Posted on 12 October 2010.
Demands information from Bank of America, JP Morgan Chase, Wells Fargo and GMAC Mortgage/Ally ~Calls for suspension of foreclosures by mortgage servicers engaged in “robo-signing” in New York until accuracy of court documents and integrity of process are assured
NEW YORK, NY (October 12, 2010) – Attorney General Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that he is seeking information from four major mortgage servicers – Bank of America, JP Morgan Chase, Wells Fargo and GMAC Mortgage/Ally – concerning the filing of affidavits that falsely attest the signer has personal knowledge of the facts presented in home foreclosure proceedings, a practice known as “robo-signing.”
In view of the prevalence of this practice in the industry, Cuomo also called on mortgage servicers engaged in “robo-signing” in New York to immediately suspend all foreclosure actions in the state until they correct their procedures to comply with New York law and can assure the public and the courts that integrity has been restored.
“I will not allow New Yorkers to lose their homes due to mortgage goliaths that buck the system by submitting affidavits signed without knowledge of the facts,” said Attorney General Cuomo. “Such conduct is a fraud upon our courts and a slap in the face of New Yorkers struggling to get by in this economy. My office will continue to root out these practices so homeowners receive the full protections afforded by our judicial system.”
Recent reports indicate that employees of these mortgage servicers routinely signed affidavits submitted in foreclosure proceedings without personal knowledge of the underlying facts or verification of loan file information, and without even reading the documents they signed. This practice, known as “robo-signing,” has tainted the integrity of the foreclosure process by which homeowners in New York lose their homes. Bank of America, JP Morgan Chase and GMAC Mortgage announced that they were temporarily halting pending foreclosures, while Wells Fargo has not suspended foreclosures despite the deficiencies uncovered.
Attorney General Cuomo is calling on these mortgage servicers to submit documents and information to his office concerning how foreclosure documents are prepared, verified, attested to and notarized, and how required notices are provided to New York homeowners. The letters request that the mortgage servicers stop re-filing foreclosures that had been suspended (and in Wells Fargo’s case, cease proceeding with pending foreclosures) until the Attorney General’s Office is assured that reliable and fair procedures are in place and that accurate, trustworthy documentation will be submitted to the New York courts. The letters also request that the mortgage servicers refrain from filing any new foreclosures until they can provide assurances that their procedures comply with New York law and are neither tainted nor inaccurate.
Because of the gravity of these transgressions and the high volume of foreclosures, Attorney General Cuomo is calling on all mortgage servicers engaged in “robo-signing” in New York to immediately suspend all pending foreclosure actions in the state, including evictions and foreclosure sales. Cuomo is also requesting that the mortgage servicers not file any new foreclosures until the companies correct their procedures.
Tens of thousands of New Yorkers have been devastated by the foreclosure crisis. In fact, the foreclosure rates in Nassau and Suffolk Counties rank among the ten highest in the nation. More than 60,000 New York homes are currently in foreclosure, and 130,000 New York homeowners have received pre-foreclosure notices this year after falling behind on their mortgage payments.
In addition to his office’s review of Bank of America, Chase, Wells Fargo and GMAC Mortgage/Ally, Attorney General Cuomo is working with other state attorneys general, banking regulators and other interested parties to assess the veracity of servicers’ foreclosure filings and ensure the fairness and accuracy of their processes.
Attorney General Cuomo advises New York homeowners who are facing foreclosure proceedings to do the following:
- Contact the court to find out the status of your foreclosure proceeding.
- Seek representation or advice from a qualified attorney. If necessary, contact your local bar association or legal services office for a referral. If you are unable to retain counsel, carefully review any documents filed thus far with the court to ensure their accuracy.
- If you have not done so already, immediately contact your lender or servicer to discuss available alternatives to foreclosure such as a loan modification.
- For a general description of the foreclosure process, refer to www.nyprotectyourhome.com/fc_timeline.html.
- Consult with a government-approved housing counseling agency. To find counselors approved by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) in your local area, call 800-569-4287 or visit www.hud.gov. A list of housing counselors also can be found via the NYS Banking Department at www.banking.state.ny.us.
- Call HOPE NOW at 1-888-995-HOPE. HOPE NOW is an alliance of housing counselors, mortgage companies, investors and other mortgage market participants that provides free foreclosure prevention assistance.
- If you live in New York City, call 311 to schedule free foreclosure counseling sessions at the Center for New York City Neighborhoods.
New York homeowners who believe their homes were foreclosed based upon false or inaccurate documents filed in court by their lender or servicer should seek representation from an attorney. They may also file a complaint with the New York Attorney General’s Bureau of Consumer Frauds & Protection by calling 800-771-7755 or visiting www.ag.ny.gov.
The investigation, led by Special Deputy Attorney General for Consumer Frauds & Protection Joy Feigenbaum, is being handled by Special Counsel Mary Alestra, Assistant Attorney General Brian Montgomery and Deputy Bureau Chief Jeffrey Powell of the Bureau of Consumer Frauds & Protection under the direction of Executive Deputy Attorney General for Economic Justice Maria Vullo and Deputy Attorney General for Economic Justice Michael Berlin.
© 2010-15 FORECLOSURE FRAUD | by DinSFLA. All rights reserved.
Posted in assignment of mortgage, bank of america, CONTROL FRAUD, corruption, foreclosure, foreclosure fraud, foreclosure mills, foreclosures, forgery, GMAC, investigation, jpmorgan chase, MERS, MERSCORP, MORTGAGE ELECTRONIC REGISTRATION SYSTEMS INC., rmbs, robo signers, securitization, servicers, STOP FORECLOSURE FRAUD, Supreme Court, Susan Chana Lask, Violations, washington mutual, wells fargo
Posted on 06 July 2010.
I don’t know about you but this is an awful lot of dollars. Meanwhile they are cutting budgets in some places such as California and just last week in Chicago!
I’m still puzzled how no conflict of interest exist when MERS is named a defendant with the borrower in a foreclosure suit??
Well here is your answer COUNTIES!!!
Reston-based company sued on fraud charges
Nevada law firm says Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems deprives counties of fees
A Nevada law firm has filed two civil lawsuits against Reston-based Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems alleging billions of dollars worth of fraud.
The suits, filed in Nevada and California district courts, claim the company has deprived county and state governments of revenue “used among other things to maintain county real property records, fund the judiciary, school systems and other government services.”
“They tout themselves as being a recording-fee avoidance scheme,” said attorney Robert R. Hager of Nevada law firm Hager & Hearne, which has filed the suits against MERS.
“If a loan is registered on the MERS system, it will save the financial institution involved in that loan from paying recording fees. MERS claims to have saved at least $2.4 billion in recording costs that would have otherwise gone to a county where the property is located. This system is depriving counties of fees legitimately owed them and contributing to the financial deficits that many local governments are currently experiencing,” he said.
MERS spokeswoman Karmela Lejarde on Friday called both suits “baseless” and pointed out that the attorney generals of both California and Nevada refused to accept them as false claims cases, essentially forcing Hager & Hearne to file civil suits.
“These same law firms have brought many other lawsuits against MERS and every one has failed,” she said. The MERS website further claims the MERS system is approved by Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, Ginnie Mae, the Federal Housing Administration and Veterans Affairs, and the California and Utah housing finance agencies, as well as all of the major Wall Street rating agencies.
“The statement that any of our cases against MERS have failed is a lie,” Hager said. “It is true that we have other active cases involving them, but none have failed.”
According to its website, MERS “streamlines” the mortgage process for the mortgage banking industry by electronically registering mortgage loans for lending institutions. The company currently has about 2,500 clients or “members,” Lejarde said. The members list reads like a who’s who of the mortgage banking industry, including Bank of America, Countrywide Home Loans and Citimortgage, all three of which are named as co-defendants in the suits.
The MERS website also claims that since 1997, more than 63 million home mortgages have been registered on its system. “These include loans delivered to Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, Ginnie Mae, all major conduits and state housing authorities,” the website states.
According to the company, once a loan is registered in its system, MERS acts as the mortgagee in all county land records for the lender and servicer, even though it does not actually own or lay any claim to any of the mortgages.
“Any loan registered on the MERS System is inoculated against future assignments,” the company website states, “because MERS remains the nominal mortgagee no matter how many times servicing is traded.”
The lawsuits claim this means that lenders are able to avoid recording fees every time individual mortgages are bought, traded and sold by banking institutions. As a byproduct, borrowers never know who actually holds their individual loans.
“Falsely recording MERS as the beneficiary on their deeds of trust creates an oversimplified, illusory and false chain of title that purports to justify payment of less money in recording fees; depriving the counties and the state from those fees …. [S]uch identification creates the illusion of a recorded chain of title whereby the actual creditors and/or loan beneficiaries remain hidden from public record,” the suits claim.
Copyright © 2010 Post-Newsweek Media, Inc./FairfaxTimes.com
© 2010-15 FORECLOSURE FRAUD | by DinSFLA. All rights reserved.
Posted in MERS, MORTGAGE ELECTRONIC REGISTRATION SYSTEMS INC.
Posted on 11 May 2010.
1. Dismiss all cases filed after February 11, 2010, that do not include a verification in accordance with the Florida Supreme Court revised rules of Civil Procedure. The big foreclosure firms, particularly the Law Offices of David Stern, are choosing to ignore the rule requiring verifications. All parties should be required to follow the rules.
2. Dismiss all of the cases where the plaintiff is a bank “as Trustee” but the name of the trust is not disclosed. Failure to identify the actual trust is one of the newest strategies of the foreclosure mills. The trust, not the trustee, is the real party in interest.
3. Dismiss all of the cases where the complaint is not signed by the attorney whose name appears on the pleading. The big foreclosure firms in thousands of cases have someone other than the attorney on the pleading sign “for” the attorney who drafted the pleading. This is done so that both attorneys can deny responsibility.
4. Dismiss all of the cases that include these boilerplate allegations by the bank or trust: “We own the note. We had possession of the note. We lost the note.” These allegations appear in over 20,000 cases. By now it is apparent this is a ruse – no one actually lost 20,000 mortgages and notes. Frauds upon the courts should not be tolerated.
5. Dismiss all of the cases that include a Mortgage Assignment that was signed by an employee of the foreclosure mill law firm signing as a MERS officer. This would include thousands of cases where Cheryl Samons and Beth Cerni, administrative employees for David Stern, signed as a representative of the GRANTOR when the firm was actually working for the GRANTEE. This would also include cases where Patricia Arango and Caryn Graham, two associates working for The Law Offices of Marshall C. Watson, signed as MERS officers. This would also include all cases where Christopher Bossman, an administrative employee in the Daniel Consuegra fiirm, signed as a MERS officer. This would also include all cases where officers of Florida Default Law Group signed as MERS officers. In all of these cases, no disclosure was made to the Court or to the homeowner/defendants that the Assignments were prepared by law firm employees with no knowledge of the truth of the matters asserted therein.
6. Dismiss all of the cases where a Mortgage Assignment was signed by Jeffrey Stephan of GMAC (notarized in Montgomery County, PA). Stephan has already admitted in sworn testimony that a notary was NOT present when he signed mortgage assignments, even though the Assignments contained a contrary statement.
7. Dismiss all of the cases where the documents were prepared by employees of Lender Processing Services since this company has already admitted in its Annual Statement with the SEC that investigations, internal and otherwise, revealed problems with the documents that were so significant that the company implemented a “remediation” program (and in January, 2010, laid off most of its employees in Alpharetta, GA. Until this company discloses which documents were determined to be defective, and what corrective actions were taken, no documents from LPS submitted to establish ownership and standing (notarized in Fulton County, GA; Duval County, FL and Dakota County, MN) should be relied upon by the Courts.
8. Dismiss all cases where a Mortgage Assignment has been made by American Brokers Conduit, American Home Mortgage Acceptance or American Home Mortgage Company, or nominees or mortgage servicing companies working for these American Home companies, after August 6, 2007, the day these companies filed for bankruptcy. The bankruptcy court did not authorizing these actions.
If Palm Beach County judges looked critically at the documents submitted by the foreclosure mills, they would reach the same conclusion as judges in other Florida Circuits – that the documents submitted by the foreclosure mills are worthless and the attorneys submitting these documents deserve strict sanctions.
LYNN E. SZYMONIAK ESQ.
© 2010-15 FORECLOSURE FRAUD | by DinSFLA. All rights reserved.
Posted in concealment, conspiracy, corruption, DOCX, foreclosure fraud, foreclosure mills, fraud digest, Law Offices Of David J. Stern P.A., Lender Processing Services Inc., LPS, Lynn Szymoniak ESQ, marshall watson, MERS, mortgage electronic registration system, MORTGAGE ELECTRONIC REGISTRATION SYSTEMS INC., Mortgage Foreclosure Fraud, note, robo signer, robo signers, stop foreclosure fraud