By Rosemary K. Otzman
Disbarred attorney Thomas White, who is facing 20 felony charges in 34th District Court and a Chapter 7 bankruptcy proceeding in U.S. District Court, now has a court date that could get him evicted from his Van Buren Township home.
White and his estranged wife Heather White have been summoned to 34th District Court at 9:30 a.m., Thursday, Jan. 16, to face a complaint filed the day after Christmas seeking their removal from their home at 41305 Savage Road for nonpayment of their land contract.
The land contract forfeiture complaint was filed by Steven P. Robinson, a Romulus attorney, on behalf of Robert and Gloria Coppock, who had sold the house to the Whites on a land contract.
But, the Whites stopped paying their house payment almost six months ago, and continue to live in the house.
The Whites have 10 days to respond after their summons has been served. They may ask for a jury trial and pay the required jury fee in their first response or lose the right for a jury.
The summons said if they are in court on time, the Whites will have the opportunity to give the reasons why they feel they should not be evicted. They are advised to bring witnesses, receipts, and other necessary paperwork with them.
The summons states if they are not in court on time, they could be evicted without a trial and a money judgment may be entered against them.
If the Coppocks prevail, an order is then given that allows no less than 90 days for White to leave the property.
On Nov. 7, U.S. Bankruptcy Court Judge Thomas J. Tucker signed an order removing White’s house from bankruptcy protection, giving the Coppocks the right to get the money White owes them for unpaid land contract payments or to get their property back.
Judge Tucker’s order said the approximate market value of the property is $260,000 and the current debt owing is about $306,688, which includes unpaid property taxes and the Coppocks’ attorney fee and costs for filing the motion.
Walter H. Czeizler of Livonia, the Coppocks’ bankruptcy attorney, said the forfeiture filed by attorney Robinson is a “pay and stay” option that gives the Whites a chance to catch up on what they owe and stay in the house with reinstated monthly payments.
If the Whites don’t pay what they owe, the district court judge can turn the property over to the Coppocks, he said.
Heather White files for divorce
In another detail of the convoluted cases involving Thomas White, his wife Heather Lea White filed for divorce on Nov. 1.
Heather is representing herself in the case and no children are claimed since all four of their children are over the age of 18. Several of the adult children live in the house from which they may all be evicted.
The Divorce Settlement Conference / Trial is set for 9 a.m. Feb. 6 before Circuit Court Judge Arthur J. Lombard. The court session was reset by the court from the original date of Jan. 31.
By Rosemary K. Otzman