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Woman granted temporary restraining order from foreclosure

Wells Fargo agrees to allow return to home pending court hearings

Posted: June 11, 2011 - 10:57pm

The Juneau woman who had her home foreclosed by Wells Fargo Bank was granted a temporary restraining order (TRO) against the bank and foreclosure trustee Alaska Trustee LLC on Friday in Juneau Superior Court.

Judge Philip Pallenberg accepted a compromise reached by Teresa Uehara’s attorney Holly Handler and Wells Fargo attorney Michael McLaughlin, allowing a TRO that will delay eviction pending a June 28 preliminary injunction hearing.

Handler and McLaughlin discussed the issue, and reached agreement, prior to court on Friday. Mark Skolnick, an attorney representing foreclosure trustee Alaska Trustee LLC, agreed with the filing.

According to Handler and McLaughlin all copies of the keys made by Wells Fargo and ATLLC will be returned to Uehara by Monday. Uehara was appearing telephonically from Washington where she was attending to family matters.

Uehara’s husband died on March 18 from spinal meningitis. The couple had been working with Wells Fargo to avoid foreclosure when Sadao Uehara became ill, was medevaced to Seattle and placed in the Intensive Care Unit of Harbor View Medical Center.

Judge Pallenberg wanted clarification, pursuant to Friday’s agreement, that Ms. Uehara would be able to return to and reside in her Mendenhall Valley home without fear of being arrested for trespassing.

“That is correct,” McLaughlin said. “We would take no action.”

McLaughlin also added that the agreement is not intended to make any admission of the allegations.

It was alleged by Uehara and Handler that Wells Fargo promised to not take foreclosure actions against them while her husband was in the ICU. Uehara alleged a Wells Fargo representative notified them of a missed payment and were assured that no actions were being taken on their home.

Handler said, in fact, that they did begin proceedings, boarded up portions of the house, and made duplicate sets of keys. Handler alleges Wells Fargo continued with the foreclosure illegally.

One set of keys was given to M&M Services, a Juneau business that secures properties. M&M Services is not alleged to have done any disservice. The company changes the locks per a work order, secures any possible insecure entry ways, removes items that might attract rodents, take photos of every room to document personal property inside and conditions and forwards said photos to the bank.

• Contact reporter Klas Stolpe at 523-2263 or at klas.stolpe@juneauempire.com.

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