It doesn't happen often, but sometimes the government does give back the extra money that was taken from people. Superior Court is now supervising the return of 5 Million Dollars in excess forclosure sale proceeds which have accumulated over the last 5 years. And this was from people who could scarely afford it in the first place!
The project is called.... Rightful Owner. The Court has set up a site to help us track this process, and gather information. Go ahead and check for your name on the list, if you were involved in a mortgage forclosure.
I remember when I supervised a project in Family Court to track down missing restitution payees. It was great fun, and it was very appreciated by the folks who were due the funds. I suspect that the folks involved in this Superior Court process will feel the same. After they jump through the procedural hoops though.
For cases where there is more than $1,000 involved, the filing fee is $75 and a title search (about $100 cost) is among the prerequisites to filing a claim. There is no filing fee for the cases of less than $1000.