ABA Journal on MERS Rule Changes

We’ve talked before about the process changes in the works over at MERS, but this ABA Journal article is notable for it’s blunt presentation of what’s really happening with the rule changes: Calling for an end to a controversial practice, the Virginia-based company that owns Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) has announced a change in its rules that apparently would …

A Mortgage Mess Metaphor

Boot Camper Matthew Bogosian recently posted this metaphor for the mortgage foreclosure process that’s been running wild across the country on his blog.  It’s funny because it’s so true…and not funny, because it’s so true.  Definitely worth a read for those who have been watching in dismay as fake documents and “well, you owe the money to someone” philosophies have …

Foreclosure Problems that Never Die

Foreclosure defense attorneys are all too aware of the possibility for deficiency judgments. With nearly a quarter of U.S. mortgage debtors under water, many foreclosed properties sell for far less than the outstanding debt, leaving the former homeowner on the hook for tens of thousands of dollars (or more).  Lengthy statutes of limitations in some states mean these actions come …

Regulator Sanctions, New Rules Too Little Too Late?

Over the past few days, several sources including Financial Feed, The Washington Post and The Street have reported that sanctions against some of the largest U.S. mortgage servicers are forthcoming, and with them “remedial requirements” designed to clean up the foreclosure process. The reports are based on the testimony of John Walsh, Acting Comptroller of the Currency, before the U.S. Senate Committee on …

Florida Bar Steps into the Foreclosure Fray

The Florida Bar is offering a free education program for plaintiffs’ attorneys in mortgage foreclosure cases, and our brethren on the other side of the courtroom are likely very unhappy about what they’re hearing.  The Florida Bar News quotes Bar Ethics Counsel Elizabeth Tarbert as pointing out: An attorney’s obligation to make disclosures under Rule 4-3.3 is triggered when the …

Is Bank of America’s $10 Billion Estimate Too Low?

Ten days ago, Bloomberg reported that Bank of America, which had set aside $4.1 billion in the fourth quarter of 2010 to resolve disputes over faulty mortgages, believed that an additional $7-10 billion might be required to settle remaining outstanding claims.  CFO Charles Noski called the $7-10 billion figure the “upper range” and emphasized that the number was only a …

U.S. Bankruptcy Trustee Questions Magical Appearance of Documents

Another great (and heartening) report from our friends over at Naked Capitalism, this one on the U.S. Trustee’s decision to start asking hard questions about the documents that seem to appear out of thin air to serve as “evidence” in foreclosure proceedings. We’re all familiar with the underlying problem: The big problem for servicers and trustees (the parties that are …

Boot Camp Graudate David Shaev Fights Fraud

David Shaev is featured in an article titled Why Paperwork Matters: Consider This Mortgage Mess. Judge Shelley C. Chapman, of the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York, has ordered HSBC and Litton Loan Servicing (a Goldman Sachs subsidiary) to send officers with some juice — and not low-level types — to her Manhattan courtroom on Feb. …

Who’s to Blame for the Mortgage Mess? Banks, Not Homeowners

Another excellent article by Abigail Field in DailyFinance. As the foreclosure crisis has escalated over the past several months, one overarching debate has been about who bears the most blame: homeowners or banks? After everything I’ve learned and written about the foreclosure mess, my verdict is: The banks are responsible for 90% of the problem, troubled homeowners 10%. Yes, every …