Yes, according to at least one Arizona judge. The time a lender has to foreclose, or its statute of limitations, is the same as the timeframe to sue for payment on the loan. See A.R.S. § 33-816. This is typically 6 years. See A.R.S. § 12-548. However, a little known case held that each payment is a separate default entitled to its own statute of limitations. See Navy Fed. C.U. v. Jones, 187 Ariz. 493 (App. 1996). In other words, if a borrower hasn’t made payment on a loan for 10 years, only 4 years of payments are barred by the statute of limitation (those payments 6 years old or older). Under this argument, the mortgage lender can still sue (or foreclose) on the principal amount and the most previous 6 years of payments due. The Navy Fed case did not involve a foreclosure and seemed to contradict decades of previous foreclosure cases. But at least one judge believes it is good law and allowed a lender to foreclose after 9 years of non-payment.
*This article has been prepared for general information purposes only and is not legal advice. Legal advice is dependent upon the specific circumstances of each situation and varies from state to state. If you have specific questions about this issue or another real estate matter, please contact the Law Office of Aaron Green, PC.