Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Foreclosure Defense Lawyer Sanction $323,307 for Worthless Stall Tactics


DON'T waste your money on a foreclosure defense lawyer. 

Instead, invest in a comprehensive Mortgage Fraud Examination.  Call me for a Free, full explanation at 727 669 5511.  Read this sad sanction story to see what ALL judges should do to foreclosure defense lawyers who present bogus legal theories and failing arguments to waste court time and client money:

The chief federal judge in Minnesota has taken the rare step of ordering an investigation of a Minneapolis foreclosure lawyer who has been slapped with sanctions at least nine times since 2011. 

The sanctions imposed by federal district judges against William B. Butler total $323,307, according to Star Tribune calculations. 

In a March 2012 memorandum, Schiltz hit Butler with a $50,000 sanction and another $7,500 in legal fees for the entities he’d sued, saying Butler had filed “nearly 30 frivolous lawsuits.” He called Butler’s arguments “evasive and often absurd,” said he misrepresents the facts with “constantly shifting and contradictory arguments.” 

In another case, in June 2012, U.S. District Judge Ann Montgomery ordered Butler to pay a $75,000 sanction, plus $17,068 in attorneys’ fees. 

“Butler’s insistence on re-litigating losing arguments is staggering, and it comes with a cost, because it multiplies the expense of litigation and monopolizes scarce judicial resources,” she wrote. “Moreover, no one, not even Butler, can reasonably or competently believe in the merits of any of these arguments.” 

In August 2012, U.S. District Judge Donovan Frank hit Butler with $45,451 in sanctions. He said Butler’s “baseless” arguments had been “consistently rejected” by other courts. He also noted that Butler had defaulted on his mortgage and had “been living in his house for more than three years without making any payments.” 

Arguing that MERS does not hold the note, as Butler does, “is frivolous under Minnesota law,” said Schiltz, and has been rejected by the state Supreme Court, the U.S. Court of Appeals “and by every federal judge sitting in Minnesota who has addressed the argument,” he said. 

“Butler attracts clients through a website that blatantly misrepresents Minnesota law and attacks the legal system, the banking system and other targets,” Schiltz said. “Butler has been quite successful in attracting clients who either do not know or do not care that he has never actually won a show-me-the-note claim.” 

Attorney Jeff Vesel, who has represented some homeowners in foreclosure who were previously clients of Butler, conceded that some got temporary relief, staying in their homes for free while he sued. 

But Vesel said that instead of helping clients on a case-by-case basis, Butler presses the same theory for all his cases, which has “practically zero chance” of succeeding. 
Butler said, “I’m not in it for the money,” and more than 10 percent of his cases are done for free. But according to one “legal service agreement” from Butler’s firm, he required clients to pay him $2,000 up front, followed by monthly payments of $495. 

James Konobeck, a 62-year-old retired custodian and painter, said he paid Butler thousands of dollars to represent him in a bid to block the foreclosure of his house in Marine on St. Croix. “I really got the shaft,” he said. “I sure wish I hadn’t given him a dime.” 

He said the foreclosure and Butler’s handling of the case made him feel suicidal. He said he managed to save his home, but only after hiring Vesel. 

Lloyd Koenig, 63, said he had to pay Butler $1,500 up front, but still lost his home in Becker, Minn., to foreclosure. Butler continues to send him monthly bills of $495, which Koenig hasn’t paid. “I don’t know that he knows exactly what he is doing,” Koenig said. 

Butler says he cut Konobeck’s bill by 80 percent with Konobeck’s concurrence and blames Judge Schiltz for not following the legal precedents. He said he is still billing Koenig because his case is on appeal. 

Schiltz suggested that “Butler’s clients may be paying him, not for bringing legitimate claims, but simply for each month that he delays foreclosure by tying up mortgages in frivolous court proceedings.”
Bob Hurt         Blog 1 2 3   f  t  
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