Most lenders are using something close to the HAFA guidelines for short sales laid out in April of 2010 with some adjustment in 2011. It is easy to google and find lots of information. One of the original intents was to have sale price preapproved to make the process simpler. In my opinion this goal is falling far short. There are also provisions to incentify lenders who have 2nd mortgages to release their lein by giving them some money in cases that they would likely get nothing in a foreclosure. In the past, if the short sale did not get them some money, they would not release the lein and any attempt to sell the property would be futile. There is also a provision to give owners $3,000 towards moving expenses as an incentive to cooperate and avoid foreclosure. Keep in mind this is only an guideline. I have seen both higher and lower amounts. In one of the short sales I did, the lender's short sale offered a $1,000 incentive but only if the owner was current. It is rare in a short sale this is the case. I had another were the owner did not make a payment for months but was still offered an incentive. If your lender offered to return the escrow to you, this could be considered an incentive. If you never got it in writing, you are likely out of luck, especially if you signed anything saying you had to be current.