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Is it ethical for a lawyer to tell someone to skip 3 pmts so they can get a loan mod (HAMP)?

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March 03 2013 - Hot Springs
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Answers (3)

I have a relationship with an attorney who will help folks with short sales, loan modification, foreclosure etc.  I do not always agree with what he advises, however, I'm not an attorney.

Certain loan modifications require that you show you are experiencing a financial hardship.  If you are current on your payments how are you going to show that you are financially unable to continue?

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March 04 2013
I wish we were all conversant enough with legal ethics to advise you on this, but my feeling is that if you ask an attorney for help, they are kind of obliged to provide that help without regard to their personal feelings on the matter.

For example, I might feel that it is wrong to not pay your bills when they are due, especially when you are able. However - and I don't know this to be true - if HAMP only gives loan modifications to people who are three payments behind . . . I think your attorney owes it to you to inform you of this option.

Let's turn this around - what if they didn't tell you this was an option, and you later found out that it was? And they told you, "We knew that, but we don't approve."
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March 03 2013
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I am not a lawyer, and I'm fairly certain you're not going to get a response from lawyer on this forum....especially to this question.

With that said...

I don't believe it is un-ethical for a lawyer to discuss the pros/cons of and potential reward/consequences of any actions. However, to "tell someone" to do something illegal or that breaches a contractual agreement? Probably not, especially if that action (i.e., skipping 3 mortgage payments) is not a guarantee of achieving the desired end-state (i.e., loan mod).

Are you sure that they were not simply reviewing "all the alternatives", and that there was a mis-understanding of their intent (i.e., "discussion" vice "direction")?
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March 03 2013
 
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Is it ethical for a lawyer to tell someone to skip 3 pmts so they can get a loan mod (HAMP)?
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