Greene on the Greene Agreement
“The tone of the email condemning the so-called "Greene Agreement" concerns me. It is not that I feel a need to defend myself or the pool of companies that decided they wanted the agreement. It would just be nice if those who believe it to be some type of nefarious legal machination understood just how wrong they are. Then again, as some of the hate mail surely came from angry victims, it is all too likely that such blind anger will make it impossible for them to see things any other way.
“I have represented both lessees and lessors in advance fee retention disputes, and I for one believe that any company which engages in such a nefarious practice is committing fraud.
“It is a sad irony. Yes, the agreement is meant to be used by the lessor/broker who wishes to be reimbursed for certain agreed upon costs. However, it was also designed to protect the APPLICANT by (1) providing clear disclosure before any money changes hands (2) giving the applicant the chance to opt out or modify the agreement before signing it (3)delineating those costs which are non-refundable IF the applicant agrees, and (4)eliminating ugly battles arising from claims based on non-written agreements, or less.
Some of these anonymous critics are perhaps the same lessors and/or brokers who waged war against us because they don't think they need any agreement at all to retain advance fees. Whether or not such a practice is technically legal or not, it was the collective opinion of the pool that this is wrong. They believe that it is only fair and ethical to retain some or all of an advance fee if both parties agree in writing.
“As for the email from those who have been victimized, though it may be hard to believe, this agreement is for them as well. It is a template, and a mere starting point. It is meant to be modified to suit the needs of BOTH parties. It is predicated upon good faith, clarity, and mutuality. It is NOT intended to allow a lessor or broker to take your money, do nothing, and keep it. If I thought the agreement was going to be used for that purpose, I would never have drafted it. Moreover, in my opinion the agreement would do nothing to protect a lessor or broker whose sole purpose was to procure advance fees and nothing else.
“This should be a welcome trend in a good industry plagued by a few bad players. As the pool of companies who initiated this project did so with the specific intent of helping restore faith in a beleaguered industry, they should be applauded, not vilified.”
Kenneth C. Greene
Law Offices of Kenneth C. Greene
980 Magnolia Avenue Suite 6C
Larkspur, CA 94939
Vox: 415 461 3777
Fax: 415 461 3733
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