You’ve got to hand it to the South Florida Press, they are doing their job of covering the real horror stories behind the foreclosure crisis. Attached below is a link to today’s article that appears. Read what one attorney is quoted as saying about the fast food foreclosure “justice” handed out on the docket:
” I’m loving that, taking all these stale cases,” he said, then complimented Rosinek. ” He was just jammin’. He was taking all these old cases and just ruling on it. He was getting stuff done, and it was great.”
The far more important question to be asked is why are the “stale” cases hanging around? This attorney represents homeowner’s associations. What HOA’s, judges, press and activists need to be focusing in on is why these cases have not progressed even when the defendants have not filed one single piece of paper. I firmly believe that a close examination of these cases will reveal substantive problems, fraud and errors which will prevent these cases from ever progressing to Final Judgment.
We should all be working with our courts, our clerks and with our Circuits Chief Judges to explore ways to clear the foreclosure backlog. As defense attorneys and defenders of the integrity of the court process, we cannot just sit back and scream about the problems with the system without proposing real world solutions. To that end, I recommend we all reach out to our Chief Judge and clerks and volunteer to examine foreclosure files. We need to remind our judges that while the legislature may have demanded that courts dispose of 62% of cases statewide by July 2011, how they are disposed of remains in the sound discretion of the courts. It would be far more responsible in the long run to focus on dismissing the “stale” and “stalled” cases than it is to focus on disposing of them through Summary Judgment. Moreover, if our courts want to retain some semblance of balance, fairness and equity, our judges need to evenly and fairly apply the Rules of Civil Procedure and focus at least as much attention on disposing of cases through dismissal as they are on disposing them through Summary Judgment.
Our courts can never hit the 62% target through Summary Judgment alone, nor should they. The impact on our neighborhoods and associations would be devastating. Instead, 1) dismiss all cases filed after February 11, 2010 that have not been verified; 2) dismiss all cases that have received notice for lack of prosecution; 3) dismiss all cases that have notice for lack of service; 3) dismiss all cases for which the plaintiff has not been properly identified such that a title can be issued to that Plaintiff.
That’s the only way to come close to meeting the 62% target. I’m calling on attorneys for condo and homeowners associations to examine these policies then join the efforts to push for them.