(a) This section shall apply only to obligations secured by mortgage, trust deed, or other security in the nature of a mortgage upon real or personal property owned by a service member at the commencement of the period of the military service and still so owned by the service member whose obligations originated prior to the person’s period of military service.
(b) In any proceeding commenced in any court during the period of military service to enforce that obligation as provided in subdivision (a) arising out of nonpayment of any sum due or out of any other breach of the terms of the mortgage, trust deed, or other security occurring prior to or during the period of the service the court may, after hearing and in its discretion on its own motion, and shall, on application to it by the service member or some person on the defendant’s behalf, unless in the opinion of the court the ability of the defendant to comply with the terms of the obligation is not materially affected by reason of the defendant’s military service, do either of the following:
(1) Stay the proceedings for any period as the court deems just.
(2) Make any other disposition of the case as may be equitable to conserve the interests of all parties.
(c) No sale, foreclosure, or seizure of property for nonpayment of any sum due under any obligation as provided in subdivision (a), or for any other breach of the terms thereof, whether under a power of sale, under a judgment entered upon warrant of attorney to confess judgment contained therein, or otherwise, shall be valid if made during the period of military service or within nine months thereafter, except pursuant to an agreement between the parties, unless upon an order previously granted by the court and a return thereto made and approved by the court.
(d) Any person violating this section shall be liable for actual damages, reasonable attorney’s fees, and costs incurred by the injured party.
(e) Any person who shall knowingly make or cause to be made any sale, foreclosure, or seizure of property, defined as invalid by subdivision (c), or attempts to do so, is guilty of a misdemeanor, and shall be punishable by imprisonment not to exceed one year or by a fine not to exceed one thousand dollars ($1,000), or both.
(Amended by Stats. 2012, Ch. 204, Sec. 1. (AB 2475) Effective January 1, 2013.)
Last modified: October 25, 2018