LitaWrites (real_lawyer) wrote,

No Officer And No Gentleman (Or, Another E-Mail)


I saw your name in the newspaper. I refinanced my home 2x to pay off credit cards because the interest rate was lower but this last time I didn’t realize the rate was variable and it had gone up $167.00 in March and now it will be going up $183.00 in September. I didn’t have a lawyer but the loan officer told me a paralegal had prepared all the paperwork and I should be OK signing as there was nothing unusual about my loan. 

I am not behind yet but you seemed to know about mortgages so I am asking, is there anything I can do to complain about the lies I was told and the extra money I need to pay? I called another company about refinancing but YOU GUESSED IT! My house isn’t worth so much as before.

My reply:

Thank you for writing. There are so many issues here and I cannot render you legal advice without your coming in to meet with me and retaining me. But here’s what I can tell you:

  1. People who sell you mortgages are not “officers”, though that is the term many employ. Do you buy from “auto officers” or “aluminum siding officers” or “cosmetics officers”? No, and that is part of the problem: it sounds like you thought the mortgage salesman was automatically owed some respect and did not question what he told you. There are fine people in the business, but those have no problem explaining and answering many questions.
  2. So what if a paralegal prepares the paperwork? Who does s/he work for? Not you.
  3. You know you should never sign papers you haven’t read and don’t fully understand (see comments #1 and #2).
  4. Did you even consult with an attorney in the three-day cancellation period? The fee for a one hour consultation would probably been saved many times over by informing you that you should cancel the adjustable loan!

What you describe happened just about every day to someone, so you are far from alone. Call or e-mail me, please, and let’s set up a meeting if you like, but I don’t hold out much hope for you unless you have proof you were defrauded rather than just too trusting.

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