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Written by
Noel Cookman

The Case of The Laughable Proposal - Not Knowing the "Golden Rule"

Published On 
January 16, 2019

Continuing Series: Things My Platinum Inner Circle Attorneys Would NEVER Do

This really happened. I leave the dates on the email exchanges but have, obviously, removed the real names of the people protect the innocent and the guilty.

Opposing for a case/file on which we had already obtained credit underwriting approval (i.e., loan was approved subject to appraisal and final divorce) refused to allow our customer to let an appraiser in the house for it to be appraised.

Get this: opposing wanted money, they wanted money from the refinance of the house but opposing (attorney and client) would not allow the house to be appraised. Wife (we were getting the loan for husband) had refused to allow access up to that point.

Attorney actually memorialized this silly refusal in an email...the first exchange below...keep reading.

Spoiler Alert. Scroll to the bottom to see how it turned out.


The chain of email communication:

From: Opposing Attorney
Sent: Thursday, January 3, 2019 1:39 PM
To: My Customer’s Attorney
Subject: Customer

I talked to my client about the appraisal and settlement.  She will sell all community assets to husband and forgive all debts he owes her for the sum of $250,000. She will not allow an appraisal [emphasis mine]. Call me at 214-555-DUMB if you want to discuss.

Opposing Attorney, Esq.


Husband (my customer) responded – rather appropriately I think - to this nonsense:

From: Husband/Customer
Sent: Thursday, January 3, 2019 3:31 PM
To: Customer’s Attorney
Cc: [email protected]
Subject: Husband/Customer

So, let me get this straight, I am supposed to get a loan to give to Wife $250K, but the bank can’t [is disallowed by opposing to] do appraisal?

Is this what they teach in Law school these days? Sounds like wasted money if that is what they are teaching.

Husband/Customer Name


From me (Noel, bent over double laughing):

Dear Husband/Customer (with Attorney):

Your sentiments are spot on. And, I totally agree.

For what it’s worth, I do my best to be supportive of the legal profession – I am supremely complimentary of lawyers every chance I get, as I have been about your attorney who deserves kudos and high praise. But Mr. Opposing Attorney’s statement doesn’t pass any test. It betrays not only an ignorance of financing but a deficiency of logic. I’ll let legal professionals weigh in on what sort of legal test his statement may or may not pass. My guess is that there is hardly any sound legal argument for his position.

Put simply, Mr. Opposing Attorney needs to be in possession of a few facts:

  1. Home financing - which is exactly how $250,000 (or whatever the agreed amount is) will be produced (neither Mr. Opposing Attorney nor Wife get to choose how Husband pays the obligation so long as such payment derives from legal sources) – requires all sorts of conditions for loan approval; not the least of which is an appraisal for the collateral. An appraisal WILL be performed if Wife receives her money.
  2. If Mr. Opposing Attorney wishes to lend Husband/Customer the $250,000, he may do so at any terms which are acceptable to borrower (Husband) and lender (Opposing Attorney) and legal. If he does not wish to lend his own money, he must observe the Golden Rule – He who has the gold makes the rules. This is to say that Mr. Opposing Attorney may think that legal rules, tricks and protocol apply here and NOT financing rules. That would only be true if he is producing money. But we all know that he is not. He should forget his trickery and ask himself “how shall we get money for my client?”
  3. No judge or court can change these rules. Of course, no judge or court will lend its own money so as to circumvent the normal protocols of mortgage lending.

I’m not a lawyer; and, your Attorney can certainly predict the court’s behavior with greater accuracy than can I or any layman. But I think I can argue against Mr. Opposing Attorney’s position after imbibing 8 margaritas and a handful of pain killers. His position and that of his client’s is laughable. If he wants to argue before a court that Husband cannot have his lender perform an appraisal, Mr. Opposing Attorney will have to state that:

  1. Husband was approved for financing – not just pre-approved but underwritten and approved subject ONLY to an appraisal of the property and final divorce specifying terms properly (Owelty lien as I have prescribed).
  2. Noel Cookman, America’s Premier Divorce-Lending Authority, has stated such. If I say so myself, when I say I can deliver the money, I can deliver the money. Ask 200+ Texas divorce lawyers.
  3. His client demands payment but refuses the means of payment. Specifically, she refuses to allow the collateral (which is securing the loan husband must take in order to pay the settlement) to be appraised for its value. As I say it again, I am shaking my head, rolling my eyes and uttering disgusted-sounding chuckles. This guy is idiotic, apologies to idiots everywhere.

*From my experience and perspective, a small percentage of judges can be as ignorant, obtuse and obstinate about financing as anyone. (Who am I to talk, eh. I'm no stranger to ignorance). Generally, they are cooperative with rules of financing, once they understand them. But I would NEVER assume that they understand these matters without clear explanations. Still, the point on which all of this turns is if the objecting lawyer (or a judge who might side with him) will lend Husband the money at good terms. If not, they should rule according to what Husband’s Attorney submits and how I have designed the Owelty (buyout). Remember the Golden Rule.

Thank you. (Please forgive the sarcasm but this attorney’s behavior begs for it).

Noel Cookman
America’s Premier Divorce-Lending Specialist
office 972-724-2881 † mobile 817-454-4555 † fax 866-295-0567
601 W. NW Highway † Suite 200 † Grapevine, TX 76051

RESOLUTION? The day after my email was sent, the house was appraised. Our loan - which will put a lot of money into wife's bank account - is ready to close. 

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