There are quite a few different opinions on what caused the real estate crisis we are facing today
Some experts blame the lenders for recklessly approving “no-income-no-asset” loans that borrowers could never afford. Others blame the borrowers for taking on far more debt than their means could realistically support. Whichever side is to blame, one thing is becoming increasingly evident – so-called loan modifications through a mortgage or real estate broker are not the answer. In fact, more than half (55%) of loans modified in the first nine months of 2008 were 30 days or more late within six months, according to the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC). The problem? Even as lenders have become more willing to modify borrowers’ loans in the past year, many aren’t offering deals that borrowers can afford over the long term.
At the Arcia Law Firm, we work with our clients to take a much more proactive approach to resolve their individual mortgage crises by putting the lender on the defensive. First, our clients are referred to a qualified mortgage audit firm to perform a detailed audit of their loan transaction. These audits often reveal serious violations of Federal and State laws by the very same lenders and servicing companies that initiate foreclosure proceedings, and harass homeowners who fall behind on their mortgage payments.
Banks, lenders and servicing companies will only negotiate fairly and justly with homeowners if you can demonstrate that they have violated the law and may be exposed to a judgment for significant damages. Only qualified attorneys with knowledge about the types of claims that a consumer has against his/her lender can create this very real threat in the eyes of banks, lenders and servicing companies.
The Federal Truth in Lending Act (TILA) requires lenders to provide truthful and complete disclosures to homeowners at closing regarding finance charges and rate of interest on the home loan. The penalties for non-compliance with these requirements can be stiff if presented in a timely fashion, and may include rescission of the loan transaction. Rescission means that the entire mortgage transaction is unwound, i.e., all fees, down payment, and closing costs for the home are refunded to the homeowner. Additionally, all principal and interest payments made are also refunded to the homeowner, putting the homeowner in the position he or she would have been if the loan never closed. How’s that for negotiating leverage against your lender?
If your home purchase does not qualify for a rescission claim under TILA, you may still have a valid consumer fraud claim under Florida law, which can be supported through your lender’s truth in lending violations. Moreover, if your home loan includes prepayment penalties for longer than 3 years, balloon payments that mature in less than 10 years, late fees that exceed five percent (5%) of the monthly payment, and/or an extension of credit regardless of borrower’s ability to pay, you may also have valid claims against your lender under the Florida Fair Lending Act (FFLA).
Both TILA and the FFLA provide homeowners with affirmative claims for relief against their lenders, and against all assignees who purchase the mortgage loans. Properly asserting these claims through a qualified attorney, and following up with appropriate legal action, places the homeowner in a much stronger position to negotiate terms that are acceptable to the homeowner – not the lender – and provides the homeowner a much better chance that he or she will not fall back into default.
Even if you do not have a claim under TILA or the FFLA, your lender can be placed on the defensive if you can establish that they do not have the original note and attachments. This deficiency could prevent your lender from ever maintaining a foreclosure action against you, and from taking your home. A knowledgeable attorney can obtain all loan information in the lender’s possession through a process called a Qualified Written Request (QWR). During this QWR process the lender cannot report the account as overdue to any credit reporting agency.
The Arcia Law Firm represents dozens of homeowners in these types of consumer fraud and insufficient securitization cases against lenders, banks and servicing companies. If your home purchase loan or refinance took place between 2001 and 2007, if you are behind on your mortgage payments, if your home value is less than what you owe your lender, if you have been declared in default by your lender, or if you just received a foreclosure summons, contact the Arcia Law Firm today at 1-855-88ARCIA (882-7242), and we may be able to help achieve a long term affordable solution to your personal mortgage crisis.
As a result of the difficult conditions present in the South Florida real estate market, foreclosures are at an all-time high. Ignoring a foreclosure action can be devastating to a homeowner, who may end up losing his home completely. We aggressively defend foreclosure actions on behalf of our clients. At the Arcia Law Firm, we don’t just defend a foreclosure to prolong the inevitable, we prepare a strategic defense and counterclaims against the lender, usually placing the lender on the defensive, in order to help you achieve a long term solution that allows you to keep your home. We have the skills and the courtroom experience to succeed when real estate disputes end up in court, and also to help you reach practical resolutions before they ever do.
If you need assistance with a consumer fraud claim against your lender or any other real estate dispute, please fill out our Free Consultation Form
Our Firm guarantee is that each new client will meet with an attorney, not with a secretary or paralegal. We welcome the opportunity to meet with you and evaluate your case free of charge.
Our Firm accepts and handles consumer fraud, foreclosure defense, loan modifications, short sales, deed in lieus, bankruptcy cases, real estate transactions and litigation, personal injury, medical malpractice and other legal matters in Pembroke Pines, Miramar, Davie, Cooper City , Ft. Lauderdale, Plantation, Sunrise, Coral Springs, Lauderhill, Weston, Southwest Ranches, Sunrise, Margate, Oakland Park, Hollywood, Lauderdale Lakes, Hallandale, Dania, Pembroke Park, Wilton Manors, West Palm Beach, Pompano Beach, Miami, Coral Gables, North Miami, Aventura, Sunny Isles, Bal Harbour, Hialeah, Miami Lakes.