Thursday, June 22, 2006

CTC Real Estate Svcs v. Lepe (Cal. Ct. App. - June 21, 2006)

Steal my identity. PLEASE!

Listen to this one. Someone steals Aurora Lepe's identity and uses it to buy a house in her name. The thief gets a loan (again, in Lepe's name), but (not surprisingly) eventually defaults on the payments. So the bank forecloses.

Pretty typical, right? Except listen to this wrinkle: When the bank sells the house, due to rising property values, the proceeds of the foreclosure are more than -- a lot more than -- the total amount of the loans on the property. So everyone gets paid the full balance of their accounts, including their costs, and there's still over $50,000 remaining.

The trial court gives the excess proceeds to the Los Angeles County surplus fund. Aurora Lepe appeals, and asks Justice Mosk to give the $50,000 to her. And he does! As we used to say in the 70's: "Joker, Joker, JACKPOT!!"

Sure, identity theft is no fun. But lemme tell ya: $50,000-plus goes a long, long way towards easing the pain!

So if anyone wants to steal my identity and use it to buy appreciating property, please don't hesitate to do so. Indeed, send me an e-mail and I'll promptly send you my social security number and anything else you need. Serious inquiries only. :-)