Banks, Servicers Subpoenaed by Texas Attorney General Abbott

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Banks, Servicers Subpoenaed by Texas Attorney General Abbott

Banks, Servicers Subpoenaed by Texas Attorney General Abbott

October 25, 2010, 8:54 PM EDT

By Margaret Cronin Fisk

(Updates with spokesman’s comment in second paragraph.)

Oct. 25 (Bloomberg) — Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott sent subpoenas to JPMorgan Chase & Co., Bank of America Corp. and seven other banks or loan servicers seeking information about foreclosure practices, a spokesman said.

“The state is subpoenaing information and documents,” Jerry Strickland, the spokesman, said in an interview. He didn’t elaborate. The state also subpoenaed Ally Financial Inc., CitiMortgage Inc. and Wells Fargo & Co.

Abbott began investigating foreclosure practices in Texas following the disclosure of a December deposition in which an employee of Ally’s GMAC Mortgage unit testified that his team signed about 10,000 documents a month without verifying their accuracy. On Oct. 13, all 50 state attorneys general announced a joint investigation of foreclosures.

The Texas subpoenas followed letters sent by Abbott’s office to 30 loan servicers on Oct. 4, asking them to halt foreclosures in the state pending a review of their practices.

Abbott asked banks then to identify employees who filed faulty affidavits or other documents in the state and identify foreclosures that used such documents. He also asked lenders and servicers to halt all sales of properties previously foreclosed upon and stop all evictions.

Twenty-six of those companies responded to the letters, according to a spreadsheet of answers sent today by Strickland.

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