Even though a bankruptcy judge in Delaware this week saved them from financial ruin, real estate closing attorneys said they learned a powerful lesson from the collapse of HomeBanc Corp. — never accept anything but a wire transfer at closing.

At least a dozen Atlanta-area law firms received bounced checks from HomeBanc last month, before the company filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection Aug. 9. By HomeBanc’s count, it bounced 134 checks worth at least $18 million, but the Georgia Real Estate Closing Attorneys Association estimates the figure was $28 million.

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