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Attorney Selected for Prestigious National Board

October 29th, 2015

Jay McDonald - head 230-170

Attorney Jay McDonald was recently invited to become a member of the American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA).

ABOTA is an exclusive and prestigious national organization of experienced trial lawyers and judges. Dedicated to the preservation and promotion of the Seventh Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, the organization works to educate the American public about the history and value of the right to trial by jury. In order to receive an invitation, attorneys must display skill, civility, honor, courtesy and integrity in the legal profession.

“I’m honored and humbled to be elected into this organization,” says McDonald, who has been practicing law with Clawson and Staubes for 27 years. “It is especially humbling, as I have worked hard to foster a positive relationship with opposing counsel, so this is a real honor.” A formidable opponent in the courtroom, McDonald is known for his easygoing nature and sense of fair play.

“I’m grateful for the selection and have many to thank, including the folks at ABOTA and Clawson and Staubes. I’m excited to become a part of this organization, as it will certainly bolster my civil litigation and mediation practice. Along with being hired by Clawson and Staubes in 1988, this election is the highlight of my legal career. I look forward to working on projects with ABOTA at the local and national level.”

Members of ABOTA constitute a “Who’s Who” of U.S. trial lawyers. Trial lawyers must have tried at least 20 civil jury trials to verdict to even qualify for nomination. Members of the local ABOTA chapter and executive board, as well as the national board vote on new members, so selection is based on peer recognition of trial acumen and professionalism.

For more information about ABOTA, visit their website,

Filed Under: News, Press

Big Changes Loom For Residential Real Estate Industry

October 13th, 2015

By: Leigh Bailey and Amanda Callander, Attorneys at Law, Clawson and Staubes, LLC

Real estate professionals are in the midst of final preparation for the implementation of the new changes to the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA) and Truth in Lending Act (TILA) finalized by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB). As a result of the 2010 Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, Congress directed the CFPB to integrate the mortgage loan disclosures under RESPA and TILA. The new rule and changes go into effect on October 3, 2015.

The new rule is designed to streamline the mortgage closing process and improve disclosures to consumers.   The Truth in Lending Act/RESPA Integrated Disclosures (TRID) combines the prior TILA and RESPA forms into the Loan Estimate and the Closing Disclosure.

The Loan Estimate is the new form lenders will deliver to consumers who apply for a consumer mortgage loan. The form replaces the Good Faith Estimate (GFE) and initial Truth-in-Lending disclosure (TIL).  The Loan Estimate is designed to provide consumers with a more clear understanding of the loan terms and estimated costs associated with the loan and closing. Under the new rule, the Loan Estimate must be provided to consumers within three business days after submission of a loan application and the final Loan Estimate must be provided at least seven business days prior to closing.

The Closing Disclosure is the new form that combines the HUD-1 Settlement Statement and final Truth-in-Lending disclosures. The form provides a clear breakdown of loan charges and costs associated with the transaction. Consumers must receive the Closing Disclosure a minimum of three business days prior to closing. Any changes to the Closing Disclosure at closing must be reflected in an amended Closing Disclosure following the closing; however, if the APR changes by more than 1.8%, the loan product changes, or a pre-payment penalty is added, then a new Closing Disclosure and new three business day waiting period will be required.

The Truth in Lending Act/RESPA Integrated Disclosures (TRID) applies to most closed-end consumer mortgage loans, including the following:

  • Purchase money mortgages;
  • Refinances;
  • Mortgages on twenty five acres of land or less;
  • Mortgages on vacant land;
  • Mortgages for construction purposes only; and
  • Mortgages on timeshares

The following consumer loan types are exempt from TRID:

  • Reverse mortgages;
  • Home equity lines of credit;
  • Loans on chattel dwelling/mobile homes only; and
  • Loans by creditors who originate less than five loans in a calendar year.

As the new rule and procedures go into effect, it is vital that realtors, lenders, and closing attorneys communicate during each step of the process. TRID disclosures will change the timing for transactions involving a mortgage, and real estate professionals need to collaborate to ensure clients are educated and well informed of the potential delays associated with the changes.

TRID is breaking down the traditional silos between lenders, real estate agents and brokers, title insurance agents and real estate attorneys, fostering in each a greater understanding of the important roles and responsibilities that each participant in the real estate transaction plays, as well as the unique challenges they face.  The transition and preparation for TRID has been arduous for the industry and there will undoubtedly be challenges to address as implementation begins October 3rd. However, amid the pressure and the stress, these are positive changes taking place that will benefit home buyers and sellers, as well as the real estate industry.

The authors are attorneys practicing residential and commercial real estate law at Clawson and Staubes, LLC in Charleston. The above information is not intended as legal advice.

Filed Under: News

We’re included in the 22nd Edition of The Best Lawyers in America©

September 17th, 2015

Clawson and Staubes as a firm has been included in the 22nd Edition of The Best Lawyers in America© in the practice area of Corporate Law!

Also, see which of our lawyers are listed:


Filed Under: News
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