Financially challenged homeowners who are at risk of losing their homes now have a powerful new ally they can rely on: The Foreclosure Defense Group (FDG), a Rosemont, Ill.-based firm that matches clients to attorneys who can fight lenders in court and work to completely restructure mortgage loans in favor of the borrower.
It is estimated that over 80 percent of all residential loans since 2003 contain fraud and predatory lending violations. Adam Ackerman, who co-founded FDG with business partner Mark Laskowski, said this is an increasing fear among lenders, as evidenced by the fact that some major banking institutions like JP Morgan Chase, Bank of America and GMAC Mortgage are now halting thousands of foreclosures because they realize they may have issues with the way they filed the foreclosure, which can include falsifying documents, fraud and or predatory lending and a long list of other state and federal violations.
But instead of waiting and hoping for the lender to halt—and inevitably recommence—the foreclosure process on their own, FDG recommends the homeowner take proactive, assertive steps to ensure that a foreclosure is stopped for good or prevented from starting altogether.
Unlike loan modification programs offered through private or government entities that typically do not work, FDG attorneys take aggressive legal strategies to halt the foreclosure process and rework the loan terms. They use subpoenas, lawsuits, discovery and many more strategies to get the bank’s attention and let them know the homeowner means business—which, if litigated correctly, can result in reduced principle reduction, lower interest rates and even a completely new loan with terms that benefit the borrower.
“Only about 8 percent of all loan modification applicants get approved nationwide anyway, and of these less than 4 percent experience successful modifications,” said Laskowski. “Foreclosure defense attorneys believe in voiding the original agreement and demanding new terms.”
Foreclosure Defense Group was born in fall 2009 after a network of specialized local attorneys decided to collaborate with Laskowski and Ackerman, who are careful to point out that they are not lawyers themselves. Instead, FDG acts as a marketing, outsourcing and educational firm for the attorney network they serve.
Foreclosure defense strategies offer homeowners two major benefits, added Ackerman. First, the attorneys’ efforts can buy the homeowner extra time, which can often be 12 to 24 months or longer, depending on the complexity of the case. During this time, the homeowner will remain in their home, providing an opportunity to save money and get back on their feet. Secondly, foreclosure defense attorneys can push for a settlement and insist on a new mortgage that the homeowner can afford.
When a new homeowner client contacts FDG, Laskowski or Ackerman screens the prospective client carefully based on a pre-determined list of questions provided by an attorney. If the necessary criteria are met, an appointment is set for the homeowner to meet confidentially for a free one-on-one consultation with an experienced attorney ideally suited to handle the case. While the expenses each attorney will charge can vary, the average monthly flat fee starts at approximately $750, the charges for which can include research, litigation, paperwork and more.
For more information about Foreclosure Defense Group, phone (630) 915-2076 or visit www.ForeclosureDefense.com.