Monday, March 15, 2010
The Delaware Supreme Court has imposed a public reprimand of an attorney who had conducted 10 closings for a private money lender. The attorney has been in practice for over 30 years and had significant experience in residential real estate closings.
The attorney began represnting the private money lender in 2007. He used loan documents provided by that client's principal and did not review them because the principal told him they were "tried and true." In fact, they were tried and false-- the loans violated the Home Ownership and Equity Protection Act of 1994 and failed to contain the Truth in Lending Act's required notice of the right to rescind.
The attorney failed to provide written notice to the borrowers that he was not their attorney and they had a right to choose their own counsel. The court approved findings that he did not provide competent representation and had violated his duties of communication. The court also rejected the propsed private reprimand by the Board on Professional Responsibility. (Mike Frisch)