This Foreclosure Trial Went All Wrong….(until the very end)
On the notice of trial, the bank told the court the trial would last 10 minutes, .they came waltzing in with two attorneys, stacks of binders and a very seasoned bank witness, a guy with decades in “the industry”. They drove up from Miami and, before we started they came over to try and convince my client that he should just take a deal and walk away. Not really a good move to try and bully my guy, a decades-long serving US Marine, still pulling many forms of active duty. Not really a good move to try and bully a guy with a really well-developed sense of right and wrong. The trial started and every single thing went wrong. And by that I mean that the judge refused to listen at all to our very valid defenses, principally that my client was making his agreed mortgage payments when the loan was transferred and they called him in default. So in addition to all the very real evidential and case law objections I had the very best defense.
MY CLIENT WAS PAYING HIS MORTGAGE WHEN THE BANK PULLED THE RUG OUT FROM UNDER HIM!
Moving through the trial, the bank’s witness was couched through all the magic words the bank needs to rattle off, but none of the proper foundations were laid and the testimony and the documents should have been excluded, but they weren’t. This is foreclosure where the only rule is…
THE COURTS HAVE TO DO WHATEVER THEY NEED TO DO TO GIVE THE BANKS JUDGEMENT
There is no question that the judge had that one goal in mind, and he made several statements along they way to emphasize that, something along the lines of:
WEIDNER, WHY ARE YOU JUST DELAYING THIS – I’M GOING TO ENTER JUDGMENT.
(well gee Judge, you haven’t even heard my case yet, but we’ll get back to that)
This was one of those cases where the pleadings and the documents and the evidence was so screwed up that no matter how much the judge wants to give them judgment it just should not happen. But then, what does all that mean?
I tried several times early on to advise the judge that we could just end the waste of time right now and give my client judgment, but he just refused. Finally at the end of the day, when the bank pleaded to set the sale of this home he denied their motion after I asked the judge:
LET ME SPEND SOME TIME TO DETAIL ALL OF THE MANY WAYS THE BANKS CASE IS WRONG IN WRITTEN BRIEFING.
He was weary and tired and was pleased to end the day that way. No matter how much the judge may want to grant them judgment, this case was so bad, he knows he cant. And so after a few days of considering our written pleadings, he’s going to deny the bank’s motion for judgment of foreclosure and find for defendant. He just is.
The Lesson: Things are as bad as they’ve ever been. It’s not a fair fight and it’s not an unbiased and just court system.
The Response: Fight even harder.
The Outcome: We win…eventually