foreclosure process in the state is an executory proceeding, this article focuses on that process.
There are two notices in a Louisiana executory proceeding: a notice of seizure and a notice of sale.
Notice of seizure. Immediately after the court issues a writ of seizure and sale, the sheriff may seize the property. The sheriff must serve the borrower a written notice of seizure by personal service or domiciliary service. La. Code Civ. Proc. Ann. art. 2721. (Domiciliary service is when the server leaves the documents at your home with a person of suitable age and discretion who resides in the home.)
The notice of seizure must include information about the homeowner's options for avoiding foreclosure, including the availability of free housing counseling, as well as the time, date, and place of the sheriff's sale. The initial sheriff’s sale date cannot be scheduled any earlier than 60 days from the date the court signed the order allowing the foreclosure. La. Rev. Stat. § 13:3852, La. Code Civ. Proc. Ann. art. 2293(B)(1).
Notice of sale. At least three days, not including holidays, after the sheriff serves the notice of seizure upon the borrower, the sheriff must publish a notice of sale at least twice. La. Code Civ. Proc. Ann. art. 2331, 2722.
“Reinstating” is when you catch up on the missed loan payments (plus fees and costs) in order to stop a foreclosure. (Learn more about reinstatement to avoid foreclosure.)
Louisiana law does not give the borrower the right to reinstate the mortgage loan before the sale. However, the terms of the mortgage contract may permit reinstatement or the foreclosing party may agree to let the borrower cure the default and reinstate.
Some states allow the borrower to redeem (repurchase) the home within a certain period of time after the foreclosure. In Louisiana, the foreclosed homeowners do not get the right to redeem the home after the foreclosure. (For details see Nolo’s article If I lose my home to foreclosure in Louisiana, can I get it back?)
When the total mortgage debt exceeds the foreclosure sale price, the difference is called a “deficiency.” Some states allow the foreclosing party to seek a personal judgment (called a “deficiency judgment”) against the borrower for this amount, while other states prohibit deficiency judgments with what are called anti-deficiency laws.
There is no anti-deficiency law in Louisiana. The foreclosing party can get a deficiency judgment if the property was appraised before the sale. La. Code Civ. Proc. Ann. art. 2771, 2723.
To obtain a deficiency judgment, the foreclosing party must file a separate lawsuit for the deficiency after an executory proceeding or convert the executory proceeding into an ordinary proceeding. La. Code Civ. Proc. Ann. art. 2772. (For a summary of the deficiency law in Louisiana, see Louisiana Laws on Post-Foreclosure Deficiency.)
Once the sheriff’s deed is recorded after the sale, the purchaser can get a writ of possession from court. If the former homeowners do not leave, the sheriff will remove them and their belongings from the home.