This is a brief overview of the foreclosure process in Wisconsin.
In Wisconsin, the foreclosure process begins with the filing of a lawsuit by the lender against the borrower. The lawsuit will be served upon the homeowner. Once the lawsuit is served upon the homeowner, the homeowner will have the 20 days set forth in the Summons to respond to the foreclosure lawsuit. If the homeowner does not respond to the lawsuit within the 20 days, then a default judgment will be granted to the lender.
Once the default judgment is entered, the lender has to wait the redemption period before the lender can have the property sold at Sheriff’s Sale. If the homeowner is living in the home, this redemption period is six months to one year depending upon the lender’s Complaint. After the six months or one year has expired from the date of the default judgment, the lender can conduct the Sheriff’s Sale which is conducted by the local sheriff of the county where the property is located.
At the Sheriff’s Sale, anyone is free to bid on the property. The lender will normally bid their mortgage as their bid. If no one outbids the lender’s mortgage amount, then the lender will be the highest bidder at the Sheriff’s Sale. Then, the lender must file a motion with the court to confirm the Sheriff’s Sale. The court will then schedule a Confirmation of Sheriff’s Sale hearing. At this hearing, the court will either approve or not approve the Sheriff’s Sale. If approved, then the lender receives a Sheriff’s Deed to the property.
The homeowner still owns the house up until the Confirmation of the Sheriff’s Sale. Once the Sheriff’s Sale has been confirmed and the Sheriff’s Deed given to the lender, then the homeowner will have to vacate the residence.