06 June 2011

A Priceless story of Justice

The American banking system has been pretty brutal to homeowners since the start of this recession. That have foreclosed on a record number of homes and seized them, and that still continues at record levels to this date. But this story is about a couple who turned the tables on a bank -- and "foreclosed" on the bank itself.

The whole thing started when a Florida couple, Warren and Maureen Nyergues, bought a home that was owned by the Bank of America. The couple paid cash for the home, so no mortgage was ever needed or issued. But if there's a way to screw up a bank can usually find it, and the Bank of America did just that -- they issued a foreclosure notice on the home that didn't even have a mortgage.

Naturally, the bank wouldn't listen to reason and the couple had to take them to court to get the foreclosure notice lifted. After lifting the foreclosure notice, the court ordered the bank to pay the couple's legal fees ($2,534). It looked like the matter was settled, but once again the bank found a way to screw up. After waiting for five months the couple still had not received their check from the bank for legal fees.

The couple then did exactly what the bank would have done after not being paid -- they went to court and got a court order seizing the bank branch and its assets. The couple's attorney, Todd Allen, then showed up at the Bank of America branch with two Sheriff's deputies. Allen said, "I instructed the deputy to go in and take desks, computers, copiers, filing cabinets, including cash in the drawers."

The bank's manager was shaken and locked the attorney out of his office while trying to figure out what to do. As Allen said, "Having two Sheriff's deputies sitting across your desk, and a lawyer standing behind them, demanding whatever assets are in the bank can be intimidating. But, so is having your home foreclosed on when it wasn't right."

It took about an hour but the bank finally issued a check for the full amount of the legal fees. They also apologized for the delay. And the attorney and deputies went away without seizing any property.

Allen's final statement was, "As a foreclosure defense attorney this is sweet justice." Amen to that!

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