Choosing a foreclosure defense lawyer is a very important decision and you want to get it right. Here are what we believe are the top 5 questions you must ask a foreclosure defense attorney before hiring them.
Number 1: Are You Licensed to Practice Law in New Jersey?
Although it may seem like a silly question this is actually the first thing you should ask a prospective foreclosure defense law firm. Even before making an appointment.
There are so many lawyers around the country taking advantage of
New Jersey homeowners. One classic way is for lawyers not licensed in New Jersey to promise that they can “get a modification” or that they can “scare” the mortgage companies into stopping your foreclosure. They say this even though they can’t even practice law in New Jersey!
If out of state lawyers can’t represent you here, what about all of the non-lawyers that are sending you advertisements or bombarding you with online ads? What about all of these “audit” or “TILA analysis” groups?
These groups will say that they will analyze your loan documents and then they will prepare a report that will intimidate your mortgage company into being frightened by some group out of California or Florida that isn’t licensed to do anything in New Jersey.
In the end you must make your own decision but this is important information to have when you are trying to save your home.
Number 2: What Kind of Results Can I Expect to See?
Results among clients will vary widely based on a person’s specific situation. No situation has a guaranteed positive outcome. Therefore, an ethical attorney will not guarantee or promise that they can obtain a specific end result such as a modification. If an attorney guarantees a specific outcome, this is a huge reed flag. If the attorney promises you a free house, or guarantees you will get a loan modification with specified terms you should run.
That having been said, an attorney should have some history of prior success. If the attorney does not have any past results, they can discuss with you, they may not have enough experience in the area of New Jersey foreclosure defense.
Number 3: How Much Experience Do You Have in the Area of Foreclosure Defense Law?
It is important to ask the prospective attorney have many cases similar to yours has their firm handled. Ask if the lawyer has actually been to court and how often.
The field of foreclosure defense and loan modification have been in the mainstream for long enough now (the housing crisis was in 2008) that you should expect your attorney to have extensive experience in the area of foreclosure defense law. Believe it or not many lawyers and law firms merely dabble in an occasional foreclosure defense case. It’s a smart decision to select an attorney with extensive experience in New Jersey foreclosure defense.
Number 4: What Kind of Communication Can I Expect?
You want to ask the prospective law firm to explain how they interact with their clients. Over the years, law firms have developed a terrible reputation for their lack of communication with clients. If a law firm is dedicated to open communication with its clients, they will be able to tell you how often, and by what means you will receive updates on the status of your case. A good attorney will share information about set backs in addition to positive outcomes.
Also, although experience is important, you also don’t want to make the mistake of working with a foreclosure defense mill. This type of firm churns out hundreds of cases without fully reviewing or focusing on any of their client’s cases. You also make certain to research a law firm’s reputation, reviews and experience.
At Levitt & Slafkes we value and truly care about each of our clients. keep you posted on your case. We will return your phone calls and keep you updated on your case. To us you are an individual and not just another client.
Number 5: Have you dealt with my bank(s) in previous cases?
Experienced attorneys have dealt with most, if not all, of the banks involved in mortgage debt solutions. The attorney should be able to provide you with examples of cases in which he or she has worked with your particular bank in the past.
Levitt & Slafkes Has Extensive Experience in Foreclosure Defense
By discussing these topics with a potential New Jersey foreclosure defense attorney, you will have better insight into whether the particular lawyer is the right fit for you. Which one do you feel comfortable with? Which lawyer inspires confidence in you? Which lawyer has the experience needed to address your situation?
We are proudly designated as a debt relief agency by an Act of Congress. We have proudly assisted consumers in filing for Bankruptcy Relief for over 30 years. The information on this website and blogs is for general information purposes only. Nothing should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation.