deficiency judgment

Definition from Nolo’s Plain-English Law Dictionary

A judgment for the amount a homeowner owes the lender after a house or other asset is foreclosed upon and sold by the creditor for less than the actual debt (mortgage or car loan, for example) that is secured by the asset. In most states, the lender can file a separate lawsuit to recover a deficiency owed by the borrower. Some states restrict deficiency judgments after a home foreclosure.

Definition provided by Nolo’s Plain-English Law Dictionary.