Homeowners Skeptical They'll Benefit from Mortgage Mess Settlement
Homeowners Skeptical They'll Benefit from Mortgage Mess Settlement
State attorneys general and federal regulators are rushing to settle the robo-signing foreclosure mess created by the banks and get the real estate market back on its feet. But their proposals don't fully address the one of the fundamental problems of the crisis: Who really owns all those homes?
Foreclosure King Stern Surrenders His Crown
A partial settlement plan has been constructed by a group of state attorneys general and federal regulators. In theory, it addresses banks' flawed mortgage servicing, modification and foreclosure practices. In reality, it just lets the banks off the hook.
HSBC announced late last month that it had put all of its U.S. foreclosures on hold to review their documents -- back in December. So why are its lawyers still pushing cases ahead? HSBC also says it doesn't robo-sign. So why does its annual report mention foreclosure document problems that sound so much like those caused by robo-signing?
The Banks Disclose Foreclosure Problems
Foreclosures nationwide have exposed a swamp of fraudulent documents, but in many parts of Florida, courts have been letting banks ignore the law with impunity. Now, moves by Florida's Supreme Court and its state bar association may finally start cleaning up the fraud there by holding banks -- and lawyers -- accountable.
A New Jersey court has invalidated a foreclosure by insisting on a basic concept of due process -- that the bank must authenticate the documents it uses to make its case. But in the case of Wells Fargo v. Sandra A. Ford, there are more issues than just who owns the mortgage. She has fraud claims that go back to the very beginning.
As multiple lawsuits and SEC actions progress in relation to the nation's mortgage mess, it's becoming clear that the misbehaviors of the lawyers involved at all stages were not isolated incidents: The misconduct was systemic, and it's time to start holding those lawyers accountable.
A U.S. bankruptcy court judge in New York wants officials from HSBC and Litton Loan Servicing to appear in her courtroom next month -- to explain their failure to provide adequate documentation concerning how HSBC wound up claiming to hold a mortgage that's involved in a bankruptcy case.
After an exhaustive examination, DailyFinance's legal reporter comes to a clear verdict: Banks are responsible for 90% of the problem, homeowners 10%. Banks have done three things to create the massive glut of foreclosures choking America's legal systems and laying waste to its real estate markets.
On Oct. 20, New York courts ordered attorneys for foreclosing banks to swear they'd personally confirmed that their documents are true and accurate. But a Brooklyn judge has taken things a step further. Since the banks aren't complying, he has started throwing out foreclosure cases.
When New Jersey tightened its foreclosure rules in response to the false document crisis, it ordered the six largest servicers to explain why they should be allowed to continue foreclosing on homes. Their response: 'Trust us, everything's fine now.' If you think there's irony in that assertion, read on ...
Federal Circuit Court Judge Denny Chin has ruled that a class action can go forward against a law firm, a process-serving company and a debt-buying company that sues them for being a criminal enterprise under the Racketeer Influenced Corrupt Organization (RICO) law.
On Oct. 20, the state's chief judge ended robo-signing by requiring a special affirmation from the banks' attorneys. The now must swear that they know the banks' documents are true because they checked the paperwork. The result: nearly empty courtrooms statewide.
Linda Almonte, a former employee of JPMorgan Chase who is suing the bank for wrongful termination, has just upped the ante by filing a whistle-blower complaint with the SEC. The core allegations charge Chase with grotesque and illegal practices involving its credit card debt processes.
U.S. Bankruptcy Court Judge Martin Glenn denied Wells Fargo's request for permission to foreclose on Tandala Mims's house in the Bronx for a second time on Thursday because he still wasn't satisfied that Wells -- as opposed to some other bank -- had the right to do so.
Most people raising the issue of false mortgage documents are homeowners facing foreclosure. And in general, the banks' responses are that the paperwork issues are mere technicalities -- nothing to be concerned about. Then you find a case like that of like Wells Fargo's attempt to foreclose on Tandala Mims of New York.
Sales of foreclosed homes plunged 25% in the last quarter, which ended in September, from the previous quarter -- and 31% from the year-ago period.
Fallout from the ongoing "robo-signing" foreclosure scandal may cost major banks billions, shake the foundations of the fragile housing market and...
Foreclosures eased slightly in October, falling 4% from the previous month. The decrease most likely stemmed from the recent "robo-signing" controversy.
Depositions by three employees of Nationwide Title Clearing describe a factory-like process that's awful to look at. But Nationwide defends the system as being benign as sausage-making -- and that it's standard industry practice. Still, much of it defies common sense, at least.
In California, Texas and 25 other states, the robo-signing scandal and foreclosure debacle are even more dangerous because the lender doesn't have to go to court to foreclose. Except in rare instances, lenders can use fraudulent paperwork with impunity in those states.
A lack of staff in the face of overwhelming volume is the excuse banks give for turning to robo-signers to speed foreclosures, and for their inability to manage the the mortgage modification process. Now, a class action against BofA raises questions about its core business as well.
Now that N.Y. Chief Judge Jonathan Lippman has considerably tightened the state's foreclosure rules, his effort to eliminate robo-signing has greatly raised the stakes for the banks' attorneys. But what will the practical impacts be?
Bank of America, for the first time, acknowledged discovering some mistakes in foreclosure files as it begins to resubmit documents in 102,000 cases.
After a 16-day review of its foreclosures, Bank of America has pronounced itself satisfied. It found no problems at all with any of them, and it's ready to resume processing foreclosures. Let's be blunt: That's a claim so unbelievable it doesn't pass the straight-face test. Here's why ...
The Mortgage Bankers Association said mortgage applicatins dropped 10.5% last week, the biggest drop in four months. Elsewhere -- housing starts and homebuilder confidence -- signs are more hopeful. But the mortgage mess could be a spoiler.
The so-called robo-signers at banks who signed thousands of foreclosure-related documents without reading them were lying under oath. But even worse were the robo-signing lawyers and their colleagues: They absolutely knew they were committing frauds that could get them disbarred.
A massive loss of confidence in the foundations of property rights and rule of law has occurred. And this loss is having a devastating impact on the housing market, effectively locking up all those foreclosed homes that need to be sold. How can the economy heal while this goes on?