Military | FORECLOSURE FRAUD | by DinSFLA

Tag Archive | "military"

AGs to consider investor protections in foreclosure settlement

AGs to consider investor protections in foreclosure settlement


LOL…according to Tom Miller.

Good Luck!

HW-

If the top five mortgage servicers begin to abuse bond investors under the foreclosure settlement write-downs, the attorneys general would consider some protections, according to Iowa AG Tom Miller.

Miller faced down banking executives and analysts during a panel at the REthink Symposium Thursday. The $25 billion settlement signed in March forces servicers to meet roughly $10 billion in principal reductions, which could swell higher because in some instances the full dollar written down will not be credited.

Servicers will get full credit for reducing principal on loans they hold on their own portfolio but receive 45 cents for every dollar written down on mortgages held in private securities.

“To try principal reduction in a targeted way and find out if it works is good for the housing market,” Miller said. “We know what (the banks’) plans are. Two have said they wouldn’t do write-downs on private securities. But we could have some discussions about something to reassure investors.”

[HOUSING WIRE]

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Where are the Indictments?

Where are the Indictments?


Abigail C. Field-

Let’s be clear why there’s a mortgage deal: the banks broke the law. Several laws in fact, in ways that appear criminal as well as civil. Limiting their liability is the only reason the banks did a deal.

In this post I’m going to look at what the banks could be held liable for; how much liability “their” money persuaded law enforcers to ignore will be the next post. But one important kind of peace has not been bought: criminal. So as I detail the wrong doing exposed by the deal, I highlight the crimes our law enforcers seem to allege the bankers committed. After all, a liability release isn’t simply what it says, it’s what law enforcers do with their remaining freedom to act. If crimes were committed, and indictments don’t follow, the release is much broader than its text.

A close read of the complaint and the related language that precedes the releases (see Exhibits F and G) reveals:

continue reading [REALITY CHECK]

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USMC SGT. Shamar Thomas Veteran Rants Against Police Brutality About Occupy Wall Street [VIDEO]

USMC SGT. Shamar Thomas Veteran Rants Against Police Brutality About Occupy Wall Street [VIDEO]


USMC SGT. Shamar Thomas veteran rants at NYPD over their brutality and reprehensible tactics, including kettling, during the Times Square protest organized by Occupy Wall Street.

Speaking nothing but the truth.

 

.

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Senator Tester wants Justice Department to investigate big banks for fraud, illegal fees on veterans’ mortgages

Senator Tester wants Justice Department to investigate big banks for fraud, illegal fees on veterans’ mortgages


“If true, this type of behavior is illegal and it’s un-American. There is no question about that.”

-Sen. Tester

(U.S. SENATE) – Senator Jon Tester is pushing the U.S. Justice Department to investigate the nation’s biggest banks for allegedly adding illegal fees to the home loans of veterans and their families.

A recently unsealed whistleblower lawsuit alleges that Bank of America, Wells Fargo, and J.P. Morgan Chase disguised fees that are specifically forbidden under VA rules on veterans’ home refinancing loans. 

Because these loans are guaranteed by the federal government, they are low-risk, leading to additional profits for the banks. But the Justice Department has so far declined to pursue the case.

In a letter to Attorney General Eric Holder, Tester called for the Justice Department to take up the case, saying defrauding veterans would be “illegal and Un-American.”

“I request that you investigate the full extent of these illegal activities, and provide my office with detailed information about the subsequent damages as well as the actions the Justice Department will undertake to prevent them from happening in the future,” Tester wrote Holder. “Despite what some of our nation’s largest banks may believe, the men and women who have honorably served our country deserve better than this. They have earned as much.”

Under VA rules, lenders may not charge veterans for attorneys’ fees or settlement closing fees when handling home loans. The lawsuit alleges that lenders instructed mortgage brokers to disguise these fees by combining them with other, permitted charges.

“Taking advantage of veterans who put their lives on the line—that’s something no Montanan and no American should stand for,” Tester said. “The Justice Department needs to protect not only the men and women who defend this country, but also the American taxpayers who guaranteed these loans. The actions of these banks deserve a close and thorough look from this Administration.” 

According to the lawsuit, more than 1.2 million VA home loans have been issued to veterans over the past 10 years, and as much as 90 percent may involve some degree of fraud. 

Tester is Montana’s only member of the Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee. Earlier this year, he introduced a bill that increases the penalties for banks that violate the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act, which protects active duty troops from certain financial and legal hardships.

Tester’s letter to Attorney General Holder appears below.

###

October 11, 2011

The Honorable Eric Holder
Attorney General
Department of Justice
950 Pennsylvania Ave, NW, Suite 5111
Washington, DC 20530

Dear Attorney General Holder:

I write regarding the lawsuit recently unsealed in federal court which reveals that as many as 13 banks and mortgage firms imposed excessive, hidden and illegal fees on a number of our nation’s veterans and their families. Because these home loans were backed by the federal government, they were low-risk and led to additional profits for the banks. I am bothered by the fact that the Justice Department reportedly will not be taking on the case at this time. I request that you provide justification for this decision, and urge you to reconsider. I also request that you investigate the full extent of these illegal activities, and provide my office with detailed information about the subsequent damages as well as the actions the Justice Department will undertake to prevent them from happening in the future.

According to the lawsuit, these veterans were fraudulently charged millions in illegal fees through a Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) loan program through which they sought to lower their interest rates or shorten the terms of their mortgages. More than 1.2 million of these loans have been issued over the past 10 years, and as much as 90 percent may involve some degree of fraud.

In defrauding these veterans and their families with excess fees, the banks allegedly also benefitted by receiving hundreds of millions of dollars in loan guarantees from the VA. That resulted in better prices from the loans that banks and mortgage brokers sold to investors. And as more of these loans went into default or foreclosure, it was ultimately American taxpayers who were on the line.

If true, this type of behavior is illegal and it’s un-American. There is no question about that. Despite what some of our nation’s largest banks may believe, the men and women who have honorably served our country deserve better than this. They have earned as much. Nevertheless, this lawsuit comes on the heels of multiple settlements that have been reached in legal actions against banks that have illegally seized homes, overcharged and defrauded members of the U.S. military. This is an alarming trend that cannot stand. And it must not continue.

The men and women who are serving or have served in uniform should never have to struggle to receive the protections due to them and their families under law. At the same time, we owe it to hard-working taxpayers in Montana and across the country to recover any federal funds that have been lost through the illegal actions of unscrupulous actors. 

As the Department of Justice begins taking more aggressive steps to address this matter, I urge you to work with Congress in a close and productive manner.

I look forward to your response.

Sincerely,
(s)
Jon Tester

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Tennessee BK Trustee Says In 60 Cases This Year, Lenders Couldn’t Produce Original Note

Tennessee BK Trustee Says In 60 Cases This Year, Lenders Couldn’t Produce Original Note


SHOW ME THE NOTE!!

Bizjournals Nashville-

Federal legislation introduced last week is giving credence to a battle being fought in Middle Tennessee by bankruptcy trustee Henry “Hank” Hildebrand.

The Bill can be found in the link below…

VT Senator Patrick Leahy Introduces Bill To Fight Creditor Fraud In Bankruptcy Courts

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VT Senator Patrick Leahy Introduces Bill To Fight Creditor Fraud In Bankruptcy Courts

VT Senator Patrick Leahy Introduces Bill To Fight Creditor Fraud In Bankruptcy Courts


‘‘Fighting Fraud in Bankruptcy Act of 2011’’


Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) introduced legislation Tuesday to strengthen the tools available to U.S. bankruptcy trustees to protect American homeowners from creditor fraud in bankruptcy court.  Leahy introduced the Fighting Fraud in Bankruptcy Act, with cosponsors Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.) and Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.).

“The Fighting Fraud in Bankruptcy Act is another step forward in the Judiciary Committee’s important efforts to protect American citizens from fraud,” said Leahy.  “As Congress looks at ways to mitigate the foreclosure crisis to reduce its impact on homeowners and the economy, I hope all Senators can agree that the foreclosure process for Americans should be a fair one and one in which there is accountability for fraud or other misconduct.  And I hope we can all agree that the integrity of our judicial system is something worth protecting.”

“It’s inexcusable when big banks hit homeowners with bogus mortgage fees and improper foreclosures,” said Whitehouse.  “This bill will help ensure that Rhode Islanders who fall on hard times have access to a fair bankruptcy process and a chance at a fresh start.”

“Homeowners facing foreclosure, including military personnel serving our country far from their homes, are entitled to full legal protection from fraud and misconduct,” said Blumenthal. “This commonsense proposal simply strengthens existing authority for holding creditors accountable for abuses. It will deter needless litigation that is currently wasting resources, clogging the bankruptcy courts, and slowing our economic recovery.”

The Fighting Fraud in Bankruptcy Act includes four key provisions.  The legislation will:

  • Clarify that U.S. trustee has a duty to take action to remedy creditor abuse of the bankruptcy process;
  • Permit the bankruptcy court, either on its own or in response to a motion from the trustee, to correct or sanction misconduct and fraud committed by creditors in the bankruptcy process;
  • Empower the trustee to establish audit procedures to ensure that creditors are complying with the law;
  • Require a mortgage lender to certify under penalty of perjury that a foreclosure proceeding against active duty members of the military who are deployed is in compliance with the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA).  The SCRA protects active duty military personnel by requiring a stable, manageable interest rate for military homeowners on active duty, and staying foreclosure actions during their deployment.

The Judiciary Committee has held several hearings in recent years regarding the foreclosure crisis.  Earlier this year, the Committee considered and reported to the full Senate the Limiting Investor and Homeowner Loss in Foreclosure Act  to authorize bankruptcy courts to establish loss mitigation programs to avoid foreclosures.

# # # # #

[ipaper docId=56297743 access_key=key-1mrtb1tuwv3w9wmq1wwf height=600 width=600 /]

[Source: http://leahy.senate.gov]

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I’M SORRY | Dimon’s Annual Meeting Brings Mortgage Apology

I’M SORRY | Dimon’s Annual Meeting Brings Mortgage Apology


NOT…

“We are doing everything we can to keep people in their homes that should stay in their homes.”

BLOOMBERG-

Jamie Dimon, JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM)’s chairman and chief executive officer, said he was sorry for foreclosure mistakes as hundreds of protesters at the annual meeting demanded he do more to help homeowners and small businesses recover from the financial crisis.


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Court delays foreclosure action to Milwaukee ex-marine for six months

Court delays foreclosure action to Milwaukee ex-marine for six months


Talk about stress! Read all about Keon Williams here, then catch up on the latest developments.

JSOnline-

A six-month reprieve has been issued to Keon Williams, the north side man whose home was sold at a sheriff’s sale in January even though he is current on the only mortgage he knew he had.

The agreement filed in court Monday between Williams and attorneys for Harris Bank prevents the bank from concluding its purchase and evicting Williams from the N. 44th St. home until Nov. 12.

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Locks changed on disputed home of ex-marine in Milwaukee

Locks changed on disputed home of ex-marine in Milwaukee


There is a new development to Paying on time, yet facing eviction: an ex-Marine caught in the mortgage meltdown…

From JSOnline

Keon Williams’ fight to keep his house has taken another strange twist: The Milwaukee man arrived home Monday night to find that the locks had been changed on one of his doors on orders from Harris Bank, even though a court order says he can stay in the house for now.

“They admitted they had sent somebody to change the locks,” Williams’ lawyer, Geoffrey Gnadt, said after an emergency court hearing Tuesday. “They did apologize profusely – but there are costs.”


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Paying on time, yet facing eviction: an ex-Marine caught in the mortgage meltdown

Paying on time, yet facing eviction: an ex-Marine caught in the mortgage meltdown


Same Scenarios…Over and Over and Over again!

JSOnline-

Keon Williams is on the verge of being thrown out of his house – a startling turn of events, considering that for nearly three years since refinancing in 2008, he faithfully paid his monthly mortgage and his property taxes.

“I did everything I was supposed to do, but I’m being evicted,” says Williams, 38, sitting in his neat but sparsely furnished dining room on N. 44th St. “I never would have imagined something like this could happen.”


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In foreclosure? Can’t be found? More Twisted, Conflicts of Interest.

In foreclosure? Can’t be found? More Twisted, Conflicts of Interest.


As if it hasn’t been a conflict when MERS is the nominee for the plaintiff but is also named or is the mortgagee for the defendant…what a total state of confusion.

Oh wait there’s more, and who signs and notarizes these documents entered as evidence in most cases?

TBO.com

TAMPA – When a lender fails to find a homeowner to notify them of a foreclosure lawsuit, a judge often appoints a guardian ad item. That attorney is supposed to represent the property owner’s interests.

But guess who typically picks the guardian? The lender’s attorney.


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Servicemembers, Soldiers and Sailors Q & A for Homeowners

Servicemembers, Soldiers and Sailors Q & A for Homeowners


Questions & Answers for Reservists, Guardsmen and Other Military Personnel

The following information is provided regarding mortgage payment relief and protection from foreclosure provided under the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA, formerly known as The Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Civil Relief Act of 1940).

Who Is Eligible?

The provisions of the Act apply to active duty military personnel who had a mortgage obligation prior to enlistment or prior to being ordered to active duty. This includes members of the Army, Navy, Marine Corps, Air Force, Coast Guard; commissioned officers of the Public Health Service and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration who are engaged in active service; reservists ordered to report for military service; persons ordered to report for induction under the Military Selective Service Act; and guardsmen called to active service for more than 30 consecutive days. In limited situations, dependents of servicemembers are also entitled to protections.

Servicemembers Civil Relief Act Notice (Mortgagee Letter 2006-28)

Pursuant to the statutory amendment, HUD has developed, in consultation with the Departments of Defense and Treasury, the form for the required notice of servicemember rights (Attachment 1, SCRA Notice Disclosure). All mortgage loans, including conventional mortgages and mortgages insured by HUD are subject to the notification requirement that became effective June 5, 2006. The notice must:

 - Be sent to all homeowners who are in default on a residential mortgage;
 - Include the toll-free military one-source number to call if servicemembers or their dependents require further assistance (1-800-342-9647); and
 - Be made within 45 days from the date a missed payment was due, unless the homeowner pays the overdue amount before the expiration of the 45-day period.

Am I Entitled To Debt Payment Relief?

The Act limits the interest that may be charged on mortgages incurred by a service member (including debts incurred jointly with a spouse) before he or she entered into active military service. Mortgage lenders must, at your request, reduce the interest rate to no more than six percent per year during the period of active military service and recalculate your payments to reflect the lower rate. This provision applies to both conventional and government-insured mortgages.

Is The Interest Rate Limitation Automatic?

No. To request this temporary interest rate reduction, you must submit a written request to your mortgage lender and include a copy of your military orders. The request may be submitted as soon as the orders are issued but must be provided to a mortgage lender no later than 180 days after the date of your release from active duty military service.

Am I Eligible Even if I Can Afford To Pay My Mortgage At A Higher Interest Rate?

If a mortgage lender believes that military service has not affected your ability to repay your mortgage, they have the right to ask a court to grant relief from the interest rate reduction. This is not very common.

What If I Can’t Afford to Pay My Mortgage Even At the Lower Rate?

Your mortgage lender may allow you to stop paying the principal amount due on your loan during the period of active duty service. Lenders are not required to do this but they generally try to work with service members to keep them in their homes. You will still owe this amount but will not have to repay it until after your complete your active duty service.

Additionally, most lenders have other programs to assist borrowers who cannot make their mortgage payments. If you or your spouse find yourself in this position at any time before or after active duty service, contact your lender immediately and ask about loss mitigation options. Borrowers with FHA insured loans who are having difficulty making mortgage payments may also be eligible for forbearance and/or HUD’s other Loss Mitigation Programs. More information about help for homeowners who are unable to make payments on a mortgage is available on the HUD website.

Am I Protected against Foreclosure?

Mortgage lenders may not foreclose, or seize property for a failure to pay a mortgage debt, while a service member is on active duty for nine (9) months grace period prior to December 31, 2010 unless they have the approval of a court. After December 31, 2010, the grace period for Service member protection will revert back to 3 months. In a court proceeding, the lender would be required to show that the service member’s ability to repay the debt was not affected by his or her military service.

What Information Do I Need To Provide To My Lender?

When you or your representative contact your mortgage lender, you should provide the following information:

 - Notice that you have been called to active duty;
 - A copy of the orders from the military service notifying you of your activation;
 - Your FHA case number; and
 - Evidence that the debt precedes your activation date.

HUD has reminded FHA lenders of their obligation to follow the Act. If notified that a borrower is on active military duty, the lender must advise the borrower or representative of the adjusted amount due, provide adjusted coupons or billings, and ensure that the adjusted payments are not returned as insufficient payments.

Will My Payments Change Later? Will I Need To Pay Back The Interest Rate “Subsidy” At A Later Date?

The change in interest rate is not a subsidy. Interest in excess of 6 percent per year that would otherwise have been charged is forgiven. However, the reduction in the interest rate and monthly payment amount only applies during the period of active duty. Once the period of active military service ends, the interest rate will revert back to the original interest rate, and the payment will be recalculated accordingly.

How Long Does The Benefit Last? Does The Period Begin And End With My Tour Of Duty?

Interest rate reductions are only for the period of active military service. Other benefits, such as postponement of monthly principal payments on the loan and restrictions on foreclosure may begin immediately upon assignment to active military service and end on the third month following the term of active duty assignment.

How Can I Learn More About Relief Available To Active Duty Military Personnel?

Read more information about the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act, sponsored by the Legal Assistance Policy Division, Office of The Judge Advocate General, U.S. Army.

Servicemembers who have questions about the SCRA or the protections that they may be entitled to may contact their unit judge advocate or installation legal assistance officer. Dependents of servicemembers can also contact or visit local military legal assistance offices where they reside. A military legal assistance office locator for each branch of the armed forces is available at http://legalassistance.law.af.mil/content/locator.php

Source: HUD.GOV

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MILITARY | Jury Awards GI $20M in Mortgage Case

MILITARY | Jury Awards GI $20M in Mortgage Case


A federal jury awarded a Fort Benning Soldier more than $20 million on Monday in a case against Coldwell Banker Mortgage — an amount the plaintiff’s attorney called necessary to get the company’s attention.

Jurors in the case of David Brash v. PHH Mortgage Corp., doing business as Coldwell Banker, deliberated for about six hours before ruling in Brash’s favor. During the six-day trial, jurors heard that Coldwell Banker improperly reported Brash, 29, to credit bureaus which led to a “serious delinquency” on his credit report, that it refused to answer his questions or correct his account and damaged him emotionally, physically and financially, his attorneys and court documents say.

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Bob Filner: JPMorgan Responsible For ‘Homicide’ Of Soldiers

Bob Filner: JPMorgan Responsible For ‘Homicide’ Of Soldiers


First Posted: 02/ 9/11 04:59 PM Updated: 02/ 9/11 05:09 PM

WASHINGTON — A leading House Democrat said on Wednesday that executives at JPMorgan Chase are responsible for the deaths of soldiers who take their own lives under illegal financial pressure from the bank.

That charge, leveled by Rep. Bob Filner (D-Calif.), the ranking Democrat on the House Veterans’ Affairs Committee, came at the panel’s hearing Wednesday on violations of the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act by the megabank.

The law limits interest rates that banks can charge soldiers who are deployed abroad at 6 percent, a rule an executive at the hearing admitted the bank has broken.

“People who are under pressure commit suicide. I would call it homicide, frankly, because you are putting them under pressure. You are responsible for that,” Filner told Stephanie B. Mudick, a JPMorgan Chase executive vice president of consumer practices.

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US House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs Hearing Today: Alleged Violations of the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA)

US House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs Hearing Today: Alleged Violations of the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA)


VIOLATIONS OF MILITARY MORTGAGE/FORECLOSURE PROTECTIONS

Alleged Violations of the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA)

February 9, 2011

Alleged Violations of the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA)

Opening Statements

Witness Testimonies

PANEL 1

PANEL 2

  • Stephanie B. Mudick, Executive Vice President, Office of Consumer Practices, JPMorgan Chase & Co., New York, NY

PANEL 3

  • Colonel Shawn Shumake (USA), Director, Office of Legal Policy, Office of the Deputy Under Secretary of Defense, U.S. Department of Defense
  • Hollister K. Petraeus, Team Lead, Office of Servicemember Affairs, Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Implementation Team, U.S. Department of the Treasury

PANEL 4

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Freddie Mac Extends Foreclosure Protection for Service Members Through 2011

Freddie Mac Extends Foreclosure Protection for Service Members Through 2011


For Immediate Release
December 17, 2010
Contact: corprel@freddiemac.com

or (703) 903-3933 (703) 903-3933

.

McLean, VA – Freddie Mac (OTC: FMCC) today instructed its servicers to delay initiating foreclosure for at least nine months for financially troubled service members who are released from active duty through the end of 2011 and have Freddie Mac-owned mortgages. Freddie Mac is one of the nation’s largest investors in conforming, conventional mortgages.

News Facts

  • Freddie Mac’s decision to extend the nine-month foreclosure stay will give lenders more time to work with service members that are having difficulty paying their mortgage.
  • Freddie Mac is making this protection a requirement for servicing our mortgages although its original authorization in the Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008 (HERA) expires on December 31, 2010.
  • The nine-month stay was originally authorized for service members under amendments to the Service members Civil Relief Act (SCRA) included in HERA.

News Quotes

“Our military make sacrifices every day to protect our homes and families,” said Anthony Renzi, Executive Vice President of Single Family Portfolio Management at Freddie Mac. “This small act will protect financially troubled service members when they return from active duty by giving them more time to work with their lender to stay in their home.”

Freddie Mac was established by Congress in 1970 to provide liquidity, stability and affordability to the nation’s residential mortgage markets. Freddie Mac supports communities across the nation by providing mortgage capital to lenders. Over the years, Freddie Mac has made home possible for one in six homebuyers and more than five million renters.

###

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FL 3rd DCA Appeals Court Reversal “PROVEST, LLC PROCESS SERVICE” BENNETT v. CHRISTIANA BANK & TRUST COMPANY

FL 3rd DCA Appeals Court Reversal “PROVEST, LLC PROCESS SERVICE” BENNETT v. CHRISTIANA BANK & TRUST COMPANY


BENNETT v. CHRISTIANA BANK & TRUST COMPANY

Debbie Bennett, Appellant, v. Christiana Bank & Trust Company, etc., Appellee.

Case No. 3D09-2653.

District Court of Appeal of Florida, Third District.

Opinion filed December 1, 2010.

Joseph J. Pappacoda, (Fort Lauderdale) for appellant.
Florida Foreclosure Attorneys, PLLC, and Klarika J. Caplano, (Clearwater) for appellee.
Before SUAREZ, CORTIÑAS, and SALTER, JJ.

EXCERPT:

SALTER, J.
Debbie Bennett appeals the denial of her emergency motion to vacate a final foreclosure judgment. Based on the record and our conclusion that there was no personal service of process on Ms. Bennett, we reverse the judgment and remand for further proceedings.

On November 20, 2008, Christiana Bank & Trust Company filed an action to foreclose the mortgage on Ms. Bennett’s home. The plaintiff’s attorneys, Golson Felberbaum Law Firm, hired Pro-Vest LLC, a process service company, to serve Ms. Bennett. Christopher P. Mas, a Pro-Vest employee, filed a verified return of service on December 29, 2008. The return indicated that individual service was accomplished on December 20 at 4:13 p.m. The return further indicated that “DEFENDANT REFUSED TO DISCLOSE MILITARY STATUS; PROPERTY IS NOT A MOBILE HOME. I asked the person spoken to if the person served is married and I received a negative reply.”

Continue Below…

[ipaper docId=44531544 access_key=key-zp6ehf374b3yo1todgv height=600 width=600 /]


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HONORING VETERANS IN FORECLOSURE

HONORING VETERANS IN FORECLOSURE


Lynn E. Szymoniak, Esq., Editor, Fraud Digest, November 11, 2010

When men and women leave the military, the business community often does not reward them for their years of service with good-paying jobs. It is not surprising that veterans are among the Americans who are struggling to stave off foreclosure. Like many others, they are hoping that the bank will re-work the terms of their loans and help them through tough economic times – in the same way that the government helped the banks. They are hopeful that the banks will honor the mandate of Fannie and Freddie and offer meaningful re-working of the terms of their loans. Perhaps their 9% adjustable rates will be reduced to a 5% fixed rate. Perhaps the loan balance will be reduced to reflect the loss in value caused by the mortgage meltdown. Perhaps they can stay in their homes, because it would make economic sense for the bank to re-work their loans instead of forcing them out only to sell the house at less than 60% of the loan balance.

In this foreclosure struggle, these veterans are given no respect by the foreclosure mills. The Florida Attorney General has found that in thousands of cases involving members of the military, proof of service of process has been falsified. In thousands of other cases, former military families cannot get legal representation because they cannot afford to retain lawyers, but have just enough income to disqualify them for free representation through legal services programs. Without legal representation, they are left on their own to identify bank fraud. They must prove that the documents being presented by the mortgage-backed trusts are fraudulent and that the banks are fabricating evidence to force them out of their homes. Their years of military training and service did not prepare them for this particular battle.

Instead of a rocket-docket that forces military families out of their homes with no more than a 90-second hearing and a rubber stamp of the bank practices, there could be special measures taken in cases involving military families. The banks could be required to engage in mandated (but most often ignored) meaningful mediation. The banks could be required to present to the Courts a one-page straightforward “before and after” comparison that plainly shows the revised loan terms that were offered to these families.

Where no substantial effort was made by the banks, courts could appoint Special Masters to carefully examine the bank documents to make sure that banks were not relying on documents that had been fabricated just to speed the foreclosure. Where such documents were used to beat military families in foreclosure, courts could sanction the banks by requiring substantial concessions to meaningfully penalize the wrong-doing. Some restaurants and area businesses offer a free sandwich to veterans on Veterans Day.

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Fraud in foreclosure summons a disturbing trend

Fraud in foreclosure summons a disturbing trend


CALAMITY Summonses are being misplaced or forged by servers CAUSES Critics say sloppiness and fraud leading to sudden spike

Posted: October 22, 2010 – 12:00am
.

The foreclosure case against Patrick Jeffs was thrown out of court when a Jacksonville judge ruled that the summons to inform him of the lawsuit was counterfeit.

Mark Browne was in Iraq when a process server tried to give his mother in New Mexico a summons to inform him that his house in Jacksonville was being foreclosed on. She didn’t accept it, but the server signed a document that said she did. A judge threw that out, too.

Nancy Rush sold her Jacksonville condo in March, walking away poorer after the short sale and was getting on with her life when her phone rang with unlikely news: She was in foreclosure. A week after she unloaded the unit at Kendall Town in Arlington, a Jacksonville judge ordered the home sold at auction to settle a $190,000 mortgage debt, even though Rush had never received a summons saying she was being sued. “I didn’t even know there was a court date,” Rush said. “It scared the crap out of me.”

Even the summons, the simple but important legal notice required to inform homeowners that they are being foreclosed on, has not been immune to the massive problems surrounding what has become known in Florida and across the nation as the foreclosure mess.

The Times-Union has reviewed documents where the same name with obviously different signatures was used to certify that papers were served to the homeowner.

While there is no simple way to know how often every type of irregularity occurs, there is documentation showing a sharp rise in one narrow area of concern.

Instances where summonses entrusted to servers have been reported as lost, once fairly rare, have skyrocketed, making it harder to document the fate of important paperwork. From barely more than 100 annually six years ago, more than 2,000 summonses have been lost in Duval County in each of the last two years.

Critics attribute the problems to both sloppiness and fraud.

Tammie Lou Kapusta, a paralegal in the office of David Stern, the foreclosure law firm at the center of much of the investigations, described the serving process as “a complete mess” during a recent deposition. Renters were served rather than property owners, Kapusta told the Florida Attorney General’s Office. An affidavit of service – the legal document required to verify that the summons was served properly – would be filed when the summons hadn’t been served, she said.

© 2010-17 FORECLOSURE FRAUD | by DinSFLA. All rights reserved.



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GARY DUBIN LAW OFFICES FORECLOSURE DEFENSE HAWAII and CALIFORNIA
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