Wednesday, October 13, 2010


Just had a good lawyer and good friend call me, and we had a good chuckle over her question. 

I'm representing an estate and she the major claimant against the estate. I had sent the final payment with cover letter, receipt and a pre-addressed, stamped, envelope for her to return the receipt once her client signed it. In the letter I referred to the "SASE" - Self-Addressed Stamped Envelope - and she hadn't seen the term before. Actually, it's fallen out of common use; before the internet a lot of advertisements said to use one if you wanted information; now the information is on-line.

But this reminded me of another stupid financial industry story. (here we go again!)

15 or 20 years ago I was working on a Small Business Administration backed loan.  Involved were senior finance wonks in Richmond and Occupied (excuse me, that's 'Northern') Virginia.  Naturally there had to be hazard insurance on the property, and because of the SBA there were three or four financial fingers in the pie.

Insurance companies don't really care who gets the money in event of a loss;  with multiple parties listed as loss payees they frequently list them all and then say "As Their Interests May Appear" or, universally shown in industry shorthand, "ATIMA".

So I get a fax from one of the senior wonks asking "Who is ATIMA?"

DOH!  "Here's your sign."

Shoulda sold my bank stock -- all the clues were there . . .

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