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We are dealing with a bank that has threatened to foreclose on a mortgage my husband and I hold on a business property he uses for his dental practice.

The mortgage had been 90 days overdue for the several months. Today (Tuesday, June 4th), the bank called my husband and told him that if he did not bring the mortgage current by Thursday, June 6th, they would initiate foreclosure proceedings. They refused to offer or discuss any program or otherwise work with us. Years ago, we had paid extra into the principal of the loan so that we a few years ahead of schedule for paying off the loan. However, the bank rejects this line of reasoning demands that we bring the number of payments up to date.

We did not take out the mortgage with this bank; the original bank was acquired by a chain. The mortgage was obtained with help from the Small Business Administration.

We suspect that the bank has ulterior motives in trying to foreclose on us. We suspect that this bank would like to acquire the property because it is in a prime location on a state road in the heart of the natural gas fracking industry in our state. The property itself could not be used for fracking, but it is in a good location for a business that could serve the industry.

The bank has been in the habit of doing nasty things to us. For example, we would receive letters claiming that they were calling the loan because my husband’s life insurance (a requirement for the mortgage) was not paid up when this was not the case. This bank also had been in the
habit of taking money for payment of the mortgage from a business account we have with them (also a requirement of the mortgage) at different dates during the month, not the date we had agreed upon, and without warning, often interfering with our ability to make payroll or pay other obligations. Furthermore, the account that they would take from is in the name of the corporation my husband started whereas the mortgage is in his and my names (my name is not on the corporation because it is a professional corporation or PC).

The practice has suffered financially because of a former office manager whom we know mismanaged finances and whom we (and our current accountant) believe embezzled a large quantity of money over the years. The local police investigated but claim that they could not find evidence of theft or embezzlement. Several times we were told that the police were ready to make an arrest, and they just needed to do another check of the evidence. Then we would be told that the evidence didn’t hold up to scrutiny.

Along with the loss of money, the embezzlement got us in trouble with the IRS because the former office manager did not send in checks for payment of the payroll taxes for several quarters. This person intercepted mail and phone calls, so we were in the dark about this (and about debts to vendors). After the person left, we found drawers full of checks my husband had signed that obviously had never been mailed.

The primary problem here is preventing foreclosure on this business property. We have made a big investment in this property, paying over $300,000 over the years, and thepractice is a key source of our income.

We are attempting to borrow money from friends and relatives to prevent the foreclosure. Any advice regarding dealing with the bank regarding the foreclosure would be welcome.

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