Understanding Sun Tzu’s Art of War Will Help In Fighting Foreclosures

Fighting foreclosures is not hard if you understand Sun Tzu’s The Art of War. AOW has been studied by business leaders, military leaders and world leaders since Napoleon. In addition, it can also help in fighting foreclosures.

It’s About Giving The Appearance You Have The Upper Hand

Many foreclosure defense attorneys fail in fighting foreclosures. This is because they fail to exploit the weaknesses of lenders and their attorneys. This is either out of ignorance of how the system works or out of their own ego.

Attack is the secret of defense; defense is the planning of an attack.

If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. 

A foreclosure mill attorney asked me in a recent deposition why I have only testified at one foreclosure trial when I have done 1000 reports. The answer is simple. It’s because my clients’ attorney and I convince the bank they can’t win before the trial.

“The supreme art of war is to subdue the enemy without fighting.” 

This forces the lender to withdraw the foreclosure suit or to negotiate a modification for the homeowner.

I look at everything I can get my hands on during an investigation. MFI-Miami looks at the lender’s file and payment history. In addition, I review the foreclosure complaint and any public records including taxes. I also move quickly.

Speed is the essence of war. Take advantage of the enemy’s unpreparedness; travel by unexpected routes and strike him where he has taken no precautions.

This creates an aura of confusion and fear in the minds of the foreclosure mill. The usually don’t know how to prepare.

The whole secret lies in confusing the enemy, so that he cannot fathom our real intent 

Psyching Out A Foreclosure Mill Lawyer

The foreclosure mill will usually demand a deposition by me if they are hellbent on going to trial. My client’s attorney usually demand foreclosure mill pay me or reimburse my client for my time. The foreclosure mill starts feeling the pressure from their client. It drives up the cost of foreclosing and their client usually won’t pay.

I use the deposition to my advantage. When I sit for a deposition I purposely refuse to back down on hard questions. I also observe the foreclosure mill attorney who is asking me questions. One thing that infuriates lawyers is when you refuse to succumb to their Jedi mind tricks. In addition, what really infuriates them even more, is when you make them lose their focus.

Rouse him, and learn the principle of his activity or inactivity. Force him to reveal himself, so as to find out his vulnerable spots.

If your opponent is of choleric temperament, seek to irritate him.

Zeroing In On Your Opponent’s Vanity

There was a lawyer who once deposed me who carried herself as an uber-feminist type. I knew from working Democratic Party politics nothing gets militant feminists to go apeshit crazy more than a misogynistic asshole.

I knew could get this attorney to lose her focus. It also gave me a tactical advantage through the rest of the deposition. I stood my ground throughout the rest of the deposition. I gave consistent answers and I phrased my answers in a way I knew she did not want to hear.

She became so flustered and infuriated during the deposition that she lost focus. She also began agreeing with me on the record. I was able to get her to agree that her client lacked standing to foreclose without realizing it. My client’s attorney knew exactly where and how to exploit what she said in the deposition and use her words against her later.

Arnold Schwarzenegger used a similar technique to psyche out Lou Ferrigno when they competed against each other in Mr. Olympia contests back in the 1970s.

“The Most Important Commodity I know Is Information.” -Gordon Gekko, Wall Street

One of the other reasons MFI-Miami clients are successful is because I have contacts at the major banks. My sources feed me information about internal workings and strategies. It’s amazing what information you can get. It’s amazing how easy these become your allies. All you have to do is buy a handful of middle managers and low-level executives from Wall Street banks a few cocktails at Ulysses in New York City.

It is essential to seek out enemy agents who have come to conduct espionage against you and to bribe them to serve you. Give them instructions and care for them. Thus doubled agents are recruited and used.

The end and aim of spying in all its five varieties is knowledge of the enemy; and this knowledge can only be derived, in the first instance, from the converted spy. Hence it is essential that the converted spy be treated with the utmost liberality.

I now get regular phone calls from these various sources on weekends and bank holidays. They have no problem ratting out their bosses or get me files. They also supply me with documents their own lawyers refuse to supply me in foreclosure cases.

 Most Importantly Play Your Cards Close To Your Vest

Homeowners fighting foreclosures act like a histrionic battered woman from a Lifetime movie during their foreclosure. This doesn’t work. Homeowners also file complaints with their State Attorney General, the FTC and the Office of the Comptroller of Currency. This is dumb and it shows just how ignorant their attorney is about how the system works.

Let your plans be dark and impenetrable as night, and when you move, fall like a thunderbolt.

The whole secret lies in confusing the enemy, so that he cannot fathom our real intent.

When homeowners do this, they are essentially broadcasting to the foreclosure mill their strategy for fighting foreclosures. Regulators are required by law to notify the lender attempting to foreclose of the complaint. The regulator sends the lender a copy of the complaint and allegations.

At the trial, a good attorney will know how to pit the lender’s witnesses against each other. This needs to be done because it weakens any of the lender’s allegations in their complaint.

“If his forces are united, separate them.”

Out of vanity and just plain arrogance, the lender’s lawyer will not expect a strategy like this and this opens the door for the homeowner’s attorney to attack.

“Attack him where he is unprepared, appear where you are not expected.” 

Another strategy we employ is to bring in a forensic accountant (former FBI or IRS agents make the best witnesses) to review and contest the payment history. I recently had a Client’s case withdrawn because their mortgage servicer, SPS could not provide a complete payment history. In another case, the CPA proved that Bank of America misapplied nearly $100,000 in payments. In both cases, the lenders walked away because it became too cost prohibitive or time consuming for them to contest the accounting.

“So in war, the way is to avoid what is strong, and strike at what is weak.” 

You need to remember that a successful strategy is planned out in great detail as soon as the homeowner is served with the foreclosure lawsuit. Every battle is won or lost before it is fought.

“Victorious warriors win first and then go to war, while defeated warriors go to war first and then seek to win” 


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