Thursday, October 28, 2010

Bank of America Mortgage Modifications – Homeowners Need Your Help Not Your Red Tape

Recently, a client approached me concerned about her recent mortgage modification situation involving NACA and Bank of America. The Neighborhood Assistance Corporation of America ("NACA") is a non-profit, community advocacy and home ownership organization. NACA's primary goal is to build strong, healthy neighborhoods in urban and rural areas nationwide through affordable home ownership. NACA has said that they have conclusively shown that when working people get the benefit of a prime rate loan, they can resolve their financial problems, make their mortgage payments and become prime borrowers. The problem is that home owners can't resolve their financial problems if Bank of America makes it difficult to do so. According to my client, NACA assisted homeowners who borrowed from Bank of America are getting stuck in a "Catch 22". Homeowners who have gotten help from NACA are being required by Bank of America to have a NACA representative conferenced in to any phone conversation with the Bank. It is difficult enough to get one party on the phone, let alone to coordinate two unrelated parties. Bank of America's procedure in regards to NACA assisted homeowners is problematic. The banks should be doing everything they can to assist homeowners in this current economy. Bank of America needs to adopt a slice of NACA's primary goal and eliminate the red tape and focus on helping working people to resolve their financial problems, not exacerbate them.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Reopening a Florida Foreclosure Case Due to Alleged Bank Fraud – Counterclaims and Damages

We met with a client yesterday that lost several properties in Florida to foreclosure. Among the many files was a case, we believe, is ripe for filing a Motion to re-Open an old foreclosure lawsuit and to set aside the judgment. The basis for us to re-open the case is our allegation that the lender committed foreclosure fraud by filing a defective Affidavit in support of its case. We have done exhaustive research on this issue and on the issue of the type of counterclaim(s) we bring against the bank for wrongful foreclosure. What we found is that there isn't a lot of case law on the subject of damages in a wrongful foreclosure case. If we are successful in recovering for our client, I imagine we will be contributing to the establishment of precedent in this evolving area of the law. This is very exciting stuff. I will keep everyone posted as things progress.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Bank of America Makes Deal with Title Insurer - Foreclosure Title Issues

The latest issue that I find interesting relates to title insurance and how the title insurance companies stopped issuing title insurance for any bank owned property. In an effort to address this issue, Bank of America agreed with Fidelity National Financial to cover all court costs and settlements related to any lawsuits and Fidelity agreed it would defend new homeowners in court for any claims that arise related to a foreclosure in the chain of title. Apparently, Bank of America is working on similar agreements with other title insurers. I'm not quite sure how this is going to work in the long run for Buyers and housing prices. It still sounds to me like if someone buys a bank owned property they are still buying a home with built in litigation. I can't see how home prices won't be impacted. And the plot thickens!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Will Layoffs at David Stern’s Office add to the Foreclosure Mess?

I was reviewing a foreclosure complaint today and I noticed that the case was filed by David Stern's office and it made me think. If the reports are true about layoffs and employee exodus from his office, how on earth is he going to be able to handle his existing case load? Also, what happens if the banks decide to retain other counsel to take over their existing cases? Are there going to be further delays in the foreclosure cases because of the logistics of transferring files? Will documents get lost or misplaced and who is going to oversee that undertaking? I can't imagine how difficult that's going to be. Further, are there going to more delays slowing the housing recovery in Florida? All new questions in a time where there are a shortage of answers. What a mess!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

2010 Foreclosure Mess - Homeowners are not to Blame

Recently, the message about the 2010 foreclosure mess has changed. Somehow, homeowners are now the bad guys. They are the new scapegoats for the foreclosure mess. Now borrowers who are delinquent on their mortgage payments are being viewed as ” trying to get their home for free without a mortgage.” I believe the focus should also be on the banks and other mortgage servicers who failed to provide the required homeownership counseling, including default counseling, when a borrower was in trouble as is required under their own documents and federal law. I don’t know if the message change is the result of the bank’s p.r. or just confusion caused by information overload. Either way, its troubling.

Read the rest of the story here:

Homeowners Are Not to Blame for the 2010 Foreclosure Mess

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Mortgage Foreclosure Clients are Changing and the Temporary Boost to Our Economy

Since Bank of America, JPMorgan Chase and GMAC have come forward and decided to halt foreclosures the type of clients I am seeing is changing. My new client is someone who is confused and wondering why they are being sued if the banks allegedly stopped filing foreclosures. The other clients we are seeing, is the person who has lost their home and is interested to learn more about how they can be compensated for their home being taken based on fraudulent Court documents. It seems that the people, who are on the verge of being sued, are less inclined to contact an attorney with the banks halting foreclosures. I can't say I blame those people. Why would they need to hire an attorney at this point?

I imagine that the people who are on the verge of foreclosure are walking around with some sense of relief and extra money in their pocket. I believe that one consequence of halting the foreclosures is that there is going to be a temporary positive boost to our economy. Those people, who are not paying their mortgage, will probably be spending more money to buy other things, boosting our economy. That's a good thing, I think?

At the end of the day, the banks and the mortgage company screwed up. That's why this mess is going to linger and possibly still bring down our economy. If they weren't sloppy and in a rush to make a dollar, we would be closer to the end of this nightmare instead of on the verge of reliving it.