LitaWrites (real_lawyer) wrote,

You've Got To Know When to Hold 'Em, Know When to Fold 'Em

I was attending a closing yesterday where the Buyers received a check back of just over $600.00.  Their attorney jokingly said they could "have fun in Atlantic City" with the money.  Everyone laughed but me, recalling an incident that happened with clients of mine a few years back.

Mr. & Mrs. A. were selling their home, and when the title search was delivered to me, I was flabbergasted by the multiple judgments against the homeowners by every casino I'd heard of, and a few that I never knew existed.

"Yes", they confirmed when I called them about all the liens on their home, "they're ours."

I advised them that the total they owed, without interest, exceeded the sales price of their house.  Seemingly unfazed, they asked whether I could help them out, and I promised to try.  I hung up and called a colleague I thought might know a bit about casinos, who advised me that every casino in his experience would work out some sort of settlement.

I got to work, calling counsel for casino after casino, making my spiel that they would get something rather than nothing if they'd compromise on the full amount due them.  Some accepted less than half due, others settled at half, but every single casino attorney was pragmatic and willing to work with me. 

When I had all the monies due under the sales price of the house, I called the Buyers' attorney and scheduled closing, where I discovered that I'd done such a good job for Mr. & Mrs. A. that they had over $2,000.00 left over after all parties had been paid.  My fee was gladly paid, also, but I expected at least a "gee, thanks, its not much but we are glad to have a bit of money left over" or some such acknowledgment.  That was not forthcoming, as Mr. A. was too busy saying to his wife as they walked out the door with their bank check:  "What do you say?  We can be in Atlantic City in a few hours...".
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