J. S., retired

Our property was weeks away from foreclosure and, in order to preserve our credit rating and work with-rather than against-our lender, we proceeded with a short sale. We had obtained a legal opinion that the lender could not pursue us for the deficiency, or the difference between the loan balance and the sales proceeds received by the bank. Soon thereafter, however, we were sued by the lender for the deficiency and we retained Lance Davidson to defend us. Mr. Davidson explained that neither the statutory language nor the most pertinent case protected us–the statute expressly bars deficiencies only after a trustee sale, not a short sale, and the case precedent, unlike ours, did not involve our consent to the bank informing us of the deficiency and its right to recover it. After all, if we had no liability, why would the bank sue us for the deficiency? Our other attorney apparently had only read the ‘Cliff Notes’ version of the statute and case law. Mr. Davidson filed a Motion to Dismiss and in oral arguments against the bank’s counsel persuaded the judge that the intent of the case and the statute barred the deficiency lawsuit. The judge also agreed that the bank’s warning did not give sufficient notice. We have learned that a bankruptcy-collections attorney who lectures on anti-deficiency laws and practices for creditors and debtors throughout Arizona was ‘amazed’ at your success. And significantly, your success permitted us to recover all of our attorney’s fees so we had a free defense! But, most significantly, since the judge’s ruling effectively eliminates the debt as recourse, there is no debt forgiveness so we owe no 6-figure tax liability! You saved us many, many times what would have been your legal fee in debt liability and tax liability. Thank you, thank you