Tag Archive 'Davis Stirling Act':

Huntington Continental VOICE

 

HUNTINGTON CONTINENTAL TOWN HOUSE OWNERS – ARE YOU INFORMED?

 

VICTORY!


DIRECTORS’ FAIL TO TAKE AWAY 9,000,000 CALIFORNIA HOA MEMBERS’ RIGHTS!

 APPEAL VICTORY AGAIN 10/14/14 – CLICK HERE

 

450 HUNTINGTON CONTINENTAL OWNERS DON’T KNOW THEIR LEGAL RIGHTS ARE AT RISK!
READ AN IMPORTANT OVERVIEW OF THE RULING – 17 YEARS IN THE MAKING

 

BEFORE YOU BUY IN ANY CALIFORNIA HOA READ THIS WEBSITE

 THE HOA PRIMER – CLICK HERE

 



This website is a work in progress;

 

LATEST ISSUES

 

 

Special thanks to Sam Walker, a quality attorney, who has been instrumental in winning this battle. If you have real estate or HOA issues, or if you have litigation or appellate needs, Sam may be able to help you too: sam@samwalkerlaw.com (Sam Walker is in northern California). Sam Walker is a great appeal lawyer. That is his speciality.

 

If you are in Southern California contact Joseph Rosenblit: rosenblitlawyer@gmail.com – Mr. Rosenblit practices in Orange County and all Southern California areas. Mr. Rosenbilt stood firmly behind me in the litigation against the 14 defendants including the lawyers I sued: Stanley Feldsott, Jacqueline Pagano, and James Harkins. If you have problems with any of the people mentioned in this website, or others who do not play by the rules, I suggest you sue them too! Remember, document every issue, every email, every letter. Take photos, keep each and every items they send to you, and make copies of every item you send to them. The more people who sue their association, including the lawyers, and the management companies the better it will be for everyone.

 

DO NOT SIGN AGREEMENTS WITH ANYONE – this will take away your rights! This is what the agreements are all about – you agree to pay them all they want and YOU give up your rights at the same time. Before you sign any agreement contact Sam or Joe.

 

My opion is that it is better not to talk on phone (unless they allow you to record the conversation). People have a habit of forgetting EXACTLY what was said and that won’t be good for you. Make certain your emails ‘repeat’ every detail you wish to get across. In court you will not believe how things are twisted. If you repeat each and every issue in your response emails that will be less likely.

 

EXAMPLE: Mr. Smith if you pay $100 today we will drop the lawsuit. Instead of just saying ‘okay’ you say “Okay Mr. Jones, you state that if I pay $100 today you will drop the lawsuit. I agree to pay $100 today and will send it to you.” Be very ‘clear’ and leave no ambiguity in any correspondence with whomeever you correspond with. If you have a meeting RECORD THE MEETING – People tend to tell the truth when the truth is recored or in writing.

 

This whole thing gets somewhat complex but here it is in a nutshell.

 

War #1) Owner got behind in his payments. He then sent the Association full payment for all assessments. Association’s attorney sent the full payment back to owner. The owner sent the money back. The Association sent the money back to owner and tried to foreclose in his home in a lawsuit. The owner fought the lawsuit. The lawsuit was a bloody battle that went all the way to the court of appeal just below Supreme Court of California. The Court ruled the owner was the winner. Wars are costly. Association must pay for everything associated with the losing the war. You lose the war when you don’t play by the law. I won, they lost.

 

WINNER!

 

War #2) Association, while going through the other battle, started a new battle and tried to sue owner in Small Claims Court AFTER Erica Griffith added about $15,000 in bogus attorney fees to owner’s ledger. Owner would not allow this and stood for battle once again battling James Harkins (lawyer), the Association’s attorney, and Keystone. The events are listed below. Basically, the Association’s agents were pulling another ‘fast one’ doing things that were again illegal (my opinion). Again we went to battle, and again the Association lost, as the new Judge finally reversed their short victory and now has forced them to put their battle on in a upper level court where again we have attorneys and evidence, and witnesses. You have none of this in Small Claims.

 

WINNER!

 

War #3) Now that I have proven what had been done to me was illegal. I now sue everyone involved. Normally everyone would need to defend themselves, but in this case Rustan Laine has signed contracts forcing Association to pay and defend the Attorney, the management company etc! So why is my HOA defending these subcontractors for their mistakes? Ask Rustan Laine and Myra Kuck. Call your HOA President and tell her you want your money back from these wasteful service providers!

 

WINNER! (SETTLEMENT) While I can not give details of my personal settlement – I will have a very nice Christmas 2015 and all of 2016 for that matter!

 

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

 

Bottom line this member’s opinion is that Myra Kuck and Rustan Laine have made some very very very bad decisions, allowing all this to happen, costing this association and it members hundreds of thousands of dollars… and we are not done yet! All my personal opinion of course. “The quickest way to lose all your money is to put someone in charge who faces no consequence when losing it.” The Directors are supposed to be the ‘watchful eye’ over the agents (lawyers, managers) who wish to waste (spend) all our money; and suffer no consequence when they accomplish their goal and our balance is zero. 

 

Below are the sideline issues where the association chose to sue in Small Claims…. it lost again, the case now consolidated with the new case against Kuck and Laine. There is a huge history to all this: all you really need to know is that these particular directors have made some very bad decisions that have cost each and every homeowner about $500! A total of $250,000 and we are not done yet… it could be another $800,000 that could bankrupt this entire HOA! Then it would be time for a huge SPECIAL ASSESSMENT from each owner! When the dust settles we will know what this has cost in total. Right now the estimate is $250,000 but the next war could cost this Association another $800,000!

 

<<<<<<<<<< PAST UPDATES >>>>>>>>>>

 

UPDATE 5/2014! Owner who won major victory for all California HOA homeowers now under savage financial attack by Keystone Pacific Community Manager hired by the Huntington Continental Board of Directors. Coincidentally this Keystone Pacific Community Manager is a long term and “personal friend” of a specific director who authorized the previous attempted foreclosure. The Keystone Pacific Community Manager, approved by the same director, is now arbitrarily adding (added) 1000s and 1000s of dollars in attorney fees monthly to the owners account! it’s our opinion this is an obvious targeted attack of malicious retribution against anyone who stands up to these people when they don’t abide by the law!

 

This Community Manager has now added more than $25,000 in attorney “phone call” and “email” fees to the owners account. Beware this could happen to you!

 

UPDATE 6/2014! After publicly exposing the link between the board member and  the Keystone Pacific Community Manager, this community manager has been removed! However, they have not removed all of her daily phone calls and emails to the attorney and malicious additions to my ledger.

 

UPDATE 10/2014! Enough is enough. All owners at Huntington Continental are being victimized by this complete mis-management. Imagine $12,000 (old amount) in attorney fees (60 months of assessments) paid to an attorney when the entire situation was caused by the association itself! Association, directors, and management company named in legal action.

 

UPDATE 7/2015! A Superior Court lawsuit has been filed, and now is being amended.

 

HOA foreclosure victims – If you have been foreclosed on by ANY HOA attorney who refused payments that may have allowed you to keep your property I would advise you to contact an attorney and sue the HOA and HOA attorney who refused your money. Refusal of your payments was unlawful!!!

 

Additionally, we allege these “service providers” should pay back the monies to Huntington Continental (unjust enrichment). If you are an owner in Huntington Continental we believe these ‘service providers’ owe our association about $250,000!!!

 

If you also believe these ‘service providers’ should pay back the wasted fees they charged and were paid by your HOA directors, you should contact us via the contact links. The amount is about $500 for each and every owner at the Huntington Continental. (that is 2.5 months with no dues!!!!). Obviously one can not get paid for doing a bad job or pursuing an illegal collection and wasting literally many hundreds of thousands of dollars.

 

If you live in an Association you may know of these providers named below and you may want to check and see if they are doing the same things at your Association. Those things would be: 1) refusing partial payments (any payment you make MUST go to your assessments, 2) suing you in Small Claims court and charging Attorney fees (we believe this to be a new illegal scam happening with debt collection managers and ‘consulting’ attorneys.

 

  • An updated list of defendants that have been sued on the amended complaint are:
  • 1 – Huntington Continental Town Home Association, Inc.
  • 2- Rustan Laine (former President)
  • 3 – Myra Kuck (former Treasurer)
  • 4 – Feldsott and Lee (a law firm)
  • 5 – Stanley Feldsott
  • 6 – Jacqueline Pagano
  • 7 – Tyler Jones
  • 8 – Keystone Pacific
  • 9 – Cary Treff
  • 10 – Erica Griffith
  • 11 – Renee Barger
  • 12 – Brittany Bennett
  • 13 – Cane Walker Harkins (a law firm)
  • 14 – James Harkins
  • 15 – Arturo Chayra (dismissed as to some counts)
  • 16 – Richard Sheldon Bar (dismissed as to some counts)
  • 17 – Diann Robertson (dismissed as to some counts)

 

YOUR NEW SECRET WEAPON! – As a mandated member of your association you are effectively a ‘stock holder.’ When the directors are idiots and let the attorneys or management company fleece your operating account for every dollar you take in every month… or the directors are self-dealing in some way. If your lawsuit would benefit the Corporation as a whole and not just you – file a Shareholder Derivative Action against your management company or your HOA attorneys…. the law is that your attorney can get attorney fees!

 

Shareholder Derivative Actions – Your Secret Weapon!

 

association, manager, management company ‘now have’ added $25,000+ in attorney fees over a $120 debt the association created. Attorney fees 200 times the amount of dispute! We believe these are: $25,000 in bogus (unlawful) attorney fees and charges over a $120 small claims dispute!

 

SMALL CLAIMS HISTORY – A NEW VICTORY!

  • Association continued it’s bad acts after trial. Long story.
  • Owner sued in Small Claims for specific performance. Could not be granted.
  • Association had filed new lien and attempted to sue in Small Claims.
  • Association (improperly) dismissed first Small Claims suit, and filed a second.
  • Association sued again in Small Claims and convinced Judge to give Association $5,000 judgment!
  • Owner filed motion to vacate based on correct law. Stubborn Judge refused.
  • Owner filed a writ petition. Writ Judge denied, said remedy in Small Claims Appeal.
  • Owner appealed to Small Claims Appellate Division.
  • Small Claims appeal trial got delayed and delayed…. (good luck)
  • Owner filed Unlimited Civil complaint against Association and it’s bad actors.
  • Owner notified new Judge he filed the Unlimited Case. Judge said to file motion for consolidation.
  • Association’s attorney ‘Pinocchio’ danced on the tables playing his flute, his nose grew like a garden hose!
  • Judge did not buy his twisted BS story and ordered a consolidation of case.
  • This may have been same attorney ‘advised’ to file a Small Claims Action ‘after’ filing a lien! Civil Code prohibits this!
  • (real estate lien is a limited civil issue – civil code gives two options, sue in Small Claims or file lien – not both – read history of law!)
  • 2/9/15 – Judge says ‘legal issues’ – Judge consolidates…. another $15,000 of Association’s legal fees out the window!!!
  • We believe Pinocchio has been paid. Another attorney who pocketed the Association’s dwindling money!
  • Now on to Unlimited Civil against this malicious group.
  • When a motion was filed to consolidate the Association’s lawsuit against me in small claims – the Association dismissed their lawsuit against me!! Another waste of $25,000 paid to an HOA attorney.

 

ALL OWNERS WHO OWN AT HUNTINGTON CONTINENTAL ARE BEING VICTIMIZED BY THIS FINANCIAL WASTE. THE WASTE HELPS NO ONE AND HARMS ALL OWNERS

 


 

Note – this site is not authorized by the Huntington Continental Town Home Association.

Collections primer

If you have ever been owed money, and you were a reasonable businessperson, you know that you would never hire a $300-$600 per hour attorney to collect just $1800 in debt unless you wanted to completely harass and intimidate the debtor and by law you were entitled to recover attorney fees if you won [and you had a lot of cash in your pocket to waste on attorney fees]. This occurs only in the HOA world, not in the real world. It wastes time, it wastes money and it makes lots of enemies – not good for a close knit “community.”

 

But what if you don’t win? Who pays the attorney fee then? The HOA does. All the HOA members share in the loss TWICE. Why twice? You paid the HOA attorneys to sue, and now you have to pay the winning [prevailing] party’s attorney fees too! Some HOAs have been hit with $500,000 in attorney fees by listening to some attorney who eventually lost the case. Law is complex but in most cases the ONLY winning parties are the attorneys. Ask anyone who has been in litigation and they is what they will tell you. It’s no coincidence there are so many attorney jokes.

 

Think about this – what person would ever hire an attorney to sue for this itty bitty amount of money? Credit card companies don’t even sue for that much. We have all heard of ambulance chaser attorneys. Effectively we have the same thing going on here with these HOA collection attorneys; it’s the new ambulance chaser.

 

This is generally about an amount of money, $1800, less than costs to buy a good set of patio furniture today. Even a set of tires for your car could cost that much.

 

Ambulance chaser attorneys take personal injury cases on because they are practically 100% certain they will be paid, and paid well. When money is collected it goes into the attorney trust fund and they have complete control over the money. The take the cases on contingency, but not until they have met in the back room and done their due diligence to see if you will get paid.

 

READ AN IMPORTANT OVERVIEW OF THE RULING – EXPLAINS HOA COLLECTIONS

 

This ad is from the front page of http://www.liencollections.com

 

“The procedure for turning over a delinquent account to S.B.S. is actually as simple as filling out a few forms, sending them into us and we will handle the rest and there is NO DEPOSIT REQUIRED TO START THE COLLECTION PROCESS. All fees and costs incurred by S.B.S. are based on our set fee schedule and are billed directly to the homeowner. Fees and costs will only be invoiced to the HOA if the result of the collection action is a senior lender foreclosure or the HOA completes their foreclosure action.” [or if they lose in a legal battle and the owner is prevailing party]

 

Guaranteed; if you were hit broadside, in a crosswalk, by a drunk 18 yo guy [or illegal] driving a car with no insurance, living in an apartment with roommates, working at McDonalds, you would not find an attorney on planet earth to take your case. It would not matter if you legs were severed, you lost an eye, and your face was smushed.  On the other-hand, if the 18 yo had $1,000,0000 insurance, lived at home with his folks, driving their Mercedes, and lived on the cliffs of Corona Del Mar… you have to beat the attorneys off your doorstep. The first thing my attorneys ask is every time: do they have insurance or own real estate. Remember this – attorneys do not takes cases where they will not get paid. This is why they love the HOA collection cases – they can be assured they will get paid from the sale of your home and they can spend $60,000 in fees taking you to court for $3,000 in debt and unpaid assessments. The new ambulance chaser.

 

I had an epiphany recently – I highly doubt if these collection attorneys are used much in “rich” HOAs like Big Canyon, or the Vintage, or Shady Canyon. Why? Because there are owners in those associations that have big bucks and bigger badder attorneys and when the dust settles, the HOA may have to pay both sides of a very expensive legal battle that could be more than $500,000 just in attorney fees. It’s just the opposite in an entry level HOA. At the Huntington Continental it’s more like theft. Most people in this association, if late on their HOA assessments, have NO money for an attorney.  It’s easy money for any attorney who is selected by a Board to work in these HOAs…. every month it’s like taking money from defenseless person. A guy points a gun in your face and says “give me your money” what do you do?

 

$1800 is the current threshold amount the legislature has set to “allow” foreclosure on a property to collect this unpaid debt. A HOA owners advocate group tried to raise the amount to $3600 but the HOA collection attorneys were able to stop it in the legislature.  The laws that govern this collection recommend simply using small claims court to obtain a judgment and for HOAs to collect their money that way. The best thing for the HOA is to get the debtor paying again and get their assessments, not to punish the debtor and put them in the poor house by allowing the un-fed attorney at the equity in their house.

 

Over the past few years attorney firms have been hard at work to weasel-in to the HOA Boards and “recommend” foreclosure. What they fail to tell you in their articles is this… every dollar collected FIRST goes to pay the attorney and if the home is sold and there is not enough money, the HOA pays the attorney out of HOA funds!!! While these are complex issues, the way the attorneys have set it up is that the attorneys get a lot of money, lots and lots of money, the association gets a little bit of money. That is the case at the Huntington Continental. No one in this Galaxy would spend $60,000 attorney fees to collect $3,000 debt. Not unless that $3,000 debt came with a nice condo at the Huntington Continental; your home!

 

The HOA collections is similar to this. Now, with the JM Trust case, using an attorney does not make sense; as far as the attorney is concerned. Here is why…. if the foreclosure can be stopped by the owner paying the assessments owed, and not the attorney fees, what happens? If the attorney can not foreclose and SELL your home to collect the fees the HOA will need to pay the attorney fees, and the HOA is never going to start doing that… right? So that just puts those collection attorneys right out of business. It no mystery why they are now fighting this decision.

 

When attorneys were assured of payment though the foreclosure of your home, they were lining up to take these cases hoping you would fight and they would make big paychecks. You can read Feldsott’s comment about making $60,000 on a $3,000 collection. That did not benefit the HOA one bit. It put some family out on the street and bought Feldsott a new Mercedes and that is criminal in my opinion. Like the old saying goes, you can steal more with a pen, than you can with a gun. The new saying should be you can steal more with a law degree than you can with a pen or a gun.

 

Here is a collection attorney’s overview of her thoughts on the JM Trust case. You can read between the lines.

 

In the world that benefits both parties, and where most cases could be worked out, you might just sue in small claims.

 

ATTORNEY FEES: $0.00
Small claims lawsuit filing fee: $50
Process server fee: $75
Total cost to obtain judgment on person: $125
Obtain abstract of judgment: $35
Record abstract with County: $35

 

Total cost: $320

 

Then if debtor did not pay within 6 months or 12 months, you “could” hire a collection attorney to force sale of property. Most likely most debtors would pay the debt by then. This is nothing like regular collections. You know where the debtor lives, you know they own real estate, they can not sell the real estate without paying you. No need for a collection attorney.

 

More to come.

Partial payment law

DAVIS-STIRLING ACT

 

Civil Code §1367. Association’s Lien Rights.
[New: Civ. Code §5740]

 

(a) A regular or special assessment and any late charges, reasonable costs of collection, and interest, as assessed in accordance with Section 1366, shall be a debt of the owner of the separate interest at the time the assessment or other sums are levied. Before an association may place a lien upon the separate interest of an owner to collect a debt which is past due under this subdivision, the association shall notify the owner in writing by certified mail of the fee and penalty procedures of the association, provide an itemized statement of the charges owed by the owner, including items on the statement which indicate the assessments owed, any late charges and the method of calculation, any attorney’s fees, and the collection practices used by the association, including the right of the association to the reasonable costs of collection. In addition, any payments toward that debt shall first be applied to the assessments owed, and only after the principal owed is paid in full shall the payments be applied to interest or collection expenses.

 

Civil Code §1367.1. Notice of Lien; Priority of Payments; Payment Under Protest; Monetary Penalties; Applies to Liens Recorded After January 1, 2003.

 

(a) A regular or special assessment and any late charges, reasonable fees and costs of collection, reasonable attorney’s fees, if any, and interest, if any, as determined in accordance with Section 1366, shall be a debt of the owner of the separate interest at the time the assessment or other sums are levied. [New: Civ. Code §5650(a)] At least 30 days prior to recording a lien upon the separate interest of the owner of record to collect a debt that is past due under this subdivision, the association shall notify the owner of record in writing by certified mail of the following:[New:Civ. Code §5660 (intro)]

(1) A general description of the collection and lien enforcement procedures of the association and the method of calculation of the amount, a statement that the owner of the separate interest has the right to inspect the association records, pursuant to Section 8333 of the Corporations Code, and the following statement in 14-point boldface type, if printed, or in capital letters, if typed: “IMPORTANT NOTICE: IF YOUR SEPARATE INTEREST IS PLACED IN FORECLOSURE BECAUSE YOU ARE BEHIND IN YOUR ASSESSMENTS, IT MAY BE SOLD WITHOUT COURT ACTION.”(2) An itemized statement of the charges owed by the owner, including items on the statement which indicate the amount of any delinquent assessments, the fees and reasonable costs of collection, reasonable attorney’s fees, any late charges, and interest, if any.

(3) A statement that the owner shall not be liable to pay the charges, interest, and costs of collection, if it is determined the assessment was paid on time to the association.(4) The right to request a meeting with the board as provided by paragraph (3) of subdivision (c).

(5) The right to dispute the assessment debt by submitting a written request for dispute resolution to the association pursuant to the association’s “meet and confer” program required in Article 5 (commencing with Section 1363.810) of Chapter 4.(6) The right to request alternative dispute resolution with a neutral third party pursuant to Article 2 (commencing with Section 1369.510) of Chapter 7 before the association may initiate foreclosure against the owner’s separate interest, except that binding arbitration shall not be available if the association intends to initiate a judicial foreclosure. [New: Civ. Code §5660(a)-(f)]

 

(b) Any payments made by the owner of a separate interest toward the debt set forth, as required in subdivision (a), shall first be applied to the assessments owed, and, only after the assessments owed are paid in full shall the payments be applied to the fees and costs of collection, attorney’s fees, late charges, or interest. When an owner makes a payment, the owner may request a receipt and the association shall provide it. The receipt shall indicate the date of payment and the person who received it. The association shall provide a mailing address for overnight payment of assessments. [New: Civ. Code §5655]

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ALSO SEE Civil Code §5730 [Old: Civ. Code §1365.1]

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PAYMENTS

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When an owner makes a payment, he or she may request a receipt, and the association is required to provide it. On the receipt, the association must indicate the date of payment and the person who received it. The association must inform owners of a mailing address for overnight payments. (Section 1367.1 of the Civil Code)

An owner may, but is not obligated to, pay under protest any disputed charge or sum levied by the association, including, but not limited to, an assessment, fine, penalty, late fee, collection cost, or monetary penalty imposed as a disciplinary measure, and by so doing, specifically reserve the right to contest the disputed charge or sum in court or otherwise.

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COMMENT

So… how is one supposed to contest a charge in court, after making a payment under protest, with the association then rejecting the payment? To me is sure looks like you can make any payment at any time whether under protest or not. When you go to court you can protest the payment or not. This last section under the old code 1365.1 underlines the fact you can make payments before court.

.

Note – nowhere does it say they can refuse payments. In fact it states just the opposite – Any payments made SHALL first be applied to assessments. I am not an attorney but three Superior Court Judges agreed with our argument and wrote a certified opinion in our favor.

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The problem is this. How does a homeowner fight the big bad association by themselves? In the Huntington Continental 450 families are paying the Association per month – $90,000 monthly. The Association has a million dollars on reserve. The laws can be written in stone but if the Board of Directors and the HOA Attorneys don’t follow the laws what is a poor homeowner to do? This is a very dire situation for each and every homeowner in an Association.

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You can show them the law, your can read them the law, you can explain the law but if they refuse to follow the law you lose and they they take your house. The attorney firms have made a racket out of stonewalling HOA members. They know its a Goliath v. David fight and they know they are Goliath. At every corner they threaten you with Attorney fees. The law states the prevailing party is rewarded attorney fees. It’s a scary battle to fight Goliath.

My HOA partial payment victory

Appellate Court Fourth District Division three ruled in our favor for a second time 10/14/2014

 

A true victory for 9,000,000 who live in California HOAs. Many homes will be saved by this ruling!

 

For homeowners in California it all started with a clever attorney crafting a contract requiring the attorney fees be paid first from the payments paid by the homeowner during collection, rather, than as the law states, that the assessments be paid first. Attorney’s are really good at changing the meaning of a sentence, the meaning of a word, and completely twisting black to white, or white to black. However, the law is so clear that, that assessments are paid first, that a 6th grader would understand.

 

I have a copy of Feldsott and Lee’s contract to collect assessments given to me in court by Action Property Management. The contract between Huntington and Feldsott (signed by Rustan Laine),clearly states that rather than paying down the assessments with the money that comes in from collections, that the fund will go to pay the attorney first, it says that the “client” is free to get a second opinion. It also states the association does not have to pay the attorney (for the time being) for collections. So, what does this do? I think its easy to see if an association had to actually pay the attorney fees while foreclosing on someone’s home for just $1800 they would NEVER go through with it. In short order the attorneys fees are 10 times the amount they are trying to collect. This is what makes the whole thing a “racket” because the attorneys refuse your partial payments and you, as homeowner, are forced to pay the attorneys or have your home foreclosed. Like holding an axe over your neck with the attorney’s hand out for lots and lots of money.

 

It’s just my opinion, but if the funds collected by the attorney went to pay down the assessments, as the law states, most of these collection cases would have never ended in foreclosure and the attorney’s “racket” would have failed. Feldsott is not the only one doing this, most have jumped on this bandwagon, and many have grown to huge rich law-firms with lots of power and influence. The association signed what I believe is an illegal contract and not applying the assessments per law was illegal – at least that is what the court has ruled.

 

I just won, with the help of my excellent attorney, an appellate decision in Superior Court of Orange County a very important victory for each and every homeowner in the entire State of California. However, this victory may be short term unless homeowners like yourself band together to force HOAs like the Huntington Continental and it’s collection attorneys to follow the law and not make their own rules. While the laws have been clear since they were written it takes a court action to make a party follow those laws. This victory just came for all Home Owners in an Association, HOA, and Common Area Development members located in the State of California. This affects all Common Area Developments, Homeowner Associations, HOA, etc. – the law is clear, this ruling just supports what that law states (and the HOA attorneys hate it!). It is my understanding that all California Courts may refer to this decision.

 

In my case, had the HOA simply given me the accounting, and the attorney applied my payments, I would have owed nothing and this case would have never went to trial. As they say “pigs get fat and hogs get slaughtered” had the attorney just accepted the money this would have never gone to court and they wold still be enjoying their partial payment lawyer fee windfall.

 

Please email this website if you have a similar issue and your HOA in California is not accepting partial payments. The law is clear.

 

For years these HOA collection attorneys have been making a killing from the poor owners in associations convincing a Board of Directors to foreclose on people when they owe as little as a few hundred dollars in back assessment dues. The attorneys would write SECRET contracts with the HOA that was not conforming with the law. Legislation in California named the Davis-Stirling Act was passed to protect owners in associations. Unfortunately for owners, association attorneys gravitate to the entity who has the biggest pot of gold because that is who can pay their $200-$600 per hour paychecks. What does this do? It makes it almost impossible for someone to find a competent attorney to fight against the blatant disregard of the law and its clear common language.

 

You may find and read this exciting decision with the link below:

 

HUNTINGTON CONTINENTAL TOWN HOUSE ASSOCIATION, INC. v. THE JM TRUST

 

In a sentence this decision forces the HOA to accept partial payments so that an owner can stop foreclosure. Accepting partial payments is in conformity with the law. However HOA attorneys, who no one can fight these people because it costs a lot of money to fight an attorney who is paid by the HOA, have completely ignored this law for many years and have taken the homes of people who had the funds to pay partial payments to keep their home from foreclosure.

 

Why do they do this to owners who owe just a few hundred dollars? Here is their simple formula as stated by Feldsott on their own website….

 

“Of course, the prevailing party may recover attorney fees. Not too long ago, our office litigated a case where the attorney fees awarded and paid (trial and appeal) were more than $60,000 in a suit over $3,000 in assessments.”

 

SEE THIS INFO IN THIS PAGE

 

Where do they get their goldmine payment?

 

FROM THE SALE OF YOUR HOME!

 

You owe $3,000, they spend $60,000 to collect your milk money of just $3,000, then the HOA allows them to sell you home and collect their unconscionable winnings of $60,000 on your itty bitty $3,000 debt. The sell your home, they take the equity in the home to pay their unconscionable fees which is nothing less than a Mafia-style racket. Mickey Cohen would have been proud. So who benefits most, the HOA? or the attorney?

 

How do they make the scheme work? By not accepting partial payments. We are not singling out any specific attorney or firm because most of them have decided play this game and it has worked for several years until now. And, believe me, the attorneys who have made so much money from this scam, are not happy with this ruling.

 

My side of the story – What the lawyers say is not accurate

 

In a nutshell

 

  • I got behind on my HOA dues due to unavoidable circumstances;
  • I wrote a letter to the management that I would pay my dues in full and enclose a check;
  • I asked repeatedly for “itemized” accounting from HOA, BOD, managers and attorneys;
  • No one on HOA side would send the accounting – they simply ignored me;
  • I send additional payments and continued to ask for accounting;
  • I paid off the complete balance of my HOA account before I was ever served with a lawsuit;
  • The lawyer rejected my cashier check payment in full sent to her office;
  • The lawyer then sued me;
  • I was not served with a lawsuit UNTIL after I attempted to make my payments in full!;
  • In the trial court, the sleepy 85 yo retired judge ruled against me;
  • In appeals court where they strictly follow the law, 3 judge panel, in concert, reversed the trial court and ruled in my favor;
  • It was clear that partial payments had to be accepted per the law, and the attorney had not followed the law;
  • The appeals court Certified the Decision which means other homeowners may force payments;
  • That is the basics, there is a lot more to the story, but that is the basics;
  • The collection attorneys HATE the ruling and now they are fighting to have it changed;
  • They are attempting to fight the ruling, protecting you, using YOUR HOA money!

 

There is always more to the story. The trial was rather short and the judge was dis-interested, sleepy – he could not have cared less and I found out later his grand-daughter is friends with the collection attorney daughter! This is more about the attorney firm doing everything in their power to get their attorney fees than me paying my assessments. I asked for my line item accounting many times in every conceivable manner I could. Even writing the BOD several letters. The collection attorney kept adding their fees to the assessments I owed and taking their “pay” off the top… right from my assessment payments. It was an evil game but the only entity that can stop the attorney from playing the game is the court.

 

My attorney had flown in. The story was much much longer than the evidence selected for the case. This case concerns a rental condo I had not lived in for 8 years. I never asked for or agreed to a “attorney generated payment plan” they simply sent one in the email. I never even saw the payment plan from the attorney until I was searching email for the case. I kept asking for my accounting, as it changes every month with the fees they add. No one would send my accounting, not the HOA, the management or the attorney.

 

I sent a simple letter with a $2,000 check stating I would pay of the account. I then sent two more payments of $1,000 and $500. I then thought I was close to full payment of the account and I demanded my accounting in several letters. No accounting came. I then sent a letter stating that if you are not going to give me my accounting I must only owe my regular assessments. I then sent in checks for my regular assessments of $188 each. After that, out of nowhere I get a “default letter” from the attorney that I had been defaulted on my case! Not funny, I had never been served with any lawsuit. According to the attorney I had been served at my condo. I informed the attorney that I had not lived at the condo for 8 years and that my married tenants state they had never received anything – she insisted I had been served (I have an email from the HOA President stating they knew I was not served). I have been called by three people the process server did the same thing to. It’s called gutter service where the server throws the service in the gutter and swears to the court he served you.

 

I continually asked for my line item accounting from all sources; the attorney’s assistant just played with me, never sending what I asked for (note that in court he lied on the stand and stated he sent my accounting). At that point I was pretty frustrated so I calculated what I could have owed and sent a long letter to the HOA President with a certified funds check to his home. He send me an email stating he accepted the payment.  I had plenty of money to pay all the assessments for many months previously but the Collection Attorney prevented that by not sending the line item accounting and played Hocus Pocus with the numbers on his summary accounting. What I did not know, and what is against the law, is the collection attorney PAY THEMSELVES FIRST out of the assessments you pay in a situation such as this – so they have no incentive whatsoever to close your case because every payment you make is diverted to pay the collecting expenses, which is not in conformity with the law.

 

The bottom line is that there are many details and events that are left out of the ruling, and even though the ruling is in the favor of the homeowner, the actions of this group of collection attorneys is reprehensible. I did everything possible to pay the assessment dues and the Attorney just kept throwing them back in my face. Why, because at the end either you pay all their fees, or they sell your property and collect their fees from the sale of your property. In my case there was more than $100k equity – they had every reason to keep the case going, keep the billing going, take the house, and get they paycheck on sale. Just my opinion of course but if you read the collection attorney’s own website on how he collected $60,000 in fees on a $3,000 it’s rather pathetic – grotesque. It pure theft when some hard working soul gets into a situation where they can not pay their assessments, and some attorney forces their way into the situation demanding their fees on top of the assessments that can not be paid… “well sir, you owe just $3,000 in HOA assessments, but you now owe $60,000 in attorney fees, we will need to sell your house to pay our attorney!” It’s reprehensible that society allows this segment of law as a profession.

 

I don’t know know how these people can sleep at night. Some attorneys twist every word…. but this statement in the law could not be more clear… of course they don’t want to abide by this! Do you think an attorney wants the HOA to place a lien on your house for the attorney fees? That would never happen. So, unless they (the law firm) can force foreclosure and sell your house, their “racket” is over… and we expect they will fight hard just like Mickey Cohen. When there is a big pile of money the suits fight really hard to get their hands on it.

 

The law could not be more clear: “In addition, any payments toward that debt shall first be applied to the assessments owed, and only after the principal owed is paid in full shall the payments be applied to interest or collection expenses”

 

What is not clear? Any payments made SHALL be applied to the assessments owed…. and after the assessments are paid the future payments go to the other unpaid items. Ah ha! So what do the clever collection attorneys do? They write a “payment plan” (contract) for you to sign that forces you to give up your rights under the law. In my case the attorney kept arguing that I had a payment plan… which was never the case. I never asked for, accepted, signed, or agreed to a payment plan of any kind. I simply send the management company a letter that I would make the payments owed. Don’t sign a payment plan! Just make your payments and the law protects you. If you sign one of their evil payment plans then you are signing a contract and you are bound to what it states in the contract. Be careful!

 

The alarming part about all this – attorneys and law firms don’t want to play by the law! It’s been Goliath v. David for many years. The poor owner does not have the money for assessments let alone attorney fees. This is why the law was written – every dime goes to assessments first!

 

The ruling is starting to show up on the web. We have noticed that the major collection attorneys have not shown the ruling. We believe they are going to try and fight it with Feldsott and Lee. We believe they will band together to try and take away your rights.

 

Read this disturbing Attorney’s post about the new ruling

 

Attorney’s overview of how she reads the ruling

Basically she is stating paraphrased: “you are not going to take away my cash cow mister! Your Southern California law means nothing up here in Northern California and I am just going to advise my clients to continue to foreclose so I get my big paydays!”

 

A lien services comments on Facebook

Note that they want to keep reviewing this decision (which in code means they want to change it). This is why YOU MUST fight to keep this ruling for you! Sign the petition!

 

A more rational overview of the ruling

This is by a website that comments on “attorney fees” and rulings that affect them.

 

The Condo Guru’s perspective

 

Feldsott’s perspective

This might be Jacqueline Pagano the young attorney who lost the case. She wanted to keep beating it into the appellate judges that I had a “payment plan.” Having a payment plan, drawn up by the attorney, gives the attorneys some rights. Effectively it’s a contract. I NEVER HAD, NEVER ASKED FOR, NEVER READ, NEVER SIGNED and never wanted a payment plan. I wrote a simple letter to the management company NOT EVEN THE ATTORNEY. They are still trying to change history. Sorry, never had a payment plan of any kind.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Downloads

Doesn’t it all make sense? If HOA payments are so important to the HOA why would they be refused at any time? Just how many people have lost their homes over this practice? CAI did not support Feldsott & Lee, or file a brief in appellate court. See Attorney Steven Roseman’s important CAI post: Accepting partial payments. Note – This site is filled with information. Note that it does not offer legal advice.

 

VICTORY! – The Fourth District Third Division agreed with the Appellate Division of the Superior Court! See decision below. This will save a lot of homes. If your HOA or management company is refusing payments waive the law in front of them. SEE BELOW. Even if they file a foreclosure action you can now save your home.

 

There are 31 files, weighing 20.5 MiB with 16,172 hits in total.

Displaying 21 to 31 of 31 files.

  Gena Hanson federal complaint
» 213.0 KiB - 391 hits - February 28, 2014
Everyone has had enough of these debt collectors like Feldsott and Lee. Here is a Class Action complaint against Pro Solutions. I would expect a class action against Feldsott and Lee next. This is good read. It shows you the pathetic predatory tactics that these firms use to collect fees far above what is owed by the home owner.

  Gena Hanson federal complaint (amended)
» 1.4 MiB - 555 hits - March 19, 2014
Here is the FAC in the Gena Hanson case. All the issues in this case are similar to the issues I face[d] in the Feldsott and Lee case. Effectively all these debt collectors who use this business model are now under the microscope. This case also alleges the "partial payment" law and not applying payments to assessments first. Feldsott was doing accounting tricks... which their own employee could not explain in court. Rather than just paying down the assessments with the payments made, they would pay down the assessments but add the same amount as collection costs - and write themselves a check! How convenient! This is why I could never make sense of the accounting.

  HOA compelled to accept partial payments
» 72.4 KiB - 464 hits - February 21, 2014
This document clarifies the law and the 17 year battle to to force HOAs to accept partial payments. This is big news for HOA owners! Download this document on partial payments so you know the history of this law.

  Huntington Continental articles of incorporation
» 76.5 KiB - 424 hits - March 21, 2014
Huntington Continental articles of incorporation.

  Huntington Continental bylaws
» 404.4 KiB - 395 hits - March 21, 2014
This is the Huntington Continental bylaws

  Huntington Continental CCRs
» 996.5 KiB - 328 hits - February 8, 2014
Here is the declaration that controls the rules for the Huntington Continental association.

  Huntington Continental CCRs - clean copy
» 573.0 KiB - 331 hits - March 21, 2014
The CC&Rs or "declaration" for the Huntington Continental Town Homes.

  Open Letter to HOA owners regarding partial payments
» 21.3 KiB - 306 hits - February 12, 2014
Open letter sent to owners regarding legal rights and partial payments. (small batch had spelling error; now corrected). Download and read the letter about HOA challenging your rights in court. Please sign petition.

  Original payment letter to Huntington Continental (NOT A PAYMENT PLAN)
» 59.0 KiB - 284 hits - March 16, 2014
No attorney crafted "payment plan" here. This "letter" was sent ot HOA (not the attorney) telling them I would make payments. I first contacted Feldsott by email after I received a threat letter from them. I had a few emails with Tyler Jones who turned out to be the attorney's assistant. I told him I was going to pay the dues owed to the HOA. He asked me via email how much I was able to pay. I told him $2,000, simply answering his question. I asked for accounting. Unfortunately Mr. Jones did not tell the truth in trial. He stated he sent me itemized accounting in the mail several times (nope). Funny that itemized accounting was magically inserted in their exhibit letters and Tyler swore to a lie. In reality I had to sue the association in small claims to get my line item accounting. The accounting changes monthly. That is when I got my itemized accounting showing me their bad accounting practices. Mr. Jones then served me the actual foreclosure lawsuit in person at the small claims hearing just after Lisa Salinas handed me the documents I had requested including my accounting. Jones was kind of like the "henchman" for the attorney firm... the bottom line is that it took a small claims lawsuit to get my documents and they served me MONTHS after I attempted to pay the account in full. While I got no money at the small claims trial I did get all the documents I wanted which made it worth it. Jones served me with the foreclosure compliant A FULL THREE MONTHS after I sent the certified check to pay the assessments in full!!! This was simple letter I had sent after I received the letter from the attorney. Had no idea they had sued me. Had not been notified or served when I sent this letter (they had some mythical service at the condo - funny that it was a rental condo). Amazing that the ENTIRE time this lawsuit was in the court system and there was no response, the attorney Ms. Pagano, NEVER CALLED or contacted me one single time by phone or mail in EIGHT MONTHS - all the while I was writing letters to the HOA every few weeks asking for accounting offering to pay my due in full. When I received a notice of default 8 months later, and I called her to ask her what it was all about, she freaked out [process server had filed a fraudulent POS]. She then sued me again the next day as an individual. Interesting that she could find my address when she sent the default, but not when she falsely served me at a condo I had not been to in years. [???] The letter is OBVIOUSLY not a payment plan as Feldsott continues to call it and this is just an indication of how they do business and why this is so unfair for most homeowners.

  Overview of partial payment ruling and summary
» 171.3 KiB - 681 hits - February 24, 2014
Download the summary and overview of the ruling by the Center for California Homeowner Association Law (they also fight for your rights). This gives you the facts and a petition to sign and send in.

  Superior Court Appellate Decision
» 74.3 KiB - 267 hits - February 8, 2014
This is the Orange County Superior Court Appellate decision rendered by the 3 Judge panel in favor of JM Trust.

   

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About HCV

This is the owner and tenant advocate website. Until now owners and residents at the Huntington Continental Town Home Association in Huntington Beach, California have not had their own voice. Their complaints, their issues, their problems with the complex, the management, the association, the board of directors, the attorneys have all been silent unheard. Now its time to unleash the power of the web and get these issues heard.  The web is a great tool for exhibiting your complaints, frustrations and kudos with the association and its chosen agents such as Feldsott and Lee, and Keystone Property Management.

 

This site and the comments herein contain information that will verify owning in a home owner association may live up to everything you have ever heard about the HOA nightmare experience. Start at the front page, read a few of the documents, download the trial files. and thank God you did not buy a property here.

 

DISCLAIMER: This website is not a product of The Huntington Continental Town Home Association, Inc. nor it is affiliated with the corporation, or the board of directors. This is a private site provided for the residents of the community to allow and foster free speech regarding issues, positive or negative, that concern the owners and residents. We give you a platform to VOICE your concerns, under the premise of free speech, similar to Rip Off Report, Yelp, Wiki leaks, and others.

 

If you have had bad experiences or good experiences with the Law Firm of Feldsott and Lee, Keystone Property Management or the Board of Directors of our association we would like to hear about them. There is much to know about what has been going on behind the scenes with our board of directors, Feldsott and Lee, and Keystone Property Management. We will give you the tools and show you how to quickly obtain, contracts, minutes, your documents, your accounting, the minutes of any meetings about you or your unit, and attempt to stop all the needless allegations, fines and other menacing issues that are the daily routine of the operations at the Huntington Continental Town Homes.

 

Have you had:

  • Allegations and fines about oil in your carport?
  • Threats about your TV antenna?
  • Proposed fines about your window screens?
  • Countless letters, threats, and unfounded accusations by management?
  • Stonewalling by management and attorneys regarding your requests and complaints?
  • Refusing partial payments?

 

Regardless if your comments are  good or bad / pro or con, your your comments and opinions should be posted here to let the Board of Directors and management know how they are doing. The website put up by Keystone Property Management is hopelessly out of date.

 

Stay tuned as we open our forum and allow comments and discussions about complaints, lawsuits, contracts, the bios of our board, and everything you ever wanted to know about the Huntington Continental Town Home Association.

 

Have you even seen the attorney’s contract and how they make money off of us? How about the Keystone Property Management contracts? These are very interesting reads and something you should be aware of. You might attend more board meetings if you REALLY knew how this all worked.

 

Planned areas of this website include:

 

  • Bios on each of our directors (when they don’t tell you about them when they run for office)
  • A forum where you can post your issues and discuss the Board of Directors, Keystone Management Company and Feldsott and Lee, the attorney firm the board has received so many complaints about.
  • A classified site for things for sale in the complex.
  • All documents for the association for easy download.
  • And much much more!