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Beware the Predatory Pro Se Borrower!

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Somehow, “predatory pro se borrower” reminds me of “The Attack of the Killer Tomatoes.” Pro se defendants are generally lost souls in the court system. They typically get up, flail around before a frustrated judge, and lose (cinematic examples to the contrary, like “Find Me Guilty,” notwithstanding). So the idea that they could rise to the level of being threatening enough to be “predatory” seems like more than a bit of an oxymoron.

But this document depicts these usually hapless defendants as a danger (hat tip April Charney):

LockeLordBissell on Dealing With ProSe Defendants

As we learn, the big reason that these clueless defendants have come to annoy plaintiff firms like LockeLordBissell is that

Pro se cases are expensive to defend because the plaintiff’s lack of familiarity with the legal process often creates more work for the defendant

I’m a little surprised at that; perhaps enough judges have patience in dealing with pro se clients that the time spent in court is protracted. But irrespective of the cause, the outcome is that these pro se clients mess up foreclosure mill economics by behaving in non-standard and time-consuming ways; hence they need to be dealt with.

There are some revealing, as well as amusing threads in this presentation. The authors make strong declarations about the motives of borrowers that range from incomplete to biased. For instance, it notes a meaningful uptick in the number of pro se defendants. It blames this development on “negative press….emboldening borrowers to pursue legal action”. It bizarrely makes them sound like the instigators when they are responding to legal action taken against them. And it further contends that many are unwilling to hire attorneys, when the more obvious explanation is they can’t afford counsel and there aren’t enough Legal Aid lawyers to go around.

The presentation also makes a “good defendant/bad defendant” parse, or in this case, “frustrated borrower” versus “predatory borrower”. The only borrowers depicted as having legitimate complaints fall into a short list: those who want a loan modification versus those who are (presumably” trying to get a free house. While there are always scamsters, the idea that there are a significant number of people going to court pro se who are trying to pull a fast one (as opposed to desperate as well as deluded as to their viability with a deep modification) is inconsistent with reports from local courtrooms and foreclosure defense lawyers (including their comments on clients they turn down; they report they see more cases with meritorious defenses than they can handle, and not surprisingly also report that some borrowers simply can’t face the fact that they are too far gone to be salvaged).

Other interesting observations: the document fails to acknowledge servicer-driven foreclosures, which is a non-topic as far as the mortgage industrial complex is concerned. And anyone who resorts to “show me the note” or standing-based arguments is presumed to be a predatory borrower. Did these guys miss first year law, in which all good lawyers learn standing is a threshold issue? If you are vulnerable to a standing challenge (and there would be no reason to list it if there wasn’t a large and growing pile of decisions all over the US that have found this to be a legitimate beef in quite a few cases), exactly who is predatory?

I’d be curious to get informed reader comments on the legal, as opposed to ill-founded moralistic, ideas in this presentation.

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62 comments

  1. bob

    This is straight PR/advertising.

    Telling the client (bank or servicer) what they want to hear, and getting them ready for bigger bills (billable hours) in the mean time.

    Having the name Lord in there is perfect. How dare these serfs try to challenge us.

  2. blackstone

    As you point out, if they can get the adjective “predatory” to stick to “pro se borrower”, there will be even more disfavor heaped upon pro se litigants than there already is. In decisions you will read that pro se litigants are given some leeway about things that lawyers know and minor mistakes about deadlines etc., however in practice there is a strong bias against their cases, a special clerk to handle their “ridiculous” pleadings, and a willingness to dismiss their cases speedily.

    I think that with respect to the banks, the “show me the note” defense is not well-regarded since the borrowers don’t own the house, and at least one of the banks does. The point of the whole exercise beginning in 2001-2002 was for the banks acting in concert to screw the borrowers. Some judges though insist on legalities just to maintain a certain amount of social order from not displacing people from their homes, even though eventually, they know some bank will produce the note and the proceedings would continue, perhaps with a change of plaintiff.

    I am just an observer by the way.

    1. Rex

      “I am just an observer by the way.”

      That seems like kind of an odd statement. From what perspective are you observing? Sounds like you are expressing knowledge that might come from inside the legal system.

    2. Yves Smith Post author

      He could be a non-litigator attorney or even a litigator but not in any way related to real estate.

  3. Eugene Villarreal

    All of you excperts are all missing the point. This is about LAW and Due Process. Without one or both, we are just a banana republic that is being controlled by a dictator or some money hungry group.
    The short list between Modifications and Free House does not take into account that there’as a long list that falls in between these two. What about the individuals that didn’t want a Modification or a Free House but must now defend their rights to DUE PROCESS to the hilt ?

  4. Michaels

    As a non-RE commercial litigator and former judicial clerk (Fed. Dist. Ct. judge, many moons ago), I’d echo the “observer.” Typically, pro se plaintiffs are, at best, condescended to, and, at worst, dismissed (in both the legal and everyday senses) out of hand. Keep in mind that Locke Lord is no foreclosure mill — it’s a big, fancy defense firm whose lawyers are likely to have almost equal disdain for front line foreclosure mill lawyers and foreclosure defendants (their class solidarity is firmly with the banks and servicers as institutions, though). When Locke Lord types hear “pro se,” they likely think of plaintiffs who’ve sued their big clients or who they encountered as judicial clerks, typically in employment discrimination or consumer fraud cases. Pro se foreclosure defendants, esp. ordinary, (ex-) middle class people with legitimate beefs about servicer misconduct, simply won’t compute.

    1. sglasheen

      From what I’ve seen in my admittedly short career, in the upstate NY state-level trial and intermediate appellate courts, judges generally willing to be flexible enough to allow pro se litigants have their say. In fact, another associate at my firm was recently involved defending a protracted and borderline frivolous suit involving a pro se plaintiff for breach of contract. However, at the end of the day pro se litigants tend to lose, so perhaps its just a more polite form of patronization. Perhaps its because state court judges have to be elected and don’t want to get a reputation for being an *-hole?

  5. profoundlogic

    May I suggest a new title for the presentation…

    “Dealing With Assholes Who Interfere With the Highly Profitable Business Model of Lender Servicer Abuse and Fraud”

  6. Sophia

    It is maddening to deal with pro se litigants. And according to assorted rules, there are limits to taking advantage of their ignorance. But in my experience those limits are frequently ignored. I don’t do real estate, but I have been chastened by an employer for failing to file a motion for summary judgment on a plaintiff who had, to me, an obvious factual defense to judgment that would probably elude him. Taking advantage on one’s opponent’s inability to make a plausible legal argument is one thing, but making a factual representation to the court in a MSJ that I know to be contestable on the record even if the opponent probably won’t figure out how to contest it strikes me as unethical.

    What was most striking to me about that slide show is the reinforcement of just how awful federal courts are. It’s shameful how they disregard state law. Many of them seem to lack even a residual awareness that state Supreme Courts are the final arbiters of state law. If there isn’t a case on point with the exact same named litigants they’ll act as if it’s an open question. And they are extraordinarily pro business. Defense of commerce is their primary directive in civil cases. And loopholes don’t exist for the little guy.

    As an example, the creation of FINRA. The finer details are not public. And during the transition, many arbitration agreements made with NASD were enforced by FINRA despite the absence of language in the agreement extending the arbitration clause to successor organizations AND a lack of proof that FINRA was legally a successor org. I would hope that if put to that proof FINRA had its shit together well enough to meet it, but as far as I could tell, no federal court expected them to do so. It was just… oh, we all know it’s the same thing, quit your bitching. (N.D. Tex)

    It’s the same deal with pro se borrowers. Oh, we all know you borrowed the money, shut up. I didn’t think I could be more cynical about “the rule of law” in this country but this mortgage business is amazing to me. Clean title is the innocent man that must be preserved even if it means 19 guilty men get away.

    1. OregonChris

      The Federal Courts are being good to us in Oregon, this article has been posted here before but here it is again;

      http://www.oregonlive.com/business/index.ssf/2011/03/rulings_put_brakes_on_hundreds.html

      Oregon Revised Statute 86.735 prohibits a non-judicial foreclosure before there is a complete record of assignments in the county recorder’s office. This isn’t a “show me the note” defense, it is a matter of following state law.

      The pro se issue, in my opinion, is largely the legal profession’s fault, but also a lack of public support for Legal Aid. People assume that legal aid is some gratuitous and unnecessary benefit for the poor because it isn’t housing or food. In fact, Legal Aid does make sure people are housed and fed every time they secure someone’s SSD benefits or Sec.8 housing, stops an unlawful eviction, and many other worthwhile causes.

      Legal aid needs more support, and individual attorneys need to do everything they can to defend the poor either through pro bono or sliding scale representation, or volunteering for Legal Aid. We will not have even a semblance of a fair or equitable society if legal representation is only a luxury for the rich.

      1. Sophia

        OregonChris, I don’t know how it works in Oregon, but in my state Legal Aid is fully funded by lawyers not tax receipts, so I’m going to take exception to the suggestion that the lack of adequate representation is the fault of lawyers. And as a liberal I can’t really go along with the idea that the best answer to a systematic problem is “more volunteers!” Yes, Legal Aid needs to be better funded. And yes, attorney commitment to pro bono work is important. I’d suggest that the former is a healthier solution.

        1. OregonChris

          I’m not sure why you are arguing with me, I just think we should fund Legal Aid better so it can provide more services, and I think lawyers should provide more pro bono service to the poor whether through their own practices or by volunteering at Legal Aid offices. I never offered a “best answer to a systemic problem”, I just think the two points I offered would be steps in the right direction.

          Also, I would be interested to know how Legal Aid is funded in your state. If you mean that it is funded by Interest on Lawyer’s Trust Accounts (as it partially is in Oregon) then it is really the clients who are funding Legal Aid, and lawyers would be remiss to take all the credit.

        2. Bill Kay

          Both Yves and Sophia would greatly benefit from reading:

          Foreclosures: A Crisis in Representation by Brennan Law Center.

          http://www.brennancenter.org/content/resource/foreclosures/

          This is single MOST IMPORTANT untold story of this Crisis.

          There are just a bit over a million lawyers in US. Where is the Million Lawyer March? There is probably less than 200(if that) lawyers working to uphold the law on behalf of our people. This is the true crisis in representation.

          The “Crisis in Representation” was published in October 2009 and this issue has been greatly amplified since, due to astronomical rise in defaults tied to negative equity.

          On a personal level I am very fortunate as I have ALL 4 of the Nevada’s Great Lawyers working on my case in some capacity. A real Dream Team!

          But… there are a millions of families in desperate need across our great country and unless more attorneys join our quest for resolution there will be many more darker years ahead.

          I sincerely hope that you and any other person that truly cares will help me to publicize this issue.

          History will judge every-one’s actions, it always does.

          I welcome all comments at: providencegroup@ymail.com

          Relentlessly battling Banksters in Nevada,

          Bill Kay

      2. Jason Rines

        The top 5% can afford justice, the rest cannot. Many shakedowns of Small Business occurs these days. After two incompetent attorneys where i handed them discovery on a silver platter, I prefer being Pro Se. I have handled three family cases and two civil cases. Two of the judges warned me at pre-trial Pro Se litigants lose.

        As a business owner I can either spend $250 an hour or do it myself. 80 hours of time each case. 400 hrs
        times $250 per hour. $100k of lost income one way or the other in attempted shake downs in nine years. on a coupw of those cases, it would have been a tad cheaper to settle. But i felt the need to waste the time of the litigants to the nth, pretend I know nothing, stretch case out years. I have hedge for years in this sick society so ultimatey the $100k loss gets split between myself and the predators. Until the revenue streams of predation are non profitable as they should be, the courts will stay clogged. If rule of law isnt restored soon, such predators get silent justice like in Russia. At that point, different rules of income generation and quality of life apply.

  7. Middle Seaman

    Haven’t read the insert, but I wonder what is the total numbers of such pro se borrowers? Is it a significant number?

  8. WBILL

    As a pro se litigant, not only did the judge find the plaintiff in contempt of court, through my carefully prepared pleadings, motions and hearings; the plaintiff willingly dismissed the case against me w/o prejudice.

    I could not get my servicer to listen to me; so I fought back. Soon they filed bogus affidavits, assignments and filings which was easy to defeat. Now the DOJ, AG, Federal Rerserve and the Bar has these documents and has informed me they are pursuing the case against both the law firm and the servicer.

    I won round one; but this was only accomplished through careful research, a partial understanding of the law and its processes, without emotion, and total respect for the court and the plaintiffs attorney did I make this happen. (Knowledge of case law and rules of civil procedure)

    Prior to this case, I did not have any (repeat any) law education or background; however, I did attend/audit many county court foreclosure cases prior to understand the process and motions made. (A lot of time)

    I know some think I maybe a deadbeat but I wanted a modification and they wanted a foreclosure.

    I practiced, stayed calm, was professional, spoke clearly and direct about case law and stayed within my rights of due process and followed the rules of civil procedure. I believe in doing this work (I mean work) earned me some the senior judge’s repect (he called me counselor a couple of times)and my repect of the judicial process.

    The Plaintiff/servicer can and will file the case again and I will be ready to negotiate if there is a mutual agreement to a modification. However, I will and must be prepared if they continue to use questionable documents against me in court; I will not stand idly by and watch the bank and their attorneys abuse me, the law and courts system. My shame and fear is no more.

    Oh, the most important point I would like to make to anyone willing to take this challenging and stressful endeavour (2yrs into it), please ask for discover (compel if they don’t) and most of all retain a court report at every hearing. Having a court reporter keeps everyone (judge and plaintiff) on notice; furthermore, you will have a record for the appellate court if needed.

    PS You can only win a case if you know the law and the law is on your side. That is how the judge will rule and he/she can only do so if you point out the plaintiff’s errors to the law and do it in a clear, precise and professional manner.

    1. Michael Alex Wasylik

      WBILL, you are a rare bird among pro se.

      “But irrespective of the cause, the outcome is that these pro se clients mess up foreclosure mill economics by behaving in non-standard and time-consuming ways; hence they need to be dealt with.”

      As a foreclosure defense lawyer, one of the most frustrating things I deal with is the prospective client who comes me me after making a hash of their case—and a few days beyond the deadline to make any kind of meaningful impact for them. Their dockets are frequently littered with ill-advised motions and papers whose purpose they may or may not understand, and whose underpinnings they are unprepared to argue. There are exceptions, like David Verizzo (not a client) but I can count successful pro se defendants on one hand, while the roadkill numbers in the thousands. I frequently tell people that they should no more try to defend their foreclosures with papers found on the internet than they should try to take out thier own appendix with a scalpel they find in dumpster.

      “And it further contends that many are unwilling to hire attorneys, when the more obvious explanation is they can’t afford counsel and there aren’t enough Legal Aid lawyers to go around.”

      This is frequently true, although more people can afford lawyers than think they can afford lawyers. And the internet-inspired do-it-yourself culture leads many people to belive they can save a bunch of money doing it themselves, but for most the pro se option is far more difficult and ultimately costly than they ever imagined.

      “And anyone who resorts to ‘show me the note’ or standing-based arguments is presumed to be a predatory borrower.”

      Well, then slap that label on me too. I argue standing because standing wins. It beats summary judgements, gets me voluntary dismissals, and gives me LOTS of interesting things to talk about at depositions.

    1. Bill Kay

      WBill,

      Would you please contact me at: providencegroup@ymail.com

      I have a possibly good idea that I would like to share with you.

      While I sincerely believe that my case is in great hands,
      I equally deeply understand that no-one (including my attorneys) knows my case as well as I do.

      It is up to each foreclosure challenger to organize their case, so that it will be properly presented to the attorney(s).

  9. Tom Crowl

    What is saddest for me is that there’s no interest in anything other than adversarial resolutions.

    I am fighting alone to do what I can to save what I’ve worked so hard far. And it began even well before this crisis.

    Problems with this house go back to purchase but bottom line is it has structural issues which will make it difficult to sell in any case and especially in a glutted market. These structural problems were actively concealed by the former owners and agents when I purchased in ’91 and resulted in lawsuit and a settlement which after fees and legal expenses left insufficient money to fix house issues (except drainage)…

    Skipping to 2004, approaching retirement, realizing house would be hard to sell, figured best plan was to build granny-unit, rent out house and I would have place to live and mortgage covered since livability is good despite defects.

    I admittedly had (and still have) insufficient income to cover the full mortgage on this house by myself. BUT IT’S EASY WITH RENTERS AND GRANNY-UNIT TOGETHER.

    Tenants defaulted in Fall of ’08… I gave them 3 months forbearance and then they moved. Altogether a difficult but reasonably amicable situation since they realized I needed rent to cover mortgage.

    Bottom line of this background is that with a bit of forbearance I could have gotten new good tenants in to cover mortgage and Wachovia/Wells would have never noticed a blip.

    There’s a lot more to this… but at this point I simply wish to stay in this under 500 square foot rental unit at fair market and participate in finding a future owner who will allow me to remain in the unit I built with my own damn hands.

    I actually had willing investors, aware of the structural problems but interested since it makes a good rental and structural issues (they hoped) would prompt a better deal from Wachovia.

    From the start I’ve been ready to be reasonable. Not asking for a free house or even a mod. Don’t know about anybody else but I’m also tired of being considered a deadbeat. Frankly ‘financial services’ in all their different manifestation have been nothing but thieves in my life.

    P.S. Also a special mention for the thieves at B of A. There’s a story behind this but I had an untouched HELOC for $65,000 which was cancelled in Aug of ’08 just as I was about to launch. That was supposed to help and act as a cushion. While I understand B of A had a right to do it, they were the one’s who had suggested the loan for my startup several months before when I was looking for some resources to support that launch… and ultimately only the loan officer, the appraiser they hired and their ‘books’ ultimately derived any benefit from it.

    Clearly I’m a deadbeat crackpot.

    P.S. Never took any trips, fancy cars or the rest of the crap they talk about. I live like a hermit in one room over the garage and sold my old Honda Accord several months ago.

    All so Wells (or Freddie, Fannie or whoever) can have an empty, damaged house instead of a house full of people generating income.

    GOOD THINKING Mr. Stumpf, Timmy and the rest of the gang!

    P.S. Why don’t they let some of the ‘deadbeats’ rent back the houses at least until new owners are found? Where’s the creativity to match this national disaster CREATED BY THE FINANCIAL SERVICES SECTOR!

    Clearly I’m a worthless deadbeat with nothing to offer. Homelessness is obviously what I deserve.

    And yes, I’m becoming angrier day-by-day. I’d like to thing I’ve tried to be a good citizen and am disappointed that this “establishment” now sees me and people like me otherwise.

    So let me be clear… they are no longer MY ‘establishment’… they are an enemy to be defeated.

    Sorry I’m not an expert in law… but we all instinctively perhaps have some sense of what justice is.

    But that has largely become irrelevant to the legal profession.

  10. Transor Z

    Wow is that presentation bullshit. The proliferation of pro se litigants across areas of litigation is all about affordability and access and, to a lesser extent, negative perceptions of the legal profession. Most courts have pro se clerks and courts tend to bend over backwards to help pro se litigants. You see pro se in family law all the time.

    You can’t paint pro se litigants with a broad brush; it’s completely moronic to do so. How they are treated by judges and clerks is often a function of how respectful and serious a given individual is toward the court and the process.

    Yves, I’ve really appreciated the class theme in a few of your posts lately. For attorneys who are put off or greatly annoyed by dealing with ignorant/manipulative/slow pro se litigants, maybe real-world in-the-trenches isn’t for you. Or stick with complex business litigation, IP or estate planning where you’re insulated from hoi polloi. Because pro se has been growing for about 20 years now and it ain’t goin’ away.

  11. MinnItMan

    A more-or-less literate person with better-than-avergage persuasive ability with plenty of time on his/her hands, who is respectful of the court can be a match for an over-worked top tier grad at a white shoe firm.

    This upsets the bar greatly. It doesn’t happen very often, but when it does, the effect is out-sized.

    “Justice” is extraordinarily expensive and mysteriously, the quantity of lawyering tends to match the ability to pay.

    The real problem, IMO, is that the the overwhelming majority of potential clients and cases are very difficult for the system to deal with in a cost-effective manner, and it is not obvious how to change that. Therefore, pro se appearance can be the only available way of avoiding default, or in fighting back.

  12. James M

    The growing number of pro se littigants is directly related to the number of actions filed against individuals.

    Most actions at law are against companies, or when against individuals their insurance company steps in to defend because automotive or home owners insurance kick in.

    This is not so with foreclosure. By suing individual property owners, who are in foreclosure becuase they are short of funds, and who therefore can’t afford legal counsel, the Plaintiffs are selecting to bring actions that will be either undefended(around 92%) or pro se defended (about 5%).

    What America needs is to educate the 92% of defendants who fail to contest foreclosure about how to defend them and how to be pro se.

    We vote without a corporation representing us, we marry without a corporation representing us, the system should be that we can go to court and get a fair hearing without a PA corporation representing us.

    What the world needs is a simplified and explained court system where people can go in as individuals without the fear of being abused by the court or counsel for the opposing party.

    Unfortunately the court system, driven and controlled by lawyers, is so corrupt and perverted that it is almost impossible for anybody but the most careful, wary, and hard working pro se to get a fair hearing.

    Even for the most wary and learned pro se, getting a fair shake is uncommon. Abuse of pro se litigants, both by the court and opposing counsel is not just common but seems condoned. Like turning a blind eye to bullying and rape.

    The attitude in the legal profession to pro se litigants is a bit like the attitude in the 1800′s to black people: Ain’t they quaint and stupid, now let the anointed make the decisions.

    1. Bill Kay

      Amen,

      Now, how about WBill, Tom Crowl and anyone else interested…. Lets set up a real worthwhile well organized Pro Se website!

      Believe it or not, there really isn’t one now.

      Lets pool all of our resources and try to help millions of people.

      I may be reached at: providencegroup@ymail.com

  13. Sophia

    James, I agree with you that the increase in pro se litigants is because of pro se defendants rather than pro se plaintiffs. But the pro se litigant reputation was earned by plaintiffs who were pro se usually because no lawyer would take their case on contingency. AKA their case sucked. And in my experience, judges do give them extra leeway on most things short of judgment.

    I couldn’t work at a foreclosure mill, and I’m not sure how someone does, but the people working there are far from the anointed. It’s an ugly job. All collections work is ugly.

  14. Matt

    Of course pro se litigants are “predatory”; they’re challenging the Divine Right of Banks! ;)

  15. Brewer

    Listen to this and decide for yourself who’s trying to get to be a PREDATOR. 1. I the pro-se litigant has the original note indorsed in blank” wet ink” 2. produced by the alledged successor trustee was a lost note affidavit which was only an idemifaction agreemnt, no conveyance and was unsigned.An Allonge in comic form imaged undated and unsigned direct from the seller into the securities to the trust skipping the depositor. 3. an assignment filed 16 days after the lis and complaint from MERS acting on behalf of a DEFUNCT company that has been dead for 6 years. 4.I have a letter from MERS dated in 2002 the alledged loan was removed from MERS and the MIN# deactivated, and 5. I sworn affidavit from the alledged servicer that the loan was never assigned to anyone. How bout that?

  16. Christine Springer

    The reason there are so many pro se defendants is because there were no lawyers who were taking these cases.

    By the way, I work with lawyers who considered taking these cases on contingency and there is a way to do it so that it makes sense, but we didn’t find many borrowers who were interested in having us represent them on a contingency basis.

    Most lawyers these days are getting dragged into foreclosure defense litigation because their clients are impacted. Foreclosure is an issue for even wealthy individuals. The perception is that all borrowers are broke, but this is not necessarily true.

    So a borrower tries to mod on their own (because that’s what they’ve been told by our government and the banks) and finally the bank tells them they don’t qualify for a mod and they are going into foreclosure. So the borrower calls their trusted family lawyer/friend/acquaintance to ask for help. Their lawyer might be a real estate lawyer with 20 years of experience. However, if you ask them how to litigate on these issues, or stop a trustee’s sale in a non-judicial foreclosure state, many of them have no idea.

    I can’t tell you how many people asked me for help as a paralegal/auditor because they couldn’t find a lawyer who would even listen to them. These litigants were so desperate for a lawyer to listen to them that they were doing all the work for the lawyer before the initial consultation so they could be taken seriously! Many lawyers told me I was wasting my time because “these foreclosure defense cases are losers.”

    The good news is that once the robo-signing news broke last September, more lawyers got involved and more will continue to begin practicing in this area. Foreclosure defense as a practice area is going to expand for the next five years at least.

    The problem as I see it now is that lawyers have difficulty figuring out how to get paid fairly on these cases, and depending on what area they were practicing before, there is a period of time where they have to spend a lot of time getting competent.

    Now that there are more lawyers available to help borrowers, I hope we see fewer pro se litigants. Not because they are “predatory” but because many of them file lawsuits based on anger and just wind up losing because their facts stunk, or they didn’t position the case properly, or for a related reason. There are a lot of pro se litigants who are creating bad case law, which just helps the banks keep winning.

    The foreclosure discussion is still so fluid. If you’re going to fight in court, it makes sense to position your case in the best way possible. There are a lot of non-lawyers who have a lot to contribute and there are a lot of lawyers who want to make a difference too, that aren’t just about making a lot of money. I would encourage everyone to focus on doing what works in litigation by researching the case law and work with an attorney who can help you.

    1. ScottS

      Christine,

      I don’t know how damaging the “bad precedent” is, but unless it’s really shooting the cause in the foot, I think we need to fight EVERY foreclosure.

      The problem is that it’s profitable to foreclose. If we make it unprofitable to foreclose by contesting every single foreclosure, then that’s more than half the battle. Even if there’s no hope of winning, wasting the servicers’ time (and therefore money) is a victory.

      I’m not one to rally around lost causes, but as the slide show above demonstrates, even (especially?) inept fights against lenders are effective at costing lenders money.

      1. Christine Springer

        Scott, the problem is that the case law being created in many of the cases does derail the entire case. Think about it — if a lawyer had argued some of these issues, in theory the outcome might have been different if say, the attorney arguing on behalf of the borrower had a relationship with the judge, or had done a better job of overcoming the “deadbeat” comments made by the bank or perceived by the judge. I’m with you but the case has to be positioned in a the way that gets the best outcome and many pro se litigants don’t have the experience to do that on their own.

        1. ScottS

          I take your point, and sure, I’d love to see a 100% solution — where competent lawyers defend wronged homeowners and win, digging up dirt, setting precedent, turning the tide, making headlines, putting bad guys in jail.

          But is that realistic?

          A well-represented foreclosure defense is such a lost cause because the foreclosee has no money to pay for a defense. Perhaps if you establish a legal fund and cherry-pick some good cases and go balls-out just to set the precedent, I’ll gladly chip in.

          But short of that, I say pro se attrition is a guaranteed 99% solution — that it has the effect of stopping fraudclosure despite lacking the satisfaction of the 100% solution.

  17. So Cal 7

    Hold on here. This is just more crass non-sense from a supposedly respected firm who don’t care to note American history. The attorney’s mandate and monopoly on the Bar and legal system didn’t even come about until about 85 years ago. Prior to that, it was common for non-attorneys to assert claims and represent themselves – in America. In fact was more the case than not. It was the ABA that pushed and got “unauthorized” practice of law statutes passed in the states in the ‘20s and ‘30s.

    Unfortunately the Legal-Financial complex, with apparent and complicit approval of our poor excuse of a government, which has risen to its odius apex presently – but I think may see its nadir in the not too distant future – still lies in the gutter and looks down its nose at ordinary citizens. This attitude and stance can only engender MORE actions by individuals.

    I like a lot what WBILL has to say above. Yes, you do have to do a lot of work and research and get a real feel and technical knowledge of procedure as well as legal concepts. They are not easy and quite frankly, I don’t at all begrudge attorney’s rates (in most cases). If you gain a good understanding of how the courts function and what they require and present your claims and motions well and also keep a demeanor and bearing the court (and Defense) recognize as being informed, yes, you have every right to a favorable outcome as Pro Se litigant.

    As to why there are more Pro Se cases? (1) I think as said here folks just can’t afford the cost and to Sophia’s point, most attorneys will not take these Property/Contract cases on a contingency. (2) To follow on the latter part of the previous, I also believe that most able and talented attorneys feel the risk of being stigmatized by their peers and the courts…they aren’t “playing ball” with the system and in line with the attitude espoused by this firm. Again, I do think that tide is turning.

    When we see one major firm take the side of homeowners (if we ever do), then it will genuinely be a change for the better, because there are real and valid claims.

    Pro Se is difficult and hard, but what in life that is worthwhile is not?

  18. So Cal 7

    I also think I’m in love with Christine. Great post. There are ways for the attorney to get paid depending on the outcome of course, but that is a bit of a sticky area, though not insurmountable.

  19. F. Beard

    Yep. Blame the victims! The financial wreck is the fault of dummies, not the fault of the government enforced counterfeiting cartel known as the banking system.

    The irony is that the current self-righteous defenders of the crooked system were once hippies who railed at it. Either they never really understood it or being smarter than moi they did understand it and CHOSE to sell out to it.

    I R a baby-boomer and so far I’m ashamed of my generation. Yet, I still have hope for them.

    Repent, my fellow baby-boomers! You were right; it IS the system. Let’s fix it, eh?

  20. ScottS

    See if Lord Locke & Douche is getting money from MERS or the ASF.

    Common claims:
    • Show-me-the-note defense to foreclosure
    • Rescission of note
    • Conspiracy
    • Fraud
    • Lack of standing
    • Other Internet-based machinations focused on voiding the note and deed of trust while maintaining possession of the property

    Yeah, “Internet-based machinations” like asking if the forecloser has standing, or the “owner” of the note actually owns the note. Those devious predatory borrowers! Always tricking banks into giving them free houses.

    1. F. Beard

      No one is trying to get a free house.

      Why not? Banks don’t lend money; they create it (credit) as they lend it.

      Question? There is no free lunch so where did the purchasing power for those “loans” come from? It came from all money holders including and especially the poor. There is NO legitimate debt to the banks or even to the investors who bought the mortgages.

      That is why a universal bailout of the population is just; to return their stolen purchasing power. Inflation risk? No, not if the banks are put out of the counterfeiting business via reserve or capital requirements at the same time as the bailout.

  21. Mav

    Can any of the legal people tell me why there isn’t a class action being launched against fee pyramiding and other servicer abuses?

    Once the foreclosure process kicks in, its up to the individual borrower and they have to go it alone with “Show me the note” defences. Or can borrowers still pool together and launch a class action?

    1. Christine Springer

      The problem with class action lawsuits is that 1) someone has to put up the money to get them started, 2) they take years to get relief, which doesn’t help the borrower stop the foreclosure in the short term, and 3) the lawyers make the most money from them. I think you’ll see a lot of them in the future but they aren’t going to help borrowers stop a foreclosure in the short term.

  22. lizinsarasota

    Hey, all you jerkoffs. I’ve been pro se against WAMU/JP Morgan Chase since 2006.
    I might be pro se, and I might not have known what “standing” was or how to articulate it, but I sure as hell couldn’t see a clear paper trail between my original lender and WAMU. There was no point-to-point-to-point relationship, and I couldn’t understand how WAMU inserted itself into the conversation, with WAMU’s various titles, some handwritten right onto the legal paperwork, and I said so to the court.
    I might be pro se, but I sure as hell could tell that Shapiro & Fishman had done sloppy research, slandering my title by adding some lady down the street’s second mortgage to the issue, making her second mortgage holder part of the listing of defendants, making it look as though I was more in debt than I was, and they never bothered to correct their mistake, even though I made it part of the court record.
    I might be pro se, but I know it was wrong when, 2 days before the sale, WAMU notified me by phone that there was a sale date scheduled, after I’d been told and had received paperwork that I was in forbearance, and I prepared an EMERGENCY MOTION, filed and hand delivered to the judge, and the judge, AFTER HOURS, called Shapiro & Fishman and, in a series of seven emails, conversed back & forth and decided my sale should go ahead anyway. I might be pro se but I know judicial misconduct when I see it.
    I might be pro se but I’ve beat back six sale dates, despite judges acting like jackasses.
    I might be pro se but there’s no FRAUD in the paperwork I’ve submitted.
    I might be pro se, but I put together a nice little lawsuit against Chase last August, after Chase just flat out lied to me and said they were canceling the sale date “even as we speak.”
    I might be pro se but I’ve got the Shapiro & Fishman attorney by the balls over the robosigned affidavits in my case and I intend to squeeze. And I’m not stopping with the Shapiro & Fishman attorney either, ’cause the little gal from Gray Robinson took over the case and she hasn’t notified the court that there is a fraudulent, robosigned affidavit in my case – it’s pre and POST judgment notification, honey, that is your affirmative duty.
    I might be pro se, but I’ve organized a legal research group in the 12th Judicial Circuit and we’re going to meet every Friday and research WAMU cases starting back as far as 2006, and we’re going to ferret out the fraud in those cases and we’re going to contact the homeowners wrongfully foreclosed on and we’re going to start a ruckus. If a ruckus isn’t enough, why, then I’ll start a riot.
    Listen, the only difference between attorneys and the rest of us is that they were the kids down there at the professor’s lectern, arguing mightily over a fraction of a percentage on a quiz. That and most of them had parents willing to sit still for three more years of education and the wherewithal to pay for it.
    I might be pro se, but I can sleep at night because my conscience is clear.
    I am pro se and I know right from wrong, and anyone who looks down your nose at me can go to hell.

    1. F. Beard

      I for one apology. I meant no offense when I said “dummies”. I meant it ironically as in how the lawyers and judges might think of the victims of this mess who try to defend themselves.

      Best wishes for you and your fight with the system.

      1. lizinsarasota

        My dear, I wasn’t mad at you.
        It’s just that “ethics” comprise half of the Florida Bar exam, and we’ve got lawyers and judges who are looking stupid and sleepy-eyed when confronted with what everyone knows: that the same group of attorneys were filing fraudulent docs by the boatload and have been since the early 2000s.
        We’ve all read the back issues of “The Summit,” we’ve all read about lawyers getting kickbacks per billable files, we all know that certain firms will employing Lender Processing Services and reading articles about robosigned docs being generated by the tens of thousands every month.
        You recognize any of these firms? Do you know anyone at these firms, these firms who used Lender Processing Services so enthusiastically? These are the lawyers who ought to be losing sleep. These are the firms who have fraud in their filings, sitting like ticking time bombs in their cases.
        AK
        Alaska Trustee, LLC
        AK,HI,ID,MT,OR,WA,TX Malcolm Cisneros
        AK,HI,ID,MT,OR,WA,TX Trustee Corps.
        Regional Trustee Services

        AL
        SIROTE & PERMUTT, P.C.
        AL, MS Dumas and McPhail, L.L.C.
        Shapiro & Pickett, LLP
        AL Scott J. Humphrey
        Albertelli Law

        AR
        Mickel Law Firm, PA * major award Oct’ 07
        Robert S. Coleman, Jr., P.A.
        Wilson & Associates, PLLC (article Oct. ’07)
        Dyke, Henry, Goldsholl
        Baxter and Schwartz PC

        AZ
        Malcolm & Cisneros
        Tiffany & Bosco
        Statewide Foreclosure Services
        Folks & O’Connor, PLLC
        AZ/NV/OR/UT/WA Law Offices of Les Zieve

        CA
        Old Republic Default Management Services
        Solomon Grindle Silverman & Spinella
        Malcolm & Cisneros
        Curtis Law Group
        Housekey
        Quality Loan Service Corp
        OPTION ONE (I think CA, see 12/07)
        Fremont Investment and Loan Management
        Aztec Foreclosure Corp
        Old Republic Default Management Services

        CO
        Aronowitz & Ford, LLP
        Robert J. Hopp & Associates, LLC
        Edwards & Taylor, LLC
        Frascona, Joiner, Goodman and Greenstein
        Janeway Law Firm, PC
        Moss Codilis
        Castle, Meinhold & Stawiarski
        Hellerstine & Shore

        CT
        Reiner, Reiner & Bendett (photos 12/07)
        HUNT LIEBERT (now … Jacobson) * photos Oct. ‘06
        CT/DC/MD/VA McCabe, Weisberg and Conway
        Law Office of Martha Croog

        DC
        Rosenberg & Associates, LLC
        MD/DC/VA Bierman, Geesing & Ward, LLC
        CT/DC/ McCabe, Weisberg and Conway
        MD/VA
        DC/VA Curran & O’Sullivan, PC

        DE
        Draper & Goldberg
        Whittington & Aulgur
        Young Conaway Stargatt & Taylor

        FL
        HOLLAND & KNIGHT
        Jonathan Kilne, PA
        FL/PA Joseph H Ganguzza & Associates
        David J. Stern, PA
        Marshall C. Watson
        Gary I. Gassel, PA
        Law Offices of Daniel C. Consuegra
        Ben Ezra Law Firm
        Phillips, Flynn, Dareneau
        Shapiro & Fishman
        Smith, Hiatt & Diaz
        Albertelli & Halsema (related to Albertelli Law in AL?)
        Enrico Gonzales
        Popkin & Rosaler

        GA:
        Ellis, Painter, Ratterree & Adams
        McCalla, Raymer, Padrick, Cobb, Nichols & Clark
        Shapiro & Swertfeger (photos Oct. ’06)
        McCurdy & Candler, L.L.C.
        Stites & Harbison
        Richard B. Maner
        Stephen J. Knezo
        Albertelli & Halsema, PL
        Flanagan & Ireland
        Moore & Associates
        Shuping, Morse & Ross
        MORRIS, SCHNEIDER, PRIOR, JOHNSON & FREEDMAN, LLC (wrote article 12/07)

        HI
        AK,HI,ID,MT,OR,WA,TX Malcolm Cisneros
        AK,HI,ID,MT,OR,WA,TX Trustee Corps.
        Pite, Duncan & Melmet

        IA
        Belin, Harris, Lamson & McCormic
        Dunakey & Klatt
        Petosa, Petosa & Boecker

        ID
        AK,HI,ID,MT,OR,WA,TX Malcolm Cisneros
        AK,HI,ID,MT,OR,WA,TX Trustee Corps.
        McCarthy & Holthus
        Regional Trustee Services
        Alliance Default Services

        IL
        Kluever and Platt
        Dutton & Dutton
        Jaros, Tittle & O’Toole
        IL/MI/OH/PA Weltman, Weinberg and Reis
        Codilis & Associates * major award ‘07
        Wirbicki Law Group
        Heavner, Scott, Beyers & Mihlar
        Fisher & Shapiro
        Freedman, Anselmo, Lindberg & Rappe
        “I received yesterday the letter and check regarding the Bankruptcy Incentive Award.
        I am very proud of the work that my staff has done to get to this point. We are
        striving to be in the top 10 nationwide. I fully understand that you do not need to
        give out the incentive awards. I am very appreciated of this and in my way have
        tried to use your incentive to create an incentive for my staff. We are going to use
        the check to create a “lunch” fund to buy bagels, pizza and other foods.”
        - Steven C. Lindberg, FREEDMAN, ANSELMO, LINDBERG & RAPPE October ‘06

        IN
        Bleecker Brodey and Andrews
        KY/IN/OH Reisenfeld & Associates
        Nelson & Frankenberger
        Feiwell & Hannoy
        Foutty & Foutty
        Doyle and Friedmeyer

        KS
        Kozeny & McCubbin
        Martin, Leigh, Laws & Fritzlen
        Shapiro & Mock
        Shapiro & Reid
        South & Associates
        Gallas & Schultz

        KY
        KY/IN Reisenfeld & Associates
        Manley Deas Kochalski, LLC
        Reynolds & Thompson, LLP
        Nielson & Sherry
        Lerner, Sampson & Rothfuss
        Clunk, Paisley and Assoc., PSC
        Mapother & Mapother

        LA
        The Boles Law Firm
        Foreclosure Law Firm, LLC
        Shapiro & Mentz
        Dean Morris

        MA
        Korde & Associates
        Ablitt & Charlton
        DOONAN, GRAVES & LONGORIA
        MA/NH/RI Orlans Moran PLLC

        MD
        The Fisher Law Group, PLLC
        CT/DC/MD/VA McCabe, Weisberg and Conway
        MD/DC/VA Bierman, Geesing & Ward, LLC
        Friedman & MacFadyen, PA
        Cohn, Goldberg & Deutsch
        Shapiro & Burson
        Rosenberg and Associates

        ME
        Shapiro & Morley, LLP

        MI
        Potestivo & Associates
        Trott & Trott (also listed as MN)
        IL/MI/OH/PA Weltman, Weinberg and Reis
        Orlans Associates
        Fabrizio & Brook
        Peter, Schneiderman & Associates

        MN
        TROTT AND TROTT, P.C.
        Usset & Weingarden, PLLP
        Shapiro, Nordmeyer & Zielke, LLP. (wrote article December ’07)
        Elizabeth Mason, PC
        Murnane Brandt

        MO
        Codilis, Stawiarski & Moody
        Martin, Leigh, Laws & Fritzlen
        Kozeny & McCubbin
        Millsap & Singer
        Sandberg, Phoenix and Von Gontart
        South & Associates

        MS
        Adams & Edens PA
        Shapiro & Massey
        Dyke, Henry, Goldsholl
        AL, MS Dumas and McPhail, L.L.C.
        Morris and Associates (a/k/a Morris Law Firm)
        Morris, Schneider & Prior, LLC

        MT
        AK,HI,ID,MT,OR,WA,TX Malcolm Cisneros
        AK,HI,ID,MT,OR,WA,TX Trustee Corps.
        Just Law Office
        Mackoff, Kellogg, Kirby & Klos

        NC
        Shapiro & Ingle
        Morris, Schneider & Prior, LLC
        Brock & Scott
        Nodell, Glass & Haskell
        Roberson, Haworth & Reese
        Erwin, Simpson & Stroud

        NE
        Kozeny & McCubbin
        Eric H. Linquist

        NH
        Harmon Law Offices, PC
        Korde & Associates
        Barron & Stadfeld, PC
        Shechtman Halperin Savage, LLP
        MA/NH/RI Orlans Moran PLLC
        NH/VT Law Offices of Jonathan F. Weidman

        NJ
        Fein, Such, Kahn & Shepard
        Zucker, Goldberg & Ackerman
        Koury, Tighe, Lapres, Bisulca & Sommers
        PLUESE, BECKER & SALTZMAN
        McCabe Weisberg
        NJ/PA Stern & Eisenberg, LLP
        Parker McCay

        NM
        Little & Dranttel

        NV
        Malcolm & Cisneros
        Aztec Foreclosure Corp
        McCarthy & Holthus
        National Default Servicing Corp.
        AZ/NV/OR/UT/WA Law Offices of Les Zieve

        NY
        Jonathan D. Pincus
        Shapiro & DiCaro
        McCabe Weisberg
        Rosicki, Rosicki & Associates
        Ziccardi & Rella PC
        Edward A/ Wiener, Esq.
        Eschen, Frenkel & Weisman
        Cohn & Roth
        Steven J. Baum (in big trouble)
        Berkman Henoch Peterson & Peddy, PC

        OH
        IL/MI/OH/PA Weltman, Weinberg and Reis
        Shapiro & Felty
        (Cuyahoga County) Manley Deas & Kochalski
        KY/IN/OH Reisenfeld & Associates
        LERNER, SAMPSON & ROTHFUSS
        LAURITO & LAURITO
        Luper, Neidenthal and Logan
        Law Offices of John D. Clunk Co., LPA
        Keith D. Wiener & Assoc.
        Reimer, Lorber & Arnovitz Co.
        Carlisle McNellie Law Firm
        Gerner & Kearns Co., LPA

        OK
        BAER, TIMBERLAKE, COULSON & CATES (photos Oct. ’06)
        Lamun, Mock, Cunnyngham & Davis
        Shapiro & Cejda
        Kivell, Rayment and Francis

        OR
        Shapiro & Sutherland, LLC * got major award in Dec. ‘07
        OR/WA Bishop White & Marshal
        AK,HI,ID,MT,OR,WA,TX Malcolm Cisneros
        AK,HI,ID,MT,OR,WA,TX Trustee Corps.
        Robinson Tait
        Routh Crabtree Olsen
        AZ/NV/OR/UT/WA Law Offices of Les Zieve

        PA
        Shapiro & Kreisman
        FL/PA Joseph H Ganguzza & Associates
        Goldbeck McCafferty & McKeever
        McCabe Weisberg (McCabe, Weisberg, Conway)
        Shaffer & Scerni
        Udren Law Offices
        Zucker, Goldberg, Ackerman
        Martha Von Rosenstiel
        IL/MI/OH/PA Weltman, Weinberg and Reis
        NJ/PA Stern & Eisenberg, LLP
        Law Offices of Barbara A. Fein

        RI
        Nicholas Barrett & Assoc.
        MA/NH/RI Orlans Moran PLLC

        SC
        Finkel Law Firm, LLC
        Roger, Townsend, and Thomas (is it “Rogers”?)
        Weston Adams Law Firm
        McDonald McKenzie
        SC, TN Brock & Scott, PLLC
        Fleming and Whitt, P.A. (formerly Pearce W. Fleming Law)
        Riley Pope & Laney
        Bolen Law Firm

        SD
        Mackoff, Kellogg, Kirby & Klos

        TN
        Shapiro & Kirsch* wrote article Oct. ’06, photos Oct. ‘06
        Apperson, Crump, Duzane & Maxwell PLC
        SC, TN Brock & Scott, PLLC
        Richard B. Maner, PC
        Rodgers, Hill and Kolarich (Price, Rodgers, Hill & Kolarich)
        McCurdy & Candler
        Wilson & Associates

        TX
        Winstead Sechrest & Minick P.C.
        Hughes Watters Askanase (article 12/07)
        AK,HI,ID,MT,OR,WA,TX Trustee Corps.
        Robertson & Anschutz, P.C.
        Barrett Burke Wilson Castle Daffin & Frappier
        Baxter & Schwartz
        Brice, Vander Linden & Wernick
        Brown & Shapiro
        Codilis & Stawiarski
        Mann & Stevens * wrote article October ‘06
        Kelly Harvey
        AK,HI,ID,MT,OR,WA,TX Malcolm Cisneros

        UT
        SCALLEY READING BATES HANSEN & RASMUSSEN, P.C. (article 12/07)
        CMS Legal Services
        David B. Boyce
        Scalley, Reading, Bates, Hansen & Rasmussen
        AZ/NV/OR/UT/WA Law Offices of Les Zieve

        VA
        Shapiro & Burson
        Friedman and MacFadyen
        Sykes, Bourdon, Ahern & Levy
        Samuel I. White P.C.
        Specialized, Inc. of Virginia
        Rosenberg & Associates, LLC
        Glasser and Glasser, P.L.C.
        MD/DC/VA Bierman, Geesing & Ward, LLC
        CT/DC/ MD/VA McCabe, Weisberg and Conway
        DC/VA Curran & O’Sullivan, PC

        VT
        Lobe & Fortin
        NH/VT Law Offices of Jonathan F. Weidman
        Jeffery Kosterich & Associates, PC

        WA
        Robinson Tait
        AK,HI,ID,MT,OR,WA,TX Malcolm Cisneros
        AK,HI,ID,MT,OR,WA,TX Trustee Corps.
        OR/WA Bishop White & Marshal
        Meridian Trust Deed Service
        Quality Loan Service Corp.
        Routh Crabtree Olsen
        Shapiro & Sutherland
        AZ/NV/OR/UT/WA Law Offices of Les Zieve

        WI
        Vollmar and Huismann, S.C.
        GRAY & ASSOCIATES
        Gray & End (could be Gray & Assoc.)
        Blommer Peterman

        WV
        Law Office of D. Kevin Moffatt
        Daniel J. Mancini and Associates

        WY
        Castle, Meinhold & Stawiarski

        1. monday1929

          I, for one, welcome being called a “jerk-off” by you, if you can accomplish half of what you are attempting.

  23. F. Beard

    These are the lawyers who ought to be losing sleep. These are the firms who have fraud in their filings, sitting like ticking time bombs in their cases. lizinsarasota

    I’m afraid there is too much vested interest in maintaining the status quo, 401-Ks and all that. It’s all about keeping the stock market up,imo.

    Baby boomers I knew would say, “I know the system is crooked but all it has to do is last till I’m dead.” Well, the joke is on them; the system gave out early.

    1. ScottS

      Did the hippies turn into yuppies? Or did the yuppies skip Woodstock and, seeing a herd of sheep, decide to become Randian wolves?

      Can you imagine Lloyd Blankfein or Dick Cheney at Woodstock?

      1. F. Beard

        Can you imagine Lloyd Blankfein or Dick Cheney at Woodstock? ScottS

        Money is one way to get the chicks if all else fails, I suppose.

  24. prowl liz prowl on

    Yves, if this is some sort of attempt to be subversive its pretty transparent. Sometimes I think that you might be part of a conspiracy to present information as “cutting edge” but really just be spinning. Are you actually just another media machine, owned by the banks and corps framing information that is indirectly in their favor?
    The only purpose of drawing any sort of serious questions upon the inherent integrity of borrowers claims ultimately appears to assert that in fact, there is a valid question of whether or not the banks have committed calculated, organized, pre meditated fraud resulting in the (too early to tell fully of the outcome) start of WW3, or, in the alternative the greatest evolutionary step humanity to this point has made… starting to distribute resources equally. The potential for an ultimately sound sociologic ecology advancement in the idea of the banks restoring the adversity they’ve imposed on hundreds of thousands of human beings is off the richter in potential.
    Liz in sarasota, you are amazing! Thousands of people are literally praying that the full force of every power of truth justice and clarity blazes behind you and everyone like you (of lesser or greater capabilities,) like the power of the entire infinite echelons of existence as we know it. So that when the time does comes for you to lift your arrow and strike the beast, nothing can stand in contention to the light of truth and justice.

    That said,
    Yves you seem to make quite a presumptuous and again, “framing” implication that pro se borrowers are in any way shape or form predatory.
    Frankly, most borrowers are probably FOLKS like myself who are not interested in a long drawn out legal ordeal they have absolutely no chance to afford being as desperate for a solution as we are. Duh. What would you do if you couldn’t afford to pay for anything and realize all the money you could have saved was drained from you four years ago paying a mortgage you could barely afford then on a property that was overvalued from the get go and unscrupulously appraised?

    What else to do when you AINT GOT NOTHING TO LOSE but raise hell as best you can?

    Dont forget. People have committed suicide over all this.
    I invite you to be careful about the loaded rhetoric you veer into from time to time. I also invite you to fully embrace the revolution. If we want the true story of whats going on in our world, I really DONT THINK YOUR GOING TO FIND MUCH JUICE IN THE HISTORICAL REVELATION THAT, OMG, THIS WAS ALL A SCHEME BY THOSE MONEY HUNGRY BUYERS TO GET A BIG BOON FROM THE BANKS. I mean really? C’mon.

    Luckily,there is plenty of clear to establish standing or whatever to help you realize that whatever hyper intellectualized media world you may or may not live in is in fact really not as complex and exciting as weve all been tricked into believing it is, there is no “hype” in REALITY.
    I propose even that people like liz in sarasota are not always the storied “hyped” a few good men or erin brokovich legal eagles the media loves to spin for a profitable scoop. I imagine many of us do not want the courtroom glory or the “society altering precedent” or to be known in the history books.
    They (we) want justice. We dont want to display how many colloquialisms of dry, useless legal terminology we have mastered in order to bicker in a highly inefficient system of reasoning that is slow, lethargic, and in its own crude manner as corrupt and as shitty as the modern banking behemoth has become .
    In fact, as law abiding citizens who pay our taxes, as fair and inherently decent individuals, and honest (and usually earnest) FOLKS, all we want is our sanctity back. All we want is the idea that we can ever have something decent to show for the hours of servitude we put in at menial tasks only to have our money sucked up by a system that we wouldnt have participated in had it not been directly pushed at us, with incentives to good to say no to, which was really bait. Fraudulently appropriated money returned= redress!
    And that just scratches the surface in presenting the case of standing here.
    Again, Im not quite sure what you hope to achieve by insinuating that there may not be a clear and easy way in all this for a pro se plaintiff to prove standing.

    Its not rocket science, and its on wikipedia for god sakes.
    Injury. can be economic or non. In the case of 10+ years of ruined credit, bankruptcy, stress and emotional/psychological disturbance, Id say theres a substantial injury.
    Causation. Bank failed to properly procure loan, collusion to inflate original purchase price and siphon excess. Securitization and missapropriation of hamp funding. Predatory collection/harassment violation of consumer protection laws.
    Redressability-returning lost resources, restoring offended party to original status blah blah blah.

    Frankly, while so many white collar types (lawyers included) seem to like to pompously believe they are the privileged few who are capable of quickly understanding the legal system, think again. ITS ALL ON WIKIPEDIA.
    It really is just like Egypt. Welcome to the 21st Century.
    Technology allows me to sit in a courtroom lobby on my i phone and immediately reference any term,process,case,precedent whatever I dont know with a completely accurate description, and a dissenting opinion too. And while I didnt carve my life up to join the legal profession, I did learn critical thinking skills in the education I have tailored for myself, so I am able to clearly discern right from wrong.
    How long do you really suppose there will be a sanctified upper class lording over identical human beings only because they imply they are “special in knowledge.”
    Bump that. Flip the scrips and if shit dont get fixed, and fast, take it to the streets.
    Boston tea party, slave rebellion, mutiny, worker uprisings, civil disobedience, and the list goes on. Cycles that a sociologist and anthropologist can point out time and again throughout human history. All empires dissolve. All hierarchies are enveloped by the ebb and flow of nature. The only constant is change. Absolutes are highly dependent on causal relation, and thus are somewhat difficult if not inherently flawed by the “over-lord ship” they seek to insinuate over the whole of which they are a smaller integral piece.
    This is what those of who try to live quietly and peacefully understand. We dont go out of our way to hatch diabolical plans about how we can bilk others out of their hard earned money. And what happens when you disturb a big gentle hippo peacefully chewing its cud and lulling in the water?

    There are several more options available to seek justice than paying an “expert” 250$ per hour for 700 hours to formulaically abide by the “rules,” and not only negotiate and pander to facist modalities of oligarchy and condescension but encourage it by participation.
    Dont underestimate the folks. We have several venues to display our intellect, perhaps expanded beyond the prospects that the contemporary system of “law” is able to address as an effective alternative.

    PS. to all these a holes saying things like “how dare these underlings challenge our power?” THE SAME WAY THE PEOPLE OF INDIA CHALLENGED THE BRITISH AND BEAT THEM BACK TO WHERE THEY CAME FROM. THE SAME WAY WE ELECTED A PERSON TO OFFICE WHO IS OF THE LINEAGE OF THOSE WHO ONCE WERE CONSIDERED LESS THAN HUMAN,AND THE SAME WAY WE ARE GOING TO FULLY CONSUME AND REDEFINE YOUR “POWER” SO IT IS EGALITARIAN AND DOESNT PERPETUATE THE INCESSANT RACE/CLASS?SOCIO-ECONOMIC DISPARITY THAT HAS FOR FAR TO LONG RUN AMOK IN THE HUMAN SPIRIT.
    We are well aware that per se cases royally entrench the legal defense of the banks. Imagine if there was an underground network of people, like the underground railroad, who had strategized just as meticulous of defensive and retaliatory actions as the banks law firms and internet security cops. Imagine if we were even psychic or intuitive and had a sense of the whole issue beyond that which an average lawyer, in all their upstanding philosophical glory could grasp. Imagine it, because what you envision, ultimately becomes what is. JUSTICE.
    Which, by the way has already been served, as the bank will NEVER get another cent from me so long as I live. Multiply me by 1.7 million and I do suss me out a good old fashion slingshot stone to the giants forehead. The size of a scud missile.

    1. Yves Smith Post author

      It looks as if you have either completely lost your mind or have reading comprehension problems. The post makes clear I think the presentation is foreclosure mill serving twattle.

      1. Skippy

        Personally me liked the sodomy theory aka War = Butt love comment, extinction event not with standing, full of LOL.

        Skippy…go with a smile methinks!

        1. Yves Smith Post author

          I suppose so, but I don’t have a lot of patience with readers who look at one phrase in isolation or worse, only the headline and go off on a rant that has nothing to do with what I or other bloggers wrote. If you want to spout off, there are tons of other places on the Web to do that.

          1. skippy

            “If you want to spout off, there are tons of other places on the Web to do that.”

            Skippy…why did my tail just curl up and my ears point. How you must want to play, yet how you attune your self is beyond admirable.

  25. chris

    Attorney’s seem to think they are smarter than everyone. I have not hired an attorney that lived up to their BS. This real estate meltdown is just another way for incompetent lawyers to take advantage of people who come to them expecting them to do something. It is a major scam because the lawyers from the banks come to mediation with no intention of doing anything and the majority of client lawyers just show up and do nothing more than mail a few documents.

    Instead of doing their job, by looking at files and finding out if they can help a client during the consultation they gladly take 2500 and never speak to the client again until 5 minutes before their appearance and they then start lowering expectations by telling the client there is no chance at a modification.
    There are thousands of cases exactly like this and the only reason lawyers get away with it it because they pretend being a lawyer is so difficult and that they know best.

    I have lost respect for 90% of the lawyers involved in real estate because they are taking advantage of a state mandated mediation process. They are doing mediation and they are representing clients, getting paid to do both and they lie from both sides of their mouth.

    Lawyers are a lot like bankers and stock traders. They have created some mystic that they use to try and keep the people from realizing they are criminals and that being a lawyers takes no more brains that being a school teacher and in a lot of cases probably less.

    We can see that our current president is a perfect example that law school is not a predictor of intelligence. From the looks of Washington it is a better predictor of narcism and arrogance.
    If you are ethical, and if you are doing your job, more power to you. The reality is that attorney’s charge way too much for way to little with absolutely no accountability. they can totally suck and lose a case but they still get paid.

    Does that sound Familiar? Bankers had the same freedom to totally suck and still get paid, still get bailed out by the taxpayer and still get million dollar bonuses after screwing the entire country.

    1. Transor Z

      Chris, my advice to anyone when choosing a lawyer is to, whenever possible, get a referral from friends or family whose judgment you trust. Hopefully they will be willing to discuss their case with you at least in enough detail to help you gauge the complexity of the matter and the result the lawyer was able to obtain.

      Like George Bernard Shaw wrote, “all professions are conspiracies against the laity.” But as a consumer of legal services, you generally have the right to fire your attorney at any time and for any reason. Particularly in the current economic environment, there is no need to stay with a service provider who does not act at all times as though he or she appreciates and wants your business.

  26. Psychoanalystus

    This is unacceptable. We need to bring back debtors prisons and throw the scoundrels in chain gangs to pick up trash off of highways for the rest of their lives. That’ll learn ‘em!

    Psychoanalystus

    1. skippy

      Mummm, you got something there, god punishes humanity, ergo man to wife or wife to man, ensuing to children, rinse / repeat, society must punish it self to be god like…fantastic!

      Skippy…where do I sign up, do you have a basement of pain, I wish to attend, its good for me and the unbelievers I must contend with!

    1. Skippy

      For those that by design forgotten earlier postage, wake up sheeple, before it comes out in the next manifestation…eww lady gaga or Lowhand version.

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