At what point in time will this country wake up and realize just how much trouble we’re all in and hold the wrongdoers accountable?
That’s just a rhetorical question from me anymore, I increasingly think we’re all too far gone to make any sense of it anymore….
People filing false deeds to take over vacant homes has Palm Beach County’s clerk of courts warning owners to keep an eye on their property records the same way they do their credit reports. With hundreds of vacant houses countywide – fallout from the real estate boom and bust – Clerk Sharon Bock said her office is investigating an increase in suspect “quit claim” deeds filed on homes which are then rented to unsuspecting tenants or occupied by the scammers themselves.
A quit claim deed transfers interest in a property to a new recipient, but offers no guarantee of clear title. Although owner signatures are required on the deed, as well as notarization, Bock said advanced computer and copier technology has made forging documents easier.
“It’s terrible when someone steals your identity, but imagine what it’s like when someone steals your home,” Bock said. “Some of this isn’t just isolated incidents, it’s literally criminals with the intent to defraud.”
“Florida Rules of Civil Procedure require that attorneys file a proper Motion to Withdraw from any case which they no longer plan to represent,” said Eunice Sigler, a spokeswoman for the 11th Judicial Circuit Court in Miami-Dade County. “We are currently researching various options, including any remedies available through the Florida Bar.”
Palm Beach County Chief Judge Peter Blanc said this week he’s also trying to figure out how to proceed.
“Stern has provided notice he will no longer be attorney of record, but the court is unable to recognize it,” Blanc said. “I’m told we’re getting more stipulations of substitute counsel but not anywhere near the number we should have.”