Glossary of Real Estate Terms (Oregon) – J

Joint Liability – Liability by two or more persons for the same debt or claim.

Joint and Several Liability – A claimant or creditor may proceed legally against all persons or entities (joint liability) for a debt or claim, or against only certain ones of the group, for the entire indebtedness (that is, they may be “severed“ from the larger group to be held accountable for the full liability).

Joint Tenancy – A joint tenancy under Common Law was a form of co-ownership in which, upon death, one’s ownership interest in real property automatically transferred to the remaining survivor(s) (known as “the right of survivorship”). The last remaining joint tenant would own 100% of the property. Joint tenancy laws have been altered by state statutes, and in Oregon, ownership by joint tenancy has been technically abolished except as to personal representatives. This is not to say that the equivalent of a joint tenancy cannot be created in Oregon – it can. (See, ORS 93.180 and 93.190)

Joint Venture – The combination of two or more persons or entities for a specific business purpose. Upon completion of that purpose, the joint venture is at an end. Joint ventures are different than partnerships primarily because the partnership may exist for an indeterminate duration until voluntarily or involuntarily dissolved.

Judgment – In Oregon, a legal document, that if properly recorded in the public records, becomes a lien (that is, a charge) against all non-exempt property that the judgment debtor owns in the county of recording. A judgment may be recorded in one or more Oregon counties. Under most circumstances, the property encumbered by the judgment lien can be foreclosed, thus forcing a sale of the property to satisfy the debt due. In Oregon, absent some other agreement of the parties, such as a specified contract rate, judgments normally bear interest at the annual rate of 9.00%, are valid for ten years, and can be renewed if timely done.

Judicial Foreclosure – The process whereby a lender uses the court system to foreclose out a borrower’s interest in the secured property. This entails the filing of a complaint for foreclosure in court and the defendant filing an answer. In Oregon the vast majority of real property loans are secured by trust deeds, and therefore, most foreclosures occur non-judicially by “advertisement and sale.”

Jumbo Loan – A loan that exceeds Fannie Mae’s and Freddie Mac’s applicable loan limits. Also known as a “non-conforming” loan. Rates on jumbos are typically higher than rates on conforming loans..

Junior Mortgage – A mortgage (or trust deed) that is recorded later in time than an earlier recorded mortgage or trust deed on the same property. In Oregon, subject only to limited exceptions (such as certain construction liens), the time of recording determines the order of priority when multiple claims are made upon the same property. The significance of being “junior” means that in the event of foreclosure by a superior mortgage or lien holder, the holder of the junior interest could have their lien rights extinguished. In other words, they would have no further claim against the property to satisfy the indebtedness. This does not mean that the debt is eliminated by loss of the lien rights, but following foreclosure by the superior lien holder, the junior’s claim is no longer secured by the property.