Note: this post will seem long-winded and technical. I write to help people in foreclosure so they have a chance of keeping the house or getting financial compensation, and of not getting bilked by a crook in the process.
If you get tired of reading, stash the email for future reference. If you want to talk with me, Bob Hurt, call 727 669 5511. I charge no money.
I’m not an attorney and I don’t give legal advice, so consult a “qualified, competent” attorney in all questions of law. Consider everything in this message as academic information and non legal strategic guidance only, and not as advice for handling your legal situation.
I have to make the idiotic statement above so the attorneys I criticize won’t have valid complaints against me with the bar. YOU, their victims, should file complaints against THEM with the bar, AND SUE THEM for losing your winnable cases through negligence and incompetence.
But FIRST, you have to prove you had a winnable case. Do you have that proof?
Let’s get honest here. If you lend somebody money with a house mortgage as collateral, and they don’t pay, should you have to spend years and tens of thousands of dollars fighting to get your money back or to get the collateral sold to discharge the debt?
Honestly? NO. So, if you got a fair and honest loan, and you signed the note and mortgage, and you got the money and used it, you should either pay it back according to the terms on the note, or forfeit the house through foreclosure, or just give it back in a keys for cash or deed in lieu of foreclosure deal. Shouldn’t you? Honestly? We both know the answer to that.
But WHAT IF the lender, appraiser, mortgage broker, realtor, seller, title company officer, or servicer cheated or injured you in the process of arranging and servicing the loan? If you have proof of such injury and related damages, you have a valid reason to attack the lender or lender’s agents, as appropriate. And if you attack and win, you could end up with the house free and clear, or a financial offset from what you owe, or a loan balance reduction and refinance, or compensatory and punitive damages. I’m talking millions of dollars here, for you, possibly. IF you can prove the injuries.
I believe NOBODY should hire a traditional Foreclosure Defense Attorney to help in a foreclosure battle. I believe that because a foreclosure victim who breached a VALID note cannot win against a lender/holder. Virtually all such cases result in loss of the house. The courts MUST grant the foreclosure of a valid note the borrower breached. That means attorneys who fight those battles against foreclosures of valid mortgage (while bilking their clients) KNOW the client will lose the house in the end. That makes thse lawyers charlatans, ESPECIALLY if they didn’t prodigiously look for valid causes of action against the lender.
A law professional friend of mine spent 3 hours on the phone with me yesterday looking up foreclosure cases by Tampa Bay area attorneys Matthew Weidner (Matt Weidner), Thomas Ice (Tom Ice), and Mark Stopa, three notable foreclosure defense attorneys. WE DID NOT FIND ANY WINS AT ALL at the appellate level.
I do not imagine any of these attorneys battled foreclosure for their clients free. They and many others like them all FAILED to win any financial COMPENSATION or the house free and clear for their clients. At best, the court ordered temporary dismissals, and from what we could find, the foreclosure plaintiffs ended up winning the foreclosure, taking the house. A temporary dismissal DOES NOT CONSTITUTE A “WIN” !!!
Foreclosure “pretender defender” attorneys bilk clients $500 or more a month “to keep you in the house as long as possible.” They cookie-cut other lawyers’ pleadings and file those in court, doing little original work if any. They don’t examine the mortgages comprehensively, and even if they did, they wouldn’t know what to look for. They often don’t show up at hearings, especially summary judgment hearings. They end up making YOU lose YOUR house through THEIR negligence, even when, if they had done what you hired them for, they would have won some worthy concessions in 80% to 90% of their foreclosure defendant clients. Most are scammers, con artists, and crooks, and the bar and State attorney do nothing about them because YOU don’t complain loudly and often enough. And you don’t SUE them.
Many foreclosure victims have complained to me over the past 6 years that they paid the lawyers a fortune, they bought loan audits and securitization audits for outrageous sums from people like Paladin and Richard Kahn, and they got absolutely ZERO benefit from any of it. And most of them have become frantic, frenetic, nervous wrecks, and might even suffer from PTSD from their ordeals.
One victim told me she paid a couple thousand dollars to the bozos at the Right to Cancel group and spent a year learning their method and filing their useless, abusive paperwork in an “administrative process”, and even filed a commercial lien against someone in order to save her property from foreclosure. NONE OF IT DID ANY GOOD.
Another told me she gave a prominent Tampa Bay Area foreclosure pretender defender attorney her pile of documents, and the attorney did nothing with them, but in just 10 days a mortgage examiner found numerous causes of action against the lender and agents in those same documents.
NO GOOD CAN COME OF HIRING A FORECLOSURE PRETENDER DEFENDER lawyer to save you from foreclosure. Those lawyers might as well be total idiots for all the good they do. And they waste a lot of your precious money… for the privilege of losing your home.
I tell people who call me that they have to attack the mortgage, and if they cannot do it, to hire an attorney to do it for them, but NOT TO HIRE A FORECLOSURE DEFENSE LAWYER because they have HORRIBLE litigation RECORDS. They NEVER WIN money or houses for their foreclosure victim clients. They just bilk the clients to delay the inevitable loss of the house. I make it plain that the victim MUST get the mortgage examined by a professional to find the causes of action underlying the mortgage, and then get the lawyer to ATTACK THE Lender or plaintiff on that basis.
What causes of action? Well, the examination report (call me at 727 669 5511 for info on how to get one) details those causes of action, reasons to sue, and shows proof from the documents themselves. Any decent trial lawyer should be able to use the report and the causes of action to mount an effective lawsuit and win considerable concessions from the lender-gangsters. But foreclosure defenders have drunk so much of their own kool-aid that they want to charge clients thousands just to read the exam report, and then drag their feet with the lawsuit because apparently they don’t have a clue what to do or how to do it.
So, I write this to all the foreclosure victims. DON’T hire a foreclosure pretender defender lawyer to delay the inevitable. Before hiring any lawyer, demand to see the litigation record of winning compensation or houses free and clear for clients. If they cannot show you that, send ME an email with their contact info, and I’ll add them to my foreclosure pretender defender WALL OF SHAME as a warning to others about the uselessness of their service. Also, ask them how many of their foreclosure victim clients they have had and how many ended up losing the house. If they hem and haw, RUN from them as fast as you can.
Okay, to simplify, here’s your MORTGAGE ATTACK plan of action:
- First get your mortgage comprehensively examined by a competent professional (call me for info)
- Then inform the servicer of the causes of action through a notice of grievance
- Then inform the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau if the servicer does not correct the grievances within 30 days.
- Then hire a PERSONAL INJURY or TORT lawyer, someone used to negotiating settlements, someone willing, able, and available to do the necessary work and to sue, HARD CORE.
- If you cannot find a lawyer, then file the lawsuit (complaint, counter complaint, and cross complaint as necessary) yourself, stating your CAUSES OF ACTION and asking for damages, equitable relief, and a jury trial. See some of the references below.
If you can, find a lawyer with a record of beating banks and insurance companies. It’s a dirty job digging for a decent lawyer because the lawyer good old boys network intentionally occludes information about litigation records, the bar gives you no help at all, and the state courts make it nearly impossible to search cases by lawyer or law firm name. But you can do an appellate court search. For example, search http://2dca.org, Florida’s second district court of appeals in Lakeland, FL. Look for attorney Thomas Ice, and see how many appeals he has lost, for example. You might find a pile of them.
Also, if you paid a foreclosure pretender defender money to save your house and the lawyer did not even bother looking at the mortgage documents to find causes of action, that lawyer might have committed legal malpractice against you. See the cause of action below. If you hired the lawyer, and he neglected a reasonable duty that caused you to lose your house, which you would otherwise not have lost, then you have a cause of action against that attorney for legal malpractice. At the very least, DEMAND your money back. And once you have dumped the worthless bastard, DON’T EVER GO BACK TO HIM FOR ANY OTHER LEGAL SERVICES because clearly, YOU CANNOT TRUST HIM. Or HER.
By the way, I’m not an attorney and I don’t give legal advice, so consult a “qualified, competent” attorney in all questions of law. Consider everything in this message as academic information and non legal strategic guidance only, and not as advice for handling your legal situation.
I have compiled a bunch of information below to help you with litigation, should you decide to do it yourself. In my signature, I suggest investing in the Jurisdictionary product, a civil litigation training course on DVD with sample documents. That will give yo a litigation orientation, but in my opinion, you will need more, including the references below, because the course does not focus on mortgage attack.
If you consider the below information too scant or disorganized, I ask your forgiveness and forbearance. After all. I’m not a lawyer. Please write to me or call me if you need help, especially if you or a friend/family member needs a mortgage examination. And please write if you find other MUST-HAVE links for attacking mortgages, or if you know any lawyers competent to do it.
Bob Hurt (full contact info below)
727 669 5511
MEMORIZE this definition of a Cause of Action (reason to sue):
“A legal duty breach that caused injury and damage, to the authenticated evidence of which at least one competent fact witness subject to cross-examination will testify under oath.”
Buy the book at Amazon for 99 bucks Florida Causes of Action
See this site on Causes of action
Consider this book, Florida Elements of an Action
Trawick’s Florida Practice and Procedure would be nice for those who can afford it
One attorney summarized some of the major causes of action and their elements as follows:
· Defendant owed a duty to plaintiff to protect the plaintiff from a particular injury or damage;
· Defendant breached this duty;
· Defendant’s breach was the proximate cause of injury or damage to plaintiff; and
· Plaintiff suffered damages caused by the breach.
· Standard pleading affirmative defenses (Florida Rules of Civil Procedure 1.110(d);
· Statute of Limitations (four years);
· Statute of Repose (products liability);
· Contributory Negligence;
· Intervening, Superseding Cause;
· Assumption of Risk & Product Misuse (diminish recovery through comparative negligence);
· Good Samaritan Defense;
· Open and Obvious Doctrine (Premises Liability: Comparative Negligence);
· Alcohol or Drug Defense (Florida Statute §768.36);
· Economic Loss Rule
BREACH OF CONTRACT
· Plaintiff and defendant entered into a valid contract;
· Defendant breached the contract;
· Plaintiff suffered damages caused by Defendant’s breach.
· Standard pleading affirmative defenses (Florida Rules of Civil Procedure 1.110(d);
· Commercial Frustration;
· Statute of Frauds;
· Implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing;
· Impossibility of performance;
· Plaintiff discharges a duty owed to another party as a result of some vicarious, constructive;
· Derivative or technical liability;
· Defendant should have discharged the duty satisfied by the Plaintiff;
· Plaintiff is without fault; and
· Plaintiff suffered damages that should be paid by the Defendant.
· Standard defenses and under Florida Rules of Civil Procedure;
· Statute of Limitations (four years);
· Party seeking indemnification must be without any fault.
· The Defendant attorney was employed by Plaintiff;
· The Defendant neglected a reasonable duty owed to Plaintiff;
· The Defendant’s negligence was the proximate cause of Plaintiff’s damage, which is the amount Plaintiff would have recovered but for the Defendant’s negligence; and
· Plaintiff suffered damage.
· Pleading affirmative defenses and other standard defenses;
· Statute of Limitations (two years);
· Client’s abandonment of the pursuit of the underlying action;
· Collateral Estoppel (criminal);
· Lack of Privity.