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Own Your Screw-Ups

We all make mistakes.  It’s an unavoidable fact of our lives.  But I recently had an encounter with one of those audacious attorneys who bluster their way through an error on their part by trying to pin it on someone else.

This BS artist miscalculated the check his client needed to bring mine for closing, and was woefully short by over $1,300.  When I ask how his clients intended to make up the difference, as the contract provided for all checks greater than $500 to be bank checks, he shot back with “Well, it’s your fault, because we didn’t know how much the oil adjustment was.”

When I responded that the fuel bill was for $249, nowhere near the discrepancy, his comeback was “No one has ever questioned my numbers before--you’ve got a lot of nerve.”

I replied, less calmly, that we had already agreed on the number, and that it was the method of payment that was uncertain.  The retort was “Let’s just forget it,” before asking the title closer to accept his clients’ personal check (thus, I was left with more money in my escrow account to turn over to my client, since I didn’t write a check to for title charges).

I still can’t figure out why an “Ooops, sorry, let’s see where I can correct this problem” would have been so hard.  Or short of that, how about no apology but a civil resolution that didn’t involve him trying to point a finger at me?

Comments

( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
(Anonymous)
Jul. 20th, 2010 05:20 pm (UTC)
Bad communication can cause a blow-up
I have had similar situations happen within my experiences selling Denver Real Estate (http://findmyhomedenver.com/) and really try to focus on my clients interests so I can keep cool and figure out a solution. It is very hard when another agent acts illogically to keep the deal on track and make sure your client gets the best representation. I find one of the hardest things to deal with is another agent who stops communicating, sometime via a phone hang-up. At that point sometimes I am at a loss as what my next step should be. Hope you were able to get your deal figured out.
real_lawyer
Jul. 21st, 2010 12:48 am (UTC)
Re: Bad communication can cause a blow-up
We did--the buyers gave a personal check to the title company rather than my client.

I always think that as long as we can keep talking we can work thing out. Hang-ups make that difficult.
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )

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