Charlotte Bankruptcy Lawyer Bryan W. Stone of Arnold & Smith, PLLC answers the question “Can I buy a home after bankruptcy?”
Supporters of Christine Hansen say her personal financial troubles should not disqualify her from serving as treasurer of Florida Realtors, a 127,000-member organization devoted to advancing Florida’s real estate industry.
Critics, on the other hand, question why the organization would choose as its leader a person who “has had trouble managing her own real estate business and investments.” Ms. Hansen was elected secretary of Florida Realtors in August 2013; less than two weeks after that, she declared bankruptcy. An investment property she co-owns with a former boyfriend is being foreclosed, and Ms. Hansen is also embroiled in a lawsuit brought against her by another real estate agent.
A Florida Realtors committee nominated Ms. Hansen in July to be the organization’s 2015 treasurer. As treasurer, Ms. Hansen would oversee the organization’s $17 million annual budget. Ms. Hansen said her bankruptcy has been resolved and that lawyers are putting the finishing touches on settlement documents. Court files show the judge overseeing Ms. Hansen’s bankruptcy has not yet approved the settlement and that her debts have not been discharged.
Tina Harris, president of the Greater Tampa Association of Realtors, said Ms. Hansen would have more empathy and would be better suited to understand people who have gone through foreclosure and bankruptcy because of her experience.
Other Florida realtors are not so sanguine about Ms. Hansen’s candidacy. Suzanne Sherer, a realtor from Fort Myers, told the Tampa Bay Times that Florida Realtors should choose a treasurer who leads by example. “I borrow money from you, I expect to pay it back,” she said.
The Winter Springs-based realtor who is challenging Ms. Hansen—Kathleen Gallagher-McIver—told the Times that a treasurer candidate should be financially responsible in one’s own life before taking on a volunteer post in a large organization like Florida Realtors.
This isn’t the first time a large realtor organization has come under scrutiny for its nomination of high-level officers with personal financial problems. In 2012, the National Association of Realtors elected California broker Gary Thomas as its president. At the time, debts in his personal and corporate bankruptcies totaled some $13.2 million.
At its meeting in November, the national organization will consider a proposed change that would require candidates for leadership positions to show that they have not undergone bankruptcies or foreclosures in the seven years preceding a nomination. Florida Realtors has no immediate plans to make such a change.
The committee that nominated Ms. Hansen knew about her bankruptcy and foreclosure, according to Dean Asher, an Orlando realtor who was vice chairman of the nominating committee. “From what I understand,” he said, “all had been resolved.”
If you find yourself needing the services of a Charlotte, North Carolina bankruptcy attorney, please call the skilled lawyers at Arnold & Smith, PLLC today at (704) 370-2828 or find additional resources here. As professionals who are experienced at handling all kinds of bankruptcy matters, our attorneys will provide you with the best advice for your particular situation.
About the Author
Bryan Stone is a Partner with Arnold & Smith, PLLC, where he focuses his practice on all aspects of bankruptcy, including: Chapter 7, Chapter 11, Chapter 13, home loan modifications and landlord-tenant issues.
A native of Macon, Georgia, Mr. Stone attended the University of Georgia, where he earned a BBA in Banking and Finance, and Wake Forest University School of Law, where he obtained his law degree.
Following law school, Mr. Stone relocated to Charlotte, where he currently serves as Chair of “Bravo!” – a young professionals organization associated with Opera Carolina – and founded the University of Georgia Alumni Association of Charlotte.
In his spare time, Mr. Stone enjoys perfecting his barbeque skills for the annual “Q-City BBQ Championship” and playing softball in the Mecklenburg County Bar softball league.
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