When It is Not in Writing

“I have some land down in Florida I want to sell you cheap. It has plenty of water and lots of wildlife.”

Have you ever heard of that con before? These words were used around our house when I was growing up in Texas. This sales pitch was used by a charlatan who owned some worthless swamp land he wanted to sell for more than he had paid for it.

Of course today there are plenty of charlatans in the sales and collection world who will promise you anything to get you to take action. Some bill collectors may be considered charlatans when they try to get you to believe some of their sales pitches. In my experience, you cannot always believe what they tell you, especially when it is not in writing.

This story was posted on the internet in April of 2011, “I had an agreement in place with [the mortgage company] to enter into a repayment plan. It is not a modification but rather an agreement to pay a lump sum payment and then a couple hundred extra a month for 8 months to make my mortgage current. There is a single line disclosure in my paperwork that says the agreement is void if I file bankruptcy, but that was expected. Every person I spoke with at [the mortgage company] says they would honor this agreement even if I’m in bankruptcy. My first payment of $2K on this plan is not due until May 10th…Should I make that payment on May 10th as scheduled, or since I have now filed bankruptcy should I contact them and get some new agreement in place? I don’t want to give them $2K and then have them continue foreclosure proceedings. On the other hand, if they are willing to honor the existing plan, my intention is to stay in the house.”

The debtor in this personal bankruptcy illustration wants to believe the best about his loan company. After all, most mortgage companies are trustworthy. The debtor has been verbally reassured the bank will still honor the agreement and not foreclose on the house. The mortgage company says they will do this despite the debtor being more than several months in default, the contract is totally void the moment the debtor filed for bankruptcy, and the mortgage company is not voluntarily offering a new deal without mentioning bankruptcy.

Should she take the risk- probably not since she has no legal grounds to operate if the collectors decide not to honor their agreement. Recently, some people have become more willing to stretch the truth, especially when they are collecting money owed to them. They may be willing to present half- truths. Half-truths and broken promises are reasons many lawyers suggest not taking offers unless they are in writing.

Whether or not the debtor trusts his mortgage company to operate without a written agreement is up to him, but bankruptcies are often littered with broken promises. Mortgage loan departments are in the business of collections. The collector’s job is to get you to pay whatever and whenever you can.

If you have questions about legal issues when filing for bankruptcy, contact a bankruptcy lawyer. If you need relief from the stress of debt and you live in or around the metropolitan area of Fort Worth, Texas, contact us at www.betterbankruptcy.com .We will help you find a bankruptcy attorney in your area who can answer your bankruptcy questions.

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