(a) Mortgage as security

This section applies only to an obligation on real or personal property owned by a servicemember that–

Terms Used In 50 USC 3953

  • Deed: The legal instrument used to transfer title in real property from one person to another.
  • Foreclosure: A legal process in which property that is collateral or security for a loan may be sold to help repay the loan when the loan is in default. Source: OCC
  • Mortgage: The written agreement pledging property to a creditor as collateral for a loan.
  • Obligation: An order placed, contract awarded, service received, or similar transaction during a given period that will require payments during the same or a future period.
  • Personal property: All property that is not real property.

(1) originated before the period of the servicemember’s military service and for which the servicemember is still obligated; and

(2) is secured by a mortgage, trust deed, or other security in the nature of a mortgage.

(b) Stay of proceedings and adjustment of obligation

In an action filed during, or within 90 days after, a servicemember’s period of military service to enforce an obligation described in subsection (a), the court may after a hearing and on its own motion and shall upon application by a servicemember when the servicemember’s ability to comply with the obligation is materially affected by military service–

(1) stay the proceedings for a period of time as justice and equity require, or

(2) adjust the obligation to preserve the interests of all parties.

(c) Sale or foreclosure

A sale, foreclosure, or seizure of property for a breach of an obligation described in subsection (a) shall not be valid if made during, or within 90 days after, the period of the servicemember’s military service except–

(1) upon a court order granted before such sale, foreclosure, or seizure with a return made and approved by the court; or

(2) if made pursuant to an agreement as provided in section 3918 of this title.

(d) Misdemeanor

A person who knowingly makes or causes to be made a sale, foreclosure, or seizure of property that is prohibited by subsection (c), or who knowingly attempts to do so, shall be fined as provided in title 18, or imprisoned for not more than one year, or both.