Monday, May 16, 2011

Foreclosure lawyers at Shuster & Saben obtain dismissal of HSBC’s Foreclosure Action.

Things did not go very well for HSBC or their counsel, Elizabeth R. Wellborn, P.A., when a Melbourne, Florida homeowner retained the law firm of Shuster & Saben, LLC to defend the foreclosure action filed against his Brevard County, Florida home. Within 48 hours of the firm being retained firm attorney Richard Shuster served nearly twenty pages of discovery requests, including requests for admission, requests for production and interrogatories (written questions to be answered under oath) about the factual basis of the lawsuit served against the homeowner and the securitization of the mortgage into the Ace Securities Corp Home Equity Loan Trust. When HSBC’s counsel was unable to answer the discovery within thirty days they filed a motion for extension of time but did set their motion for hearing. To prevent the motion for extension of time from sitting in limbo, our firm submitted an unopposed order grating the motion and ordering HSBC to respond to the discovery within thirty days.

Thirty days after the Court signed the order, our firm had little in the way of discovery as rather than answer the questions and provide the requested documents, HSBC’s attorneys objected to almost all of the discovery requests Shuster & Saben made on behalf of the homeowner. Firm attorney, Richard Shuster then filed a twenty-eight page Motion to Show Cause and to Compel Better Response to Request to Produce that set forth each of the discovery requests, HSBC’s objection to each request, an argument as to why the Court should overrule the objection and a check off blank for the judge or overrule or sustain each objection. After a lengthy hearing the Court overruled many of HSBC’s objections and commanded HSBC and its attorney, Ira Silverstein, to provided better responses within thirty days.

When, HSBC and its counsel failed to comply with the Court’s second order, foreclosure defense lawyer, Richard Shuster filed a Second Motion to Show Cause which detailed the bank’s violations of the Court’s last two discovery orders and requested dismissal of the entire case.

On May 3, 2011, a hearing was held at the Brevard County Courthouse. Firm attorney Richard Shuster appeared at the hearing in person and a staff attorney at bank’s law firm appeared by phone. The Court asked the bank’s attorney if HSBC was “thumbing its nose” at the Court’s orders. The Court did not give the bank a third chance to violate another Court order and dismissed the bank’s foreclosure action. The Court also granted sanctions against the bank. Now that the case against our client has been dismissed his modest legal expenses will stop. Once sanctions are recovered we will hopefully be able to reimburse our client a substantial portion for his legal expenses from the sanction award.

To review a redacted copy of the order dismissing HSBC’s case please click the link below.

Redacted Order

About Shuster & Saben: The foreclosure defense lawyers at Shuster & Saben aspire to vigorously and aggressively defend every foreclosure case. We have offices in Miami, Fort Lauderdale, and Melbourne so that we can appear in Court in person rather than by phone when our client’s home is on the line. If your case is in a part of the state where we do not appear in person for Court we can refer you to a likeminded attorney or co-counsel with a carefully selected local counsel.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Shuster & Saben wins foreclosure case with its own motion for summary judgment.

Another Shuster & Saben foreclosure client has won their case against a securitized trust. After firm attorney, Richard Shuster, noted that the lawsuit filed by U.S. Bank N.A. as trustee for a securitized trust was not supported by any evidence that the foreclosing bank owned or held the note, he filed a motion for summary judgment on behalf of the homeowner and against U.S. Bank. Foreclosing banks often file motions for summary judgment against homeowners as a means to win cases without having a trial. A judge can only grant summary judgment when the moving party comes forward with competent evidence in the record and the other side fails to come forward with any record evidence to oppose the motion. Unfortunately, many foreclosure defense lawyers never file offensive motions for summary judgment against banks because they are content to merely delay the bank’s attempts to foreclose on the property.

Most of the lawyers at Shuster & Saben come from a civil litigation background. When we are not defending homeowners, we are suing insurance companies, banks, and bill collectors. We are used to taking cases trial where unless we win we don’t get paid one thin dime. When we take on a foreclosure case, we usually have four goals, (1) prevent default, (2) stop the bank for obtaining summary judgment, (3) implement an asset protection strategy for the client, and (4) win the case by dismissal, offensive summary judgment, or trial. Not every foreclosure case is a winnable case. In those cases where the bank’s case is very strong and the homeowner’s case is weak we let out clients know and give them frank objective advice about loan modification, short sale, deed in lieu of foreclosure, and in very rare cases bankruptcy. Even in the tough cases we invest a large amount of time to thoroughly conduct discovery to make sure the bank has evidence to prove every element of their case. When the bank is missing proof on any issue its our job to take their case apart. In the case we won by summary judgment the bank’s lawyers failed to come forward with any record evidence that the Plaintiff, U.S. Bank owned or held the note. As a result the Court entered summary judgment and final judgment in favor of the Defendant / Homeowner. To review a redacted copy of the summary judgment order please click the link below.

Redacted Summary Judgment Order