In the past few months, we’ve discovered that taking a “proactive” approach in cases not yet in foreclosure can benefit our clients enormously. By “proactive”, I mean engaging the bank or its counsel in a discussion meant to lead to a loan work-out, thereby avoiding the necessity of court involvement altogether. However, because loan securitization makes it profitable to foreclose, the “discussion” with the other side is actually more of an exposition of the bank’s illegal treatment of the homeowner meant to disincentivize it in its drive to foreclose. In Dave’s case, the proactive approach worked out extremely well.
Dave came into our office in September of this year, facing imminent foreclosure. His bank had hired a law firm which was threatening to file the action unless he paid a sum of money far beyond his reach. Upon our initial review, it certainly appeared that Dave’s rights were being violated by his bank in that he was falsely being told he did not qualify for mortgage relief, and in that the amount his bank claimed he owed was incorrect.. Using the “proactive” approach, we decided to aggressively point out these violations to the bank’s counsel. By doing so, we hoped to convince the bank’s lawyers to go back to their client, convince it to take a step back before rushing headlong into foreclosure, and work with our client in helping him save his home.
Our efforts paid off for Dave, in a big, big way. The bank never did get around to filing foreclosure. Instead, it cooperated fully in considering all Dave’s financial information, and in the end, offered him one of the most astonishing loan modifications we’ve seen. Most impressively, it reduced the amount it claimed Dave owed from $112,000 to $26,000. With that, his monthly payments of principal and interest fell like a rock, from $692 to $189. And maybe most fulfilling for us personally, the proposal came within three short months, right before Christmas. Yes, Dave, there is a Santa Claus.
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Next week: Court holds bank’s feet to the fire.
Copyright 2012 Daniel L. McGookey