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Problems in Massachusetts

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    Avatar of mbrpm

    I was forming a relationship with an agent when i was asked to run all this by an attorney.

    I had allready spoken to attorney Mike Moschos, whom I got off the list from NARS, a year ago and I mentioned NARS and Equity Holdings and told him what I had in mind and he said “we can do that”.

    I spoke to Mike in his office today and he informed me that due to all the Bailout / Rescue Schemes that have taken place the Mass Attorney General ” won’t allow ” these type of transactions to be done.

    I have not heard of any “Laws” that were passed that would not allow an owner to put their property into their own trust.

    I need an attorney because this state requires attorneys to do closings, no title companies.

    I asked Mike who do I call at the statehouse to inquire about this and he said ” don’t waste your time”.

    I’m going to try and check this out, see how far I get.

    Any help from NARS on this would be greatly appreciated.


    Network Member


    Bailout / Rescue Schemes use Dead/ Dry/ Easily Defeated pieces of paper, with a couple of words beginning in “L” and “T”, written at the top.

    Most have an immediate Merger of Title issue, except in States ( or, one I know of, anyway ) where it is permitted to have a Beneficiary also be the Trustee.

    I place on my NEO cover sheet to have “Their Legal People call Our Legal People”, with any inquisitorial concerns, as to the authenticity of the Land Trust.

    It also says that the paperwork should be reviewed by someone with “Common Legal Sense.”

    To me, it would be “Common Legal Sense” for a whole country full of Nay-Nay Birds to talk to people who know the subject they are discussing.

    They don’t/ They’re just guessing/ THEY KNOW IT !

    That’s not Common Sense.

    Does it work ? Sometimes yes, sometimes, dah.

    I probably need to write out an explanation for what I’m saying to them like this and maybe draw them some pictures.

    I know that I just about needed to do that over a Last Comic Standing joke, from last night, I tried to share at work about “anybody here have a Black Escourt ?” ( they’d found one stuck in the toilet/ bless her heart )

    You already know all this and it doesn’t help you, but hope you get where you need to go.

    Avatar of joecain

    Hi Mike -

    I am just about to head out of the NARS Office for the weekend, but I saw your post and chose to send off a quick response.

    I read your writing that Massachusetts is an attorney-close state. In my experience, that could mean to close an actual real estate sale. Transferring the title of your own property into your own inter-vivos Trust is not a sale, so therefore there may be no need for an attorney.

    Correct me if I am wrong, but answer me this:
    Is there an actual law on the books in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts making it illegal to record a transfer of title in the Office of the Clerk of a County Recorder? Name change transfers and spousal gift transfers must happen periodically there. Is the attorney saying that these are unacceptable to the Recorder’s Clerk if you walk in to do-it-yourself?

    By the way, New York State, arguably the single most litigious area of the whole country is also an attorney-close state. Yet, somehow, lots of NARS Members and Clients have had their title transfer Docs recorded there over the years without the “benefit” of an attorney either drafting the Deed or actually being involved with its recordation.

    Again, maybe I am way off. I just seems to me that this is NOT a sale. I am hopeful that other, more experienced Investors will post to your topic over the weekend so that when I return on Monday, I can learn some new tricks.


    Joe 8)

    Avatar of mbrpm


    Thanx for your reply.

    The attorney didn’t say it was against the law, only that the attorney general wouldn’t allow it.

    How she would go about stopping one from putting their own property into an inter-vivos Trust, I don’t know.

    I agree with you that doing that doesn’t constitute a sale.

    It sounds like the WORD came down from above to all attorneys to stay away from these types of transactions or anything that is not a conventional sale.

    If you’re correct and this title transfer can be done without an attorney, great.
    However, I think most sellers who are serious about doing this are going to want an attorney to look at this and there lies the problem, finding an attorney smart enough to know what this inter-vivos Trust is and willing to use it and willing to go against the wishes of the attorney general.


    Avatar of joecain

    Mike -

    I do not profess to know exactly what might be legal or illegal in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts as it might relate to real estate in general or Land Trust in particular.

    I am not an attorney. Therefore, I am going to suggest that you ask the attorney you are dealing with where, exactly, you might find the “word” or “wishes” of the State Attorney General in THE LAW. Have him show you or render an actual opinion on this topic IN WRITING.

    If he cannot or simply chooses not to do so, then have Mike consider the possibility that the act of placing one’s own property into one’s own inter-vivos Trust for one’s own asset and privacy protection might not be against THE LAW.

    If all else fails, ask him to call in and speak with Bill Gatten. He obviously knows NARS and Bill well enough to be listed as a possible attorney to check in with in our literature. Perhaps, a new conversation with Bill will either enlighten the rest of us on his point of view, or, more likely, help him to remember why these transactions are able to be done in his area.

    Either way, we will probably all win.

    Avatar of mbrpm


    Step 1……Send fax to Mike Moschos asking for that information and suggesting he call and have a chat with Bill.

    Step 2……Contact two other attorneys who I had spoke to many moons ago who had no problems with the inter-vivos Trust.

    Step 3……Contact the Attorney General.


    Avatar of mbrpm


    I completed step 1, however I don’t think I’ll hear from Mr. Moschos.

    Step 2…..I made contact with one another attorney.

    He said he wasn’t interested.

    I asked for a referral.

    He says “What is it you want to do again?”

    I explain it to him and gave him the condensed version.

    I tell him my sellers often want to run it by their attorney but the problem is that most attorneys don’t know what it is.

    I told him I need an attorney that I can refer these sellers to.

    He said he would take the calls.

    Question…..Should I send the attorney some info ahead of time?

    If so, any suggestions?



    He’s just going to field the calls and have his secretary ask them if their marriage is shaky, to try to find a way to turn a buck.

    ( He said, “What was it you were talking about that I already gave you my
    answer on, when I don’t even know what you were talking about ?”)

    KNAT-P ( Know Nothing about Trusts – Professional )

    My wife has suggested that this is a job for Kathleen.

    Like screening a handful of attorneys, in particular areas, and telling them that if they have a brain they’ll hold their tongue on stuff they don’t know, until it’s cleared with her.

    Why can’t they be brought up to speed and take a portion of the deals.

    Not to advise a party that has an opposite stake in the deal, but just to learn and let them get some of their attorney friends that are stupid to learn enough to know things check out, for the seller’s etc. with questions.

    Heck, is Kathleen getting boned up on Bill’s system or is she sticking with the straight Empire State deals.

    I’m thinking that if I put her name on my NEO and a link into my e-mail to the seller to some of the places, on the Net, where she’s read some people the Right Act, that should get a percentage of them to sit up and listen. If not anyone today, maybe tomorrow.

    That’d be worth something to me. Maybe even 10% Beneficial Interest.

    But, she would want to know what I am putting her name on and how it can work for her and not against her ( or someone like her or Bill, for example and Jan.)

    It sure would lend credibility.

    And, hopefully, not cost her ( or them ) any time.

    Attorneys got smart when they found out Short Sales make Bank and they will with this, if they chose not to try to steal it and wind up getting pinched, instead.

    Oh, well an idea.

    Some day I’ll have a good one.

    Avatar of areyes

    that would be interesting to have Kathleen retain 10% IB on the NEO and within the trust to add more credibility to the negotiations especially in those states that use attorney’s to handle escrow.

    Avatar of mbrpm

    I’m out of the loop here, whose Kathleen ?



    Professor at PropertyShark.com
    Senior Partner at Scanlon & Pinto, PLLC
    Past Associate Attorney at Rubin & Licatesi
    Education Hofstra University
    St. John’s University Recommended 1 person has recommended Kathleen

    1 partner
    Connections 100 connections
    Industry Law Practice
    Websites My Company
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    Public Profile http://www.linkedin.com/in/kathleenscanlon SummaryI represent purchasers and sellers of residential real estate including investors, wholesalers, rehabbers and builders. I also represent over 40 Lenders, as bank attorney, and represent these Lenders as settlement agent for purchases and refinances, assignments, CEMAs and coop closings as well as a comfortable familiarity with subprime lending. I have been closing FHA loans for 14 years, including 203K loans.

    As a transactional real estate attorney, I practice law with a business focus. My specialty is creative acquisition, financing, development and disposition of real estate, whether single premises or bulk REO packages ranging into the billions. I utilize several different vehicles including land trusts, lease options and purchase CEMAs, to name a few, to assist my investors in maximizing their profit and minimizing their risk.

    Unlike many attorneys, I think “outside the box” and find the solution rather than sit back and practice “the way its always been done”. Real estate law is a dynamic, evolving area of law that changes as markets needs demand. I stay on top of the cutting edge techniques so that I may refine them and adapt them to my practice and the needs of my clients.

    acquisition & disposition of residential and commercial real estate; structuring creative investment transactions, including bulk REO transfers, land trusts, lease options, “subject to”, purchase CEMAs; negotiating modifications, workouts and short sales on behalf of the distressed home owner and providing settlement agent services to Mortgage Lenders.


    (Privately Held ; 51-200 employees ; Real Estate industry)

    March 2008 ??? Present ( 4 months)

    Appointed as a Professor, I teach at various real estate seminars on cutting edge topics including short sales, distressed properties, land trusts and other creative acquisition strategies.

    Recommend Kathleen???s work at PropertyShark.com

    Senior Partner
    Scanlon & Pinto, PLLC

    (Partnership ; Law Practice industry)

    August 1996 ??? Present (11 years 11 months)

    I am a partner in a boutique law firm concentrating in the practice of real estate and mortgage banking law in the metro-NY area. We provide representation to lay people as well as real estate investors, rehabbers, wholesalers and builders. Whether the transaction involves a single family home or a construction development project with blanket financing, Scanlon & Pinto, PLLC brings the necessary expertise to the table.

    Recommend Kathleen???s work at Scanlon & Pinto, PLLC

    Kathleen has 1 recommendation (1 partner) including:

    Matthew Lucks, Director of Training, PropertyShark.com View recommendations

    Associate Attorney
    Rubin & Licatesi

    ( Law Practice industry)

    1994 ??? 1996 (2 years)

    I was a Staff attorney in the residential real estate and mortgage closing department. I closed numerous transactions on behalf of purchasers and sellers as well as Lenders, including new construction transactions, FHA loans etc.

    Recommend Kathleen???s work at Rubin & Licatesi

    EducationHofstra University
    JD, September 1991 ??? June 1994

    St. John’s University
    BS, Paralegal Science, January 1987 ??? June 1991

    Recommendations For KathleenSenior Partner
    Scanlon & Pinto, PLLC

    ???Kathleen Scanlon is quite possibly the most knowledgeable real estate attorney in New York State. She holds a mastery over complex and creative real estate transactions that would boggle most other attorneys. It is precisely this expertise that drove us to recruit Kathleen as our resident Legal Expert here at PropertyShark University. AND, I look forward to utilizing her in my own real estate transactions in the future.??? April 28, 2008

    Matthew Lucks, Director of Training, PropertyShark.com
    was with another company when working with Kathleen at Scanlon & Pinto, PLLC

    Write a recommendation for Kathleen

    Additional InformationWebsites:
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    digital photography, software development, skiing, weight training

    Groups and Associations:
    New York State Bar Association, Real Property Section; Nassau County Bar Association; Big Apple REIA, NYC REIA (Vendor Member); Active Rain; Wanna Network; Investment Riches, Bigger Pockets,


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    Avatar of nyreattorney

    Hey here I am :D !

    Alvin emailed me personally about this thread and I appreciate you guys thinking of me.

    I have to respond to Joe Cain’s comment about recording docs in NY without attorneys – hate to say I had to revise your docs for two lovely ladies who came in to see me because they could not get them recorded. 1.) the trustee must actually sign the transfer tax returns; 2.) the Warranty Deed must enumerate the powers allocated to the Trustee in the Trust Corpus and 3) your POA should be the NY form Durable POA.

    It is an interesting concept and I definitely would consider partnering up with you guys. I do need more concrete information on the system that you are using. We all have our own techniques and goals for structuring these transactions. I have been using the land trusts for short sales as I have discussed before and therefore, my structure is geared towards that goal and to be in compliance with New York State law. I am getting nationwide inquiries so I am widening my focus.

    I would be more than willing to assist where I can as I duly understand your frustrations with counsel.


    Blessed is the Attorney that Can Get Off the Ground, with a Short Runway !

    Thanks, Alvin and Maria and guys and gals.

    This is one small step for us; one giant leap for Trust-kind.

    Thank you, Kathleen.

    Until, you’re better paid ( in case you have to hire some new folks to help put up with all this entrepreneurship !)

    Thanks again, everybody, Alan

    Avatar of joecain

    Hi Kathleen -

    As always, it is great to see you here on our Discussion Board, offering your experience and professionalism. I really appreciate the assistance you were able to provide with the NARS Client that contacted you. That Simple Trust that she was attempting to place her property into seemed to require exactly the finesse that you were able to provide. Thank you for that.

    I would like to see a copy of the NY form Durable POA to send to our legal counsel for their review and to determine what, if any, changes will be needed in order to streamline the Doc Process.

    I look forward to being able to refer to you, with your permission of course, several other Clients in the future as these issues occur. We have used the version you saw of the Title Transfer Deed that we supply for properties in New York State for many years and it may indeed need to be updated and your help and experience will be valuable assets as we move forward. Many trained professionals have assisted us over the years with revisions to our Title Transfer Docs so that they can conform to local regulations, helping to make them able to be recorded in local jurisdictions. Certainly, each County in New York State seems to have specific and different additional forms (in quadruplicate, no less) that need to be filled out in addition to the actual Deed. Your willingness and ability to assist the Client who contacted you in handling the details necessary to transfer title of her own property into her own inter-vivos trust was greatly appreciated by all involved.

    Type to you again soon.

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