If we have already signed all of our closing documents in a real estate transaction, can the title company come back and ask that we pay lawyer fees?

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If we have already signed all of our closing documents in a real estate transaction, can the title company come back and ask that we pay lawyer fees?

We are purchasing a short sale property of which has been a complete nightmare. We just signed the closing documents last week and were thinking we were closing that night but then came to find out that we weren’t going to be able to close until the seller sent in his paperwork. The seller still hasn’t sent in his paperwork and just today his realtor/broker told our realtor that we were responsible for paying the accruing lawyers fees from whatever date? Is this okay? I think it’s a breach of the contract that we’ve already signed.

Asked on October 18, 2011 under Real Estate Law, Oregon

Answers:

FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

Good question. If you did not agree to pay the accruing attorney fees of the presumed lender concerning this short sale transaction in any written document for the sale, then you have no legal obligation to do so.

Additionally, if you are obtaining a loan to purchase this property as a short sale is a federally insured loan, then the request that you pay the accruing attorney fees of the presumed lender very well could be a RESPA violation and would be illegal to pay even if you wanted to agree to pay the attorney fees to close the escrow.

You should consult with your real estate agent and consult with a real estate attorney about the situation you are facing and the potential RESPA violation that I have written about.

Good luck.


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