Friday, March 30, 2012
Shuster & Saben reaches confidential settlement in Foreclosure Trespass case.
Nearly four years ago a Melbourne, Florida resident in foreclosure left town for the weekend. Although her home was in foreclosure she continued to live there and run her home based business from the property. When she arrived home after the weekend away, the lock on her front door had been changed. A field service agent sent by her loan servicer had broke in the back door, changed the lock on her front door, and left his business card. When she found her front door locked she went around to the back of the house where she found her broken in back door left wide open. When she went inside she found that many of her possessions were gone.
The homeowner called the police and a police report was filed. The police did not arrest anyone and told her that because she was in foreclosure this was a “civil” matter. Our client did not know if the field service agent took her belongings or merely enabled some other person to take her stuff by leaving the back door unlocked.
The home owner took pictures of her home after the break-in to show that the property was in good repair and could not have been mistaken for an abandoned property. She asked several different lawyers in the Space Coast to take her case. Every attorney she spoke to told her the same thing: that her damages (about $6,000.00 of lost property) were to small and she had no proof that the field service agent left the back door open or took her property. One lawyer told her “Perhaps the field service agent broke into the property, changed the locks, and locked all the doors and then a thief broke in and left the back door open.”
When no lawyer would take the case the homeowner tried to obtain a settlement from the loan servicer who said they would look into her report. Unfortuantly, the loan servicer did not offer her one thin dime.
Just before the deadline to file a law suit expired the home owner stumbled upon this blog. She met with foreclosure litigator Richard Shuster, at Shuster & Saben’s Melbourne office. Attorney Shuster advised her, this case will be hard there is almost no evidence but we are not a firm to shy away form hard cases. This is not a case that will make you rich but if we are lucky we will recover damages sufficient to replace your stuff. Since the loan servicer did not obtain a final judgment of foreclosure or writ of possession and the property was not abandoned the servicer had no right to change the homeowner's locks. Shuster & Saben filed suit against both the loan servicer and the field service agent. Both the loan servicer and the field service agent hired top law firm’s to defend the case. Approximately four months after suit was filed the firm reached a confidential settlement for an amount sufficient to cover most of what our client lost.
About Shuster & Saben: Shuster & Saben seeks justice for homeowners. When banks and loan servicers trespass, break & enter or violate consumer protection statutes will sue the bank and handle such matters on a contingency fee basis. For homeowners facing foreclosure who want more than just delay, we seek to save our clients’ homes, assets, time, and sanity. If you only have one home and only one foreclosure case we encourage you to diligently review the results obtained by every law firm you are considering and interview more than one firm. This blog has over 60 entries with a significant sample of our firms victories and settlements. A well informed homeowner is our best client.