I am one, am highly versed in this area of law, and don't "know intuitively" that your one-size fits all solution will enrich every homeowner. I also don't know intuitively that you can attack the validity of every mortgage, especially without litigating it (which you can't do since you aren't a lawyer). I also don't know intuitively that one can't successfully litigate a wrongful foreclosure case, if indeed it was wrongful under the law, and one knows how to litigate. I also don't know intuitively that "attacking the mortgage" is going to settle for lots of money.
Even I, a non-lawyer, know that if you don't intuitively know those things, you should, and therefore, no matter how highly versed you consider yourself, borrowers in trouble will make a mistake hiring you.
You should know those things intuitively because you have lived through the past 15 years of mortgage and securitization shenanigans, and government collusion with banking to encourage subprime, predatory lending, and because you studied torts and contracts in law school, and TILA, RESPA, HOEPA, ECOA, FDCPA, FCRA, and related state laws since then. If you have read the FCIC report
, you know where most of the responsibility for the financial collapse lies, albeit greedy home loan borrowers contributed to their problems by creating debt to make imprudent investments in real estate.
You well know, or should know, that appraisers have historically overvalued real estate to match the purchase price of real estate, mortgage brokers have falsified loan applications in order to obtain financing, and overpriced their services. You know that a client coming to you for help defending a foreclosure automatically imposes a responsibility on you to investigate the underlying loan for evidence of tortious conduct, contract and regulatory breaches, and legal errors. And if your negligence in failing to do that caused the client to lose his home to foreclosure, then you deserve for the client to sue you for legal malpractice if the investigation would have revealed causes of action justifying litigation against the injurious parties for damages. And you should know that the threat of such litigation, or just filing the claims, will motivate the injurious parties to settle with your client.
But just in case you did not know those things, you do now, so you have no excuse for claiming otherwise.
You could look at the West Virginia Brown v Quicken Loans
case as a poster child for bringing about well-deserved punishment of the crooked lender and appraiser, and financial compensation for the feckless borrower. Sure, most attorneys probably cannot afford to take such cases on contingency, but they can afford a mortgage examination to find the causes of action to use as the basis of negotiating a settlement.
If you don't believe me, let this FDIC report
guide you. The FDIC examined 259 loans and found that only 7 complied with guidelines, and 75% contained multiple errors.
Let's say a mortgage victim came to you for help defending against foreclosure of a loan justified by one of those appraisals. How would you ever know without examining the appraisal against USPAP guidlines
to determine whether it complied? Suppose the appraiser and loan underwriter valued the property at 30% more than its actual value (in Brown's case, the Quicken-hired appraiser nearly TRIPLE overvalued).
How would you discover that, and what would you do about it?
How would you explain your incompetence if you did not discover and act on it for your client?
I have seen a couple dozen mortgage examination reports. More than 2/3 revealed actionable appraisal fraud. Borrowers with such crookedness in their loans need competent attorneys to get them compensated for their injuries. THINK about it.
Attorney Matthew Weidner bragged publicly that he had saved THOUSANDS of homes. I dug into court records for the Florida 6th circuit where he practices and the 2nd appellate district. His name did not appear in any district records, so evidently he never won an appeal. He lost 20% of his cases outright, and he drug the rest of them out. Frankly I don't believe his claim. He is what I call a foreclosure pretender defender. He probably uses cookie cutter pleadings to protest against standing and conditions precedent, all things that the creditor can fix and bring back to trial for a win.
Why does he do only this even though he well knows the mortgage attack methodology is the ONLY One that reliably gives borrowers an opportunity to obtain financial compensation for their injuries?
I'll explain why. He cannot afford to litigate on behalf or broke borrowers pro bono, or even on contingency. He does not have the technical competence to examine a loan transaction for all of the evidence of causes of action. And his business model, probably derived from Neil Garfield whom I consider a charlatan who belongs disbarred and in jail for misleading the public and his clients, depends upon charging the client $300 to $1500 a month for as long as he can keep them in the house, and then dragging out the foreclosure for years, eventually leading them into the jaws of foreclosure where many of them (but not most and not all) belong.
I like Matt, enjoy his fetching personality and willingness to blog to the public. He seems like a charming, handsome man, and a fantastic husband and father. But how does he actually help ANY mortgage victim?
You see my blind spot here, don't you? You realize that I cannot see the SETTLEMENTS Matt obtained for his clients. The courts don't document those. The client signs a non-disclosure. But I could not find a single case that Matt actually won for a foreclosure victim client. Frankly, I'd like to see proof of his saving houses, but how can he save a house from foreclosure when he knows the borrower obtained a loan and breached the note by failing to pay timely?
Hey, fogbowsters, I'm just a student. Teach me about how you win for your foreclosure victim clients without ever examining the loan transaction for evidence of errors, breaches, and torts. But don't try to convince me that dragging out the foreclosure constitutes winning.