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REUTERS | Top congressional cop may probe mortgage servicers

REUTERS | Top congressional cop may probe mortgage servicers


Wed Jan 26, 2011 2:23pm EST

* Treasury: won’t shut down foreclosure prevention program

* Democratic lawmakers want to grill mortgage servicers

* States, SEC already probing banks’ foreclosure practices (Adds comments from Treasury, lawmakers, TARP details, byline)

By Rachelle Younglai

WASHINGTON, Jan 26 (Reuters) – A top congressional cop said on Wednesday he would consider investigating U.S. mortgage servicers, which have been accused of shoddy home foreclosure practices.

If the House Oversight Committee decides to take on this probe, it will add yet another layer of pressure on top servicers such as Citigroup Inc (C.N), Wells Fargo & Co (WFC.N) and Bank of America Corp (BAC.N).

The nation’s 50 state attorneys general, the Securities and Exchange Commission, bank regulators and the Justice Department are among those probing the handling by banks of mortgage-related paperwork and foreclosure procedures.

At the House Oversight Committee’s first hearing of the year, lawmakers said more had to be done. Democratic Representatives Dennis Kucinich and Elijah Cummings asked the Republican committee Chairman Darrell Issa to haul in servicers such as JPMorgan Chase & Co (JPM.N).

Issa, who became chairman when Republicans took control of the House of Representatives in January, said he would consider the request.

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