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economic justice | homelessness

Steal this house! "Present the note" and adverse possession

Land rights are human rights--though we know little of that here in the USA. Please spread the following information widely!
Housing is a human right. I present here some basic strategies for retaining one's right to housing, in the event of foreclosure. This is not legal advice, nor am I qualified to give such. These are ideas to be tested with attorneys that you may know or contact.

On 10 December 1948, the General Assembly of the United Nations adopted and proclaimed the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The United States may not have ratified the Declaration, but it has set a standard worldwide for human decency and may be brought to the attention of our legal system on that basis.

Article 25.

* (1) Everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the health and well-being of himself and of his family, including food, clothing, housing and medical care and necessary social services, and the right to security in the event of unemployment, sickness, disability, widowhood, old age or other lack of livelihood in circumstances beyond his control.
Note that health care is included as well; but for the moment I'd like to address the problem of mass foreclosures. Have you heard of the strategy called "Produce the Note?" When you signed mortgage papers, they likely had a transferability clause. The mortgage crisis was precipitated by "bundling" mortgages, re-selling, transferring, and re-selling again. As it turns out, your original signature, which is necessary for a proper Court-approved foreclosure, may be difficult or even impossible to retrieve! This could mean that you can effectively stay in your house for an indefinite period. And isn't life itself an indefinite period? This is from TMFSinchiruna's CAPS Blog:



"By telling a bank to "produce the note," a homeowner can delay foreclosure by forcing the lender to prove the suing institution is actually the same which owns the debt.

"During the lending boom, most mortgages were flipped and sold to another lender or servicer or sliced up and sold to investors as securitized packages on Wall Street," explains the Consumer Warning Network. "In the rush to turn these over as fast as possible to make the most money, many of the new lenders did not get the proper paperwork to show they own the note and mortgage. This is the key to the produce the note strategy."

".... CNN explored one person's strategy in demanding her bank "produce the note," only to find that the lender had "lost or destroyed" the evidence of debt ownership. Such a revelation can significantly strengthen a homeowner's position when asking to renegotiate a mortgage." (more)

I should think so....That, however, is not the only arrow in your quiver if you are faced with foreclosure. There is also "adverse possession." Adverse possession in Oregon requires a ten-year occupancy that is "open, notorious, and hostile," and there is a further requirement that you believe that the land is rightfully yours. Many States have this clause.

So that is the scheme I am suggesting, to retain human rights to land, and to destroy the mortgage capitalist institutions that have sucked away our life savings and which threaten our very homes and existences: Stay in your foreclosed home, keep paying the utilities (thereby becoming "open and notorious," demand that the Note be presented with your original signature at the foreclosure proceeding--'cause maybe it can't be!--and file a public "notice of adverse possession" (this is a strategy that I am improvising, consult a lawyer) that cites the Universal Declaration of Human Rights section that I posted above; include in the statement your heartfelt belief that, given the collapse of the mortgage industry and of the economy generally due to their incompetence, and due to the copious allocation of public money to such institutions to cover their own malfeasance, the land has reverted to your ownership by right. Frankly, if you can hold on to your property for ten years after such a stunt, I'd bet you really would have ownership. In any event, the law presupposes your tenancy as valid, so you can't be kicked out while the court procedures are dragging on!

Imagine how much money you could save, working month after month or year after year, paying NO MORTGAGE! Even after the end game, you'd have savings and thus would not necessarily contribute to homelessness ("houselessness").

Staying in your home is your patriotic duty, if you define patriotism as "doing right by the community." No one but a tiny group of distant, parasitic, inheritance-class elite can benefit from your leaving the house to its decay; but the community at large retains stability and wealth if you stay, paying as you always have for utilities, services, food, and commodities. Don't EVEN THINK of leaving your home "because it's the right thing to do." Unless you have another home to go to, it isn't.

Here's the kicker: this strategy will work best if MANY PEOPLE do it. Foreclosures are approaching like a tidal wave across this land, so please spread this message far and wide! I'm sure the strategy needs refinement, and I'm just as sure that it will have a tremendous effect for the good, in retaining needed housing for months, or maybe for years or lifetimes.


....and remember your less fortunate friends and neighbors, when they need to share

with love

Theresa (This will be broadcast next Thursday on kboo.fm kboo.fm/presswatch 90.7 Portland)

 link to www.motherearthnews.com



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