DESPERATE ...need help! - Posted by Mark

Posted by GL on December 14, 1999 at 07:03:01:

Based on your statement that a competent attorney said pay up or walk, here are some thoughts.

What would happen if you adopted a delaying strategy? Wait the maximum time before replying to the other party’s letters (30 days?). Reply with a question that requires clarification.When they reply ask another question, or ask for more documentation. Make them prove every little thing. Accept nothing. agree to nothing. When that avenue runs out start negotiating. make one sided offers. Quibble about everything.Keep changing your mind. Keep stalling every way possible.See how long you can drag the whole affair out. In the case of a government agency it could be years.

Stop paying taxes and mortgage payments etc. Keep collecting rent or keep living there. Milk it for all it is worth.

Put some more clouds on the title. Leins, easements, loans, mortgages. Whatever you can think of. Ones you have the power to remove.

After a year or more when all delays are used up let them foreclose.

Buy it back at the foreclosure sale.

One more thought before you do this. What they are doing sounds arbitrary and unfair. This is where publicity can make them back off. Also if it is a government organization talk to your elected representative, and see what they can do for you.

DESPERATE …need help! - Posted by Mark

Posted by Mark on December 13, 1999 at 14:32:38:

Have buyer for my property, but have unsatistied mortgage from 30 years ago. House burnt down in the seventies, presumably insurance paid mortgage twenty some years ago.
Now mortgage company says that mortgage was never paid and is default for last twenty some years. They have never foreclosed. I have owned property for over 10 years. Records from some 20 years ago apparently were not kept. Former owner memory of events back then is sketchy. I consulted with an attorney, who said that I have two choices
if I can’t document the mortgage payoff, 1. pay it 2. walk away from the property. And no I didn’t have title insurance when I bought. Anybody have any ideas?

Time for “Vic Vicious” from the firm of Howe Dewey Cheetum and Steele - Posted by John Behle

Posted by John Behle on December 14, 1999 at 24:23:03:

I would get an agressive attorney that would rattle the saber and threaten them with damages. I doubt they would go to court, but they would look very foolish trying to explain or document the situation.

If the note was a trust deed, the trustee could have some records (usually the title company). I doubt that, but the fire department could have a file and it might have some information about the insurance company and a claim being filed.

Their failure to file a notice (did they?) and pursue this defaulted loan would appear to the court that they did not believe they were owed money.

If in fact, you did not make a payment and the previous seller didn’t, their assertion that one was made enters into the realm of fraud. An affidavit from you and the previous owner would be valuable.

Based on their actions and lack of trying to enforce their position tends to demonstrate that your side of the story is correct. A good attorney here could probably wrap this up pretty easily and cheaply.

I’m not an attorney, but I suggest you consult another one before just walking away from this.

Once you put some pressure on in that manner, they would likely settle for a small amount before going to court.

Re: DESPERATE …need help! - Posted by GL

Posted by GL on December 13, 1999 at 19:17:04:

If the mortgage was paid off then the discharge of mortgage should have been recorded at the registry office or court house. Check the record. Also I would be asking for some evidence to back up a claim like that. Do they have a file on the case? Can you find out who the lawyers were who handled the case? Get all the details. Someone must know something. They can’t pop up now and say “Oh we forgot to collect on a debt 30 years ago” without having some explaining to do.

Re: DESPERATE …need help! - Posted by Ben

Posted by Ben on December 13, 1999 at 19:15:06:

Check your state’s laws, in some states if a mortgage
is that old and has not been foreclosed on, there is a legal presumption that it has been paid. I would also check into the applicable statute of limitations. Worst case scenario maybe the mortgage holder would take $500.00 in exchange for a release.They have obviously written off this loan a long time ago.

Re: DESPERATE …need help! - Posted by DB_ATL

Posted by DB_ATL on December 13, 1999 at 17:42:14:

Seems to me that if the lender has never forclosed in 20 years, they may have waived their right to the money. check with a competent real estate attorney.
Oh, and always get title insurance!

Re: DESPERATE …need help! - Posted by Mark

Posted by Mark on December 13, 1999 at 20:27:18:

Yes did check courthouse no discharge was recorded, am trying to reconstruct as best I can but 30 years is a long time. Records of insurance compamies were not computerized 30 years ago and microfilm wasn’t saved.
I’m going tommorrow to check newspaper for accounts of the fire! thanks all.

Re: DESPERATE …need help! - Posted by Mark

Posted by Mark on December 13, 1999 at 20:34:02:

The presumption of payment is 20 years after either the last payment or when the last payment was due. The
lender is our favorite Uncle in D.C. and he claims that a payment was made 4 years ago according records provided in depositions. I have owned the property for over 10 years and have never made a payment, and the former owner claims to not have made a payment in 20 years. But they have this computer printout that a payment was made; by whom nobody is sure. thanks

Re: DESPERATE …need help! - Posted by Mark

Posted by Mark on December 13, 1999 at 20:38:21:

Have checked with two attorneys. After research the competent one said pay or walk. I agree that title insurance should always be gotten, but even I don’t follow my own rules sometimes. If I had gotten title insurance, we probably would never have settled. Thanks