‘The bottom line is that the notice of substitution of Plaintiff in judicial states, or notice of substitution of Trustee in non-judicial states should be the first line of battle. Neither one of them is valid and in both cases you have a stranger to the transaction being allowed to name itself as creditor, name its own controlled entity or subsidiary as trustee, and then ignore the realities of the money paid to the real creditor. They are claiming damages from the borrower — all for a debt that in the ordinary course of things has already been paid several times over. But it is true that it wasn’t paid to THEM because THEY were never and are not now the creditor fulfilling the definition of a creditor who could bid at the foreclosure auction. It is not that the borrower doesn’t owe money when he borrows it, it is that he doesn’t owe it to any of the people who are claiming it. And that is what gives rise to liability of law firms to borrowers.” Neil F Garfield
According to the indictment and plea agreement, Harrell operated a scheme in which he off ered , in exchange for a fee from a homeowner facing foreclosure , to postpone foreclosure proceedings on the homeowner’s property. Harrell accomplished this by instructing homeowner clients to deed fractional interests in th eir properties to other individu als whom Harrell would pay to file bankruptcy petitions in U.S. Bankruptcy Court. Once the bankruptcy petitions were filed, Harrell would notify creditors — which included multiple TARP banks — seeking to foreclose on his clients’ properties , th at the propert ies were part of an active bankruptcy proceeding .
According to documents filed in this case, Youngheim participated in a large-scale mortgage fraud scheme designed to unjustly enrich himself and his business partner Loveless (among others) to the detriment of neighboring homeowners in Gary, Indiana, and taxpayers generally. Individuals who were recruited to buy most of the houses sold in the scheme were first-time home buyers with little practical experience in the field of real estate and with limited to no familiarity with the Gary, Indiana real estate market.
But for the Justice Department to truly start fresh, and fulfill their mission of stopping corporate fraud and preventing it from occurring again, they will have to compel JPMorgan to admit full liability for deliberately selling rotten mortgage securities. And here, federal agencies have revealed themselves as more interested in extracting public relations value by getting banks to admit something resembling wrongdoing, rather than forcing them to confess more widespread transgressions which would increase their legal exposure. Though agencies like the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) have announced “get-tough” procedures on extracting admissions of wrongdoings in financial fraud settlements, in practice they serve as nothing more than insincere apologies.
Massachusetts homeowners facing foreclosure will see enhanced protections under regulations filed by the state Division of Banks that prevent national and state lenders from foreclosing on a property if an application for a loan modification is in process. “This is another step in the right direction to further strengthen protections provided to Massachusetts borrowers and homeowners,” Consumer Affairs and Business Regulation Undersecretary Barbara Anthony said in a news release.
The Justice Department plans to use its tentative $13 billion settlement with JPMorgan Chase as a blueprint for reaching similar deals with other banks in probes related to bad mortgages and the 2008 financial crisis, a law enforcement official familiar with the negotiations said Monday. If such an effort is successful, it could usher in an era of high-priced settlements throughout the banking industry.
Earlier this year, Kevin Singh almost lost his house. "The bank did not help, was not helping at all," Singh told VOR. "I sent them everything, sent them all the income I'm making, [to show that] I can afford the house. But they did not do anything –they tried to foreclose on me." Singh is a self-employed housepainter living in Sacramento, California. He is an immigrant from India who has lived in the United States for 20 years. He was a victim of the housing bubble's collapse and the questionable mortgage products and practices that helped cause it. "The business started going down when the economy went down, I was not able to afford my payments," he said.
A dozen U.S. Senators have asked the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and the U.S. Justice Department to look into residential tax lien sale and foreclosure practices that they say are unfairly––and potentially illegally––causing seniors, veterans and the disabled to lose their homes. In a letter to the the CFPB and the Justice Department, the senators cited a Washington Post series detailing how in Washington, D.C., third-party investors sometimes purchase tax liens at auctions then try to rake in profits by charging property owners exorbitant processing, legal and other fees that can significantly increase the amount owed by a property owner, sometimes buy multiples of 30 to 40 times. For some property owners, the fees are too much to bear and they are forced to vacate.
After reviewing three years of personal financial disclosures, the Center found judges who authored opinions favoring companies in which they owned stock. The Center found judges who ruled on cases even when family members were receiving income from one of the parties. And it found judges who accepted lavish gifts — like a $50,000 trip from a lawyer.
Lillian Marquez, 38, and Michael Keatts, 56, both of Stockton, California, were arrested in their homes for a mortgage fraud scheme. A federal grand jury indictment charged them with conspiring to commit mortgage fraud and with nine counts of mail fraud. The indictment was unsealed upon their arrests. According to the indictment, from February 2006 through at least August 2012, Marquez and Keatts operated Colonial Home and Business Services, Stockton, California. Both defendants were licensed real estate agents who assisted clients in purchasing and selling homes.
The Office of Vermont Attorney General William H Sorrell has filed suit against Bank of America for violating Vermont’s foreclosure mediation statute and Consumer Protection Act in foreclosure actions brought by the Bank against local homeowners. According to the complaint filed in Washington Superior Court in Montpelier, Bank of America, based in Charlotte, North Carolina, (a) failed or refused to comply with mediation settlements in Vermont state court foreclosure actions to which it previously agreed; (b) billed foreclosure defendants (the homeowners) for more money than their mediation settlements provided; and (c) sent mailings to homeowners containing misrepresentations, including misrepresentations about the amount of money due the Bank and the status of the foreclosure action.
A Treasure Valley woman bought a home in Nampa, only to find out later that she only owns half of it. She owns the front half of the property, while someone else owns the back half. At age 76, Betty Galloway was looking to settle down in Nampa. She is retired and lives on Social Security. The widow and mother of five sold her home in Georgia, planning to use the money to buy a home here.
Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti joined with community activists and homeowners Thursday to promote a new, anti-foreclosure help line. The help line is designed to keep more families in their homes as well as reduce fraud in the foreclosure process. CBS2′s Dave Lopez spoke to people grateful that the help line will help them stay in their homes. Lopez was there when the mayor talked to the Garr family of 150th Street. He assured them that they were not alone in their foreclosure battle
Having a hard time with the mortgage? Take the advice of local activists: Stop paying and stay put. State bank regulators have your back. The state Division of Banks has put its stamp on regulations designed to keep lenders from foreclosing a loan if the borrower has applied for a modification. The regulations are part of a foreclosure prevention law signed by Gov. Deval Patrick last year. They complement rules requiring lenders to modify home loans if the cost of modification is less than the cost of foreclosure.
Baltimore-based Civil Justice is offering free legal consultations for Marylanders who lost their home or are facing other foreclosure-related financial difficulties. The new program, “Foreclosure Recovery: On Track to Financial Health,” will focus on addressing harmful ripple effects of mortgage default, from municipal liens and debt collection to credit problems. The nonprofit Civil Justice hopes to reach 300 to 600 people.
The old proverb “the enemy of my enemy is my friend” suggests that two parties who don’t particularly like each other can still unite to battle a common enemy. Apple and Microsoft teamed up against Google; Yankees and Red Socks fans bonded to boo Alex Rodriguez; and banks and credit unions recently joined to fight the Richmond, Calif., plan to use eminent domain to seize mortgages. Banks and credit unions became “frenemies” on Aug. 30, 2013, when the ABA, California Credit Union League, and several other trade associations, including the California Bankers Association, filed a joint amicus brief criticizing Richmond’s plan to use eminent domain to force the refinancing of select “underwater” mortgages.
An amended lawsuit by fired bank examiner Carmen Segarra describes a chaotic work environment at her old employer, the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, alleging that lines of authority were unclear and bad behavior by a supervised bank went unexamined. A spokeswoman for the New York Fed said the bank was reviewing the new allegations from Segarra, who was dismissed seven months after being hired in late 2011 as part of a push to beef up supervision of so-called Too-Big-to-Fail financial institutions.
The primary payment we are focusing on today is servicer advances which come in different flavors — non-stop, limited and none. Most loans (96%) are subject to claims of securitization regardless of what the current servicer or trustee is telling you. And most of those (my guess is around 75%-90%) come with third party obligors, which is why there is so much confusion. Besides servicer advances, the agents for the trust beneficiaries at the investment bank who sold them the bonds received on behalf of the bond holders, insurance payments and other funds from other contracts designed to limit the risk associated with the terms of the bond repayment of interest and principal.
“When it mattered most, Fifth Third failed to write down the value of loans it held on its books, and as a result, the bank didn’t show its true losses on those loans in the records it used to apply for TARP funds,” said Christy Romero, Special Inspector G eneral for TARP (SIGTARP). “Treasury and federal taxpayers, who funded the TARP bailout and who became investors in Fifth Third and other banks, deserved to know the truth about Fifth Third’s financial condition.”
The first thing is judges are moving cases toward resolution at speeds far greater than has ever before occurred. It’s a tidal wave of foreclosure actions that is ripping across Florida like a wildfire. And as in any great fury, there are mistakes being made…..many of them. But far worse than the outcome for consumers who go into court without an attorney and see first hand that they are losing their homes are the consumers who do not have any notice that they are losing their homes….
Q: I am trying to work out a Bank of America Co-op short sale, we are just submitting an Signed offer today, The bank is asking 206,400; the offer is for 190, the bank just did a drive by valuation, the house needs New AC, Stove, Dishwasher.
A:You will get nowhere with an OCC Complaint. The OCC is hugely bureaucratic and far too friendly with the banks. See a knowledgeable Chapter 13 attorney and file Chapter 13 requesting the LMM program.
Sifting through a massive study of low-income children and their families, Lynch School of Education Professor Rebekah Levine Coley and colleagues have gleaned new insights into the harmful effects of substandard housing on families and children. Coley, whose research into the housing choices of low-income families is supported by a grant from the MacArthur Foundation, says her new report shows the distinct emotional and educational prices children pay when their families live in run-down apartments and homes.
The prominent Yale economist was one of three winners of the Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel, all of whom were cited for their analysis of asset prices. As far his asset-price work goes, Shiller is probably best known for the two editions of his book, Irrational Exuberance. His work is often credited with predicting the bursting of the tech bubble in 2001 and the real estate bubble just a few years later.
The American Civil Liberties Union and the Center for Popular Democracy today filed a lawsuit under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) to compel the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) to provide details about the agency's relationship with the financial industry and its efforts to block municipalities from using eminent domain to prevent foreclosures. Banks have foreclosed on millions of homes, and vast numbers of homeowners remain at risk of losing their homes to foreclosure because their mortgages are “underwater,” meaning homeowners owe more than their properties are now worth.
While the media is all agog over the prospect of the “biggest settlement evah” with a single company, concentration has risen greatly in a lot of industries, particularly banking, so bigger companies and even mild inflation means settlements should get larger over time. So size is not a metric of accomplishment. The question is what was the actual liability and is the settlement an adequate remedy? We have the same problem here as with the mortgage settlement: save for a couple of types of bad conduct, it looks as if not enough discovery was done to know the extent of the conduct and hence what an appropriate remedy would be.
Q: I am in foreclosure and on the 8th the court is going to side with the bank. How long will I have before I have to be out of the house?
A: How do you know the court will side with the bank on the 8th? Is there a default hearing scheduled that day? If so, you should consult a foreclosure attorney because you may still be able to file an answer and avoid judgment.
On March 11, 2008, Christopher Cox, former chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission, said he was comfortable with the amount of capital that Bear Stearns and the other publicly traded Wall Street investment banks had on hand. Days later, Bear was gone, becoming the first investment bank to disappear in 2008 under the watch of Cox’s SEC. By the end of the year, all five banks supervised by the SEC were either bankrupt, bought or converted to bank holding companies.
Arizona continues to be faulted for its handling of federal money aimed at helping underwater and struggling homeowners avoid foreclosure. The Arizona Republic and Arizona Daily Sun both report this week regarding of federal audits critical of how the state used foreclosure prevention funds. The Arizona Legislature was slow to approve measures aimed at giving renters more notice when their residences were facing foreclosure. Republican assembly raided $50 million from a national mortgage settlement fund to help pay for other budget needs.
Our housing markets are now heading directly into the perfect storm and those in the real estate and mortgage industries would be well advised to get prepared for the downturn now. I dislike being an alarmist, but I am officially sounding the alarm. This past September signified the fourth straight month of a decline in existing home sales, while mortgage interest rates hit two-year highs. The Mortgage Bankers Association index of mortgage activity is now at its lowest point since November of 2008, which was probably the nadir of the financial crisis and resulting Great Recession.
The answer appears to be a lawsuit to quiet title which really can be met with little opposition. And a second action for slander of credit and identity theft looks promising to clear the negative credit reports and collect damages. For more information on this see my blog posts in 2007 and 2008, where I predicted we would get to exactly this point. While the policy makers were passing laws and enacting draconian rules of procedure to clear the calendar of foreclosure cases caused by what they thought were dilatory defenses, it is now revealed that it is the plaintiffs that have delayed the cases not the homeowners. And while all of that was happening an increasing number of cases were being tried and won by homeowners as lawyers came up to speed on the facts and the law applied to these ridiculous instruments that are treated as though they were true notes and mortgages.
Lisa Kay Brumfiel's legal battle to stop the foreclosure of her house took a fatal hit Oct. 2 when U.S. District Judge William J. Martínez ruled that his jurisdiction to handle the case dissolved months ago when U.S. Bank changed how it would pursue the property. Brumfiel challenged the constitutionality of Colorado's most common foreclosure process, known as a Rule 120, which is a streamlined way for lenders to take mortgaged property when homeowners default.
It defies reason that we continue today to hear about major bank scandals, more than five years after the financial crisis. But if anything, the revelations are growing larger and more complex. Which is why I am now making a modest proposal to force them to come clean. The way that countries enveloped in patterns of interminable abuse often deal with the aftermath is through something called a Truth and Reconciliation Commission. We need one for global finance.
A California city's controversial plan to use eminent domain to help its residents burdened with mortgages worth more than their homes has caught the eye of some Baltimore leaders, who say the city might benefit from the program. There are thousands of such underwater mortgages in Baltimore, so 4th District Councilman Bill Henry has asked the City Council to explore the possibility of using the city's power to take mortgages from banks and then work with a private firm to refinance the loans based on current property value.
Last December, the California Supreme Court declined to hear an appeal filed by a couple who had accused financial giant Wells Fargo & Co. of predatory lending. One justice, who owned stock in the bank, recused himself from the case. But Justice Kathryn Werdegar, who owned as much as $1 million of Wells Fargo stock, participated — and shouldn’t have. The Center for Public Integrity learned of Werdegar’s financial stake thanks to California’s relatively strong financial reporting requirements for justices. But California’s law is an exception.
Q: No one bought my house at a foreclosure auction. Is it true that the property now legally belongs to the bank? What happens next - do they have the right to evict me upon notice? What happens if they want to conduct another foreclosure auction?
A:Foreclosure auctions differ by state. But typically, a foreclosure auction is held by the bank or the bank's trustee on behalf of the bank to get higher bids from third parties on the home. If no bids are made, the home is sold back to the bank by default.
The possible accord with the agency, which originally asked for $6 billion from the firm, could be included in a broader deal the bank is seeking with federal and state authorities, according to a different person briefed on the settlement talks. If JPMorgan can’t reach a global settlement on pending mortgage bond matters, it may instead seek to settle claims such as the FHFA’s individually, said the person. Both people asked not to be named because the talks are private. JPMorgan is grappling with investigations in the U.S. and abroad, including probes into a trading loss last year of more than $6.2 billion and its hiring practices in Asia. The bank has tapped $8 billion of $28 billion in reserves set aside since 2010 to cover its legal costs.
Q: Hi. I have a question please. After the Final Judgment of Foreclosure is recorded, approximately how long do you have until the foreclosure auction in Central Florida? And then do you have to move out immediately after the house is sold? Thanks in advance.
A:Typically on the day the judge enters the Final Judgment, he will also set a sale date. This sale date may be anywhere from 30 to 120 days after the final judgment is entered. Refer to your court docket for that specific date, or consult the attorney who handled your case.
"What Happened to Goldman Sachs" is the second book in 12 months from a former employee that accuses the bank's management of not being sufficiently devout. Steven Mandis, who was an investment banker and proprietary trader from 1992 to 2004, is the latest to break the code of silence. Last year Greg Smith wrote a public resignation letter in the New York Times in which he complained that the company had a "toxic" culture and referred to its clients as "muppets."
Southern California home buyers have apparently had their fill of bidding wars, home shortages and double-digit price hikes. For the third straight month, the median home price across the Southland stayed essentially flat, at $382,000. The September data confirmed expert predictions that waning demand would throw a wet blanket over the white-hot market. The stall is owed to multiple factors: buyer fatigue over skyrocketing prices, higher mortgage rates, an expanding supply of homes and a pullback by investors who had swarmed the market.
But the most significant thing about JPMorgan's deal with the Department of Justice may be what it doesn't do. It doesn't resolve the ongoing federal criminal investigations of the bank's conduct in the residential mortgage securities business during the run-up to the 2008 financial crisis. That investigation is being handled by federal prosecutors in Sacramento. The money penalty may sound big, and a series of earlier big settlements produced the firm's first quarterly loss since Jamie Dimon took over as CEO at the end of 2006. (He became chairman a year later.) But to an enterprise the size of JPMorgan it's still chump change. The people who pay it are not the executives who managed the bank to this pass, but the shareholders. Until the responsible executives are held personally accountable--including Dimon--no financial penalty will have a deterrent effect.
Question: My husband and I were recently taken to court by our landlord, who was trying to evict us. The landlord alleged in the court papers that we hadn't paid our rent. When we went to court for our trial, we reached an agreement with the landlord's attorney to move out as part of a settlement of the case. We found another rental and moved out within a week, but now we are worried that this court case will still show up on our credit report. Will this case continue to haunt us?
Bondholders of mortgage loans that Richmond, California, has threatened to seize through eminent domain are asking a federal appeals court to revive their lawsuit against the city. Bank trustees for investors including BlackRock Inc. (BLK), Pacific Investment Management Co. and DoubleLine Capital LP are appealing U.S. District Judge Charles Breyer’s Sept. 16 ruling tossing the case, Rocky Tsai, an attorney for the banks, said in a filing today in federal court in San Francisco. They’re asking a federal appeals court in San Francisco to review the ruling, according to the filing.
A Monday order from Palm Beach County Circuit Judge Richard Oftedal spells out some of the problems in today’s foreclosures, from law firms’ playing hot potato with cases to just plain shoddy handling. Oftedal dismissed the 2010 case after a hearing where the lender’s attorney, who was new to the file, sputtered through explanations as to why it took the bank six months to meet a two-week deadline to comply to one order and why it never complied to another request to file a new complaint.
Home purchases by institutional buyers reached a record high in September and all-cash buyers accounted for almost half of sales as investors responded to rising demand from renters. Institutional purchases accounted for 14 percent of sales, according to a report today from RealtyTrac. That was the highest share since the real estate data firm began in 2011 to track transactions by that group, which it defines as buyers of 10 or more homes a year. All-cash sales rose to 49 percent from 40 percent in August and 30 percent a year earlier, a sign that rising mortgage rates since May have kept some people out of the market and that smaller investors are stepping up purchases.
We, the homeowners of America claim the tortious actions of the Banks have created Unjust Enrichment, evident in the fact that their wealth and size has increased 40% since the Great Recession they caused. The basic purpose of restitution is to achieve fairness and prevent the unjust enrichment of a party. In tort law, restitution applies to the measure of damages required to restore the plaintiff to the position he or she held prior to the commission of the tort.
Nearly half of all home purchases in the month of September were paid for in cold hard cash, as tight lending conditions continue edge out traditional buyers and investors continue to scoop up inventory. All-cash deals accounted for 49% of sales across the U.S., according to a new report from RealtyTrac. That’s up from 40% in August and 30% in September of 2012.
Just two days before Thanksgiving more than a dozen Statesville homeowners found out they'll have to wait another two months to find out if they'll lose their homes to foreclosure. In August the families received a letter saying they'd have to pay $4.6 million or face foreclosure. The debt was for an unpaid construction loan from nearly 10 years ago. "You maintain this property for five to six years and then this comes out of the woodwork that we could lose it all," said Lynn Zanotti.
Sale is declared void ab initio; These are the words that Edwin Calle and his attorneys Brian McCaffrey Attorney at Law, P.C. have been waiting to hear for more than six (6) months. On Monday October 21, 2013 Mr. McCaffrey met with his client to explain the ramifications of the long awaited decision. Mr. Calle can now begin the process of trying to save his home by entering into loss mitigation with his servicer Bank of America.
New Jersey’s foreclosed homes are filled with 'vampires'. In this case they aren’t the undead, they’re people living in homes going through foreclosure for years and not paying any bills. People call them squatters or freeloaders but when you dig deeper, it could be the foreclosure process in New Jersey that may be flawed and not necessarily the homeowner getting a free ride.