The Banking And Real Estate Lobby Buys Of Lisa Posthumus-Lyons

Former Lt. Governor's DaughterNewly elected Michigan State Representative Lisa Posthumus-Lyons wants to screw Michigan homeowners. Posthumus-Lyons is the daughter of a former Michigan Lt. Governor Dick Posthumus. This former Michigan Lt. Governor’s Daughter received nearly $11,000 from the real estate and banking lobby during her campaign last year.

Lyons has introduced legislation that appears to have been written by the banking lobby.  This legislation would make it easier for lenders to take possession of a home.  This is even if the lender lacks legal authority to do so. The legislation also calls for eliminating the 6-12 month post-foreclosure redemption period.

Lisa Posthumus-Lyons Wants To Screw Michiganders

But before I get into that, here’s a Reader’s Digest version of how foreclosures in Michigan work.

Unlike most states, Michigan has a 6-12 month post-foreclosure redemption period.  A homeowner gets a 6 months redemption period if they own less than 3 acres. They get a twelve month redemption period if they own more than 3 acres. In addition, they get 12-months if they owe less than 10% of the value of the home.

Michigan is known as a non-judicial foreclosure state. This means homeowners are denied their day in court unless they sue their lender over issues regarding their foreclosure.

Michigan does their foreclosures by a method referred to as “Foreclosure By Advertisement”.

This means the mortgage servicer tacks the notice on the door notifying them of the foreclosure sale. The law firm handling the foreclosure is then responsible for advertising the sale in a local publication for 4 consecutive weeks prior to the sale date.

The Michigan House voted in 2009 to modify the state statutes that govern foreclosures for 24 months.

In July of 2009, revisions were made to MCL 600.3204 and MCL 600.3205 which regulate foreclosure procedures in Michigan.   These revisions require the mortgage servicer to notify homeowners they have the right to a judicial foreclosure if they get homeowner counseling.  It also allowed the homeowner a 90-day postponement of the foreclosure if they notified the lender’s attorney they want to discuss foreclosure alternatives.

Lisa Posthumus-Lyons Is Financially Backed By People Already Screwing Michigan Homeowners

These conferences are a joke. The homeowner usually gets stuck speaking with a hapless lawyer or paralegal from the law firm handling the foreclosure. The sad thing is, the attorney never allowed an actual representative from the mortgage servicer or the entity holding the note to participate in the meeting.

In one phone conference, Attorney Andrew Wayne (P59398), the attorney for Trott & Trott, even attempted to end the conference call when my client’s attorney demanded Mr. Wayne get someone on the conference call from Bank of America. the attorney had to call the main switchboard at Trott & Trott from another line and demand he come back to the conference call.

When he returned nearly 25 minutes later, Mr. Wayne wasn’t too happy to hear that I knew more about what was going on with his client’s file than he did. He was also not happy we caught him purposely misleading us twice.

As horrible as this is, Orlans Associates is worse. As some you know I’ve written extensively about them and will be again.  Orlans Associates treats MCL 600.3204 and MCL 600.3205 like a mere suggestion, not the law.

Nearly 75% of my foreclosure clients whose foreclosures are being handled by Orlans Associates have never received any type of notifications prior to the law firm initiating the foreclosure.

The Republican-controlled Michigan House is now scrambling to put something permanent in place before the 24-month deadline of July 15, 2011 for MCL 600.3204 and MCL 600.3205

Lisa Posthumus-Lyons Introduces Bill Written By Foreclosure Mill Lobbyists

Two weeks ago, Michigan state Representative Lisa Posthumus-Lyons sponsored legislation that would keep some of those revisions intact but would eliminate the 6-12 month post-foreclosure redemption period.  She claims this is “a community-friendly bill,”

She was quoted as saying, “…the shortening of the redemption period brings Michigan in line with other states, where the time is anywhere from 10 days to one year. Most have no period at all.“We hope to address the foreclosure issue on the front end,” she said. During the redemption period is when “many homes deteriorate and lose value.”

What Lisa Posthumus-Lyons, who is former Michigan Lt. Governor Dick Posthumus’ daughter, isn’t saying with her Frank Lutz-style wordplay is that most of the states that have a 90-day pre-foreclosure redemption periods are judicial foreclosure states.  This means that a lender has to bring legal action against the homeowner in order to foreclose and the whole foreclosure process is overseen by the courts.

Lisa Posthumus-Lyons’ legislation is only a “community-friendly bill,” if you are a bank or mortgage lender.

John Llewellyn of the Michigan Bankers Association claims the redemption period “muddies up the water and confuses title.”

I scratched my head and asked myself if these people live in some type of Ivory Tower on Bizarro World?

A statement like this coming from the Michigan Bankers Association isn’t surprising nor is it unexpected.   There is no evidence to suggest that Michigan’s post-foreclosure redemption period has or is contributing to title problems of foreclosed homes.

What Former Michigan Lt. Governor’s Daughter Lisa Posthumus-Lyons Isn’t Telling You

For three years, I’ve had to endure this same verbal diarrhea from his colleagues in Florida. Like his friends at the Florida Bankers Association, what John Llewellyn doesn’t want to admit is that mortgage securitization and sloppy work done by foreclosure attorneys is what “muddies up the water and confuses title”.

Banking lobbyists have pointed the finger of blame at virtually everyone else but themselves for the crisis. This is even when every economist and financial analyst around the world has provided empirical proof that the banking industry was indeed responsible. Yet, the banking lobby continues to pee on our legs and tries to convince us it is raining.

In Florida, eight different foreclosure firms are under investigation by the Florida Attorney General and the federal government for foreclosure fraud.  Of the eight firms, one has been forced to shut down leaving 100,000 foreclosures in legal purgatory and another is being sued by three of its mortgage servicing clients.

Former Michigan Lt. Governor’s Daughter Lisa Posthumus-Lyons Cashes In From Banks And Real Estate Firms

I also didn’t expect to hear such comments from the daughter of one of Michigan’s most respected elder statesmen. So I did some digging. I found that nearly $68,000 Rep. Lyons raised came from corporate lobbyists.

The former Michigan Lt. Governor’s Daughtereceived $10,750 from groups connected to Real Estate and Banking. The same people who would greatly benefit from her legislation.

She also received $3250 from the Michigan Bankers Association. Comerica Bank also gave her $400. In addition, Michael Price, CEO of Mercantile Bank who’s bank received a TARP bailout gave her $200 and Bank of America gave her $250.

Foreclosure Mills Are Cashing In And They Need The Help Of Lisa Posthumus-Lyons

There is a reason why Michigan Foreclosure Mills are creating or buying title companies and real estate companies. Last July, Trott & Trott bought Phillip Greco Title. Weir Manuel Realtors and Coldwell Banker Schweitzer, located in suburban Detroit.  David Trott wants to control the entire post-foreclosure process and address any title or mortgage assignment issues that his firm may have created.  By buying a title company and a real estate franchise, he can hide it from the public.

There is no such thing as a coincidence in politics.  Lyons is from a political family and being a former Public Policy Director aka Lobbyist for the Grand Rapids Association of Realtors.  Rep. Lyons knows how both the political system works. She also knows the mechanics of how real estate and foreclosures work in Michigan.

Lyons knows what the problems are facing homeowners.  She knows that this legislation makes it easier for lenders and their attorneys to foreclose on properties when they may lack the legal standing to do so and to hide these problems from the public.  Because of her background, she can’t claim ignorance or naivety like most politicians on this subject.

So the question becomes, where does your loyalty lie, Rep. Lyons? Is it with your struggling constituents who voted for you because of respect for your father or with the lobbyists who bank rolled your campaign?

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