5 Tips When Seeking a Divorce Attorney

Divorce can be emotional and messy, but choosing the right divorce attorney will make a huge difference. Take a look at these tips to hire the right person to defend you and achieve the fairest outcome.

1. Stay Private

Depending on the circumstances surrounding the divorce, each involved party may want to tell everyone the news. However, this isn’t usually the best approach. It likely isn’t set in stone who your partner will have as a divorce attorney, and it’s best to keep attorney information to yourself at first. Often, divorce attorneys may know each other or be in the same legal circles. The last thing anyone wants is to get another lawyer due to conflicting interests. Take advantage of attorney and client privilege.

2. Do the Research

It may sound obvious, but do research when trying to find the right lawyer. Ask friends and family for their suggestions, but make sure that the lawyer focuses on divorce cases and has an excellent record. Also, it’s important that your chosen lawyer has a good record when it comes to your specific needs, whether they include child support, child custody, or financial agreements. Reviews are often available online, and it’s usually clear which lawyers are reputable.

3. Take Interviews

No one is forced to hire the first lawyer they meet with, so it’s best to set up several meetings and interview each to find the right fit. Ask questions concerning their practice, such as what type of law they specialize in and what they will do to ensure you get the best outcome.

4. Have a Plan

If at all possible, try to discuss the division of finances with your spouse before seeking an attorney. If the split can be remotely amicable, it will help in the long run. Discussing the division of money and property beforehand, especially if there is no prenuptial agreement, will make the process smoother for the lawyers on both sides. Try to be mature and sensitive to the situation. It will make the overall case better if things are talked through sensibly and rationally.

5. Know the Cost

Make sure to ask the lawyer what the exact costs will be, whether for the initial meeting or the overall trial. Be firm in finding out what the initial fees are, as well as any other court costs that may not be mentioned, or any hourly fees or rates.

Regardless of what happens, being civil will bring the best results when it comes to the divorce proceedings. Making sure the divorce attorney is qualified and has a good record will make the journey much easier on yourself and your ex-spouse.

10 Amazing Ideas for a Military Themed Wedding

I have been incredibly lucky to attend several military weddings – including my own. While my husband and I did a traditional ceremony following our 14-month long-distance engagement, many of the couples whose weddings I've attended were in fact already married through a quick courthouse ceremony months of even years prior. They do the courthouse marriage so that they can reap the financial benefits, promising to have their 'real' wedding when he returns from the deployment. Because of this arrangement, many brides are left planning their big day singlehandedly. That can be a blessing to those detail-oriented brides who have been dreaming of their wedding day since age 5 when she would dress in a pillowcase veil, her mother's heals, and force her little brother to walk hand-in-hand down the imaginary aisle in her family's living room. But it can also be an incredibly daunting, exhausting event to plan. Unless you have a magnificent wedding planner, you are left with the infinite details that go into bringing the vision to life.

With June being the most popular wedding month in many areas of the country, I am busting with inspiration for a modern military themed wedding. Therefore, I have compiled 10 of the most amazing military themed wedding ideas that I could find to help make this special event less worrisome and more whimsical.

1.) Your Story invitation insert.
In April, 2013 I attended a military wedding of a couple who invited me and my husband with a delightfully unique invitation. It was a classy Mad Libs-style invitation that allowed us to hand write words on the RSVP card such as a song we wanted to hear and how we wanted them to recess down the isle (I said cartwheel.) I am loving the wedding invitation Insert featured through David's Bridal that tells a quick story of how the bride and groom met – a fun way to tell guests who may not know the couple very well.

2.) Love birds cake topper.
Made by Ann Wood at annwood.net, she can customize a bird wedding cake topper to your branch of the military. Sit them atop your cake to wow your guests and treasure as a keepsake long after the cake cutting.

3.) Spruce up your favors.
This idea is so fresh. Use a living spruce in a mason jar tied with burlap string to give guests as favors. What a wonderful way to incorporate the army green and tan military wedding color pairing into your favors.

4.) Anything but boring boutonnieres.
I love attending weddings that reek personality. For a military twist, pin an army man, anchor emblem, wings or sabers to the lapel of your ushers and groomsmen.

5.) The wedding that gives back.
For the couple who doesn't need much, this idea is sure to leave a lasting impression. Rather than creating a wedding registry, invite guests to donate to a military cause of your choosing, such as to the Wounded Warrior Project. Include instructions with the invitation, and display a reception table where last minute donations can be made. Remind guests of tax deductions.

6.) Create a photo booth.
It's a party, why not have a little fun with photography? It's a great way to snap photos of all the guests enjoying themselves in a nontraditional way.

7.) Go vintage.
If I could redo my wedding I'd plan a vintage military themed wedding. Rather than bright patriotic colors, go for vintage blues and muted reds. Use old suitcases and trunks to house gifts, and incorporate vintage military airplanes or other branch-specific nostalgia into the centerpieces and favors.

8.) Use pretty postage.
Dress up your invitations with custom military wedding themed postage from zazzle.com.

9.) Amazing military wedding venues.
I had the honor of witnessing a wedding ceremony at the Air Force Academy Cadet Chapel. It is a stunning structure both inside and out. As a guest, I will never forget that wedding because it was truly an amazing venue. To incorporate the military theme into your setting, research local museums, banquet halls, and chapels related to your branch. Many bases are rich in history, and you can usually find both old and new structures that are sure to please. Most military venues must be reserved in advance for a fee, much like civilian wedding sites.

10.) Free wedding dresses through Brides Across America.
Heidi Janson at BridesAcrossAmerica.com has given away over 5000 wedding gowns to military brides. This remarkable woman and her team are setting up nationwide wedding gown giveaway events in July, 2013. Head on over to their site to check dates and locations, and to pre-register. To qualify, you or your fiancĂ©e has to have deployed within the last 5 years – or – you must have orders for an upcoming deployment. You must also show proof of orders, have a valid ID, and be engaged. If you don't live near one of the giveaway events, or if you don't qualify, they sell very affordable gowns through their site.

I've just skimmed the surface of my finds. For many more amazing military themed wedding ideas, check out my Pinterest board: Amazing Ideas for a Military Themed Wedding

Finding A Workers’ Compensation Attorney

Although no law states that you must hire a workers’ compensation attorney, it is extremely difficult, if not impossible, to handle a claim on your own. When you’re going against highly skilled adjusters working for the insurance companies that have constant access to lawyers, hiring legal representation is essential. Trying to handle your own case may save you a few bucks, but it will cost you plenty in the long run.

When Should I Seek Representation?

Trying to determine when to hire an experienced workers’ compensation attorney isn’t easy. However, if your employer denies that you were injured on the job, or if the insurance carrier refuses to pay, you need to call a lawyer right away. Some less obvious reasons to seek representation include the following instances: if the adjustor promises benefits but keeps giving you reasons why the check hasn’t arrived yet, if your employer’s attorney asks you to give a deposition, and-the worst-case scenario-if you are denied medical treatment. All of these situations should be viewed as red flags.

Why Should I Seek Representation?

Believe it or not, many people ask that question. The simple answer is: you have rights! Nobody wants to be the bad guy in any situation, but insurance companies have a knack for making victims feel that way. Do not let these self-interested parties determine what’s right or wrong; in our system, that is what judges and juries are for.

If you were in a work-related accident, you are likely dealing with the complex legal system for the first time, and dealing with it while you are in a state of duress. Meanwhile, the insurer or employer who you are seeking compensation from will hire lawyers who handle these kinds of cases every day. Therefore, you need skilled representation from a lawyer who can match the defense at their own game and provide you with guidance and support during what will be a tough time.

How Can I Find A Lawyer?

Finding representation is simple. First, check the Internet. Almost everyone advertises legal services online these days. Read the reviews posted, ask your colleagues and coworkers for referrals, and check the local Yellow Pages. Advertising comes in many forms; use it to your advantage. Also, check with your state’s American Bar Association. They keep tabs on everyone practicing law in the state, and, more importantly, they keep track of complaints and malpractice claims. Though the Bar will not refer you to a specific workers’ compensation attorney, they will certainly provide you with all of the tools you need to make an informed decision.

You have rights. Exercise them. Do not let your employer bully you when it comes to getting the compensation you deserve. Too many people lose the monetary support they are entitled to claim because they do not know that help exists. If you have been injured on the job, and your job refuses to pay, call an experienced workers’ compensation attorney right away.

What Type of Insurance Coverage for the Amazon Vendor?

If you are involved in e-commerce by selling online, you might realize that you face similar risks as other business. Those involved in the Amazon marketplace are required by the company to obtain a certain amount of business coverage up to $1,000 per occurrence:

• Commercial general liability insurance

• Bodily injury insurance

• Personal injury insurance

• Property insurance

Amazon vendors need to realize that this is limited coverage that will not protect them if losses necessitate a larger claim. Like any business person, those involved in e-commerce need to assess their needs and acquire appropriate related insurance protection.

General Liability

General liability insurance is a basic coverage for the online seller – as it is traditional brick and mortar retail outlets. It is there to protect your business from liability to:

– Injuries

– Negligence

– Accidents

If a related lawsuit occurs, this insurance can pay for payment you are judged to pay and legal expenses.

Products liability coverage generally is tied to this policy. It protects the manufacturer or seller in regard to bodily injury or property damage to a third party that occurs because of a faulty product.

There are instances, however, when this form of coverage does not help. Why? In the event a seller is not rated appropriately and files a claim, he or she may get a ‘no’ from the insurer.

Take the case of Mary – an Amazon vendor that successfully sold skin care products to an online market.

All was fine, business-wise, for Mary until the fateful day when a consumer sued her in relation to a serious skin flare-up credited to the creams sent to her by Mary. When Mary filed a claim, she was in for a shock: the insurance company denied coverage because her policy was wrongly rated as an internet retailer. As someone that placed her company labels on her creams, she should have been rated ‘a manufacturer’!

Too bad her agent did not catch the mistake! The financial consequences had a far-reaching effect, eventually forcing her to file for bankruptcy.

While this spells out the urgency of being on the lookout for problems with a policy, there are other forms of coverage that an Amazon seller needs to be highly cognizant of.

Other Policies for the Amazon Seller

One of the chief concerns any Amazon seller has is the possibility of being suspended from the Amazon network of sellers. If this occurs, the loss of income can be substantial. Amazon Suspension Insurance Policy is the number one coverage that is recommended for the industry across the board.

Other insurance policies to consider are:

• Business Auto

• Workers Comp

• Umbrella/Excess

• Cyber Liability

• Ocean Marine

• EPLI

Of course, nothing takes the place of speaking to an insurance professional that will steer you to a tailored insurance program made for you.

Everything You Must Know Before Selecting a Bankruptcy Attorney

Before making the decision to file for bankruptcy, it is important to realize that there are four different types of ways individuals and companies can file. Your bankruptcy attorney will be able to help you determine whether you should file for Chapter 7, 11, 12, or 13. Chapters 7 and 13 are personal options. On the other hand, chapters 11 and 12 are for corporations and those in the agricultural business.

The first step you will need to take in order to select a bankruptcy attorney is to search for lawyers in your area that practice in the appropriate Chapter you will be filing. There are some lawyers that focus on personal finances, while others may simply focus on businesses. Some firms may do a mix of both. More general firms that practice a wide variety of law are also an option. When it comes to filing on behalf of an individual, many firms choose to file Chapter 7. Chapter 7 bankruptcy is the least complicated way to file.

When selecting a bankruptcy attorney, it is best to seek someone with experience in the field. You are going to want someone who knows what they are doing and is highly knowledgeable when it comes to settling your finances. If you choose to go with an individual as opposed to a firm, it is best to ask if the lawyer has a reference source that he or she uses in the event they are unfamiliar with a particular part of your case. When choosing a firm, all of the members of the practice can work together if a problem arises. Firms are likely to have individuals who are knowledgeable in a wide variety of areas; making all references in-house. Remember, even the slightest mistake can cause your case to be dismissed.

Find out if the person you choose is going to be available to answer your questions. Find out how long it may take for return calls and what happens if your lawyer is unavailable when a need arises. Is there a backup option in place? In order to head down the road to financial freedom, you are going to need someone that is available.

Before making your decision, be sure to check references. Most firms will provide you with a list of clients that they have worked with in the past. Make a few phone calls to see what others have to say before making your decision. When you are not in good financial standing, asking friends and family for their advice may be the last thing you want to do. However, they may be able to provide you with a reference for a bankruptcy attorney.

Finding the person that is going to represent your case is not a decision that should be taken lightly. When it comes to your finances, experience and professionalism are extremely important.

Reasons to Buy Life Insurance

For many people, the first introduction to life insurance is when a friend or a “friend of a friend” gets an insurance license. For others, a close friend or relative died without having adequate coverage or any life insurance. For me, I was introduced to a life insurance company where I had to set appointments with friends and family as I learned the ends and outs of the industry and hopefully, make some sales.

Unfortunately, however, this is how most people acquire life insurance – they don’t buy it, it is sold to them. But is life insurance something that you truly need, or is it merely an inconvenience shoved under your nose by a salesperson? While it may seem like the latter is true, there are actually many reasons why you should purchase life insurance.

As we grow older, get married, start a family, or begin a business, we need to understand that life insurance is absolutely necessary. For example, picture a safety net. You may be the greatest tightrope walker in the world, without a doubt. You could perform without a net, but, “Why?” You cherish your life and the life of those close to you and you wouldn’t do anything that showed that you felt differently. Let’s face it, we have no control over the unpredictability of life or of unforeseen occurrences. With that in mind, just as a safety net protects the uncertainty life, so does life insurance. It is an indispensable and fundamental foundation to a sound financial plan. Over the years, life insurance has given many caring and responsible people the peace of mind knowing that money would be available to protect the ones most important in their life, family and estate in a number of ways, including:

1. To Pay Final Expenses

The cost of a funeral and burial can easily run into the tens of thousands of dollars, and I don’t want my wife, parents, or children to suffer financially in addition to emotionally at my death.

2. To Cover Children’s Expenses

Like most caring and responsible parents, it is necessary to be sure that our children are well taken care of and can afford a quality college education. For this reason, additional coverage is absolutely essential while children are still at home.

3. To Replace the Spouse’s Income

If one parent passes away while the children are young, the surviving caring parent would need to replace that income, which is essential to their lifestyle. The responsible surviving parent would need to hire help for domestic tasks like cleaning the house, laundry, and cooking. Add to that equation if it is a single parent, helping with schoolwork, and taking your children to doctor’s visits.

4. To Pay Off Debts

In addition to providing income to cover everyday living expenses, a family would need insurance to cover debts like the mortgage, so they wouldn’t have to sell the house to stay afloat.

5. To Buy a Business Partner’s Shares

In a business partnership, the partners need insurance on each other partner’s life. The reason is so if one dies, the others will have enough cash to buy his interest from his heirs and pay his share of the company’s obligations without having to sell the company itself. They have the same needs (due to the risk that one of the partners might die), and they simultaneously purchased insurance on each other’s life.

6. To Pay Off Estate Taxes

Estate taxes can be steep, so having insurance in place to pay them is essential to avoid jeopardizing assets or funds built for retirement. Use of insurance for this purpose is most common in large estates, and uses permanent (rather than term) insurance to ensure that coverage remains until the end of life.

7. To Provide Living Benefits

With the advancements in medicine and rising healthcare costs, people are living longer, but cannot afford to. Living benefits is an option to use death proceeds before the insured dies to help with obligations or necessities to ease the pressure on themselves and others.

How Much Coverage Should I Buy?

The face amount, or “death benefit” of an insurance policy (i.e., the amount of proceeds paid to the beneficiary) should be high enough to replace the after-tax income you would have earned had you lived a full life, presuming you can afford the annual premiums for that amount. In other words, the insurance replaces the income you didn’t have the chance to earn by living and working until retirement due to a premature death.

The proper amount of insurance allows your family to continue their lifestyle, even though your income is no longer available. The actual amount that you should purchase depends upon your present and probable future incomes, any special circumstances affecting you or your family, and your existing budget for premiums.

Whole Life or Term?

Some people prefer to drive Cadillac, Lincoln or Rolls Royce, which come with all of the electronic gadgets that make driving safe and as easy as possible. Others prefer less customized makes, equally reliable to their more expensive cousins, but requiring more hands-on attention.

Whole life is the “Cadillac” of insurance; these companies try to do everything for you, specifically investing a portion of your premiums so that the annual cost doesn’t increase as you grow older. The investment characteristic of the insurance means that premiums are generally higher than a similar term policy with the same face value. After all, whole life insurance is intended to cover your whole life.

Term insurance, on the other hand, is temporary life insurance. There are no excess premiums to be invested, and no promises or guarantees beyond the end of the term, which can range from 1 to 30 years. The annual premium for term insurance is always less than whole life, lacking the investment component, but your premiums will rise (often substantially) once the term period expires.

Both types of life insurance, term or whole life (or one of their derivatives) have benefits and drawbacks; both have their place depending upon the needs, desires, and financial objectives of the purchaser. A knowledgeable professional insurance agent can help you decide which type of policy is best for you depending upon your circumstances. But whichever you select, be sure that you have enough coverage to meet your objectives in the short term and the long term.

The Last Word

Some people mistakenly believe that life insurance is a scam. This is because the money for premiums is lost if death doesn’t occur during the coverage period (in the case of term insurance), or because many people live to a ripe old age and continue to pay their permanent insurance premiums. Such naysayers compare life insurance protection to gambling, and forgo the protection entirely.

There are others, who have the belief that life insurance does not help them. To those individuals, the answer is: You are absolutely correct! The truth of the matter is that life insurance is a way for caring and responsible people to help ensure that their family can continue to move forward in the event of your untimely demise, a truly difficult time of loss. Of course, there is no bet – you will die, but no one knows when. It could be today, tomorrow, or 50 years into the future, but it will happen eventually.

Do you have life insurance? Why or why not?

Selecting a Mesothelioma Lawyer

If you have been diagnosed with mesothelioma and find yourself having made the decision to hire a mesothelioma lawyer, make sure that you take this decision very seriously. It is of great importance that you do your homework and seek out the best and most experienced mesothelioma lawyer and not just the one with the flashiest advertising.

It is very important to find a lawyer that has years of experience and positive jury verdicts for mesothelioma cases. When hiring a mesothelioma lawyer it is important to find someone who you can trust and who you feel has your best interest as their top priority.

Ignore the hype, the sales pitch, the glitzy offices, the fancy advertising, and the pressure to sign now; and go for the services of an experienced mesothelioma attorney when seeking counsel to handle your case. Litigating mesothelioma is difficult therefore, having an experienced attorney by your side is of utmost importance… with the key being on “experienced”.

When interviewing a mesothelioma lawyer it is important that you ask questions such as how many mesothelioma cases have they handled; again this speaks to the importance of finding an experienced attorney to work on your behalf.

You will also want to know how many mesothelioma cases the lawyer has settled and on the average how long did it take to settle the claim. If at all possible you will want to avoid a jury trial, simply in the interest of time and stress.

Mesothelioma is an aggressive cancer and one for which there is no known cure. Time is meant to be spent with your loved ones and not in a protracted court battle. An experienced mesothelioma lawyer can help to move the process forward in a concise and well thought out manner. When interviewing a mesothelioma lawyer, ask if they will pass your file onto another firm. The lawyer you interview may not even be the lawyer that ends up working on your case. Ask the questions and expect satisfactory answers!

Also ask how many attorneys will be working on your file and exactly how long have those attorneys been practicing law. Remember this is not the time for inexperience and you deserve to know who will be working on your lawsuit. You will also want to know if there have been any grievances filed against the mesothelioma lawyer you interview. Ethical and moral practices should be an expectation.

Another helpful question would be; what is the average compensation for a mesothelioma case that the lawyer has won?

Also, focusing on the less stressful route and the most expeditious route, remember to ask about the odds for settling outside of court versus having to go to court and attempting to win a jury verdict. Take the time to ask these simple questions in your initial meeting with the mesothelioma lawyer.

Don’t take short cuts.

Doing the hard work on the front end will make such a difference for you and your family. Another key piece of advice is to avoid making any final decisions and avoid signing any legal agreement based on the first meeting with a perspective mesothelioma lawyer. You should take a few days to think over the results of the interview and should always interview more than one attorney prior to making a decision.

Yes, time is of the essence and it is your responsibility to have your lawsuit handled by a lawyer who understands the complexity of asbestos claims. Experience really does count.

Asbestos claims are often very complex and proving the link between your illness and your exposure to asbestos can be quite difficult and often time consuming. The guidance of an experienced mesothelioma lawyer is critical to helping you and your family as you seek and receive financial compensation for being diagnosed with mesothelioma related to asbestos exposure.

Experienced attorneys in this field understand that each case is different and deserves individual attention, and will pursue your lawsuit with experience and knowledge of mesothelioma and the asbestos industry.

Fast Car Insurance Quote Info: What Will You Need to Provide in Order to Get Fast, Reliable Quotes?

What you need to have ready in order to obtain a fast car insurance quote varies depending on the company. In general, though, you’ll likely need the following:

• Driver’s license number

• Vehicle’s year, model and make

• Zip code

• Vehicle identification number

• The odometer reaching for the car you want insured

If you want to add somebody else to your policy, you’ll need some of their details as well. It’s not uncommon for a parent to add their teen to their policy. Some insurers use such personal information as factors to determine your “risk” level and therefore the price of your policy. Individuals with high risk factors are obviously charged more. Risk factors include things like the type of vehicle, age, driving history, and even credit history.

If you live in an area that is prone to severe weather, it could be a factor that causes you to get higher quotes as well.

There are usually ways to save when trying to get a fast car insurance quote. Check and see if there is an option to enter any details on the security features of your vehicle, like GPS anti-theft devices and alarms. The more difficult it will be for your car to be stolen, the more money you could potentially save on insurance.

Fast Car Insurance Quote From Different Companies

There are some sites that will give you multiple quotes from several different insurance companies at once, and will allow you to go down and compare all of the offers. Don’t just select the one with the lowest rate. Take a few minutes to read the details regarding each offer. What exactly will you get with that rate? What about the deductible? What do all of the reviews say about each particular provider? What kinds of discounts might you be eligible for?

Another thing to consider is the type of coverage you need. If you drive an older car, then basic liability coverage might be enough. However, if your family depends on you working, then you’ll likely want coverage on yourself as well just in case you are ever badly injured and cannot work. How much of a deductible will you be able to pay if the vehicle ever needs repaired or even replaced?

These are the most important factors to consider when searching for a fast car insurance quote. You can learn more about auto insurance and get some quotes with esurance. Discounts with this company are some of the best. There are many ways to save.

Top Three Tips To Find The Best DUI Lawyer

When you are involved in a drunken driving case, it is indeed a huge embarrassment for you and it results in loss of reputation as well, if you are a public figure. It is a huge dent to your confidence and goes down as one of the lowest moments in your life. If there is one element that can make this moment any better for you, it is the presence of a good DUI lawyer. When one is legally qualified and has enough experience in dealing with drunken driving cases before, he knows exactly how to bail you out of the situation you are in.

You should remember that you may not walk free when you hire a good attorney to fight your drunken driving case. Nevertheless, you could be rewarded with lower penalty charges or reduced jail sentence than that was offered to you before. Since this attorney plays an important role in your freedom, it is only natural that you should choose him properly. Here are five tips that will help you to choose the right legal partner to bail you out of your drunken driving case.

1. Local flavour

Always look for legal experts in your locality because these people will have a thorough knowledge of the local driving & drinking laws. Also, they could share a personal rapport with the judges or prosecution, and they might know to turn this goodwill into a reduced sentence for you. A local attorney knows exactly how the court functions and how it will pronounce judgements in a drunken driving case. Therefore, you must use an attorney who knows what he is doing and why he is doing so.

2. Great history

Before hiring a legal expert, do a background check on his representation history. Analyse the cases that he has presented and how many he won out of them. Also, check if he was involved in any controversial representations in the past that led to his disqualification from the bar. If yes, you should stay away from such people because they will only bring you more mess than the one that you are already in.

3. References

Choose an attorney who is ready to provide you references from his past clients and success stories. It speaks volumes about the confidence of a lawyer when he gives details of his past cases and clients to you. Check with these clients to understand the expert’s style of working, his winning rate, fee structure, availability, team strength and about his other skills. When an attorney hesitates or refuses to give details about references, it is a clear indication for you to reject this person.

These are some of the basic tips that you need to follow to hire one of the best attorneys to represent your drunken driving case. Apart from these, you should give consideration to factors like user reviews, the flexibility of timings, qualification and additional certifications of lawyers, personal discussions and recommendations from friends & colleague to choose the best possible option to represent your case successfully.

I Can’t Afford an Attorney to Help Me Defend My Home From Mortgage Fraud

“A settled plan to deprive the people of the benefits, blessings, and ends of the contract, to subvert the fundamentals of the constitution, to deprive them of all share in making and executing laws, will justify a revolution.“ John Adams, Novanglus Papers, 1774

AM I SUPPOSED TO JUST STEP ASIDE

AND LET THE LENDER TAKE MY HOUSE?

Originally there were twelve of us working loosely as a group researching individually and then sharing that knowledge. We operated then like members of a club all with similar interests. While we were learning much faster than any individual borrower could have, we were each making our way through court representing ourselves. Is it wrong? Are we going to lose? I have felt both confident and anxious at different times over the last seven years. But, our members have won seven cases in the last eight months, so the answer is, yes it is possible. In fact, I do it full time. In some weird but good way, I feel it is my civic duty.

I have been sitting in court and heard many judges admonish borrowers who are trying to represent themselves as Pro se parties that they “need to get an attorney”. Nearly all of my clients over seven years believed that because the judge told them to, that it was the law. It is not. But, the judge most often felt that the borrower had a better chance of having his side of the story represented with a competent attorney. It is, on a general level, good advice. But, judges today are missing some details about a new type of fraud which was virtually unknown until about 1999, and that can make paying an attorney a sure way to lose your family’s home.

The Borrower can’t afford an attorney anyway at this time. Besides, there are close to zero attorneys that even know mortgage finance law. There isn’t enough room here to go into detail, but it is easy enough to understand if you are lucky enough to meet someone who knows what has changed over the years in the relationship between attorneys and judges. I wish someone would have told me in 2011.

Actually, if it is a fraudulent foreclosure, why should a borrower have to lose his or her home because they can’t afford to hire an attorney? They are victims of a crime. They are not criminals.

So if you are a borrower who is threatened with foreclosure the question is, if you can’t find a good attorney and even if you did you could not pay him or her, do you just give up the greatest and most expensive possession that you will ever own? Maybe. But, I say no. Every day I know more than the day before and on this one subject, I am an expert.

I have taken this whole issue of “Imposter” lenders blowing smoke up the court’s behind and stealing homes without ever “lending” a dime to the borrower very seriously. Yes, back in the days of the real world (before 1994 or so) it was all very simple.

You borrowed from a banker you knew. You signed a Promissory Note detailing the amount you owed and the payment terms you agreed to. The banker needed to know that if you became unable to make your payments that the bank would not lose the money they were loaning you, so you put up the home you were buying as collateral. The document you signed that contained the terms you and the bank agreed on is called a security instrument. In states that use judicial foreclosure rules, that collateral instrument is called a mortgage. In states that use non-judicial foreclosure rules the security instrument is called a deed of trust, in these states there is nothing even called a mortgage. Since, we all use the term mortgage to mean home loans we get mixed up. The foreclosing party is counting on confusing you and the judge. (I cover that more completely in another article).

Now those documents and the terms agreed to is your home loan. The Promissory Note is essential to the deal and it is the most important document you signed. You made these fair monthly payments. You and the banker kept track of the payments, and when your loan was paid off the Promissory Note was marked paid and returned to you. The original Promissory Note was returned to you. Every time. You could trust the finance industry to do it like this. But, to any borrower, attorney, or judge born after about 1980 this sounds like fantasy, because following the laws and statutes on banking has not been an active idea since 1995 (that’s when Microsoft first provided free email at the literal speed of light).

But, since so few Borrowers know any of their rights and because these same crooked finance guys ruined the economy for just about the whole world, very few Borrowers can afford to go plunk down $5,000 for an attorney to tell them their rights. The vast, vast majority of borrowers being wrongfully foreclosed have just tell their kids they gotta change schools and they rent a truck they can’t afford and head for a rental home or apartment that they not get approved for because not only has the false foreclosing party taken their home illegally, they have also reported the foreclosure to the credit rating companies, which has ruined their credit.

Folks, this is not the America that I grew up in!

It is my intent to stick around to tell these victim borrowers that it doesn’t all have to go so fast. That the “Bank” that is threatening to foreclose has no case. This “foreclosing party” cannot and they will not show the real deal proof that they even are the true party you owe. That is because they are not the party you owe.

But if, you don’t stop turn and fight they will and do get away with it. Your case is very good, you just don’t know it yet.

I do that. I am working hard to be that someone that can tell you why you have more than just hope to help you fight back. I am a long time real estate broker, real estate developer, home builder, mortgage broker and a consultant on very large real estate deals around the country. I am supposed to be a real smart guy, and you know what?

Yep, GMAC Mortgage stole my house and it made me mad. Real mad. I have been mad every moment since November 11th, 2011. But I didn’t rent a truck. I fought back. But, like so many Americans in all professions, the economy had seriously damaged my income, so I couldn’t afford an attorney. Back then, I just knew that I had to have a lawyer.

I have held my own house to a standstill in court for now seven years, while dealing with the most outrageous lies from attorneys in court than I could never have dreamed anyone would be brazen (or stupid) enough to tell. Luckily I now know why I could stick around, and if I stuck around neither side would win. The explanation on what is different today is too long for this article, but I think I will make the seven years worthwhile very soon.

OK, so above I have stated much of the problem (not in detail of course) of how does a borrower try to protect his home without the money or information to hire an attorney.

The answer is to do it Pro Se. Pro Se means “I am representing myself”.

That will at first sound impossibly intimidating. Everyone I have ever talked to had a very difficult time even thinking about it. But, it is possible. It is legal. In fact it is your constitutional right.

First of all, you need information. What has your “Lender” done wrong? What have you done right? How can I find my way through the court system? You can’t lie. You have to really know what the truth is and what is happening. If we try to deceive the court with misleading statements, we will look no better than the characters we are up against. The truth is a very powerful weapon when used correctly.

Whoever is threatening to foreclose on you is not the entity that funded your loan. You are not going to claim you didn’t get a loan, because you did. But, not from the Lender which is named on your loan papers. It came from an unknown source in an illegal way. (Just ride along with that thought, you can learn what I mean later).

This means that whoever you think you closed with has no right to collect from you money, nor to “assign” the loan to another entity. Therefore your loan could not have been sold. The Seller and the Purchaser of your Promissory Note cannot have written a contract and transferred your loan through a sale because the Seller had no interest (ownership) in your loan to sell.

But, if you don’t protest it in court they will claim your loan has been sold and now an Imposter/Fictitious Payee (real statute terms in all 50 states) will steal your home. If they make a claim that is untrue, but you don’t object, then the judge must take the lie as the truth by law. In watching borrowers in court, or reading the motions and answers in their cases, I am struck with how little borrowers think they can object. Heck, what did Perry Mason do? Object. What did Barnaby Jones do? Object. What did Captain Kirk do on Boston Legal? Yes, he objected long and loudly. The court is not a church. You should act professionally, but you have every right to have your say.

The way you begin getting your case to court is to file a lawsuit (a Quiet Title Action is common for home loan fraud, but today we have something much better. The average cost around the country to file a foreclosure fraud lawsuit is $100 to $200 or so. Compare that to what an attorney wants up front.

You are now the Plaintiff and no longer the Defendant. You will not go to court for some time, but you will have to demand your rights and the party claiming to have the right foreclose will try to block you with lies. But, this is all on paper through motions using the appropriate laws and not before a judge in court right away. Possibly never, which is how we won 5 times recently. It is my belief because we stay in and fight the foreclosing party decides to pick on someone who does have the strength that knowledge brings.

We can organize your documents and come up with the strategy to prove you did not receive money from the Imposter Lender who is claiming you did. We can answer your questions and help your presentation. That is what we have done for ourselves and we can do it for you. At a fraction of what a full time attorney charges. When the proper time comes you might be using an attorney for a short time in court when you can show the attorney why he can win for you. This will cost you a fraction of what you think to save your home. Did I mention that we can help lower your anxiety with this knowledge?