Gallagher & Associates Team

Gallagher & Associates Team

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

G&A Spring Open House

Please join us for our Spring Open House on April 14 from 5:00-8:00 pm. at our Party Deck and Tiki Bar.

Our theme for the party is St. Pete Vice: Ode to the 80's. We will have a DJ spinning 80's tunes and will feature your favorite 80's fare. You dont have to come in 80's attire, but we will have prizes for the best dressed in 80's attire.

As always, we will have ample food, beverage and fun.

To RSVP, reply to this email or contact Ginny at or 727-344-5297.

Non-Judicial Foreclosure

The Florida Bankers Association has presented a bill to Florida legislators aimed at ending the due process rights of Florida homeowners by instituting non-judicial foreclosures. The act, titled The Florida Consumer Protection and Homeowner Credit Rehabilitation Act seeks to end foreclosure lawsuits and fast track foreclosures in a little as 90 days. Just as it sounds, banks would accelerate foreclosures against defaulting homeowners without the need for the courts and judges would no longer rule on foreclosure cases.

Attorneys would have no forum to assert legal or factual defenses and banks could automatically auction the home out from under you, despite any legal defense. Passage of this bill would end the new mandatory foreclosure mediation required by the Florida Supreme Court. Finally, this act would permit money judgments for the deficiency between the foreclosure auction sale price and amount of the loan after the house is lost.

This proposed law presents serious due process concerns and will drastically change the way banks handle loans in default. It will drastically limit the rights of homeowners and consumers.

The Florida Legislature convenes on March 2, so take this opportunity to tell your representatives that you do not support this dangerous bill. To find the contact information for your legislators, click below:

Find Your Legislator

Jury Trial Waivers

These days waivers of jury trial are standard in certain contracts, especially in mortgages. What is a waiver of jury trial? It's a provision in a document that means you give up your Constitutional right to have your lawsuit decided by a jury. A waiver of jury trial does not mean you are not allowed to sue; rather, it means that if you do sue, and your case goes to trial, a judge rather than a jury will decide your case.

Are waivers of jury trial enforceable? The answer is usually yes. Courts generally deem that if you signed a contract containing a waiver of jury trial, you are held to be in agreement it, regardless of whether or not you even read the provision.

Of course, there are exceptions, but for the most part, courts will enforce a waiver provision. This means that if you are a signing a contract, first be sure to read it in its entirety. If possible, you should consult an attorney. You should also ask the party that drew up the contract to remove the waiver provision if you do not want to give up your right to have a trial in front of a jury should there be a dispute relating to the contract.

The bottom line is that a waiver of jury trial is usually upheld by courts, so if you don't want to give up your right to have a jury decide your lawsuit, please have that provision removed or be prepared to walk away from the deal.