BankruptcyHard to believe that with the double digit increase in real estate values in Florida, many homeowners still find themselves underwater with their mortgages, but this is a fact.  Victims of overextended credit limits, overinflated home appraisals during the mortgage crisis, and rising taxes and forceplaced insurance, has caused many homeowners to simply not be able to come out from below the water.  In fact, many that entered into loan modifications during 2009 and 2014, may be about to default again on their loan modifications due to the increase in interest rates scheduled for the fifth year under the Making Home Affordable Program, or an increase in the required monthly escrow.

While foreclosures in Miami and Broward are at the lowest levels we have seen for years, we are experiencing a new wave of foreclosures from the above borrowers, that tried to make ends meet and meet their financial obligations but with rising taxes and insurance, or a loss of a job, or loved one, can no longer sustain their mortgage payments.  This leads to a brand new filing of a foreclosure against these homeowners, and often forgiven debt under the Making Home Affordable Plan is recalculated into the mortgage balance, sending some to be underwater again.

At the Law Offices of Jacqueline A. Salcines, P.A. our dedicated team of foreclosure defense attorney and consumers rights advocates fight shoulder to shoulder with these lenders to protect our clients rights and properties.  The aim is to stop foreclosure and the abuses of the mortgage industry by holding lenders accountable for their actions.  We practice:

  • Foreclosure Defense
  • Commercial and Residential Foreclosure
  • First and Second Mortgage loan settlement and forgiveness
  • Loan Settlement
  • Short Sales
  • Loan Modifications
  • Credit Card Debt and Settlement
  • Debt Collection Abuse
  • Unfair Collection Practices
  • HAMP and Internal Modifications

HELP FOR STRUGGLING HOMEOWNERS IN FLORIDA

Whether you find yourself in a current foreclosure, or whether your default of your mortgage is imminent and you wish to plan and strategize all options available before you default, one call can make the difference.

At the Law Offices of Jacqueline A. Salcines, P.A., attorney Jacqueline A. Salcines, has over 15 years experience in the mortgage and real estate law industry.  She is an accountant having practiced prior to becoming an attorney.  Having an exclusive and extensive background with accounting and business law, as well as mortgages, provides the cutting edge difference when settling the accounts with lenders.  “Knowing what a lender can and can not do makes all the difference in the standpoint of a negotiation”. Often lenders in foreclosures are bluffing that they have the note or that their assignments are valid and when pushed against the wall and taken to trial, cases get voluntary dismissals.  “This is what we hope for our clients.”

“At my firm, we do not practice delay tactics or the buying time technique that many attorneys do while charging their clients monthly. Rather, I personally sit with the client and explore their needs and desires, while running their financials to see what they qualify for.  Our foreclosure defense is foreclosure defense with a result in mind.  I will review the complaint, often audit the loan package to see what advantages we have to win at trial.  That is the strategy.  Not mere delay to then push a bankruptcy on the client.”  Says Jacqueline Salcines, Esq.

Call us today for a free foreclosure defense and strategizing session.  The first consult is always free of charge and can provide the know-how and options that perhaps many borrowers do not know are available to them.

The foreclosure crisis is on the rise again in South Florida.  However with the right team behind you, the foreclosure crisis can be averted.

TRUST  |   COMMITMENT  |  RESULTS

Jacqueline A. Salcines

Jacqueline A. Salcines

LAW OFFICES OF JACQUELINE A. SALCINES, P.A.

706 S. DIXIE HIGHWAY

SECOND FLOOR

CORAL GABLES, FLORIDA 33146

TEL.  305. 669.5280

EMAIL:  J.SALCINES@SALCINESLAW.COM

Insurance - Home Icon on Multicolor Puzzle.Anytime a mortgage is taken out on a property, the borrower pledges the property as collateral for the loan.  As part of the mortgage terms, the borrower is then required to maintain property insurance including hazard, wind, and often times flood insurance, covering the property.  The amount of the coverage is usually determined by the amount of the loan or monies loaned by the lender.  If the property insurance is paid by the borrower annually, it is very important that the borrower keep the insurance current and not allow it to lapse. There have even been cases when the insurance was escrowed by the lender but perhaps a bill crossed in the mail or was lost, and the lender allows the insurance to lapse. A Notice of Intent to Cancel should never be ignored. This is a notice from the insurance company that the policy will be cancelled in a certain number of days.

So what happens if the insurance lapses (is not paid and cancelled)?  Well, pursuant to the terms of most mortgages, the bank now has authority, given to them by the borrower homeowner, to purchase their own insurance policy, called Force Placed Insurance, and to charge it to the borrower.  The bank can increase the limits of the coverage and ask for any endorsements or other items on the policy that may result in the cost of the policy rising to two and three times the original amount.  The borrower then will receive a bill asking them to pay the amount in full or, if escrowed, may increase the monthly amount of the mortgage payment by the monthly premium (yearly premium divided by 12).

When homeowners receive this, it is too late and often they can not cancel the force placed and must wait a year. However, they also can not afford the payment nor the lump sum required to be paid by the mortgage company, and fall into default on their mortgage.

This has become one of the main reasons that homeowners are now falling into default of their mortgages and requesting loan modifications and/or short sales.  The bank makes it difficult to work with them when they demand payment in full of sums due, and wont negotiate any terms when it comes to the insurance.  However, there are many ways around it.

In my firm, we recently had a client obtain a proposal from their prior insurance agent, pay the premium, then showed the bank that the premium was paid.  Once this was done, the lender agreed to cancel the forced placed, but there remained the issue of the past premiums.  So this in turn had to be negotiated as well, and a portion may be forgiven, erased or a payment plan can be negotiated.

It is very important to enlist the services of an attorney to fight for your rights when force placed insurance or escrows cause you to become delinquent in your mortgage.

Often times, homeowners are not equipped to take this battle all the way to upper management, or perhaps can not determine when they are being ripped off by the lender.

If is imperative that the homeowner ask for the policy. Request a copy of the invoice and dec sheet or document evidencing the coverage limits, etc.

In fact, there have been a wave of lawsuits against certain lenders who were determined by the court to have worked together with the insurance companies, such as Citizens Property Insurance, and were receiving kickbacks from the insurance companies for putting the force placed insurance in place. Wells Fargo is one of those lenders being investigated for force placed insurance fraud.

If you are having difficulty paying your mortgage due to insurance escrows or insurance amounts being astronomically high, contact us today.

We can assist you in attempts to lower the amounts, investigate the force placed policies, and cancel them so you will not lose your home.

Call us today for a free consultation.

TRUST  |   COMMITMENT  |  RESULTS

 
 
 
LAW OFFICES OF JACQUELINE A. SALCINES, PA
706 S. DIXIE HIGHWAY
SECOND FLOOR
CORAL GABLES, FL 33146
OR BY EMAIL:  J.SALCINES@SALCINESLAW.COM