At my last foreclosure defense settlement conference, the lender’s attorney attended with me and my client. His lender client is out of town, and the attorney didn’t even know who to call, although he had previously suggested to me a contact and phone number. So no phone call was made, and nothing was done at the settlement conference.
I was given a new phone number to call, with a different lender representative than had been previously suggested. I offered to follow up, so the next time we met we could all be more organized.
The lender’s attorney became angry that I wanted to continue the conference, since his client did not attend. He claimed that we had completed the settlement conference, and now he was entitled to continue the foreclosure. The danger, as I suggested to him, was that nothing had been discussed; nothing had been put in writing. My clients were in danger of losing their home if the foreclosure proceeded. We needed written reassurances from the lender that they intended to follow federal law in modifying this mortgage, and we wanted that agreement reinforced by a court order in this foreclosure proceeding.
But the lender’s attorney was resolute: he is filing a report with the court that the settlement conference has been held, and we have no further right to impede his goal of taking away my client’s home. Unfortunately, under Indiana state law, he was right.
Now we must file objections, and process more paperwork asking for a hearing before the judge on the question: “Does the lender have the right to continue foreclosure, without meeting federal guidelines for mortgage modification?”
Well, someone has to solve this stupidity. I will end up having to cut the deal with the lender, and the new contact I was just given. I will also have to make sure the paperwork is right. Unfortunately, the apathy of attorneys and lenders makes what should be a simple transaction an uphill climb filled with delays and “hiding the ball”. Hopefully it will get easier over time.