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Michael J. Catalfimo

Michael Catalfimo’s Answers

60 total


  • Can I request the court to order my ex's boyfriend to NOT smoke around my son?

    My ex has been allowing her boyfriend to smoke in the car when they come to pick up my son for custody visits.I asked her nicely not to allow it and she told me it was none of my buisness and I could do nothing about it. That since It's not agains...

    Michael’s Answer

    Yes, you may ask the court to make an order of this nature. A New York Family Court Judge I appear before often, routinely includes a provision in his orders which prohibits each parent from smoking in the presence of the child(ren), or permitting a third person to do so. If your child's pediatrician will write a note in support of you request, it would be helpful.
    One thing to remember if you decide to make this request: If your Ex has any complaints about you relative to custody, visitation or child support, the filing of your petition will likely prompt her to assert those complaints against you in a petition of her own.
    DISCLAIMER: The foregoing is not intended to constitute legal advice, or to create an attorney-client relationship between us (See paragraph 8 of Avvo Terms and Conditions of Use). It is offered, instead, as general legal information relevant to the issue(s) raised in your question. Legal information is not the same as legal advice (i.e., the application of law to an individual's specific circumstances). If you desire to obtain legal advice, you should retain the services of an attorney to represent you. If you choose to act upon the information provided above without first retaining an attorney, you do so at your own risk.

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  • Problematic deceased estate

    I am the appointed executor of a deceased estate. There is only one fixed asset (apartment) in the estate and one stream of income (the rent paid for the apartment). I have two problems: 1. The real estate is mortgaged by a bank. There is no equi...

    Michael’s Answer

    I agree with my colleagues who have encouraged you to retain an attorney. The life insurance issue needs to be addressed as quickly as possible. If the company can be made to pay out the death proceeds, that should go a long ways towards solving the problems you've described. If, on the other hand, the company is legally justified in refusing to pay on the policy, you may be able to negotiate a "short sale" or "deed in lieu of foreclosure" with the bank. Without knowing more facts, however, I couldn't say which of these options might be better for you.
    I realize that good legal advice can be expensive, but the problems you've described are not ones you should try to resolve on your own. If you choose not to hire an attorney, then you should probably consider resigning your position as the Executor of the estate, as you could become personally liable to other estate beneficiaries (if there are any) if the estate is not properly administered.
    DISCLAIMER: The foregoing is not intended to constitute legal advice, or to create an attorney-client relationship between us (See paragraph 8 of Avvo Terms and Conditions of Use). It is offered, instead, as general legal information relevant to the issue(s) raised in your question. Legal information is not the same as legal advice (i.e., the application of law to an individual's specific circumstances). If you desire to obtain legal advice, you should retain the services of an attorney to represent you. If you choose to act upon the information provided above without first retaining an attorney, you do so at your own risk.

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  • Do I need to pay rent for a house that is being foreclosed on?

    The owner of the home that I've been renting for 9 years in California has defaulted on his mortgage. The way I've found out is that for about 30 days, I've been receiving mail in his name about stopping foreclosure and people have even been comin...

    Michael’s Answer

    Your rights and responsibilities with respect to the payment of rent are established, initially, by the terms of the lease agreement which you signed. Such an agreement typically obligates the landlord to provide habitable premises to the tenant and, in return, obligates the tenant to pay rent to the landlord for those premises. The standard residential lease agreement does not, typically, condition the tenant's duty to pay rent upon the landlord's timely payment of any mortgages which are owed on the premises.

    Assuming that your lease agreement does not condition or limit your duty to pay rent, you will breach your contract by withholding the rent due to the threat of a foreclosure proceeding. That will give the landlord the right to bring eviction proceedings against you for non-payment of rent, and may obligate you for the payment of the landlord's legal fees and costs (if the lease authorizes this).
    If in fact the leased premises do become the subject of a foreclosure proceeding, please note that a recently enacted federal law may offer you some protection in the event that you are still in possession of the premises at the time of the foreclosure sale. The law, which is known as the “Helping Families Save Their Homes Act of 2009,” was signed by President Obama on May 20, 2009 as Public Law No. 111-22. You can find more information about it by searching the internet.

    DISCLAIMER: The foregoing is not intended to constitute legal advice, or to create an attorney-client relationship between us (See paragraph 8 of Avvo Terms and Conditions of Use). It is offered, instead, as general legal information relevant to the issue(s) raised in your question. Legal information is not the same as legal advice (i.e., the application of law to an individual's specific circumstances). If you desire to obtain legal advice, you should retain the services of an attorney to represent you. If you choose to act upon the information provided above without first retaining an. attorney, you do so at your own risk.

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  • Real estate lawyer

    I signed a lease for a friend 2 years ago and now I don't want to deal with this person. I have requested him to empty the apartment several times and he has not moved out. He is paying the rent but now the lease has expired as of this month. I am...

    Michael’s Answer

    Your rights and responsibilities with respect to a lease of real property are established, initially, by the terms of the lease agreement which you signed. The standard residential lease agreement typically obligates the tenant to deliver possession of the leased premises to the landlord at the end of the lease term, in the same condition the premises were in at the start of the term (reasonable wear and tear excepted). It also typically obligates the tenant to pay the landlord's legal fees and costs should the landlord have to bring a lawsuit to evict the tenant, collect rent, or enforce other terms of the lease.
    Assuming that your lease contains these standard provisions, you were obligated to deliver the possession of the leased premises to your landlord at the end of the lease term, in vacant and broom clean condition. Because you did not do that, your landlord now has the right to bring an eviction proceeding against you (and your friend, if he chooses) and he may recover in that proceeding not only the reasonable legal fees and costs he incurs, but also the reasonable use value of the apartment for the time your friend holds over in possession of it. To avoid this, you should consult promptly with a NYC attorney who is experience with housing court matters of this nature and explore with him or her the following possible options for resolving your problem: (a) bring your own eviction proceeding against your friend, so that you can obtain the possession of the apartment and then deliver it to your landlord; or (b) try to negotiate a deal with your landlord, pursuant to which he will bring the eviction proceeding against your friend and , in turn, you will pay both his actual legal fees and costs (up to, but not exceeding, an agreed maximum amount) and the agreed reasonable use value of the apartment during the time it takes to complete the eviction (again, up to, but not exceeding, an agreed maximum amount); or (c) try to negotiate a "cash for keys" deal with your friend, pursuant to which he will voluntarily--and promptly--surrender the possession of the apartment to you, in good condition, in return for which you will pay him an agreed amount of money. I don't know your friend, of course, but if I were you, I would probably try the "cash for keys" option first, as it might well be the quickest and cheapest option available to you.
    Good luck.
    DISCLAIMER: The foregoing is not intended to constitute legal advice, or to create an attorney-client relationship between us (See paragraph 8 of Avvo Terms and Conditions of Use). It is offered, instead, as general legal information relevant to the issue(s) raised in your question. Legal information is not the same as legal advice (i.e., the application of law to an individual's specific circumstances). If you desire to obtain legal advice, you should retain the services of an attorney to represent you. If you choose to act upon the information provided above without first retaining an attorney, you do so at your own risk.

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  • "I had a lawer that was helping with getting a deed put into my name of a house that was passed down to me..She fired me

    "I had a lawer that was helping with getting a deed put into my name of a house that was passed down to me..She fired me as a client because she said that I would not get Home owners insurance..I did comply..she would not talk on the phone to me w...

    Michael’s Answer

    I agree with Mr. Brophy: Just hire another attorney. Are you sure that it was homeowner's insurance you were being advised to purchase and not "title insurance"? It would make more sense to me if your former attorney wanted you to obtain title insurance, so that you could be sure there were no problems with the title to the property. He or she could have been concerned that if you didn't have title work done and then discovered later that there was a problem with the title, you might blame your lawyer for not discovering the problem when the deed was done. You should be sure to talk to your next attorney about the issue of title work.
    DISCLAIMER: The foregoing is not intended to constitute legal advice, or to create an attorney-client relationship between us (See paragraph 8 of Avvo Terms and Conditions of Use). It is offered, instead, as general legal information relevant to the issue(s) raised in your question. Legal information is not the same as legal advice (i.e., the application of law to an individual's specific circumstances). If you desire to obtain legal advice, you should retain the services of an attorney to represent you. If you choose to act upon the information provided above without first retaining an attorney, you do so at your own risk.

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  • If i own propety in new york that is going into foreclosed can a lean be be put on property that was willed to me in pa

    i am losing my home in new york to forcloser doesthe bank have any right to go after it in pa.

    Michael’s Answer

    It's possible, but unlikely. First, the New York property must sell for less than the amount of the foreclosure judgment. Second, the foreclosing plaintiff must timely make a motion for a deficiency judgment and prove to the court's satisfaction that it is entitled to receive one. Assuming it gets a deficiency judgment, the plaintiff must next conduct post-judgment discovery--either formal or informal--to see if you have non-exempt assets or income which can be reached to satisfy the judgment. If it learns, as a result of that discovery, that you own property in Pennsylvania which is valuable enough to be worth pursuing as a collection asset, the plaintiff must then bring a new lawsuit against you in Pennsylvania to obtain a judgment in that state; then utilize Pennsylvania enforcement devices to try and force the sale of your property there.
    For a variety of reasons having to do with the economy and the way that mortgages are owned and serviced, most foreclosing plaintiffs would be unwilling to take all of the steps I have juist described.
    DISCLAIMER: The foregoing is not intended to constitute legal advice, or to create an attorney-client relationship between us (See paragraph 8 of Avvo Terms and Conditions of Use). It is offered, instead, as general legal information relevant to the issue(s) raised in your question. Legal information is not the same as legal advice (i.e., the application of law to an individual's specific circumstances). If you desire to obtain legal advice, you should retain the services of an attorney to represent you. If you choose to act upon the information provided above without first retaining an attorney, you do so at your own risk.

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  • Can a bank file a personal judgment before finishing foreclosure process ?

    I'm in middle the process of doing a Short Sale but meanwhile my second mortgage banker filed a judgment against me, So my question is, are they allowed to do that?

    Michael’s Answer

    A mortgage loan has two parts: the Note and the Mortgage. The Note represents the borrower's promise to repay the loan, and the Mortgage creates a lien against the borrower's home to secure the performance of the borrower's repayment obligation.
    When a mortgage loan borrower defaults in repaying the loan, New York law gives the holder of the mortgage the right, at its option, to: (a) foreclose the lien of the mortgage; or (b) sue on the Note to obtain a money judgment. This right exists regardless of whether the mortgage is a "first mortgage" or a "second mortgage."
    It soumds like the holder of your second mortgage has chosen to sue on its Note to obtain a money judgment. This is legally permissible, provided that: (a) you are in default in the payment of the second mortgage Note; and (b) the lawsuit is commenced and prosecuted in accordance with the rules of procedure which are applicable to it. As a practical matter, you would not be able to successfully complete a short sale of your property without securing the consent of ALL lien holders--including the holder of your second mortgage. If you can negotiate an agreeable payment to each of your lenders, the pendency of a suit for a judgment on your second mortgage Note would not be a big problem: the plaintiff in that lawsuit would simply discontinue the action--or, if a judgment has been obtained, provide a satisfaction of judgment--at the time of the closing of the short sale.
    DISCLAIMER: The foregoing is not intended to constitute legal advice, or to create an attorney-client relationship between us (See paragraph 8 of Avvo Terms and Conditions of Use). It is offered, instead, as general legal information relevant to the issue(s) raised in your question. Legal information is not the same as legal advice (i.e., the application of law to an individual's specific circumstances). If you desire to obtain legal advice, you should retain the services of an attorney to represent you. If you choose to act upon the information provided above without first retaining an attorney, you do so at your own risk.

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  • Do I need an attorney? I am now receiving deficiency notices after my manufactured home was repossesed and sold at auction.

    Over 5 years ago my manufactured home was reposessed. I had a clause in the purchase agreement allowing me to sell home to a buyer who would assume the loan balance. After notifying lender that I had a buyer they refused to allow the sale, saying...

    Michael’s Answer

    Unless your loan documents provide otherwise (which is unlikely), you cannot terminate your loan repayment obligations by selling the loan collateral and tendering a new borrower to your lender. Lenders sometimes consent to this type of "transfer of equity" arrangement in manufactured home loan financing transactions, but even when they do, they often decline to release the original borrower from their personal liability on the loan. I recommend that you consult an experienced consumer finance attorney for further assistance. You may have some recourse against your purchasere, depending on how the purchase agreement was drafted.
    DISCLAIMER: The foregoing is not intended to constitute legal advice, or to create an attorney-client relationship between us (See paragraph 8 of Avvo Terms and Conditions of Use). It is offered, instead, as general legal information relevant to the issue(s) raised in your question. Legal information is not the same as legal advice (i.e., the application of law to an individual's specific circumstances). If you desire to obtain legal advice, you should retain the services of an attorney to represent you. If you choose to act upon the information provided above without first retaining an attorney, you do so at your own risk.

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  • Can I sue this bank for lawyer costs and emotional distress?I'm attempting to buy a second home and tried to get a loan with TD

    Bank. I went through the normal loan process. In July, I received confirmation that I was approved for mortgage and a closing date was determined. I recieved a signed letter and several calls and e-mails confirming. A week later they had put my mo...

    Michael’s Answer

    It is not possible to answer your question without knowing more about the terms of your loan commitment and the reason the bank refused to close. Since you are asking whether you can sue for your attorney's fees, I assume you were represented by an attorney in connection with your loan. If so, that person is in the best position to tell you whether or not you have a legitimate claim against the Bank which is worth pursuing.
    DISCLAIMER: The foregoing is not intended to constitute legal advice, or to create an attorney-client relationship between us (See paragraph 8 of Avvo Terms and Conditions of Use). It is offered, instead, as general legal information relevant to the issue(s) raised in your question. Legal information is not the same as legal advice (i.e., the application of law to an individual's specific circumstances). If you desire to obtain legal advice, you should retain the services of an attorney to represent you. If you choose to act upon the information provided above without first retaining an attorney, you do so at your own risk.

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  • Will existing expenses (loans) be considered in NY Child support case

    Never married to mother of child Non-custodial parent Just served - tangible income very low due to loans and mortgages I have with my current wife. is there a way I can have my current loans figured in with the amount at my disposal? I hav...

    Michael’s Answer

    Debt service is generally not an allowable deduction under NY's Child Support Standards Act (the "CSSA") unless the debt relates to a business owned by the payor. However, the Court has the discretion to vary from the CSSA guidelines if it finds that the application of the guidelines would be unjust or inappropriate. It is unlikely that a court would grant a CSSA variance request based upon a high amount of consumer debt, but you have nothing to lose by asking.
    DISCLAIMER: The foregoing is not intended to constitute legal advice, or to create an attorney-client relationship between us (See paragraph 8 of Avvo Terms and Conditions of Use). It is offered, instead, as general legal information relevant to the issue(s) raised in your question. Legal information is not the same as legal advice (i.e., the application of law to an individual's specific circumstances). If you desire to obtain legal advice, you should retain the services of an attorney to represent you. If you choose to act upon the information provided above without first retaining an attorney, you do so at your own risk.

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