6 Key Questions to Ask Before You Hire a Forclosure Attorney

The 2008 financial crash put a lot of people out of work. It hurt business owners, emptied personal savings, destroyed American home values and lead to massive foreclosures.

What Many Homeowners Don’t Know

The crony network of big banks, financial institutions, government, politicians, the courts, and their corporately owned media have used propaganda, lies and spin doctors to convince Americans that naïve and greedy homeowners crashed the global credit markets in 2008.

They blamed the crash and current economic chaos on homeowners who bought too much house. Yes, some mortgagers made some people believe they could buy more home then they could afford. However, the blame here is often misleading.

Why? Obscene broker commissions were a big part of originating mortgages. Banks were on a tear to bundle, securitize, sell and re-sell mortgages. It lead to irregular mortgage practices.

The bigger truth has been revealed that there are no mortgages to back the mortgage-backed securities. Thus former treasury secretary Hank Paulson told taxpayers, “We must bail the banks out, or else everything will collapse.”

Iceland Let Their Banks Collapse

In fact, Iceland arrested the financial offenders and put in actual safeguards to restore the capital markets and consumer confidence. We in America got the toothless Dodd-Frank bill that makes it appear legislators are minding the store.

Banking and the financial industry needed major reforms. Instead, after the Wall Street financial crash our American banks actually got 38% BIGGER!

Too Big to Fail and Too Big to Jail

Today banks are bigger than before the economic crash and the Dodd-Frank bill does nothing significant to keep Wall Street from trashing the economy again.

Insanity is doing the same thing you’ve been doing but expecting a different result.

Fast forward and today, these quasi-patriotic cronies continue the lies and prop up the fraud on the taxpayer’s dime. They brazenly continue to cover up their partners’ crimes while still receiving a massive transfer of wealth from taxpayers without impunity.

Can You Name One Banker That Went to Jail?

By the way, in 2008 that 800 billion dollar bail out has turned into trillions out the back door of the Federal Reserve straight into bank coufers.

What few Americans realize is that crony capitalists who fleeced institutional investors out of $17+ Trillion, clouded the title on all the mortgages they originated and supposedly sold on the secondary market.

They stole our pension money, wiped out savings and now they’re still after your home. In fact, more than 4.9 million homeowners were foreclosed since the Wall Street crash and there’s more on the way.

American’s need help staying in their home. If the banks and servicers won’t deliver then where do homeowners turn for guidance through this financial maze of fraud and corruption?

Many are programmed to think, “Lawyer, that’s what I need to stand up for me, to sort out the fraud, to keep my family from being kicked into the streets.”

Are Lawyers Best Suited to Standup For Homeowners?

As Americans we’ve been conditioned to believe that the only people who can help us navigate, legal matters are lawmakers and attorneys. Fortunately, in the realm of foreclosure law, there are a few good ones.

However, when it comes to ferreting out truth or fraud in your foreclosure, few attorneys (Real Estate attorneys included) are equipped or have any desire to fight as hard as a regular educated homeowner.

It’s a fact that no one will ever care more about saving your home than you. If staying in your home is not all that important, then most attorneys will do. But buyers beware.

How Do You Choose the Right Lawyer in Foreclosure Matters?

I’ve personally talked with hundreds upon hundreds of homeowners all across America who routinely pay from $1,000 to $30,000+ in attorney’s fees plus monthly retainers and still loose their home. This is more common than you’d think.

I ask homeowners, “What was the attorneys strategy? Was it to help you buy time until you are evicted or actually stay in your home?”

Many homeowners had not thought the end game through. How often do we hire attorneys? There are no Consumer Reports on America’s best foreclosure strategies, fighting bank fraud or attorneys.

Most Americans are busy trying to make a living, caring for loved ones, keeping their heads above water and would rather avoid the legal realms. Who can blame them?

So, unless new information is introduced it makes perfect sense that many homeowners don’t know what to ask to hire an attorney or figure out what makes one effective over the next.

When it comes to defending your home, the following basic questions will get most homeowners started.

The following six questions came from an interview with Justin James. He is the founder of The Foreclosure Relief Network, a company dedicated to helping homeowners stand up for their legal rights.

The company with its network of private investigators, paralegals and law firm was developed to educate and arm the American consumer with the information necessary to protect families and property against the unlawful actions of banks.

Mr. James emphasizes that “Every homeowner who suspects mortgage fraud or are in foreclosure or about to be, needs to be educated.

They need to know upfront if an attorney will work on your behalf or instead see you as a tool to collect fees while they stall things off in court. By asking these basic but key questions, this is knowable.”

You want to interview an attorney just like you would choose a doctor, dentist, CPA or a contractor to work on your home. You want a good fit.

Write Your Questions Down

Mr. James suggests that before you phone or visit an attorney in person, have your questions written down and refer to them.

6 Key Questions to Ask Before You Hire an Attorney to Get a Modification or Defend Your Home Against Banks

  1. Do you feel that the banks and their servicers commit mortgage security and/or foreclosure fraud? (Yes) Correct answer.
  2. Do you believe that if a bank shows up with a piece of paper that alleges it’s the original Note-do you still believe there’s a chance of winning court? (Yes)
  3. Are you willing to challenge the banks claim of ownership of the note, mortgage, chain of title, etc.? (Yes)
  4. Are you willing to cross exam a witnesses? (Yes)
  5. Will you challenge and call a robo-signer as a witness? (Yes)
  6. Are you willing to be that attorney at the party that went up against the big bankers or challenged a court that seems to lean in favor of big banks? (Yes)

If you get so much as one “no” to the above questions then be aware, your situation may be at cross-purposes with this particular attorney.

To the few that are actually competent and not bluffing their way into your back pocket, these basic but telling questions are not difficult to answer.

Other than the details of your situation, each question does not require you as homeowner to expound any further. Either they know it or they don’t. Either they believe banks can do no wrong or believe in justice for homeowners.

When to Walk Away

Bottom line is that if the attorney interviewed is…

  • Not comfortable breaking down your chain of title if necessary
  • Does not believe the bank is ever wrong about a note or mortgage
  • Not willing to challenge the bank or the courts
  • Not willing to cross examine a witness…

Then why are you there? Why should they take your money? Don’t give them a dime Pack your bags and find another attorney or other expert to interview. Consider…

Who’s Paying Your Bill?

You are paying the attorney for a service. You wouldn’t go into a car dealership and say…

“I’ve got $400 a month to spend on a vehicle. Just give me whatever you got to drive.”

You’d be surprised how many people would accept poor treatment when it comes to attorneys. Why?

Because some homeowners are intimated and think, the lawyer knows more. That’s usually true about civil law matters. That’s when a good educated attorney makes sense.

But when it comes to foreclosure, commercial law and challenging the banks-think again. I would challenge you to think outside the box.

Defend Yourself? Really?

Others will say, “YES BUT you can’t defend yourself against fraud or a foreclosing bank. You must have an attorney.” Many homeowners felt that way in the beginning. However…

We now know plenty of average homeowners who’ve been educated and succeeded with the guidance of companies like The Foreclosure Relief Network.

But, what few homeowners at first realize is that attorneys are not traditionally schooled in banking and finance.

In fact, I’ve interviewed some well informed average homeowners who educate their attorneys.

You Deserve to Know What You are Getting for Your Time and Money

If your prospective attorney is the real deal, they will understand your need to interview. That’s why it’s important to know…

  • What does the attorney actually believe about banks and foreclosure?
  • Make them lay their cards on the table. Time is of essence.

You simply want to insure that you are investing your energy and money wisely into a winning strategy and NOT prolonging what many attorneys feel is an inevitable foreclosure.

It’s a little known fact that if you, as a homeowner are educated and have a complete and correct strategy then foreclosure is NOT always inevitable.

Follow The Money

If you hire an attorney that did not adequately answer these questions, then be advised you, your family and your home may be taken for a professional ride.

According to Mr. James extensive experience with homeowners, banks and courts across America, rare is the attorney who will answer your call, who will fight banks on behalf of your homeowner and constitutional rights.

Most attorneys will not intentionally do you harm because they genuinely believe what they believe. That banks can do no wrong is just part of their many years of education and training.

As important, attorneys take an oath to protect corporations. It’s what they do.

That said… put yourself in the attorney’s shoes for just a minute. They have a lot of competition. A title, though impressive is no guarantee of success. They are businessmen and women and for many economic times are tough like many homeowners.

Yes, attorneys enjoy a measure of prestige but that doesn’t pay the bills. Like you and I, they have to make a living or find a way to survive. Just make sure it’s not at your expense.

Who Has More Money? Influence?

A homeowner called Mr. James and was livid because he spent over $7,500 on an attorney who believed that his counsel had defected to the bank side.

Even with documented fraud (common today) as the centerpiece of his defense against the bank, this homeowner lost his home.

The homeowner asks, “Who’s got more money here? The Big American Bank or me as homeowner?”

Do you think you’ll ever see this homeowner’s story on the evening news? It’s not likely. Remember who owns and controls media, advertising and reporting.

Of course I don’t expect you to believe any of this. Check it out for yourself.

Bank Walks Away

Speaking of a good homeowner story, while working on this article one of Mr. James clients called about Quiet Title action which forces a bank to produce valid documents.

The banks have to prove they have ownership before they can foreclose. In today’s heavily securtized financial system that’s more and more difficult for banks to validate unless they manufacture documents from thin air. This is known as robo-signing and yes, it’s illegal.

Gary is out of the Midwest. He applied several times for a modification and then found himself in foreclosure. He suspected bank fraud. Gary began looking and found a young and hungry attorney out of law school.

The attorney had not yet adopted “a bank can do no wrong” attitude. However, the first hurdle was overcoming this attorney’s lack of knowledge on foreclosure fraud, banking and securitization, etc.

Remember few attorneys have this profound knowledge, seek it out or even believe it’s possible to help a homeowner to win. It’s not taught in law school.

To compensate, Gary began working with Mr. James to gain the education, knowledge, legal templates and strategies. This also saved him thousands of dollars in attorney’s research fees.

Gary reported that his homework paid off and the bank walked away. Finding a lawyer willing to listen was the exception in this case. However, keep in mind that…

The Courts Are Available to All Homeowners

Remember, you as an American citizen have constitutional rights.

An attorney is not the only way to stand your ground against bad behaving banks. In fact there are far more effective strategies homeowners can and do take every day.

The majority of homeowners do not realize that with the right kind of education they can in fact represent themselves in court. It’s referred to as Pro Se’, a petitioner or simply an American citizen. Often it’s an effective option. Here’s why.

The fact is that the courts cannot hold a regular homeowner to the same standard as they do lawyers. It turns out that with an effective strategy, presented properly, defending yourself against banks often leads to settlements.

Mr. James reports that he sees it everyday and as the courts become more educated, the tides are shifting in favor of homeowners.

Some homeowners combine the idea of Pro Se’ (without an attorney) along with private mortgage investigations to uncover irregularities that stop foreclosures.

Bottom Line-Trust Your Gut

Remind yourself that if your home is worth defending then no one will ever fight for your home like you can.

After interviewing the attorney, if you can’t say yes, then SAY NO FOR NOW.

Keep looking. If the attorney doesn’t feel right-move on. There are viable alternatives. Do your homework.

Finally, if you have a compelling enough why and are willing to do a little legwork, then there are resources that can help you to learn how to stay in your home and prevail even without an attorney.

How to Decide on a Quality Divorce Lawyer

Selecting a lawyer or a family lawyer can be quite challenging due to the large amount of divorce lawyers and family lawyers practicing today.

Experienced divorce lawyers can help you through a very stressful time inside your life and in addition allow you to avoid very costly financial and emotional mistakes. Quite hard and life altering decisions must be made, affecting many personal and important issues, such as custody, child access or visitation, joint custody, child support, spousal support, division of property, debt division, equalization of net family properties, the matrimonial home, separation agreements, among a great many others. Choosing the right divorce and family lawyer is the key to obtaining the best results in your divorce.

Both you and your child’s rights and health and happiness could possibly be affected for quite a while down the road. Divorce and family laws are full of many legal technicalities and therefore are frequently subject to legal interpretation along with your lawyer or family lawyer has to be experienced in these areas. Issues of custody and supporting your children can profoundly affect your child’s continuous advancement.

If you and your spouse are considering divorce proceedings, it really is critical that you consult a divorce and family lawyer to understand your rights and obligations. You should not sign anything or take any action that can affect you or your child’s rights, without getting proper legal advice from a qualified family and divorce lawyer. This is a very important point not to be overlooked. Doing so may cause serious consequences.

Selecting the right divorce and family lawyer requires more work than simply looking through the local yellow pages or telephone book listings. You could start your search for a divorce lawyer by conversing with relatives and buddies and requesting referrals. Contact your property or business lawyer for a referral to a family and divorce attorney. You may also want to try speaking to close friends or co-workers.

Ensure the divorce and family lawyer you decide on answers your questions and makes you feel that you and the case is essential and not simply another number. Your lawyer shouldn’t talk to you in legalese however in plain ordinary language so you understand exactly what is going on and what may happen in the future. You must go with a lawyer who you feel comfortable with and with whom you can trust to reveal your individual and confidential information and someone who is not going to have you feeling foolish or uncomfortable for communicating with them about things you don’t understand. It is important to remember this point.

Your divorce and family lawyer ought to be compassionate and understanding due to the emotional issues involved. Many divorce and family lawyers have undergone their own personal divorces and also have experienced your circumstances personally as well as professionally and may even take an improved position to empathize with you and understand precisely how you experience and how they may assist you better.

Becoming an English Solicitor – The Qualified Lawyers Transfer Scheme (QLTS)

English law is held in high esteem; London is among the leading legal cities in the world; and talented and qualified lawyers continue to seek to become English solicitors.

Job prospects are decent for lawyers in the UK and by becoming an English solicitor, you increase your employability. Once qualified, you will be able to practise law cross-border, finding employment in England, Europe and further afield in countries including Australia, South Africa and Russia. In addition, you broaden your professional knowledge, understanding and experience which similarly broadens your career prospects.

As a qualified English solicitor, you will be in a stronger position to offer your existing and future clients more legal services. As well as finding employment as a solicitor in England and Wales, your wider career prospects are enhanced when you gain the QLTS. You may choose to practise law in your home jurisdiction, in which case you will benefit from an improved professional track-record and marketability. Or work as an English solicitor in London. Or perhaps even find a role in an international law firm which has a base in the EU, and live and work anywhere in the world.

Whichever career path is right for you, being an English solicitor will bring you more business and greater financial rewards. And this is enhanced by the high standard of competence associated with newly qualified solicitors of England and Wales thanks to the method of assessment – whether you choose the fast-track QLTS route or the domestic route.

Under the existing Qualified Lawyers Transfer Scheme, the QLTS (previously, the Qualified Lawyers Transfer Test, the QLTT), international lawyers as well as barristers in England and Wales, are assessed to ensure they meet the necessary standards required to practise English law. Those admitted to the Roll of Solicitors of England and Wales through the QLTS have an even greater professional profile thanks to this high level of testing.

The QLTS training places international lawyers on a par with domestic lawyers, making for a more level playing field. The same standard expected of domestic lawyers is expected from overseas lawyers wanting to apply for the QLTS and lawyers who pass the QLTS have the same level of competence as lawyers qualified to practise English law through the domestic route.

Now is certainly a good time to become an English solicitor, as the financial implications of the recession start to ease and the employment markets open up once more. The QLTS offers two major improvements to candidates compared to the QLTT – there is the English language test and the removal of the experience requirement. These are both positive developments for international lawyers wanting to train as English solicitors.

As a result of these enhancements to the QLTS, more confidence is instilled in successful candidates. There is rigorous testing of all applicants’ practical skills as part of the course. This ensures no one experiences discrimination as everyone is treated the same and assessed to the same standard – although of course because the means of testing is objective, issues regarding ages and disabilities of candidates will naturally be taken into consideration. Candidates who meet the necessary standard will be admitted as a solicitor of England and Wales. Clients will therefore know that all qualified English solicitors, regardless of their route to qualification, are competent and have the professional knowledge, skills, behaviours and ethics needed to perform legal duties well.

The QLTS is an affirmative step for all international lawyers, and barristers in England and Wales, seeking to train as English solicitors. The system is fairer but equally stringent and allows only the highest calibre of lawyers to pass the QLTS assessments.

If you want to become an English solicitor, a big factor in determining whether you’ll pass your QLTS course is the course provider itself. Without excellent teaching, informative materials, a support network, and experienced staff to guide you through, passing will be more difficult. The QLTS School programme offers a dedicated approach to the QLTS assessments – and because it’s completely focused on the one test, students really benefit from an array of advice and support that is always available.

The QLTS School is committed to helping international lawyers become English solicitors. Our website has information for every stage of the process, from what you need to do to be eligible for the QLTS to applying for the course. There is advice about careers, the benefits of practising English law, and guidance for every step of the course.

With over ten years’ experience and thousands of international lawyers who have successfully qualified as English solicitors, the QLTS School has an excellent reputation and a high candidate pass rate. The QLTS course is comprehensive and convenient, and you will have all the materials you need to study – including distance learning courses, video and audio lectures, and access to the online study portal – and the freedom to study when it suits you. The study portal lets you communicate with other candidates, as well as access all the teaching tools including videos, audio and PowerPoint presentations.

Created by skilled legal professionals who have worked extensively with international lawyers and understand their needs, the QLTS School programme provides you with everything you need to pass your QLTS assessments and go on to enjoy an extensive career as an English solicitor.

Mow A Better Lawn, The Easy Way

I was schooled, as many of you were, about mowing lawns, that each time you mow the lawn the next time you rotate 90 degrees. If you are extra anal you go for the 45 degree rotation. I was never that anal so I just cut on the 90 and things went well. The people that “schooled me” said that it would make groves in my yard where I ran the mover. And, I believed it. Until I moved into my new house, and I followed suit and started my 90 degree rotation. Well we live on a slope becase of 1. the view and 2. the water drainage problem we had in out previous home (that is another story.)

I mowed the lawn three times. Twice up and down and once side to side. It was
amazing how much easier going across the slope, than going up and down. I spent
the rest of the summer going across the slope. Along with the proper fertilization
and watering. I kept the blade on the mover sharp and What a Beautiful Lawn. The
kids had a ball barefoot and happy.

I am a proponent of push mowers. I think that they mow a better lawn and provide
and provide a chance to get the blood flowing in between exercise sessions.
Working behind a computer as much as I do, that is much needed. I also feel that
they give you more control of the mower than a riding mowers. Not to mention that
they are safer. It also really hacks me off to see some one terribly over weight
mowing a 1/4 acre lot with a riding mower. That is ridiculous! Anyway off my soap
box.

After I am done, if there is any “clumps” I take the leaf blower and disapate them
into the grass. I hate to say it but the more regularly that you mow the less clumps
you will have. Blah, Blah, Blah!

All and all a beautiful lawn is not that difficult. Just some ideas to help you save
some energy for other projects. Just thinking of you.

Just a few options.

Things to Consider When Hiring a Family Law Lawyer

A family law lawyer specializes in matters relating to issues that surround the family. These can include marriage, divorce, child support, spousal alimony, guardianship, adoption, domestic violence and child abuse.

Choosing a family law lawyer is an important decision, especially when dealing with child abuse and domestic violence. These legal issues are highly-charged events that require attorneys who are well-versed in domestic relations law and child advocacy.

Divorce can also be an emotionally-volatile arena that requires lawyers who can help both parties work through their differences while obtaining a fair settlement. When children are involved it is important to work with attorneys who will fight for the rights of minor children to ensure adequate child support is provided.

Issues related to family law often require clients to work closely with their chosen lawyer. It is best to determine what qualities you prefer before interviewing attorneys. Do you prefer a male or female lawyer? Do you require an aggressive attorney or one who remains calm? Do you need a lawyer with years of experience of would a recent law school graduate suffice?

It can be helpful to create a list of questions, concerns, and the desired outcome. Organize all records pertaining to the legal issue. For example, divorce lawyers will require financial records, real estate deeds, automobile titles, current and previous years’ tax returns, and information surrounding minor children.

It can be beneficial to interview three or more attorneys to determine which is best suited for your needs. Most law firms offer gratis meet-and-greet consultations while others assess a minimal fee. When arranging appointments inquire about initial consultation fees and what documents should be brought to the meeting.

During the meeting it is important to determine cost estimates. Family law lawyers normally require clients to provide an upfront retainer. This typically ranges between 25- and 50-percent of expected costs.

Legal fees are usually assessed at an hourly rate, but some cases are charged as a flat fee. Cases requiring extensive research and court appearances are typically billed hourly. Cases involving minimal work, such as a legal name change, are billed at a flat rate.

Law firms also assess backend fees to cover the cost of phone consultations, court filing fees, copying and faxing documents, and postage fees. Some attorneys deduct these costs from the retainer, while others remit monthly invoices.

The majority of family law lawyers require payment at the time services are rendered. However, some will allow clients to develop a payment plan. It is important to determine payment schedules to ensure you can comply. When payment plans are allowed, it is smart to obtain the plan in writing so that all parties understand payment amounts and due dates.

Individuals who require services from a family law lawyer, but cannot afford legal fees may qualify for pro bono services. Much depends on earned income and circumstances surrounding the case.

If possible, obtain family law lawyer referrals from family or friends. This can minimize time spent searching for or consulting with attorneys. Those unable to obtain referrals can utilize the Internet or telephone directories to locate law firms.

Another source for locating reputable attorneys is the American Bar Association website at abanet.org. The ABA does not offer recommendations, but instead publish a list of nationwide family law lawyers who are in good standing with the organization.