Law Offices Of David J. Stern Plantation Florida 33324 | FORECLOSURE FRAUD | by DinSFLA

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APPROVED | Class Action Settlement for former David J. Stern employees – Mowat et al v. DJSP Enterprises, Inc. et al

APPROVED | Class Action Settlement for former David J. Stern employees – Mowat et al v. DJSP Enterprises, Inc. et al


This is just coming in and I’ll follow up with any developing news.

Here’s a recap meanwhile:

Former employees of Plantation attorney David J. Stern agreed to a preliminary $502,000 settlement after he fired them without giving the required 60-day notice as business at his foreclosure law firm began to dry up.

U.S. District Judge Robert N. Scola Jr. found the settlement “sufficiently fair, reasonable, adequate and in the best interests” of the former workers, according to a preliminary order. There will be a June 8 final hearing.

Workers in the class-action settlement now have until May 3 to opt out of the settlement, while papers in support of it should be filed by May 29.

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Florida Supreme Court hears landmark Foreclosure Fraud suit

Florida Supreme Court hears landmark Foreclosure Fraud suit


Does the rule of law matter?

Why hasn’t David J. Stern not been disbarred? Suspended?

Is Fraud upon the court 100,000’s of time & to the face of a judge not a crime?

Why would the original judge not sanction anyone?

Will the Supreme Court allow fraud to slap it in its face 2nd time around?

Where has justice gone?

Reuters-

The Florida Supreme Court heard arguments on Thursday in a landmark lawsuit that could undo hundreds of thousands of foreclosures and open up banks to severe financial penalties in the state where they face the bulk of their foreclosure-fraud litigation.

Legal experts say the lawsuit is one of the most important foreclosure fraud cases in the country and could help resolve an issue that has vexed Florida’s foreclosure courts for the past five years: Can banks that file fraudulent documents in foreclosure proceedings voluntarily dismiss the cases only to refile them later with different paperwork?

The decision, which may take up to eight months, could influence judges in the other 26 states that require judicial approval for foreclosures.

The case at issue, known as Roman Pino v. Bank of New York Mellon, stems from the so-called robo-signing scandal that emerged in 2010 when it was revealed that banks and their law firms had hired low-wage workers to sign legal documents without checking their accuracy, as is required by law.

If the state Supreme Court rules against the banks, “a broad universe of mortgages could be rendered unenforceable,” said former U.S. Attorney Kendall Coffey, author of the book, “Foreclosures in Florida.”

[REUTERS]

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Florida foreclosure case could SLAM banks

Florida foreclosure case could SLAM banks


Reuters-

The Florida Supreme Court is set to hear oral arguments Thursday in a lawsuit that could undo hundreds of thousands of foreclosures and open up banks to severe financial liabilities in the state where they face the bulk of their foreclosure-fraud litigation.

The court is deciding whether banks who used fraudulent documents to file foreclosure lawsuits can dismiss the cases and refile them later with different paperwork.

The decision, which may take up to eight months to render, could affect hundreds of thousands of homeowners in Florida, and could also influence judges in the other 26 states that require lawsuits in foreclosures.

Of all the foreclosure filings in those states, sixty three percent, a total of 138,288, are concentrated in five states, according to RealtyTrac, an online foreclosure marketplace. Of those, nearly half are in Florida. In Congressional testimony last year, Bank of America, the U.S.’s largest mortgage servicer, said that 70 percent of its foreclosure-related lawsuits were in Florida.

The case at issue, known as Roman Pino v. Bank of New York Mellon, stems from the so-called robo-signing scandal that emerged in 2010 when it was revealed that banks and their law firms had hired low-wage workers to sign legal documents without checking their accuracy as is required by law.

This was a case of an intentionally fraudulent document fabricated to use in a court proceeding,” says former U.S. Attorney Kendall Coffey, author of the book Foreclosures in Florida.

[REUTERS]

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PINO v. BONY Oral Argument set for Thursday May 10, 2012 at 9:00 am

PINO v. BONY Oral Argument set for Thursday May 10, 2012 at 9:00 am


The Oral Arguments in Roman Pino v. Bank of New York will be heard before the Florida Supreme Court on Thursday, May 10, 2012  at 9:00 AM.  In this case the court will be addressing the circumstances under which a voluntary dismissal (a final judgment or other court action) can be set aside long after the case is over, based on underlying fraud on the court.

The Oral Arguments can be watched live on http://thefloridachannel.org/watch/web3/1336655014.

As reflected above, the Fourth District certified this issue to be one of great public importance, and in doing so, noted that “many, many mortgage foreclosures appear tainted with suspect documents” and that Pino’s requested remedy, if imposed, “may dramatically affect the mortgage foreclosure crisis in this State.” Pino, 57 So. 3d at 954-55.

Supreme Court of Florida

No. SC11-697

ROMAN PINO,
Petitioner,

vs.

THE BANK OF NEW YORK, etc., et al.,
Respondents.

[December 8, 2011]

PER CURIAM.

The issue we address is whether Florida Rule of Appellate Procedure 9.350 requires this Court to dismiss a case after we have accepted jurisdiction based on a question certified to be one of great public importance and after the petitioner has filed his initial brief on the merits.1 This narrow question arose after the parties to this action filed a joint Stipulated Dismissal, which advised that they had settled this matter and stipulated to the dismissal of the review proceeding pending before this Court. It cannot be questioned that our well-established precedent authorizes this Court to exercise its discretion to deny the requested dismissal of a review proceeding, even where both parties to the action agree to the dismissal in light of an agreed-upon settlement. The question certified to us by the Fourth District Court of Appeal in this case transcends the individual parties to this action because it has the potential to impact the mortgage foreclosure crisis throughout this state and is one on which Florida’s trial courts and litigants need guidance. The legal issue also has implications beyond mortgage foreclosure actions. Because we agree with the Fourth District that this issue is indeed one of great public importance and in need of resolution by this Court, we deny the parties’ request to dismiss this proceeding.

[…]

[ipaper docId=75141917 access_key=key-10ukvw841p3aqsqqo53z height=600 width=600 /]

 

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Florida Supreme Court to review dismissed foreclosure lawsuit against Greenacres man

Florida Supreme Court to review dismissed foreclosure lawsuit against Greenacres man


This shouldn’t be so difficult, David J. Stern has TONS of fraudulent documents out there. Pick any County, any documents his firm filed and you’re sure to find fraud. Just read the depositions from his former employees.

“We conclude that this is a question of great public importance, as many, many mortgage foreclosures appear tainted with suspect documents,” the appeals court wrote in certification to the Supreme Court.

PALM BEACH POST-

An unassuming drywall hanger from Greenacres has banks warning of a “widespread financial crisis” if the Florida Supreme Court favors him in a landmark foreclosure case justices will hear this week.

Plucked out of the 4th District Court of Appeal, Roman Pino v. the Bank of New York is the first significant foreclosure complaint to be heard by the high court since the state’s legendary housing collapse.

It’s particularly unusual because the 41-year-old Pino had already settled the case when the Supreme Court decided in December to take up a legal question it said could affect the mortgage foreclosure crisis statewide.

At issue is whether a bank can escape punishment for filing flawed or fraudulent documents in a case by voluntarily dismissing it. (A voluntary dismissal allows the bank to refile at a later date.)

That’s what Royal Palm Beach-based foreclosure defense attorney Tom Ice said happened when he challenged a document created by the Law Offices of David J. Stern and sought to question employees about its veracity. On the eve of those depositions, the bank moved to dismiss the case, blocking the court’s ability to address any sanctions.

“The objective here was to hide from punishment for the wrongdoing,” Ice said.

[PALM BEACH POST]

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PINO vs BONY | BRIEF OF AMICUS CURIAE FLORIDA LAND TITLE ASSOCIATION AND AMERICAN LAND TITLE ASSOCIATION

PINO vs BONY | BRIEF OF AMICUS CURIAE FLORIDA LAND TITLE ASSOCIATION AND AMERICAN LAND TITLE ASSOCIATION


Via MATT WEIDNER

EXCERPT:

INTRODUCTION
The Court retained this case so that it could give needed guidance to trial courts and other litigants by its answer to a certified question arising from a mortgage foreclosure action. As the Court wrote: The question certified . . . transcends the individual parties to this action because it has the potential to impact the mortgage foreclosure crisis throughout this state and is one on which Florida’s trial courts and litigants need guidance. The legal issue also has implications beyond mortgage foreclosure actions.
Pino v. Bank of New York, 36 Fla. L. Weekly S711 (Fla. Dec. 8, 2011). Florida Land Title Association (“FLTA”) and American Land Title Association (“ALTA”) file this brief to address the need for this Court to give guidance to trial courts and litigants on the importance of protecting the rights of third parties that have justifiably relied on the finality of a prior court action when buying, extending financing on, or insuring title to real property.

SUMMARY OF ARGUMENT
The Court can expressly limit its decision in this case to the setting aside of a voluntary dismissal in a case where no third party interest in real estate is implicated. Should it choose to do so, FLTA and ALTA have no issues to address. However, if the Court decides to write more broadly, we respectfully ask the Court to emphasize the need to protect the rights of affected third parties when collateral attacks are brought against otherwise final court judgments, orders, decrees or proceedings. The residential mortgage foreclosure crisis has caused a host of problems for homeowners, lenders, and Florida’s court system. The Court addressed many of these problems by forming the Task Force on Residential Mortgage Foreclosures in 2009 and by adopting its recommended amendments to the Florida Rules of Civil Procedure in 2010. However, unlike some other states, the Court has not adequately addressed the protection of third party interests when otherwise final court proceedings are collaterally attacked, especially the interest of those who have purchased foreclosed real estate.

Respectfully, if the Court is to give guidance to trial courts and litigants regarding collateral attacks against foreclosure actions (whether relief is sought under rule 1.540(b) or the use of inherent judicial powers) beyond the narrow facts of this case, it should give guidance on protecting the interests of third parties that purchase, finance and insure title to foreclosed properties. Recognition and protection of these neglected interests is vital to the integrity of our judicial system and to the ultimate resolution of the mortgage foreclosure crisis.

[…]

Download PDF Below

Down Load PDF of This Case

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Thousands of foreclosures in limbo one year after Stern firm’s collapse, has not released original documents

Thousands of foreclosures in limbo one year after Stern firm’s collapse, has not released original documents


What’s even more amazing is that this law firm is still in GOOD…yes GOOD standing with the Florida bar! But we all know exactly what’s going on here.

So how are the cases getting by if the original documents needed are being held hostage? Hmmm

Palm Beach Post-

The so-called foreclosure king of Florida knew his reign was over four months before his law firm’s doors would officially shutter.

“There’s nothing left for you here. There’s nothing left for me here. We’re done. And that’s the end of the story,” one of David J. Stern’s chief employees remembers him telling her in November 2010, according to her deposition.

The conversation followed what Stern characterized in his own deposition as the “unexpected catastrophic event” of being fired by the two biggest clients of his massive home repossession empire.

On March 31, 2011, he closed the firm, leaving as many as 100,000 Florida foreclosures, or nearly a third of the state’s backlog, in limbo.

A year later, thousands of his company’s former cases are still sputtering through the courts, sometimes stalled as new attorneys get their bearings or even dismissed so fresh paperwork can be filed, foreclosure defense attorneys say.

In fact, in the year since the epic collapse of Stern’s firm, much is unresolved.

  • Despite 377 complaints to the Florida Bar related to foreclosure fraud, not a single attorney has been sanctioned. Stern remains a member in good standing.
  • The attorney general’s investigation into foreclosure mills withered this year when the state’s power to subpoena them was quashed.
  • A required mediation program ordered by the Florida Supreme Court for lenders and homeowners died in December after a lack of participation and cooperation rendered negotiations impotent.

And the 368,000-case backlog in the state’s foreclosure courts has grown as the Stern firm’s wayward files added to the logjam, some attorneys said.

“Let’s face it …

[PALM BEACH POST]

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Former staff at closed David J. Stern law firm to receive settlement

Former staff at closed David J. Stern law firm to receive settlement


Sun-Sentinel-

Former employees of Plantation attorney David J. Stern agreed to a preliminary $502,000 settlement after he fired them without giving the required 60-day notice as business at his foreclosure law firm began to dry up.

U.S. District Judge Robert N. Scola Jr. found the settlement “sufficiently fair, reasonable, adequate and in the best interests” of the former workers, according to a preliminary order. There will be a June 8 final hearing.

Workers in the class-action settlement now have until May 3 to opt out of the settlement, while papers in support of it should be filed by May 29.

[SUN-SENTINEL]

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Bondi says court ruling puts foreclosure fraud investigations in jeopardy

Bondi says court ruling puts foreclosure fraud investigations in jeopardy


As if she didn’t know this…hmm

Miami Herald-

An appeals court has denied Attorney General Pam Bondi‘s request to allow the state Supreme Court to review a ruling she says limits her ability to fight foreclosure fraud. Because of this decision, seven pending cases are now threatened, Bondi said Thursday.

In December, the state’s 4th District Court of Appeals ruled that Bondi does not have the authority to investigate a law firm for alleged fraud under the Florida Deceptive and Unfair Trade Practices Act because attorneys’ work on behalf of lenders did not constitute trade or commerce. She asked the court to certify that its decision in the  Law Offices of David Stern, P.A. v. State of Florida case passes upon a question of great public importance so that she could appeal to the Supreme Court.

[MIAMI HERALD]

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David J. Stern Sued by DJSP Enterprises and PI Bill Warner While Stern Buys 150 “Five Guys Burger and Fries Franchise’s,” Foreclosure King takes on Burger King.

David J. Stern Sued by DJSP Enterprises and PI Bill Warner While Stern Buys 150 “Five Guys Burger and Fries Franchise’s,” Foreclosure King takes on Burger King.


Oh my, look what we have here…big mistake because I don’t think this is going very far….his franchises that is.

Bill Warner Private Investigator-

My source in Fort Lauderdale tells me that attorney David J. Stern has rolled over his $Millions in foreclosure home profits and the cash he got up front from the DJSP Entreprises Inc. FKA Chardan 2008 China Acquisition Corp deal into at least 150 Five Guys Burger and Fries Franchise’s, will that be fries with your meal sir?

It appears that David J. Stern is buying ”Five Guys Burger and Fries Franchise’s” in bulk, Stern is trying to acquire 500 Burger Joints NATIONWIDE

[BILL WARNER]

image: Bill Warner

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Law Offices of David J. Stern PA vs Bank of America “Miami Court Denies BAC MTD, May Owe Stern Over $10 Million”

Law Offices of David J. Stern PA vs Bank of America “Miami Court Denies BAC MTD, May Owe Stern Over $10 Million”


UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE

SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF FLORIDA

Miami Division

THE LAW OFFICES OF DAVID J. STERN,
P.A .,
Plaintiff,

v

BANK OF AM ERICA CORP., BANK OF
AMERICA N.A., and BAC HOM E LOAN S
SERVICING, L.P.,
Defendants.

[ipaper docId=78823930 access_key=key-7443ydz0bgvlv87mivf height=600 width=600 /]

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David Stern Investors Admit Foreclosure Documents Were Forged

David Stern Investors Admit Foreclosure Documents Were Forged


Folks, please tweet, forward, whatever. This is a huge story that deserves to be given major coverage in MSM. Local judges need to be aware that they are being handed forged documents.

FDL-

In 2010, the Law Offices of David J. Stern spun off the robo signing document mill part of his business into a separate, publicly traded company.

Stern pocketed some $60 million from that deal. The investors got the company and all its documents, internal procedures and everything you would need in order to find out what really happened within the Stern document mill.

A little after 8 AM EST today, a filing went up on the SEC’s Edgar database. It’s a Complaint in lawsuit, dated yesterday.

[FIRE DOG LAKE]

[ipaper docId=77175540 access_key=key-167l9gbhw0d6noa9m8tu height=600 width=600 /]

 

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Mortgage Fraud:  Law Offices of David J. Stern, ProVest, PTA

Mortgage Fraud: Law Offices of David J. Stern, ProVest, PTA


Mortgage Fraud

Law Offices of David J. Stern
ProVest
PTA

Action Date: January 4, 2012
Location: FT. Lauderdale, FL

In the lawsuit filed by DJSP Enterprises against David J. Stern and the Law Offices of David J. Stern, there are also allegations involving ProVest, the process server used by Stern and most of the other major foreclosure mills hired by Lender Processing Services in over 20 states.

The allegations regarding ProVest are found in paragraphs 36-38:

36. Prior to the Transaction, the Seller Defendants also knowingly and systematically inflated their process of service costs to the Court. Specifically, Seller Defendants engineered a fraudulent scheme whereby they directed their process servicing work to a process servicing company called ProVest. The Seller Defendants caused each file to generate four or five separate fees for service of process regardless of whether service of process on multiple defendants was necessary or appropriate and regardless of whether service of process for multiple defendants could be achieved at the same address.

37. In exchange for receiving these inflated service of process fees, ProVest, in turn, routinely referred back to PTA servicing requests for “skip tracing” to locate defendants for whom ProVest purportedly did not have accurate street address information to effect service of process. ProVest “hired” and paid fees to PTA for “skip tracing” services despite the fact that ProVest had the ability and resources to perform “skip tracing” itself and routinely did so itself.

38. The Seller Defendants’ arrangement with ProVest amounted to a kickback scheme. DS Law padded and inflated its process servicing costs which were billed to its clients and added to the court costs assessed to foreclosure defendants. In exchange for feeding this work to ProVest, PTA earned manufactured “skip tracing” fees which inflated PTA’s revenues and profits and which represented another way in which the Seller Defendants artificially inflated the revenues of the Target Business prior to the Transaction.

 

 

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Mortgage Fraud:  DJSP Enterprises, INC vs. Law Offices of David J. Stern

Mortgage Fraud: DJSP Enterprises, INC vs. Law Offices of David J. Stern


Mortgage Fraud

DJSP Enterprises
Law Offices of David J. Stern

Action Date: January 4, 2012
Location: FT. Lauderdale, FL

DJSP Enterprises, the publicly-traded company that was supposed to make millions for investors from the foreclosure services it provided to The Law Offices of David Stern (“the Stern Firm”), sued David J. Stern and the Law Offices of David Stern.

Stern Law mortgage foreclosure caseload rose from 15,000 in 2006 to 70,400 in 2009.

In 2009, Stern Law handled 20% of all foreclosures in Florida.

Stern Law’s clients included all 10 of the top 10, and 17 of the top 20 mortgage servicers in the U.S. including Fannie, Freddie, Citibank, BOA, Goldman Sachs, GMAC and Wells Fargo.

The non-legal, back room servicers related to foreclosures included REO services: property inspection, valuation, eviction, broker assignment – these were performed by DJSP Enterprises – the sole client was Stern Law.

Here are Paragraphs 29 -35:

29. The Seller Defendants fraudulently induced Plaintiffs DAL and DJSP into entering into the Transaction by fraudulently and artificially inflating the Target Business’ actual revenues, by intentionally failing to disclose that the Target Business and DS Law were not, in fact, operating in accordance with all applicable laws, and by concealing that DS Law was in jeopardy of losing its largest clients due to DS Law’s unlawful conduct. Indeed, before entering into the Transaction, the Seller Defendants knew that DS Law and the Target Business had been systematically falsifying and/or back-dating pertinent legal documents, submitting such documents to the courts, routinely misplacing and losing original key documents, filing foreclosures with inaccurate and/or incomplete documents, prosecuting foreclosure cases without obtaining proper service of process, and were in jeopardy of losing the Seller Defendants’ largest foreclosure clients due to such conduct.

30. By cutting corners in the foreclosure process without following the rule of law, the Defendants artificially reduced the expenses of the Target Business which falsely inflated the profitability of the Target Business.

31. To summarize, the Seller Defendants failed to disclose to DJSP and DAL that DS Law and the Target Business were systematically operating in an unlawful manner. In addition, the Seller Defendants failed to disclose to DJSP and DAL that the Target Business’ reported revenues were not accurate, inflated, and improperly calculated and that the expenses of the business were also distorted due to the systematic practices designed to “shorten” the legal process. The Seller Defendants falsely led DAL and DJSP to believe that they were acquiring a long-term profitable business that operated in accordance with all applicable laws to induce DAL and DJSP to enter into the Transaction.

33. Prior to the Transaction, the Seller Defendants were at all times well aware that DS Law and the Target Business were intentionally perpetuating a fraud on the courts by, inter alia, systematically filing forged documents, forging signatures on such documents, fraudulently backdating documents, improperly notarizing and witnessing documents, fabricating documents, signing affidavits without reviewing or verifying the information contained therein, prosecuting foreclosure cases without obtaining proper service of process, and filing foreclosures with inaccurate and/or incomplete documents.

34. Indeed, the Seller Defendants directed employees of DS Law and the Target Business to purposefully overlook glaring inaccuracies in foreclosure pleadings and to essentially rubber stamp computer generated documents without reviewing or verifying the accuracy of the documents. New attorneys at DS Law were not only encouraged, but were even ordered to sign legal filings and pleadings without reading them. As a result, false and inaccurate documents were routinely executed and filed with the courts in an effort to hasten foreclosure proceedings and illegally obtain final judgments of foreclosure for the Seller Defendants’ clients.

35. The Seller Defendants even incentivized these unscrupulous and unlawful practices by giving their employees bonuses and extravagant gifts for churning out the highest number of foreclosure cases in the least amount of time. The Seller Defendants encouraged contests between DS Law attorneys to see who could jam a foreclosure case through the courts the fastest.

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Attorney General Pam Bondi Asks Fourth District Court of Appeal to Certify Important Foreclosure Investigation Case for Florida Supreme Court Review

Attorney General Pam Bondi Asks Fourth District Court of Appeal to Certify Important Foreclosure Investigation Case for Florida Supreme Court Review


NOTE: Below in her request appears a reference to a link @ #4 Nevada v. LPS, but where is her lawsuit against LPS??

Attorney General Pam Bondi today filed a motion asking the Fourth District Court of Appeal to certify that its recent decision in Law Offices of David Stern, P.A. v. State of Florida passes upon a question of great public importance. In Stern, the Fourth DCA held that the Attorney General’s Office lacked authority under the Florida Deceptive and Unfair Trade Practices Act (“FDUPTA”) to subpoena records of the Stern firm as part of an investigation into possible misconduct in the firm’s handling of foreclosure cases.

Applicable court rules require certification from the Fourth DCA before this office may appeal the Stern decision to the Florida Supreme Court. The Attorney General’s motion asks the Fourth DCA to certify that its decision in Stern passes upon the following question of great public importance: whether the creation of invalid assignments of mortgages by a law firm and subsequent use of such documents by the firm in foreclosure litigation on behalf of the purported assignee is an unfair and deceptive trade practice which may be the subject of an investigation by the Office of the Attorney General.

.
source:  http://www.myfloridalegal.com

[ipaper docId=76789463 access_key=key-2dd5psfp0y694n3qwlkh height=600 width=600 /]

 

 

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FULL DEPOSITION TRANSCRIPT OF DAVID J. STERN 12/21/2011

FULL DEPOSITION TRANSCRIPT OF DAVID J. STERN 12/21/2011


H/T FloridaForeclosureFraudWebBlog

EXCERPTS:

Q Define “cradle to grave” in the context you
said it — meant it when you said it.

A When I speak of cradle to grave, that would be
that we provide services that may become necessary on a
default of loan on behalf of the client, so it generally
come in as a foreclosure. If the foreclosure is
interrupted by a bankruptcy, we will handle that
bankruptcy. Once the bankruptcy has been concluded and
we’re free — sorry — from the automatic stay, we would
then continue on with the foreclosure. Once the
foreclosure is complete and title invest in the
servicer, we would then handle any evictions where
necessary. Once the eviction is complete and it becomes
a real estate-owned property, we would then open the
title work and handle the closing on behalf of the
grantor, the bank as the seller, to the grantee.

Q And those systems that were used by the Law
Offices of David J. Stern, P.A., you developed?

A I — the day one, I developed them; day two,
they continued to be expanded and improved upon by
people that were smarter than I was in those particular
areas.

Q Okay. But would you agree with me certainly
until 2006, you were the captain of the ship with regard
to your office and how it ran and the systems that were
to be used?

A I would agree that I was the captain of the
ship. I would strongly disagree that processes were put
in — that were put in were put in by me. The
development, better practices, things like that, Miriam,
Sam, Beverly, when she joined, and Cheryl, did a lot of
that. So, there was — in 2000 — even in 2000, there
were procedures and policies put in place that they were
comfortable in doing and realized that I would have no
objection. If I had to deal with every granular change
that results from Fannie or Freddie guidelines or a
local rule or a judge making some sort of requirement,
that by definition would be an impossibility. Hence,
development expanding processes and procedures very
quickly fell on Miriam, Beverly and — and — and
Cheryl. I was there for the day-to-day probably up
until 2006. He had my nose and things, but it didn’t
take long to realize that. Sometimes you can’t be the
rainmaker and be involved in procedure because very
quickly, I did not know or have knowledge as to the
capabilities of the staff that was in place.

Q Did you ever object to any of the policies or
procedures that were put in place by others beside
yourself.

A I don’t I don’t recall. Apparently, not
very long or hard or I’ll stay with them in there.

[ipaper docId=76269312 access_key=key-3ow5ih0w1jc7uvgohvw height=600 width=600 /]

 

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Matt Stoller: Treat foreclosure as a crime scene

Matt Stoller: Treat foreclosure as a crime scene


“Obama may talk of the “99 percent” but his administration is engaged in an aggressive coverup of bank crimes.”

 

Politico-

Bubbling under the surface of politics is the foreclosure crisis — where the power of big finance is brushing up against the rule of law. The party leaders seem to have decided it is essentially a giant — but unavoidable — tragedy. GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney said foreclosures have to clear for the housing market to reset. The Obama administration, meanwhile, has spent only about $2 billion of the $75 billion authorized for the Home Affordable Modification Program.

But the foreclosure crisis is not only a few million personal tragedies. It is a few million crime scenes.

[POLITICO]

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Senator Maria Cantwell: MERS “should be shut down and dissolved”

Senator Maria Cantwell: MERS “should be shut down and dissolved”


H/T Matt Stoller

December 15, 2011

The Honorable Eric Holder, Jr.

U.S. Department of Justice

950 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW

Washington, DC 20530-0001

Dear Attorney General Holder:

I write regarding the ongoing settlement talks between state attorneys general, federal fraud regulators, the White House, and large financial institutions over alleged illegal foreclosure and mortgage servicing practices and abuses.

I am concerned that recently reported settlement proposals will effectively absolve these financial institutions of substantial civil and criminal liability in one of the largest alleged fraud schemes during the financial crisis. Specifically, I am concerned that the proposed settlement includes a release from liability that may be far too sweeping, does not adequately compensate victims, does not require enough of banks to reform the system that led to the crisis in the first place, and is being made before all the facts are known and without the backing of a full inquiry into the size and scope of the alleged fraud.

Large financial institutions helped inflate the housing bubble through tranching and securitizing mortgages at a frenetic pace while disregarding mortgage and foreclosure laws. Collecting fees from issuing mortgages then selling to investors securities backed by these mortgages allowed the largest financial institutions to pump up profits and home prices, while dumping any potential losses on homeowners, taxpayers, and investors. When the housing bubble burst taxpayers were forced to bail out the largest financial institutions. It is estimated that the federal government disbursed over $4.7 trillion to financial institutions, and guaranteed an additional $13.87 trillion, during the financial crisis.

Without a thorough investigation, it is impossible to truly estimate just how pervasive the defects in the foreclosure and securitization process are. Continued reports of wrongful foreclosures, forged documents, and an inability of servicers and banks to prove chain of title and the legal right to foreclosure, raises the very alarming possibility that these defects were endemic to the mortgage servicing industry across the country. The sheer magnitude of the potential fallout from these defects demands that we undertake a full investigation to uncover the true scope of wrongdoing before providing blanket immunity to the perpetrators.

I am also concerned that reports of a settlement in the range of $20 billion, as recently reported, may not adequately compensate the victims of the foreclosure crisis. As a result of the pump-and-dump scheme perpetrated by the nation’s largest banks that inflated – and burst – the housing bubble, an estimated 14 million Americans are underwater, owing $700 billion more on their homes than those homes are worth. A $20 billion settlement is woefully inadequate to compensate the wrongfully evicted or homeowners struggling to stay in their homes. Much more should be required of banks to provide meaningful help underwater homeowners and compensate foreclosure fraud victims.

A settlement with mortgage servicers must also require reforms to ensure such abuses do not happen again. The goal of servicing mortgages must be accuracy and adherence to the law, not expediency and corner-cutting. Confidence must be restored that proper transference of notes and mortgages was followed and clear chains of titles are available for all mortgages. Until then, the burden of proof must be on financial institutions to prove that they have the legal authority to foreclose. The Mortgage Electronic Registration System should be dissolved and shut down, and the shortcut that allowed banks to avoid hundreds of millions, if not billions, in local fees to local registrars of deeds be closed off. It is critical that large banks not be allowed to shirk their tax obligations to local governments. A settlement in this case must compensate state and local governments for taxes and fees which were owed but not collected.

The crisis in our housing and financial markets has shaken the confidence of the American people in our financial system and in government. Holding banks accountable for abusive and fraudulent practices, while compensating damaged homeowners, wrongfully evicted, local governments, and defrauded investors is vital to restoring that confidence. I urge you to ensure that any settlement with mortgage servicers over alleged foreclosure abuses does not absolve liability for crimes and wrongdoing that has yet to be fully investigated, and ensures just compensation for victims.

I appreciate your attention to this matter.

Sincerely,

U.S. Senator Maria Cantwell

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[ipaper docId=75811029 access_key=key-3akr4fq4pq5lfwoyir3 height=600 width=600 /]

 

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Posted in STOP FORECLOSURE FRAUDComments (1)

Banks Press for CFPB Waivers in Foreclosure Talks

Banks Press for CFPB Waivers in Foreclosure Talks


Little by little they are working their way up to freedom.

All their eggs are almost in the basket…

WSJ-

Banks are demanding that the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau relinquish the right to sue over certain flawed mortgage originations, in exchange for their participation in a proposed multibillion-dollar settlement of alleged foreclosure abuses.

The banks say their inability to secure a sufficiently broad release from the new bureau, which was sidelined in earlier discussions as it launched, would be a deal breaker. The five biggest U.S. mortgage banks, state attorneys general and Obama administration officials are pushing to finalize a deal before the end of the year that would be worth $19 billion or more.

[WALL STREET JOURNAL]

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FL 4DCA Says FL AG lacked authority under FDUTPA to issue the subpoena, Reversed

FL 4DCA Says FL AG lacked authority under FDUTPA to issue the subpoena, Reversed


DISTRICT COURT OF APPEAL OF THE STATE OF FLORIDA
FOURTH DISTRICT

July Term 2011

LAW OFFICE OF DAVID J. STERN, P.A.,
Appellant,

v.

STATE OF FLORIDA, DEPARTMENT OF LEGAL AFFAIRS,
Appellee.

No. 4D10-4708

[December 14, 2011]

 [ipaper docId=75682304 access_key=key-1ddqsno5cz2v49d8a02s height=600 width=600 /]

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Borrowers may give up future claims in foreclosure reviews

Borrowers may give up future claims in foreclosure reviews


We already knew this and if you expect any real restitution, you’re in for a surprise!

HW-

A mortgage servicer will be granted a waiver from future claims depending on what sort of remediation a borrower gets from the foreclosure reviews conducted under federal consent orders.

Independent consultants, approved by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and the Federal Reserve, will review nearly 4.5 million foreclosure files over the next several months. They will be looking for any harm caused by improper practices uncovered last year.

[HOUSING WIRE]

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Banks, Officials Near Pact on Foreclosures

Banks, Officials Near Pact on Foreclosures


Planned…just in time for the Holidays around the corner!

Here’s hoping you forget when you get back from celebrating!

 

WSJ-

Five large lenders could be forced to make concessions worth roughly $19 billion as bank representatives and government officials push to put the finishing touches on a settlement of most state and federal investigations of alleged foreclosure improprieties.

Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan and state officials hope to reach a deal as soon as this week, though any agreement could be delayed by unresolved issues including the naming of a monitor to oversee the agreement.

The settlement would end months-long negotiations among federal officials, state attorneys general and the nation’s five largest mortgage servicers: Ally Financial Inc., Bank …

[WALL STREET JOURNAL]

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