Northern California Workshop, CLE Credits

There is a seminar worth attending for both lawyers and homeowners in Northern California. The presenters are Dan Edstrom, senior forensic analyst for LivingLies, together with Jim Macklin and Attorney Charles Marshall, all veterans of the foreclosure war. I might make an appearance via SKYPE. They will cover as much as possible for a one day seminar.

To register click on this link: Northern California Workshop

Shadow Foreclosures: Over 500,000 Az Homeowners Underwater

Yes, we can help at livinglies, but the numbers are so high that there is no way we have the resources to help everyone. Lawyers, accountants, analysts and others should be seeing this as a major opportunity to do well for themselves and for the owners of these homes by challenging the rights of the those collectors who are taking their money now, or demanding payment or threatening foreclosure. Arizona lawyers have been slow on the uptake here and in so doing are potentially setting themselves up for future malpractice claims for anyone, whether they aid or not, who received advice from the lawyer that was not based upon the realities of the securitization scam.

Call 520-405-1688, where you can get help in documenting the fraud, help in drafting the documents, and help in finding a lawyer. If you are a lawyer involved in foreclosure defense, bankruptcy or family law, you need to to start studying the real facts and the strategies that get traction in court.

We are planning a possible new Arizona seminar for lawyers, paralegals and sophisticated investors or homeowners. But we will only schedule it if we get enough calls to indicate that the workshop will at least pay for itself. It is a full day of information, strategy, role-playing and tactics to use in the court room.

Editor’s Analysis: Despite loosening standards for principal reductions and modifications, the foreclosure activity across the country is increasing or about to increase due to many factors.

The bizarre reason why the titans of Wall Street want these homes underwater combined with the miscalculation of the real number does not bode well for the housing market nor the economy. With median income now reported by the Wall Street Journal at 1995 levels, and the direct correlation between median income and housing prices you only need a good memory or a computer to see the level of housing prices in 1995 — which is currently where we are headed. As the situation gets worse, the foreclosure and housing problem will become a disaster beyond the proportions seen today.

Wall Street NEEDS foreclosures — not modifications, principal write-downs or settlements. The reason is simple. They have already received trillions in bailouts from the Federal Government. All of that was predicated upon the homes going into foreclosure. If the loans turn out to be capable of performing, many of those trillion of dollars ( generally reported at $17 trillion, which is more than the total principal loaned out to all borrowers during the meltdown period), the mega banks could be facing trillions of  dollars in liability as the demands are properly made for payback. The banks should not be allowed to collect the money and the houses too. Neither should they be allowed to collect the bailout money and keep the mortgages.

The “underwater” calculation is far off the mark. If selling expenses and discounts are taken into consideration, the value of homes used in that calculation is at least 10% less than what is used in the underwater calculation, which would increase the number of underwater homes by at least 15% bringing the Arizona total to nearly 600,000 people who know now that they will never see valuation even coming close to the amount owed. The prospect for strategic defaults in Arizona and elsewhere is staggering —- totaling more than 10 million homes  — or nearly twice the number of foreclosures already “completed”, albeit defectively.

As stated in the article below there is, as we have been saying for years, a huge difference between home prices and home values. Home prices can be pushed up or down based upon external factors In this case it was a flood of what looked like cheap money that is now apparent was neither cheap nor even money (because the named lender never made the loan). Home values and home prices should over the long run track each other given no manipulation of the marketplace which is exactly what Wall Street did. Home values, based upon the Case-Schiller index and thousands of other economists are based upon one simple variable — median income. Median income is now at the lowest point since 1995. That means home values are, after selling expenses and discounts, less than 90% of 1995 prices.

It is simply inevitable that people will take the hit on their credit and walk away from the homes rather than pay $200,000 for on-existent equity and that is exactly what Wall Street is counting on, forcing through its manipulation of government policy and spinning to the public media. If those homes do not go into foreclosure the mega banks’ scam will reveal itself, the assets on their balance sheet will vanish because they never existed anyway and the banks will fall. Whether they are too big to fail or not, they will fail — unless foreclosures spread out across the land.

by Kristena Hansen, www.bizjournals.com

Roughly 40 percent of all mortgaged homes in Arizona were under water during the second quarter of 2012, the third-highest negative equity rate in the nation, according to a report released Wednesday by CoreLogic Inc.

In raw numbers, that translates to about 521,600 homeowners statewide being under water for the quarter out of roughly 1.31 million total mortgaged homes, the report said.

Arizona’s negative equity rate was much higher than the national average of 22.3 percent (10.8 million homes) of all mortgaged homes that were underwater during the same period. That nationwide figure was also a gradual improvement from the first quarter’s 23.7 percent negative equity (11.4 million homes).

CALCULATING NEGATIVE EQUITY

Negative equity, or being under water, refers to homeowners who owe more on their mortgages than their home’s present estimated value. CoreLogic determines negative equity rates by the number of underwater homeowners versus all residential properties in a certain area with an outstanding mortgage.

CoreLogic experts say the improving negative equity landscape nationwide is largely due to the recent rebound in home prices, dwindling sales of lender-owned properties and low inventory of existing homes.

Home prices and home values, however, are distinctly different. Prices represent how much homes actually sell for, while home values are only an estimate and are therefore much harder to determine.

Michael Orr, a real estate expert at Arizona State University, said home value estimates will vary widely depending on who is making the assessment. That makes it tricky to hone in on best practices for calculating negative equity, he said.

Sam Khater, deputy chief economist for CoreLogic, explained how his firm makes its determinations.

LivingLies Offers Scholarships To New Seminar

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER NOW AND SAVE MONEY

What we NOW know about

Loan Securitization And Foreclosure Defense

Presented By

NEIL F GARFIELD, MBA, JD

During my national tour 2008-2009 and my local intensive workshops I learned a lot about what people need, about what people want and about what people can do.  In the two years since my last workshop (an intensive 2-day workshop on procedure and evidence) I found many competent professionals and laymen who could benefit from the workshops but could not afford to pay for them.

In a radical departure from prior pricing models, we have slashed the prices of the workshops to a fraction of what was previously charged.  this is despite the fact that we have sharpened our resources, presentations, tactics and strategies.

This of course will result in fewer amenities being offered as part of the workshop since the hotels tend to charge fees that result in tuition costs that are out of reach for many people whom we wish to invite.

As a pilot measure, we have accepted the suggestion that we make an official policy of what was previously an unofficial policy.  We are offering up to 7 scholarships to those who are qualified and unable to afford the cost of tuition.  The decision on these scholarships is within our sole discretion.

We have done our part in reducing the cost of the vital information presented in these workshops.  I have done my part in providing free information on the LivingLies blog for nearly 5 years.  Anyone who applies for a scholarship should do so with the utmost good faith and an offer to pay what they can.  If you are interested and you think you qualify for a scholarship please write to us at: Seminars@GarfieldFirm.com and put into the subject line: Scholarship

Management reserves the right to increase the number of scholarships depending upon the number of registered and pre-paid participants.

Regards,

Neil

 

 

 

First 2011 Workshop: January 29 LA CA 50 Seat Maximum Register NOW!!!

REGISTER NOW — CLICK HERE!!!

OKAY: Dan Edstrom whom many of you know as our Senior Securitization Analyst and Jon Lindemen, Esq. who has established one of the largest anti-foreclosure mills in the country led a very successful workshop in Sacramento. Answering demand, here is the link for the next one. I’ll be Skyping in and there will be plenty of materials. The price is low and the quality is high. Dan’s chart has gone viral on the internet and has been used in various media including top rated shows (Elliot Spitzer) and others.

CNBC video is on Dan’s website here: http://dtc-systems.net/2010/11/cnbc-mortgage-meltdown/

Eliot Spitzer video here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NHigtkmC3fo&feature=channel

Just for a HUGE laugh check out this explanation of Quantitative Easing: http://dtc-systems.net/2010/11/quantitative-easing-explained/

The first great workshop of 2011 for attorneys who need the latest in quantum data research for litigation in the mortgage/foreclosure arena. Come join us in beautiful Los Angeles in Southern California for a workshop that will showcase years of meticulous fact-finding and verification of the securitization process as it relates to the mortgage loan industry and its’ possible effects on issues like: Title, Trust, Conveyance, Assignments, TILA, RESPA, Servicing Duties, and much more! Sign up soon…seats are very limited. California MCLE’s are being applied for in a retro-active capacity.

REGISTER NOW — CLICK HERE!!!


Workshop Agenda
8:30–9:15 Introduction [Martin Andelman]

9:15–10:00 The Securitization Process [Jim Macklin]

10:00–10:15 Morning Break

10:15–11:00 Prospectus, Pooling/Servicing and Trust Agreements [Jim Macklin]

11:00–11:45 Discovery [Jon B. Lindeman, Jr.]

11:45 to 1:00 Lunch

1:00–1:45 The Great Flood: Proprietary Currency, Appraisals and Ratings [Neil Garfield]

1:45–2:30 Application of Law and Motion Practice [Holly Burgess]

2:30–2:45 Afternoon Break

2:45–3:30 Obligee, Obligor, Life Goes On: Credit Enhancements in Action [Daniel Edstrom]

3:30–4:15 The Man Who Wasn’t There or the Invisible Trust [Daniel Edstrom]

4:15–5:00 Closing Q&A

**  Schedule subject to change without notice **

New Workshop on Motion Practice and Discovery

why-you-should-attend-the-discovery-and-motion-practice-workshop

VISIT LIVINGLIES STORE FOR FREE VIDEOS AND OTHER RESOURCES

START WINNING CASES!!

May 23-24, 2010 2 days. 9am-5pm. Neil F Garfield. CLE credits pending but not promised. Register Now. Seating limited to 18. INCLUDES LUNCH AND EXTENSIVE MANUAL OF FORMS, NARRATIVE AND CASES. An in-depth look at securitized residential mortgages and deeds of trust. Latest cases on standing, nominees, splitting note from security instrument, bankruptcy strategies, expert declarations, forensic analysis reports.

Lawyers, paralegals, experts, forensic analysts will all benefit from this. This workshop includes monthly follow-up teleconferences and continuing on-going support with advance copies of articles, cases and analysis.

  1. STRATEGIC REVIEW: WHY THESE CASES ARE BEING WON AND LOST IN MOTION PRACTICE.
  2. SECURITIZATION REVIEW
  3. USE OF FORENSIC REPORTS AND EXPERT DECLARATIONS
  4. RAISING QUESTIONS OF FACT IN CREDIBLE MANNER
  5. SETTING UP AN EVIDENTIARY HEARING
  6. FOLLOW THE MONEY
  7. OBLIGATION, NOTE, BOND, MORTGAGE, DEED OF TRUST ANALYSIS
  8. TILA, RESPA, QWR, DVL AND RESCISSION — WHY JUDGES DON’T LIKE TILA RESCISSION AND HOW TO OVERCOME THEIR RESISTANCE.
  9. NOTICE OF DEFAULT, TRUSTEE, STANDING, REAL PARTY IN INTEREST EXAMINED AND REVIEWED
  10. INVESTORS, REMICS, TRUSTS, TRUSTEES, BORROWERS, CREDITORS, DEBTORS, HOMEOWNERS
  11. FACT EVIDENCE ON MOTIONS
  12. FORENSIC EVIDENCE ON MOTION
  13. EXPERT EVIDENCE ON MOTION
  14. ORAL ARGUMENT
  15. WHAT TO FILE
  16. WHEN TO FILE
  17. EMERGENCY MOTIONS — MOTION TO LIFT STAY, MOTION TO DISMISS, TEMPORARY RESTRAINING ORDERS, MOTION TO COMPEL DISCOVERY
  18. DISCOVERY: INTERROGATORIES, WHAT TO ASK FOR, HOW TO ASK FOR IT AND HOW TO ENFORCE IT. REQUESTS TO PRODUCE. REQUESTS FOR ADMISSIONS. DEPOSITIONS UPON WRITTEN QUESTIONS.
  19. FEDERAL PROCEDURE
  20. STATE PROCEDURE
  21. BANKRUPTCY PROCEDURE
  22. ETHICS, BUSINESS PLANS, AND PRACTICAL CONSIDERATIONS

Lehman Execs and Auditors Face Civil and Criminal Inquiries and Lawsuits

This is pretty aggressive and pretty abusive. I don’t know how under GAAP this follows the rules whatsoever,” he said, referring to Generally Accepted Accounting Principles.“That reeks of an auditor who, rather than being really truly independent, is beholden to management,” he said, adding that the S.E.C. and the Justice Department should follow up on Mr. Valukas’s findings.

Executives at other Wall Street banks professed surprise at Lehman’s accounting maneuvers. Goldman Sachs, Barclays Capital and other banks said on Friday they did not use repos to hide liabilities on their balance sheets.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Surprised? Other than the people who thought they would not get caught, who is surprised by the fact that upon close scrutiny Lehman’s books were cooked and Ernst and Young “auditors” went along with it? Ask any “Joe” or “Jane” in the street if they are surprised.

So a few scapegoats are going to jail in the usual perp walk while most of the “masterminds” walk away with taxpayer money jingling in their pocket, with homeowners being bounced from their homes, with the economy in a death spin, and while their wallets bursting with cash, are replaced with more wallets in more places with more pockets.

Let’s put it very simply: If the experts are surprised they are not experts. Or, if they are experts, they are co-conspirators. To paraphrase Brad in the survey workshops they were either stupid or just plain lying.

But I didn’t post this because I am angry and outraged over the behavior of Wall Street, regulators, congress and the Obama administration. The reason I write this is to highlight the fact that persistence pays off. What was unthinkable, crazy, conspiratorial 3 years ago when i first started writing on this subject is now being accepted as axiomatically true.

If you persist in challenging the pretender lenders and demanding that the real creditor step forward, if you persist in getting a full accounting from the creditor (investor) down to the the debtor (borrower, homeowner), then you will magnify your chances of prevailing against a fraudulent foreclosure. Nearly all of the foreclosures during the past 3 years were fraudulent. Millions of people are thinking of their old homestead while they probably still own it, even though they left or were evicted.

Get your facts together, get that forensic analysis, get an expert to declare the truth, and get a lawyer who either understands securitized mortgage loans or is willing to learn. And don’t stop, don’t give and don’t leave until the last option of the last move has been played — because it is only THEN that the other side will cave in and offer you a reasonable settlement. And even then you still need to go to court with a quiet title action because the people offering you the deal are NOT your creditor and don’t know the name(s) of your creditor much less represent them.

March 12, 2010

Findings on Lehman Take Even Experts by Surprise

By MICHAEL J. de la MERCED

For the year that it took the court-appointed examiner to complete his report on the demise of Lehman Brothers, officials from Wall Street to Washington were anticipating it as the definitive account of the largest bankruptcy in American history.

And the report did just that when it was unveiled on Thursday, riveting readers with the exhaustive detail contained in its nine volumes and 2,200 pages. Yet almost immediately, it raised a host of new questions.

Now government regulators have what some lawyers call a road map for further inquiry into former Lehman executives like Richard S. Fuld Jr. and the auditing firm Ernst & Young.

Whether the Justice Department and the Securities and Exchange Commission will actually pursue their own legal actions is unclear. But legal experts said on Friday that the examiner, Anton R. Valukas, had provided plenty of material for civil regulatory action at the least with his findings of “materially misleading” accounting and “actionable balance sheet manipulation.”

“It’s certainly not helpful to any of them,” Michael J. Missal, a partner at the law firm K&L Gates and the examiner in the bankruptcy case of New Century Financial, said of some individuals accused of impropriety in the report. “It certainly assists private litigants and probably increases the pressure on the government to take some kind of action here.”

Representatives for the S.E.C. and the United States attorneys offices in Manhattan and Brooklyn declined to comment.

While Mr. Fuld and other former top Lehman officials are already defendants in a number of civil lawsuits, the new discoveries by Mr. Valukas have taken even veteran observers by surprise. Chief among these was the revelation of a particularly aggressive accounting practice, known internally as Repo 105, that Mr. Valukas said helped the investment bank mask the true depths of its financial woes.

Examiners in bankruptcy cases are appointed by the Justice Department to investigate accusations of wrongdoing or misconduct. Their job is to determine whether creditors can recover more money in these cases, and their findings often serve as guides for more lawsuits and even regulatory action.

What examiners are not asked to do is play judge and jury. Though the report contains strong language — Mr. Valukas deems Mr. Fuld “at least grossly negligent” in his role overseeing Lehman — it stops short of accusing anyone of criminal conduct or of violating securities law.

Patricia Hynes, a lawyer for Mr. Fuld, said on Thursday that her client “did not know what those transactions were — he didn’t structure or negotiate them, nor was he aware of their accounting treatment.” She did not return an e-mail seeking additional comment on Friday.

Mr. Valukas’s findings have stirred loud discussion among legal and accounting experts over the ways Lehman sought to improve its quarterly results months before it collapsed.

Over hundreds of pages, Mr. Valukas details the genesis of and the process behind Repo 105. Based on standard repurchase agreements — short-term loans commonly used by many firms for daily financing needs, in which borrowers temporarily exchange assets in return for cash up front — Lehman took a particularly aggressive accounting approach to these transactions.

Here, the investment bank used repos to temporarily park assets off its books to make its end-of-quarter debt levels look better than they did — while calling them sales instead of loans.

The accounting tactic, first used by Lehman in 2001, had one catch, according to Mr. Valukas: no American law firm would sign off on its use.

Enter Linklaters, a highly respected British law firm that gave Lehman the answer it wanted. So long as the repos were conducted in London through the bank’s European arm, and so long as the company took other cosmetic steps to make these transactions appear to be sales instead of financings, Linklaters determined that they would pass regulatory muster.

A spokeswoman for Linklaters said on Friday that the firm was not contacted by Mr. Valukas and that its legal opinions were not criticized in the examiner’s report as wrong or improper.

Lehman also had the backing of Ernst & Young, which certified the bank’s financial statements despite receiving warnings from a whistle-blower who said there were accounting improprieties. An Ernst & Young spokesman said on Thursday that the firm stood by its work for 2007, the last year it conducted an audit of Lehman’s financial results.

But Lynn E. Turner, a former chief accountant for the S.E.C., accused Ernst & Young of abdicating its responsibility to the audit committee of Lehman’s board by not presenting the concerns.

“This is pretty aggressive and pretty abusive. I don’t know how under GAAP this follows the rules whatsoever,” he said, referring to Generally Accepted Accounting Principles.

“That reeks of an auditor who, rather than being really truly independent, is beholden to management,” he said, adding that the S.E.C. and the Justice Department should follow up on Mr. Valukas’s findings.

Executives at other Wall Street banks professed surprise at Lehman’s accounting maneuvers. Goldman Sachs, Barclays Capital and other banks said on Friday they did not use repos to hide liabilities on their balance sheets.

Why Show Me the Note Isn’t Enough

see no-silver-bullet

The reason lawyers should attend the forensics workshop is not so they can do forensic analysis (although they certainly would be in a better position to do so), but rather because they need to know what to do with the information once they get a report of results from a forensic review and analysis.

My observation is that many lawyers and pro se litigants are left with their mouths hanging open when the the other side (pretender lender) does in fact produce a note, copy of a note, assignment, separated allonge, indorsement or other document giving the appearance of propriety. You have to ask yourself what if I was physically holding that note, copy etc.? Would that mean I had the power to enforce it?

Those who have not studied securitization don’t know what to say because deep down inside they think the show is over — when in fact it has only just begun, which is the point of Brad’s Workshop on forensic analysis.

Lawyers have complained that we tried to pack too much information into one day in the our workshops we did over the last two years. They are right. The reason lawyers should attend the forensics workshop is not so they can do forensic analysis (although they certainly would be in a better position to do so), but rather because they need to know what to do with the information once they get a report of results from a forensic review and analysis.

That note or copy they produced is probably not the evidence that is required. It probably is a copy of the note as it existed at the closing, and does not contain the chain of custody, assignment, indorsements or other indicia of ownership.

There is no doubt that a workshop on motion practice and discovery for lawyers only needs to be done and I am working on that. My problem is the same as any trial judge would have. How can we go that level unless the lawyer knows what evidence exists, what evidence to ask for, and how to use that evidence? That is the purpose of the forensic workshop. Unless the lawyer or pro se litigant knows what to do and say about the information produced in a forensic analysis, it is of little use. Logically, they could not possibly know what to say or do with the information unless they understood the significance of the information when it is presented to them.

Brad’s forensic workshop, together with my participation and other guest speakers, weaves together the issues presented by the loan transaction itself, the securitization of the mortgage, the transfers and chain of title issues combined with what works and doesn’t work with Judges because it is seen as truly significant as opposed to merely technicalities designed to delay the proceedings. Indisputable evidence that raises questions of fact that helps the Judge “get it” is what is necessary to win.

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