Home Selling in Las Vegas>Question Details

Pamela Evenh…, Home Owner in Holland, MI

Our bankruptcy lawyer promised that we would get a home credit exemption if we surrendered our house in bankruptcy - i.e. of a short sale.

Asked by Pamela Evenhouse, Holland, MI Tue Jan 8, 2013

We had $200,000 equity in our house when we went into bankruptcy. Our lawyer advised us to surrender the house in the bankruptcy instead of doing a short sale because we would get the home credit exemption instead of walking away with nothing in a short sale. We followed his advice and I have proof of what he told us, but when our house finally sold - we received nothing. The bankruptcy trustee did not sell the house - so we received nothing. What can we do?

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Well Miss Evenhouse , I'd say you need some legal advice. You hired an attorney to represent you and you feel he or she did not act in your best interest .You need to go back to them and ask them to explain or find out where you can file a complaint. This is a real estate website where real estate agents can answer questions pertaining to property . Real estate agents do not get involved in legal matters like bankruptcy , or tax credit issues. This is why attorneys have to pass the bar exam , tax consultants another exam and Realtors have a real estate test and professional standards to abide by . We all have to be accountable for the field of expertise we practice . With all due respect , your question should be directed to the governing authority for attorneys . I sure hope you can get some help on that.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 8, 2013
I do to . I know it's a lot of work but you really have to do the best you can with what you've got . Most people don't have the motivation or the focus to follow through . I will tell you this Miss Evenhouse , the truth ALWAYS prevails ! You need to be persistent until you get answers . You might try filing or talking with the attorney generals office . If nothing else , hey can at least give you some direction.
Flag Tue Jan 8, 2013
Thank you for the advice. I think filing a complaint against him in our state is the best option.
Flag Tue Jan 8, 2013
As always, I am not an attorney, nor do I play one on tv. Having said that, do not construe this as legal advice and consult with an attorney. Here is what I know from prior dealings:

Almost all lawyers carry E and O insurance. (Errors and Omissions for those that don't know.) If an attorney gives you incorrect information, makes an error or an omission, while acting as your attorney, you can make a clain against the insurance.

My advice, find a new attorney and look into a settlement.

Jeffrey Sklar, Broker
Desert Valley Realty
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Jan 11, 2013
Question: Why do you think you deserve to keep any money or property when you owe enough to qualify for a BK? The property was purchased with someone else's money? The money that you have in the property belongs to another person. You need to give it back. This is what a BK is all about. Giving back the money that you borrowed and did not or could pay back.

I agree with Rockinrealtor. There is lots of misinformation provided when we work outside of our skill set. There are many Attorneys that dabble in real estate and have no clue about the idiosyncrasies involved in the processes. They may be book smart and process smart, but cannot make actions in the benefit of the property owner. Real Estate owned is typically treated just like any other property owned. YOU LOSE IT IN A BK.

The BK attorney's job is to rid a person of debt. The action used is to liquidate all of the belongings (with a few exceptions provided by federal law) and provide payment to the people that are owed money. You end up with no debt and a few personal items. This is plain and simple. The typical result of a BK is no debt, few assets, possible loss of job, no credit, no ability to use credit for a while and very limited funds. Do you still want to do a BK?

When thinking about a BK, you need to build a team of players to meet your needs. An attorney is great when laws are involved and court action is the result. I suggest you do not use a Realtor for legal action and you do not use an Attorney for real estate issues. Do not use a plumber if the lights do not work. Do not call an electrical if the drain does not let the water out of the tub.

In the BKs that I have been involved in, my team will save the principal property, and the equity, if the owner wants to keep it. Common knowledge is that anything sold during a BK will result in the funds going to the creditors. That is the reason that the assets are sold. A principal residence is no exception.

Trying to keep a principal residence is not an easy task. The attorneys I work with do not dabble in the real estate field. The rely upon the expertise of a Realtor to work in the real estate arena. They work to keep the property if the owner wants it.
In the event of an upside down property, or a property that has no equity, the property may still be kept by the owner if the owner wants it. We work out a payment plan to the Investor that is approved by the all parties including the Judge, Trustee, and all other participating parties.

Another option is that the property may be given back to the to the Investor to pay the amount owed. This is looked at as a foreclosure (DIL) for future credit applications. To avoid the foreclosure process during a BK, we work to take the property out of the BK and sell the property. This results in no foreclosure data reported to the credit agencies. This is a much better choice of action to avoid the foreclosure stigma.

Did your attorney chat with you about the tax implications when the BK is complete? You need to speak to your CPA immediately to mitigate any tax payments you may have as a result of the BK forgiveness.

I wish you wellness and prosperity in the upcoming year.

Contact me for more details and options when working with BK attorneys and the prevention of a foreclosure on your credit history.

New Web Sites:


Please contact me immediately if you know a person that cannot make their mortgage payments. I will work with them to avoid foreclosure or bankruptcy at no charge or fees to them.

Steven Goldman, CRS
Broker Salesman
Certified Distressed Property Expert (CDPE)
Certified Default Advocate (CDAT)
Certified Short Sale Professional (CSP)
Certified Probate Real Estate Specialist (CPRES)
REO-BPO Certified
Realty One Group
10750 W. Charleston #180
Las Vegas, NV 89135
Direct 702-242-1372
Fax: 866-286-2099
E-Mail: crssteven@teamgoldman.info
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 8, 2013
Definitely, talk to another attorney and you CPA asap regarding this matter.

On a side note if you had $200k equity why is a short sale even being discussed?

Best Regards,
Robert Adams
The Adams Team at
Rothwell Gornt Companies
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 8, 2013
You are asking for legal advice - call your attorney and talk to a CPA!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 8, 2013
Pamela Evenhouse
I am sorry to hear of your situation. I would find an Attorney that can dig into the paticulars of your situation. It is a tough situation because Attorneys don 't usually go against other Attorneys. You can file a Bar Complaint. Google the Attorney's name and google his phone number. Try to look at his record. Has he had complaints against him? Is there chatter on the Internet about him? Sometimes it is amazing what you can find. I would make lots of noise once I had some facts under my belt. Contact the BK Trustee. These people are accessible. You have to be persistent. When I have an issue with a company or especially banks I google their Corperate Govenance and find their officers. Then track down email contacts and phone numbers and I usually start at the Senior Vice Presidents office and work my way up to the CEO. Good Luck. Find a competent Attorney! file a Bar Complaint and do your research. Hope I have helped.
Thank You
Suzie Marquardt
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 8, 2013
Hello Pamela,

You should consult another attorney. This is outside the scope of practice for a Realtor. Common sense tells me that you may have been given some bad info. Good luck!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 8, 2013
Pamela, there is more to your story than you can possibly write here. I suggest that you consult with another attorney regarding your issues.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 8, 2013
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