Monday, November 16, 2009

Shuster & Saben Seek Sanctions against Bank of America on behalf of Sebastian, FL homeowner

For Immediate Release: On Tuesday, November 17, 2009, Shuster & Saben served a Motion For Sanctions against Bank of America, N.A. for failing to mediate in good faith with a Sebastian, Florida homeowner. The firm’s client, an elite estates and trusts paralegal (who spent over twenty years working with some of South Florida’s top law firms) attended mediation, in Vero Beach, pro-se, prior to hiring the foreclosure defense litigation department of Shuster & Saben, LLC.

Under the Administrative Order of 2009-01 of Indian River County Chief Judge Willaim Roby, lenders seeking to foreclose on the primary residence of Indian River County homeowners are required to conduct mediation prior to moving for summary judgment. Under the administrative order, the lender must have its counsel appear in person and a representative of the plaintiff/lender may appear by phone or in person. The administrative order requires that individual appearing for the lender must have “full authority to modify the existing loan and mortgage and to settle the foreclosure case.”

Prior to the mediation, the lender’s law firm, Kahane & Associates of Plantation, Florida filed a “Form A” identify Krystal Martin as the respresenative of the lender who would appear at the mediation. The subject homeowner, via federal express provided pertinent financial documents, a release of her tax returns, and a hardship letter to the loan servicer, Litton, so that Litton and Bank of America could evaluate modification of the loan prior to the mediation.

According to the firm’s client, when the mediation commenced for the first 30 minutes of the mediation Bank of America had no representative what so ever. The person listed on the “Form A”, Krystal Martin never appeared for the mediation and in her place, a representative of Litton, the servicer on the loan appeared by phone. Since the person appearing was not a Bank of America employee but only a employee of the loan servicer hired by Bank of America, it was apparent that the representative had no authority to do anything without talking to the lender. When the mediation began the Litton representative did not know the current balance on the loan. The lender’s attorney who signed the “Form A” did not bother to attend the mediation. In her place was a local Vero Beach attorney, Nina Ferraro, who is NOT an employee of Kahane & Associates (the law firm hired by Bank of America to bring the foreclosure). Ms. Ferraro had no prior involvement in the case and also did not have the borrower’s current balance.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Shuster & Saben obtains Dismissal of Foreclosure Action

For Immediate Release:
The law firm of Shuster & Saben has obtained the dismissal of a foreclosure lawsuit filed against the firm’s Brevard County client. The Plaintiff / Lender filed suit against our client in an attempt of take their Cocoa, Florida investment property. In the subject action, after the lender drastically raised our client’s interest rate (to well over 8% A.P.R.), our client was unable to continue to afford to make monthly mortgage payments. Our client had financed the property with an A.R.M. (Adjustable Rate Mortgage) that was linked to the LIBOR index, and faced an increase in their interest rate after their initial rate expired. Despite the fact that interest rates declined from 2007 to 2009, the lender still raised the client’s interest rate to a point that it was no longer affordable. Several months after the client stopped making mortgage payments the lender filed a Notice of Lis Pendens and a Complaint for Foreclosure in the Brevard County Circuit Court.

The client consulted with several other Space Coast attorneys before choosing Shuster & Saben to defend the foreclosure action. After Shuster & Saben filed its notice of appearance and voluminous discovery requests the lender decided to dismiss the case and cancel the lis pendens. Counsel for the lender advised that the lender has decided to write off the loan. To view the actual Notice of Dismissal click here.