WILLIAM JEFF BARNES, ESQ.
Jeff is the founder of the Foreclosure Defense Nationwide (FDN) website and blog. His law practice is almost exclusively oriented towards defense of foreclosure actions throughout the United States, with his Firm having represented victims of foreclosure and predatory lending practices with local counsel where required in the states of Alaska, Arkansas, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Missouri, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Vermont, Washington, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.
Jeff has been a member of the Florida Bar since 1988 and is also a member of the Colorado Bar, first admitted in 1990. Before concentrating full-time on foreclosure defense, he had been previously admitted to practice in several state courts, including the Superior Court for the State of New Jersey (Atlantic City); the Hennepin County Circuit Court (Minnesota); the Norfolk Superior Court (Commonwealth of Massachusetts); the Circuit Civil Court of Walker County, Alabama; and the Superior Court for the State of California (Orange County).
He is also admitted to several Federal Courts, including the United States District Court for the Southern and Middle Districts of Florida and the United States Courts of Appeals for the Third, Sixth, Tenth, and Eleventh Circuits. Jeff has been previously admitted to practice pro hac vice in the United States District Court for the District of Minnesota (Duluth); the United States District Court for the District of New Jersey (Newark); the United States District Court for the District of Wyoming; the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of California (San Jose Division); the United States District Court for the Northern District of Ohio (Eastern Division); the United States District Court for the District of Oregon (Portland Division); the United States District Court for the Middle District of Tennessee (Nashville Division); the United States District Court for the Western District of Washington; the United States District Court for the District of Hawaii; and the Federal Ninth Circuit Bankruptcy Appellate Panel.
Jeff has been admitted pro hac vice to numerous state courts, including the Superior Court of New Jersey, Chancery Division (including Atlantic, Ocean, Monmouth, Morris, Gloucester, Burlington, and Passaic); the Superior Court for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts (Plymouth); the Superior Court for Flathead County (Montana); the Superior Court of Coweta County (Georgia); the Superior Court of Washington (Ferry County); the District Court for Kootenai and Bonner Counties (Idaho); Hancock County Superior Court (Indiana); the Circuit Court for Cook County, Illinois; Iowa District Court (Greene County); Kern County Superior Court (California); San Bernadino County Superior Court (California); Washetenaw County (Michigan); Mahoning County (Ohio); Maricopa County Superior Court (Arizona); Pima County Superior Court (Arizona); the Hawaii First District Court (Honolulu); the Hawaii Second District Court (Maui); the Kenosha County Court (Wisconsin); the Superior Court for Washington County, Vermont; the Superior Court for Stamford/Norwalk, Connecticut; the Circuit Courts of Oregon (Clackamas, Multnomah, and Crook Counties); Oklahoma County District Court; and the Circuit Court of the 17th Judicial Circuit (Winnebago County, Illinois), with these admissions being in connection with foreclosure defense litigation representing borrowers. Mr. Barnes does not represent any banks, “lenders”, servicers, trustees of securitized mortgage loan trusts, trustee sale companies, or any others who seek to foreclose.
He prevailed against MERS (Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems, Inc.) in the Supreme Courts of both Oregon and Montana in having those Courts declare that MERS is not the “beneficiary” of a Deed of Trust notwithstanding MERS’ claim that it is, and thus making the law on this issue in Oregon and Montana. As a direct result of Mr. Barnes’ efforts, all non-judicial foreclosures involving MERS in both Oregon and Montana stopped upon issuance of these Supreme Court decisions.
Jeff has spent over twenty-nine years litigating throughout the United States in the areas of business tort litigation, contract litigation, insurance litigation (coverage, claims, premium fraud defense, and Unfair and Deceptive Insurance Practices), fraud litigation, real estate litigation, and Administrative proceedings involving defense of chiropractors in disciplinary proceedings. He also spent two years representing individuals in deportation proceedings and appeals to the BIA (Board of Immigration Appeals) following the enactment of the Illegal Immigration Reform and Responsibility Act (IIRRA) and its integration with the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act (AEDPA). His current practice includes both trials (jury and non-jury) and appeals at both the state and Federal levels in jurisdictions throughout the United States, and opposing Proofs of Claim and Stay Relief Motions in Bankruptcy proceedings involving foreclosure issues. Jeff was also previously a Certified Mediator and Arbitrator, having been so certified by the Supreme Court of Florida, and he also previously obtained status as a Qualified Neutral in the State of Minnesota.
After graduating from Franklin & Marshall College in Lancaster, Pennsylvania with a degree in Experimental Psychology, Jeff obtained a Master of Science degree in Education and his Juris Doctor (law) degrees from the University of Miami (Florida). Between graduation from college and prior to law school, Jeff was a public and private school teacher in Miami, Florida, having taught elementary, junior, and senior high level students. He also served as an assistant (adjunct) at Florida International University in the areas of Behavioral Science Statistics and Preventive Law to Master’s and Doctoral candidates, and taught English grammar and composition at the Lewis Merwitzer High School in Miami Beach, Florida. While in law school, Jeff served as a prosecutor in the Office of the State Attorney in Miami, Florida, and was in charge of a division where he handled arraignments and numerous trials on a daily basis.
FDN attorneys handle foreclosure defense matters in both judicial and non-judicial (trustee) jurisdictions. The network is associated with experts in the areas of securitized mortgage loan trusts who analyze mortgage documents to ascertain any violations of Federal lending laws and matters affecting a foreclosing party’s alleged ability to seek the remedy of foreclosure. A mortgage loan examination or audit is strongly recommended for anyone seeking to defend a foreclosure action. FDN will provide contact information for an auditor or loan examiner upon request made through our “Contact Us” link.
FDN’s local counsel network currently embraces forty-three (43) separate law Firms throughout the United States and continues to grow.