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Man will receive surplus on sheriff’s sale credit bid

January 30, 2014

The Indiana Court of Appeals awarded a Grant County man nearly $375 after finding a surplus was owed to him when his property sold at a sheriff’s sale for more than what was calculated by the trial court based on an agreed judgment between the man and the bank.

JPMorgan Chase Bank filed a complaint to foreclose on Joel Stoffel’s property. In 2012, the two filed an agreed judgment entry and decree of foreclosure, outlining how much a personal judgment against Stoffel would be. The agreement came to a total of $139,907.82 plus any additional costs related to the sheriff’s sale.

Chase assigned the agreed judgment to the Federal National Mortgage Association, which submitted the winning bid at the sheriff’s sale of $152,121.72, through a credit bid. A credit bid is made by the judgment creditor in which no money is exchanged. Shortly thereafter, Fannie Mae filed its satisfaction and release of judgment with the trial court.

Stoffel filed a complaint seeking payment of an alleged surplus balance based on the difference between the credit bid and the $139,907.28 face amount of the agreed judgment. The trial court denied his motion and, based on its math, ruled there was no surplus.

In Joel Stoffel v. JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A. and Federal National Mortgage Association, 27A02-1303-MF-299, the Court of Appeals reversed in part, finding there to be a $374.58 surplus after calculating the principal, post-judgment interest, real estate taxes and sheriff’s sale expenses. It came to this amount by excluding some evidence the trial court had admitted that was inadmissible. The court ordered a judgment in favor of Stoffel for this amount.

The COA affirmed the trial court’s rejection of Stoffel’s argument that Fannie Mae’s satisfaction of judgment prohibited it from introducing evidence to show the correct amount of the agreed judgment. The agreed judgment left certain costs to be determined, and Fannie Mae’s satisfaction of judgment did not preclude the presentation of admissible evidence to demonstrate those costs and rebut Stoffel’s allegation that a surplus existed.
 

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