Irvine Attorney Sues to Obtain Loan Modification

A local attorney is suing her lender for failing to give her a loan modification. Are loan modifications now an entitlement?

Irvine Home Address … 51 CEZANNE Irvine, CA 92603

Resale Home Price …… $1,849,000

Yeah owe me back like you owe your rent

Owe me back like its money I spent

Pay me back when you shake it again

Nas — You Owe Me

Are borrowers owed a loan modification? Is it a right or an entitlement? Once upon a time, loan modifications were a gift generously offered by a lender — a gift of a lower payment, a reduced interest rate or some other term modified in favor of borrowers as an enticement to keep paying their mortgage. Somewhere along the way, this unilateral change in terms in favor of buyers became something they are supposed to get, something they are entitled to. I am not sure why foolish borrowing should be rewarded this way, but fixing this problem after the fact is so important to the government that many programs exist to make these loan modifications happen, and now borrowers who have tried to use these programs are suing if the loan modification does occur to their satisfaction.

Irvine woman sues over loan mod ‘hoax’

September 17th, 2010 — Marilyn Kalfus

An Irvine homeowner is suing a large national mortgage servicing company, saying they perpetrated a “loan modification hoax” and committed fraud by promising but never granting her a permanent home loan modification.

So this woman is claiming the entire loan modification program was a hoax to induce her to apply for something she probably isn't qualified for. That seems like a stretch to me, but if she can squeeze a few bucks out of the bank, why not?

Jean C. Wilcox, who also is a real estate lawyer, is seeking class-action status on behalf of other homeowners whose mortgages have been serviced by EMC Corporation.

EMC is based in Texas with offices in Irvine. The company used to be owned by Bear Stearns and is now a subsidiary of JP Morgan Chase, which is not named as a party in the suit. The lawsuit was filed by attorneys Anthony Lanza and Brodie H. Smith of Lanza & Goolsby in Irvine and Thomas Mauriello of Mauriello Law Firm in San Clemente.

Wilcox claims in the suit:

“Through its orchestrated loan modification hoax, EMC has induced consumers, including plaintiff, to continue making excess or other unjustified payments in pursuit of illusory permanent loan modifications. EMC has thereby avoided the need to initiate, prosecute and conclude multiple foreclosures … and has avoided the need to liquidate excessive and under-valued real estate inventory … and has artificially bolstered its financial statements, including balance sheets and related SEC filings … by minimizing mandatory reporting of toxic loans, defaulted loans or distressed loans.”

We’re requesting a response from EMC.

Wilcox bought her home in 2004. Three years later, she says in the suit, she refinanced her WAMU purchase money loan with a subprime loan from Freemont Investment and loan, which has since been dissolved. A few months after the refi, she was notified that EMC was her new servicer, but she wasn’t told who holds the loan. She said to this day, she doesn’t know who it is.

I found her mortgage records in my database. She purchased her home for $992,000 using a $695,000 first mortgage and a $297,000 down payment. She opened a $40,000 HELOC shortly thereafter, and she refinanced with an $800,000 loan on 12/29/2006. Perhaps she needed that extra $100,000 to pay for upgrades? It is the $800,000 loan with $100,000 cash out that she is seeking to modify. I'm thinking that if she wouldn't have pulled out that $100,000, she might not need a loan modification. Do we want to reward her behavior?

Wilcox says in the suit that she underwent 4 temporary or trial modifications with EMC but never received the permanent modification that she was promised. The goal posts kept changing, she said, as she was shuttled from person to person at the company.

In the suit she relays the various steps she took to fulfill the requirements she was told she needed to meet to obtain temporary loan mods. She says at one point an EMC employee advised her to stop making payments on her debts because it would prevent her loan from being modified. As she missed her payments, she said, her FICO score plunged. She said she postponed selling her house, while its value decreased significantly, because she was relying on receiving the permanent loan mod.

“I poured every penny I had into this house,” Wilcox, a single mother of two, said in a brief interview. ”We just lavished everything we could on this house. This is our ultimate dream home.”

And all of us are supposed to pay for that stupidity by subsidizing her mortgage. Great!

The lawsuit, filed in Orange County Superior Court, alleges violations of the California Consumers Legal Remedies Act, unlawful, unfair and deceptive business practices, breach of contract, unjust enrichment and fraud.

A judge would have to approve the suit’s class-action status. The law firm of Lanza & Goolsby states on its Website, ”It is estimated that the class may include hundreds or thousands of California homeowners who were victims of EMC’s fraud — while struggling to keep their homes through this recession.”

Investigative Website Pro Publica has delved into the denial of loan modifications in an extensive series of reports. Reporter Paul Kiel wrote in February:

“The largest servicers have lagged in approving homeowners for modifications. Together, those servicers account for more than 60 percent of the 3.4 million mortgages eligible for the program, but very few homeowners have been approved for lasting modifications. About 425,000 Chase customers are eligible for loan mods, according to the Treasury Department. Only a little more than 7,000 have received permanent modifications.”

“There are a number of adverse consequences of a trial period’s dragging on, said the [National] consumer law center’s [Diane] Thompson. Because a homeowner is not making a full payment, the balance of the mortgage grows during the trial period. The servicer reports the shortfall to credit reporting agencies, so the homeowner’s credit score can drop. And most important, says Thompson, the homeowner isn’t saving money in case the modification fails and the home is foreclosed. ‘Keeping someone in a trial modification really does not do them a favor,’ she said.”

Earlier this year, borrowers in Washington state and Arizona filed lawsuits against Bank of America over loans that were not modified. Those homeowners also were seeking class-action status.

I don't know about you, but I don't feel good about this lawsuit. The behavior it rewards is troubling to me. All loan modifications are fraught with moral hazard, and if we allow lawsuits to compel them, we are inching ever closer to full principal forgiveness on the backs of the US taxpayer.

BTW, I want to commend Marilyn Kalfus on her great reporting. Lately I have noticed a series of excellent stories from her with hard-hitting truths about the activity in our housing market. Kudos, Marilyn, your good work is noticed and appreciated.

The illusion of wealth

People who live in Orange County are fantastic pretenders. The previous owner of today's featured property lived the good life courtesy of their house.

  • This property was purchased on 4/21/2004 for $1,460,500. The owners used a $1,00,000 first mortgage and a $465,500 down payment. So far so good.
  • On 6/30/2005 they refinanced with a $1,471,458 Option ARM and withdrew their entire down payment plus some extra spending money.
  • On 2/20/2007 they refinanced again with a $1,650,000 first mortgage and a $220,000 HELOC.
  • Total property debt was $1,870,000.
  • Total mortgage equity withdrawal was $870,000 including their sizable down payment.
  • Total squatting time was about 10 months.

Foreclosure Record

Recording Date: 04/13/2010

Document Type: Notice of Sale

Foreclosure Record

Recording Date: 11/20/2009

Document Type: Notice of Default

The property was purchased at auction for $1,485,500 on 7/16/2005. It looks as if the hard money lender put a $1,633,500 loan on the property staking claim to the first $148,000 plus interest. Whoever talked this hard money lender into the deal stands to make the rest — if there is any.

Irvine Home Address … 51 CEZANNE Irvine, CA 92603

Resale Home Price … $1,849,000

Home Purchase Price … $1,485,500

Home Purchase Date …. 8/16/2010

Net Gain (Loss) ………. $252,560

Percent Change ………. 17.0%

Annual Appreciation … 138.8%

Cost of Ownership


$1,849,000 ………. Asking Price

$369,800 ………. 20% Down Conventional

4.52% …………… Mortgage Interest Rate

$1,479,200 ………. 30-Year Mortgage

$362,209 ………. Income Requirement

$7,512 ………. Monthly Mortgage Payment

$1602 ………. Property Tax

$400 ………. Special Taxes and Levies (Mello Roos)

$154 ………. Homeowners Insurance

$410 ………. Homeowners Association Fees


$10,079 ………. Monthly Cash Outlays

-$1503 ………. Tax Savings (% of Interest and Property Tax)

-$1941 ………. Equity Hidden in Payment

$620 ………. Lost Income to Down Payment (net of taxes)

$231 ………. Maintenance and Replacement Reserves


$7,486 ………. Monthly Cost of Ownership

Cash Acquisition Demands


$18,490 ………. Furnishing and Move In @1%

$18,490 ………. Closing Costs @1%

$14,792 ………… Interest Points @1% of Loan

$369,800 ………. Down Payment


$421,572 ………. Total Cash Costs

$114,700 ………… Emergency Cash Reserves


$536,272 ………. Total Savings Needed

Property Details for 51 CEZANNE Irvine, CA 92603


Beds: 4

Baths: 3 full 1 part baths

Home size: 3,600 sq ft

($514 / sq ft)

Lot Size: 9,327 sq ft

Year Built: 2004

Days on Market: 6

Listing Updated: 40435

MLS Number: S632282

Property Type: Single Family, Residential

Community: Turtle Ridge

Tract: Chau


TUSCAN BEAUTY!! Gate guarded in Turtle ridge..Very impressive and emotional neighborhood. Exceptional elevations and endless views. Extenxive stone exterior finishes. The emotion starts at the curb…Enter thru a private gate into the courtyard with cozy fireplace and dramatic water feature. Newly updated with new carpet, paint and lush landscaping. Extensive marble floors downstairs. Gourmet kitchen with granite counters and stainless appliances. Seperate wine room as well with a wrought iron door. Three bedrooms in the main house and a detached casitas with private bedroom/bath and an optional family room which also can be used for a gym or private office. Oversized master suite with walk in closets. dual sinks and large sitting area. Large view windows to give you a light and bright ambiance.Entetainers backyard is complete with extended family room area, built in bbq, fireplace and endless views of the mountains and city lights. MODEL PERFECT!!


69 thoughts on “Irvine Attorney Sues to Obtain Loan Modification

  1. awgee

    If you look again at her loan history, I think you will find that not only did she extract $100,000 when obtaining the $800,000 refi, but that loan has a balloon payment and it increased her interest rate about 4 or 5 points.

    She is not a victim. She is greedy and stupid.

      1. wheresthebeef

        I love the sob story…single mother of two who poured every last dime into her dream house. Screw her, she could lose some weight and work at some of the Nevada “ranches.” She might make more money than her ambulance chaser lawyer job that evidently doesn’t pay the bills.

  2. lowrydr310

    Tuscan beauty? I was in Toscana for a few weeks recently and didn’t see any homes that looked like this.

    “I poured every penny I had into this house,” Wilcox, a single mother of two, said in a brief interview. ”We just lavished everything we could on this house. This is our ultimate dream home.”

    I’m trying to understand the psychology of home buying. This lady claims it was her dream home. Do people really buy their dream home, and then every day for the next 30 years smile and feel an emotional rush when they walk into their home?

    I only ask because I get tired of holding on to the same thing too long – jobs, cars, clothes (though I’m still happily married; going on seven years now and not looking to replace my wife). I’m afraid if I was to buy a house the excitement and novelty would wear off quickly, and I’d be looking for a new one after only a few years.

    I see friends of mine who are living the American Dream™ and while they’re content with their lives and enjoy their homes, they recognize that they’re debt slaves and can’t easily relocate on short notice.

    1. AZDavidPhx

      She poured every penny into the house! A woo woo wooo! Wah wah wah!!

      That was your idiot choice madam when you bought a house for…..

      You decided to pour every penny into your dream. Why are you now entitled to a modification after the fact? Oh, the house was supposed to appreciate and pay for itself – I get it. Too bad it didn’t work out that way.

      What I find most ironic is how she claims to have been “promised” a loan mod. Like any good fancy pants lawyer, I am certain that she has this all in writing – signed by the bank president and is not just blowing smoke.

      Remember folks – always get it in writing, just like the lawyers tell you. Never assume! Or you might end up looking like an ass as in the case of this gal.

      Time to mail the keys in, lady. Go live the dream in a cheaper neighborhood.

  3. Planet Reality

    I don’t think these people are pretenders they put down a half million in cash.

    It looks more like they blatantly gamed the system. Taking more cash out paying the small option arm and then squatting. Pretenders is the wrong label. Intelligent people with money but no morals is probably more accurate.

    1. AZDavidPhx

      We do not discuss morals any longer on this blog. Morals are for the courts to enforce. Anything that is legal is therefore moral by default.

    1. AZDavidPhx

      Have you know sympathy? This poor hapless soul who makes a living as an expert on “the law” and contracts has been hoodwinked! Bamboozled! Hustled into a fraudulent hoax! GASP! Sounds sinister! Someone promised her a loan mod and didn’t do it! Her delusions of grandeur are collapsing all around her and all you can do is make fun. She is now the voice of all gals who have been duped by these fiends! I wish her luck on her class action lawsuit quest to be a champion of the little people!

      Next step is to form a group. I propose it be called “Gals Against Big Banks” or “GABB”. I will start making T-Shirts immediately. Someone else start making posters and signs. It’s time for the proletariat to revolt!

      1. Will

        Maybe there should be a special support group for women duped by bankers. The shame of it all…this virtuous, innocent, wholesome lady was seduc*d and abandoned by shameless bankers, who pillaged her savings and then shredded her equity. What next…a weepy appearance on the “Oprah” Show? It’s her last season…maybe this could be the last episode…get me a hanky, please, a see blockbuster ratings!

  4. AZDavidPhx

    Ladies and Gentlemen of this supposed jury, My Bank’s defenders would certainly want you to believe that I am not entitled to a loan modification, and they make a good case. Hell, I almost felt pity myself. But Ladies and Gentlemen of this supposed jury, I have one final thing I want you to consider.

    This is Chewbacca. Chewbacca is a Wookiee from the planet Kashyyyk, but Chewbacca lives on the planet Endor. Now, think about that. That does not make sense!

    Why would a Wookiee — an eight foot tall Wookiee — want to live on Endor with a bunch of two foot tall Ewoks? That does not make sense!

    But more importantly, you have to ask yourself: what does that have to do with this case? (calmly) Nothing. Ladies and gentlemen, it has nothing to do with this case! It does not make sense!

    Look at me, I’m a lawyer defending a major record company, and I’m talkin’ about Chewbacca. Does that make sense? Ladies and gentlemen, I am not making any sense. None of this makes sense.

    And so you have to remember, when you’re in that jury room deliberating and conjugating the Emancipation Proclamation… does it make sense? No! Ladies and gentlemen of this supposed jury, it does not make sense.

    If Chewbacca lives on Endor, you must not acquit!

    Here, look at the monkey. Look at the silly monkey!

    1. bn

      “She purchased her home for $992,000 using a $695,000 first mortgage and a $297,000 down payment. She opened a $40,000 HELOC shortly thereafter, and she refinanced with an $800,000 loan on 12/29/2006.”

      I’m trying to understand RE liability. In the Wilcox example, how much money is considered recourse versus non-recourse? Since she re-fi’d is the 800k considered recourse? Or is only 40k HELOC considered recourse since it wasn’t purchase money?

      1. IrvineRenter

        When she purchased, the original loan was non-recourse. When she obtained the HELOC, any of that money borrowed would be recourse, but the original purchase money mortgage is still non-recourse. Once she refinanced the first mortgage, the HELOC goes away, but the entire first mortgage is now recourse.

        1. Planet Reality

          That’s all well and good, and uh legal and let’s be realistic, no matter how much these people are hounded by debt collectors (and they will be) they are never going to pay a dime.

          1. AZDavidPhx

            They won’t waste their time chasing lawyers either as lawyers know that debt collectors have no real power to collect. The typical bluffing and posturing won’t work on someone who understands their game.

          2. Perspective

            Hmm, I’m not so sure this is true. Collectors don’t have to play games with solvent deadbeats, and by solvent I mean someone with a high income. As a partner at a smaller OC firm, she probably earns around $250K (with no spousal income and two kids living in Orange County, that’s not too much, but still makes her far from judgment proof).

            The collectors don’t have to make a ton of calls to her – just a couple. Then they’ll mail her the complaint they plan to file. They will win a judgment. She’ll know this. If she does nothing, the judgment will allow plaintiff to attach her wages.

            The non-recourse nature of her refi has her in a bad position (relative to most Americans, she’s in a fine position, but…). Due to her poor position, it’s understandable she’s reaching for straws by filing this case.

          3. lowrydr310

            I love the single mom card being played by an OC lawyer making $250K+. Go cry to a real single mom struggling to get by.

    2. Planet Reality

      This is a sad statement on what we have come to in America. A person buying a near million dollar home with an advanced degree needs the support of our government to live her entitled life.

      When these types of people finally get their principal reduction I have no doubt they will do it all over again with full endorsement of the tax payer subsidized banks.

  5. Shevy

    To play devil’s advocate, although I disagree with the ends that she is trying to achieve with her lawsuit if the true intent is simply to say that she and other are entitled to loan mods. However, the lawsuits does bring up some good points that really have nothing to do with her deserving a loan mod and also brings to light some shady bank tactics that have allowed bank executives to take huge bonuses while they should be insolvent.
    Marilyn Kalfus writes, “EMC has thereby avoided the need to initiate, prosecute and conclude multiple foreclosures … and has avoided the need to liquidate excessive and under-valued real estate inventory … and has artificially bolstered its financial statements, including balance sheets and related SEC filings … by minimizing mandatory reporting of toxic loans, defaulted loans or distressed loans.”
    Once again this proves the existence of shadow inventory. Moreover, I believe that many IHB readers and educated people that understand what is going on would agree that it would be a good thing if banks would just liquidate their excessive under-valued real estate, no longer were able to use mark to fantasy accounting, and accurately reported on their losses. Maybe these attorneys are smarter than we are giving them credit for and they are using this lawsuit to shed light on bad policies. From what I read, most of their argument did not provide any legal reasons why they should give a loan mod, only complaints about bank policies and practices that are bad and should not be allowed. If this law suit is successful at making banks change these policies, many banks would probably fail, however, it could also force banks to make loan mod policies more clear, may help to end tax payer bail outs, may force banks to dispose of assets quicker, may help prices come down to market levels, and everyone can move on. Of course this is the glass is half full way of looking at it.
    Although her main goal may be to force loan mods, if anything productive comes out from this, a more likely scenario based upon what I read will be that it brings many of shady bank tactics to extend, amend, and pretend to light.
    Regarding loan mods, I was at a home that was recently purchased by one of my clients through foreclosure. I knocked on the property next door and the lady that answered was really nice, she had 2 or 3 kids and she had purchased her home a few years ago. She paid $220,000 for a one bedroom apartment and confided in me that she really needed a 2 bedroom place. Her interest rate is 6.25 and when she called for a loan mod they said no. This is clearly a case in which the owner has not been educated, her property is now worth circa ½ that, moreover, for the payment she is making on this property could easily afford a 2 bedroom and live much more comfortably, yet she is concerned about her credit and her only wish is for a loan mod that brings her rate to current market levels when it’s likely that that she will be underwater for more than 10 years. Of course there are no 200% LTV loans that I know of right now so it’s not going to happen. I believe that there is a fundamental problem with financial education in this country and that puts American consumers at risk of being manipulated as so many were during the bubble. For the most part, loan mods that are successful help no one except for the banks and if consumers looking for loan mods were properly educated they would choose to walk away regardless. The fantasy that a loan mod will come about that is a benefit to the consumer in the long run on a massive scale is only a tactic to string people along and transparency and education is the best solution.

    1. Planet Reality

      “it would be a good thing if banks would just liquidate their excessive under-valued real estate”

      In reality that would be difficult for most people to answer, they would first need to know if they would join the unemployed or under employed due to the insolvency tsunami that would ensue once again.

    2. Van godDam

      I think she is taking a “If I can’t have a loan mod, no one can!” position. There are some great things listed in that complaint, and as a RE attorney she is probably quite aware of how rife with malfeasance the lending industry is.

      She might think that if she gets the banks peeing down their leg, they will settle and give her a modification.

    3. Food

      This woman lawyer lied about her dream home. A couple years ago, she was desperately trying to get rid of her house on Bamboo. With that WTF price, it was no wonder that it did not sell. I wonder if there were even bidders. With these desperate lawsuits, I hope the banks would expedite the foreclosure process.

      1. Honcho

        I used to defend lenders/servicers against these kind of garbage lawsuits. Once the lawsuit is filed, there is a hold placed on the property and the foreclosure doesn’t proceed (typically the plaintiff (or the plaintiff’s lawyer) would file a lis pendens in the real property records that effectively prevents the property from being sold. This really does nothing other than extend the process even further.

        FWIW, I never saw one of these junk lawsuits advance beyond the pleading stage. However, it can still take up to a year to get the lawsuit dismissed and the lis pendens expunged from the real property records.

        My clients would often be willing to do loan mods, but rarely, if ever, would the person actually be able to qualify for a loan mod. Or, the person could qualify for a loan mod but they wanted some ridiculous term that would be a deal breaker.

    4. Chris

      “I believe that there is a fundamental problem with financial education in this country and that puts American consumers at risk of being manipulated as so many were during the bubble.”

      American math scores are some of the lowest in the world. What do you expect?

      Furthermore, most of them bought homes without even bother thinking about the “loan amount” but rather “monthly payments”. Now tell me how educated is that?

  6. CA

    This is random, but has anyone ever heard of “The Irvine Oracle?”

    Apparently BofA/recontrust has been publishing a ton of NOD’s/NTS’ in there. I have other means to pull up auctions, but call me old fashioned, I like reading through these.

  7. Soylent Green Is People

    To set expectations, I’m one who believes most law schools should be closed or consolidated, with the remaining lawyers trapped and put down in some humane way as we do with all vermin.

    This lawsuit will be won only when they are passing out free shaved ice cones in hades. It would be nice however (IMHO) to penalize someone, anyone for the foreclosure delaying tactics known as “loan modifications”. These programs were mere show trials that were put on to distract the weak minded until the banks could ramp up their foreclosure efforts. The sooner the general public realizes that mods were part of the extend and pretend mentality with the end point being a knock on the door by the sheriff to boot you from the property the better.

    If the bankers got us into this wreck, leveraging off of feeble thinking and greed, why are we expecting to be lead into prosperity by this same bunch post bail out? I don’t know about you, but I’ve got my pitchfork and torch at the ready, waiting for the masses to boil over. A blizzard of lawsuits won’t change anyones behavior, but perhaps a touch of revolution will.

    My .02c

    Soylent Green Is People.

    1. AZDavidPhx

      Oh but the masses were all about the loan modification charade. They actually believed that the banks had some kind of incentive to actually help Joe lunchbox who overspent on his house LOL. Only now when they start sobering up to the reality that they fell in love with a conman who romanced and jilted them does the anger start to spew. Strategic defaults, lawsuits, concrete poured into toilets.. Hell hath no fury like a scorned house debtor.

      That’s the price that these sheeple pay for their addiction to blue pills.

    2. Perspective

      Yes, all lawyers are evil and should be eliminated… until you need one, and then just that one is great…

      1. Soylent Green Is People

        Perspective –

        Are you then not willing to cull from the herd the kind of “attorneys” this person represents? Sure, the market will force them out, but that takes time. Accellerating these kinds of lawyers into another vocation will save all of us quite a few headaches.

        There are too many lawyers chasing too few subjects of substance, but rather focusing on the entitlement class. This needs to stop. Closing a few law schools would be a good start. Lower supply hopefully will result in higher quality levels of those before the bench. Take some time to read the blog if you disagree on the current quality level of the legal minds today.

        My .02c

        Soylent Green Is People.

        1. Perspective

          I’m all for limiting the supply of lawyers (hugely self-interested since me & the Mrs are already in). There’s been a ton of pressure on the ABA to stop approving new law schools and to limit the number of students admitted to ABA-approved schools. That pressure hasn’t resulted in much to-date.

          As for the attorney in this post, she’s from Loyola – a school routinely ranked in the top-100 by US News.

          1. Tony

            The AMA has been very successful limiting the supply of doctors by limiting, through pressure and otherwise, the number of students admitted to medical schools. That pressure HAS resulted in increased medical care costs that way exceed inflation for the last 20 years.

          2. HydroCabron

            leave the market alone as the french say.

            Too bad the French language lacks a word for “entrepreneur”.

          3. Normand

            By the way, “entrepreneur” IS french. In fact, there is another wonderful french word used these days…”mortgage”.

            If you look into a dictionary, you will see that it is coming from the french: “mort” (death) and “gage”(due to). It litterally means that you will be paying until you die.

            I’m a french canadian (Québec)

          4. HydroCabron

            “Irony” is also in the dictionary. Google “verbal irony” for a deeper understanding of my post.

          5. Freetrader2

            Loyala! Well, that sure is impressive. You’d need, oh, about a 3.2 and a 60% percentile GMAT to get in there. So she is almost in the top 50% of the population in intelligence! She was probably a Gender Studies major.

          6. Perspective

            Freetrader2, there’s a statistical flaw in your conclusion. To get into Loyola or a similar law school, she’d need a pretty good GPA like you stated. So of the percentage of the population that makes it to college AND actually graduates, she would need to perform proportionally well.

            Also, the entire population does not take the LSAT. Only college graduates who are considering law school take the LSAT, and of that small subset of the population, she’d need to also perform well in relation to those takers.

            Then, she would also need to get through law school and graduate. Many law schools cull the first year class by up to 33%.

            Then finally, she would need to pass the CA Bar Exam which is notoriously difficult.

            So, regardless of her undergrad major, she is quite an accomplished person relative to the general population.

          7. Misstrial

            Despite your stats, there are about 3 or 4 unemployed attorneys on this season’s Apprentice.

            On the first episode, each gave the sobering facts relative to the lack of employment in the legal profession in the current economy.

            Each (with the exception of Mahsa who is a DDA with Brooklyn DA’s office) stated that case work evaporated leading to their termination.

            Another (Nicole, who was the first fired by Trump) quit simply because she stated she didn’t get a JD from Stanford “to scan documents.”

            I figure that Ms. Wilcox failed to factor an economic downturn into her long-term financial plans and is now seeking relief from the courts to provide for her own lack of prudent strategy.

            Sorry, no sympathy.


          8. Perspective

            Not quite sure who was seeking sympathy?

            I like your reasoning though – a TV show has 3 unemployed attorneys on it and therefore… I’m not sure anything you could say after that would make any sense.

            The JD from Stanford may not want to scan docs, and the biggest reason is ’cause she doesn’t have to scan docs. Sure, a big firm will pay here $160K+ to do so, but her resume will afford her plenty of income over the course of her career.

          9. Misstrial


            It is no secret that attorneys, particularly in M&A and corporate law, are experiencing layoffs. If this is news to you, do a check on the NYT for articles regarding this issue.

            RE: the JD from Stanford – she has no other attorney jobs on her resume and she stated that she intends to look into another field for which she has interests.

            In any event, I have never known of a junior associate who made career decisions such as hers ever recover professionally.

            To clarify, I have no sympathy for Ms. Wilcox.


    3. Food

      This republic was created because of non-existent or under representations among the taxpayers. More than 200 years later, I am beginning to feel the same way as the founding fathers of this republic. On top of that, this republic now boasts to be the most corrupted country in the world where the thugs (among them many Jews) have stolen trillions of dollars from the taxpayers. This corruption is more than the combined amount of any other countries, tribes, organizations, enterprises both present and in the past. What can pitch forks and torches do. Police would escort you to jail immediately. What we need is a coup. When Obama dumped general McCrystal and installed an ass-kisser instead, I was hoping McCrystal would be brave enough to be that general to force a coup and dispose the trash in Washington and at the state level.

      1. Soylent Green Is People

        Oh.. now I see. It’s the jews. Somehow I missed that. It was so obvious how could I have overlooked that part of the vast conspiracy to collapse American society. Thanks for the insight.

        Perhaps if you changed your moniker from “Food” to “Tool” it would more accurately reflect your point of view.

        Soylent Green Is People

      2. HydroCabron

        This republic was created because of non-existent or under representations among the taxpayers.

        Yes, and the Founding Fathers had gas jets coming out of their behinds for the purpose of levitation – except for crossing bodies of water, in which case they simply walked. After the revolution, crime, unwed pregnancy, masturbation, and taxes were unknown in our land. Life was a glorious paradise built by cheerful non-union laborers, who carried lovely a capella harmonies through their entire 70-hour workweeks. But the evil Franklin Roosevelt, backed by a swarthy, bearded cabal of Joos, gang-raped Liberty and took all the money from every productive man in the United States, leaving these Christians enslaved.

        Since then, we have endured a long night of barbarism, with no economic growth, no access to material goods of any kind, and no chance to speak out for fear of execution or imprisonment in this centrally-managed totalitarian dystopia. The days since 1913 have been a Marxist horror, and those since 1932 an unending incarceration in a Stalinist prison. If only we could end taxes, restore Christianity to government, and ban abortion, we would bring back the heaven on earth that this country was in 1890.

        Do I have that about right?

        Actually, the Founding Fathers were eastern elites (boo!) with a well-founded fear of people nourishing your sort of dark conspiracy fantasies. They rebelled against one of the lowest-taxing governments in history, which had clumsily handled colonial government even while granting a considerable amount of autonomy to the colonists. The Founding Fathers carefully constructed a layered republic between themselves and the mob – i.e., between themselves and YOU. They owned other human beings – called “slaves” – and many were not Christian, or were actively opposed to organized religion. They were horrified by standing armies, and would find our $750 billion annual defense budget outrageous.

        As with all other American historical figures, they did not hold views which could be considered right wing or left wing today. History itself does not conform to any particular modern ideology’s pet conception of it: it’s far too dirty and indecipherable to fit the narratives spun by one group or another.

      3. Food

        There are no Jew theories. These are just my astute observations. Let’s use the example of the top two bandit SOBs: Greenspan and Bernanke. Aren’t they Jews? If not, what are they? Should we call them monkeys as one of IR’s cartoons depicting Greenspan and a monkey side by side? If you don’t know what they are and dispute me on that, you are indeed a fucking bigot. So, let’s hear it since you are disputing me. What are they?

        Oh, I have deliberately chosen a silly handle to entertain the likes of bigots who would attack personalities when confronted with politically incorrect idealism to you. You did so exactly as I have expected.

    1. IrvineRenter

      The margins are still pretty good for more expensive properties, but finding a buyer is more of a challenge.

  8. BD

    Yikes… My conservative bone is twitching. I won’t be caught ever holding a 1.4M dollar piece of RE with hopes of getting 1.8M in this market.

    Hopefully this is a fund owned property who can stomach the months of waiting to break-even.

    The ‘high-end’ is just now begining to weaken. I expect it to accelerate for lots of reasons.

    Tell me why – anyone – why now is the time to buy a piece of RE at 1.4M (personal home) when we will have a decade or more of flat prices or declining RE prices?



    1. Perspective

      Well, it could only be the “time to buy” this $1.4M home if you:

      were currently renting something for $5-7K,
      have $400K to put down,
      have a household income in the $400K range, and
      were reasonably ready to remain in this home for the next decade.

      So, we’re looking at a tiny subset of the OC population who already has a whole host of options available to them.

    2. DarthFerret

      BD: Tell me why – anyone – why now is the time to buy a piece of RE at 1.4M (personal home) when we will have a decade or more of flat prices or declining RE prices?

      Because they’re starting with a different premise than you are.

      Sadly, there are quite a few out there that think like Planet [r]ealty does. There are still quite a few that BELIEVE that RE prices always go up (at least in the nicer areas). They think that Irvine and beach-close OC are immune to the housing bust. Remember Corona del Mar Homeowner (I don’t remember his exact username) that used to post here? He argued for over a year that CdM was completely immune to the housing bust.

      Some of those people that think this way are either wealthy or high wage-earners. I know it doesn’t make sense for people with such an inability to understand the housing market to be financially successful via other means, but talents in some areas don’t necessarily translate into talents in all areas. Their beliefs are wrong, but what does that have to do with BELIEF? Some of these people will make very foolish loan-buying choices based on their incorrect beliefs.


      1. Misstrial

        This attorney, like most others, have the means and the connections to advisors and experts who can give them (many times at no cost) advice in order to avoid the outcome presented by IR.

        Interesting that she apparently failed to seek appropriate guidance prior to making the house purchase.

        ~Misstrial (who is aware that many attorneys use their house as an ATM or as collateral in order to fund expenses for their law practice)

  9. laguna1

    It makes me so angry that people like her are trying to gain the system! Buyers knew what they were getting themselves into, now they are making us tax payers pay for their greediness.

    We own a property that we have rented out but we are not trying to get a loan modification. We decided to rent our primary residence and wait the market out. If you are able to buy a home then you know the terms of the mortgage and must be responsible if the market goes up or down. Lets say you bought a bunch of stocks and they go down, you can’t ask for that money back!

    1. Chris

      “It makes me so angry that people like her are trying to gain the system!”

      She’s nothing compared to GS.

      1. lowrydr310

        When you’re the one who write the rules, you have the ultimate power. Is it just a coincidence that GS alumni get appointed to many high level gov positions related to finance?

    2. Misstrial


      Not to worry.

      Just think how clients will flee from her as a legal representative after reading how she can’t even manage her personal financials.


  10. Major Schadenfreude

    “If you are able to buy a home then you know the terms of the mortgage and must be responsible if the market goes up or down.”

    No! The lender must be responsible for discerning whether a potential loan owner will be responsible during times of distress. If the lender deems them a risk, the cost of the loan increases to compensate for the risk.

    We need a system where the lenders return to being prudent again. Such a system can only exist if there is only very minimal government involvement.

    1. lowrydr310

      I used to share the same opinion, however IR gave some good evidence to the contrary last Thursday in his post Did We Replace Welfare with Home Ownership and HELOC Abuse?.

      To be honest, I don’t believe political decisions and government policies had much to do with the growth in home ownership. Lax lending standards and lowered down payment requirements added buyers to the pool by converting good renters into bad loan owners.

      If you want to blame any particular policy for this, I would look to Alan Greenspan’s refusal to regulate credit default swaps as a good candidate. The reason lending standards got so lax is because lenders believed they had transferred the risk to someone else, most often AIG. Since this risk was grossly mispriced, lending standards continued to fall and the mispricing of risk was hidden by the rampant appreciation the influx of new, unqualified buyers created. When it all blew up, we had a major financial crisis.

      The delivery mechanism that put unqualified buyers into homes was not the GSEs, so it was not government policy that increased the home ownership rate: it was private subprime lenders. The data on this point is difficult to refute (see below). Republicans have tried to blame Barney Frank which is a joke considering he had no power while all this was going on. Democrats try to blame the Republicans because they were in charge, but that isn’t right either because it was caused by private companies — not the GSEs — and not by any government programs.

  11. MikeInIrvine

    This lawsuit is a good thing and if she were to win it would be a great thing. Really. I’m serious here.

    Think of it from the banks perspective. A successful outcome (against the banks) would mean that by even mentioning, implying, etc. the possibility of a loan mod it would somehow obligate them to actually mod the existing, bad loan.

    If so, the reasonable response would be that all mod’s would stop. Immediately.

    Foreclosures would increase and the markets would start to clear. This would do wonders in helping buyers with price discovery and sooner (then later) normalcy would return to the markets.

  12. Misstrial

    Interesting how she put more time into trying to uncover a legal justification for her case than in performing financial planning and asset management to make the home purchase.

    Basically she and many other women want the government to be their husband or their daddy.

    This is the main reason why women vote Dem.

    ~Misstrial (who is not a member of The Little Girls Club)

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