California Attorney General Brown Sends Cease and Desist Letter to Ally’s Gmac Until It Proves It Is Complying with the Law

Brown Directs Nation’s Fourth Largest Home Lender to Suspend Foreclosures Until It Proves It Is Complying with the Law

LOS ANGELES – Attorney General Edmund G. Brown Jr. today directed Ally Financial, Inc., formerly known as GMAC, to prove immediately that it is complying with state law or, if it cannot, to cease and desist from foreclosing on California homes.

“I’m taking this action to protect California homeowners facing the tragedy of foreclosure,” Brown said. “They are clearly in jeopardy since an Ally Financial official admitted his review of thousands of critical foreclosure documents was really a sham.”

“Prior to resuming foreclosures here, the company must prove that it’s following the letter of the law,” Brown added.

California law prohibits lenders from recording notices of default on mortgages made between January 1, 2003 and December 31, 2007, unless, subject to limited exceptions, the lender contacts or tries diligently to contact the borrower to determine eligibility for a loan modification. A notice of default must include a declaration of compliance with California law.

Recent reports indicated that the head of Ally Financial’s document processing team testified he routinely approved and signed foreclosure documents without confirming they were accurate and legally sufficient, as he was required to do. He approved foreclosure cases at such a rapid rate that he was known by consumer advocates as the “super robot signer.”

This admitted misconduct raises serious doubts about whether Ally Financial’s practices provide California borrowers facing foreclosure the protections guaranteed by law. Accordingly, Brown is demanding that Ally Financial, the fourth largest home loan institution in the country, demonstrate its compliance with California law or else halt all foreclosure operations in the state.

Ally Financial earlier this week suspended evictions of homeowners and foreclosure sales in 23 states that, unlike California, have a system that requires a court order for foreclosure. The company has, however, continued its foreclosure operations here and in other states.

In the first six months of 2010, Ally Financial originated $26 billion in home loans, with more than 24 percent of them made in California, and the company reported earnings of $769 million during that period from its large loan-servicing business. Ally Financial services loans on behalf of numerous other companies and investors.

Source: California Attorney General

You can check out the letter below…



California Attorney General Cease and Desist Letter to Ally/GMAC

2 Responses to “California Attorney General Brown Sends Cease and Desist Letter to Ally’s Gmac Until It Proves It Is Complying with the Law”
  1. Elaine S says:

    It’s a shame this CA att general letter didn’t also call into question the failure to properly notarize said affiavits according to California law.
    See the Maine depostion by Stephan pages 15,30-31,40,56

    Stephan testified so I got interested in reading Stephan’sfull testimony with this site’s help.

    Page 6 of his deposition of Dec, 2009 (google. It was in a tiny url within your page that opened.) Is perhaps the most important piece of all.

    12 Q. And so what type of documents do you
    13 ordinarily execute?
    14 A. I execute on a daily basis assignments of
    15 mortgage, affidavits of any type that might be needed,
    16 deeds. Any type of the document that would need a
    17 signature of an officer of GMAC.

    Together with: about page 14 same document gives his working notary structure describing fraudulent practice. The notary wasn’t in the room, he boxed up stacks and sent them over to the notary in a different place/room.

    It’s not just the affidavits! Notice that, read as a whole, he admits to also signing deeds without a proper notary who witnessed his signature.!!!!!!
    There is a whole other layer of people who have a cloud on title of their real estate if their deeds were signed by him. (or any other similar robo-signor with an absentee-notary.)

    Notary is a serious business, but everyone has routinely assumed they were all good, for example even attorneys and signors of affidavits for foreclosures. Apparently, we can no longer do that as a standard of practice in this country.
    Smart attorneys will start issuing supoenas for notary challenges if they suspect anything. And notary journals must be kept and be available!

    Assignments of mortgages if also signed without a notary present in the room witnessing the signing perhaps means a whole stream of breaks in the established lender-ownership rights needed to foreclose still other properties. ( If they too required a notarized signature I’m not certain of this kind of document needing that, you can easily check. Stephan having a “signing officer” VP position status implies that it also was a document type needing notarization, otherwise no need to send the doc to a special desk, at added time and cost.)

    In other words the affidavits supposedly verified the true note holder who had the right to foreclose. And ironically, the improperly done assignments scramble that valid ownership of record needed for yet other transactions, that a foreclosure affidavit would othewise ignorantly attest to. Compounded errors may be plentiful.

    So if Stephan’s notarized signature is on an assignment of mortgage, anywhere in the midstream changing of ownership of the note papers, even if someone else later signed the affiadavit for foreclosure, I think it too is a tainted foreclosure.

    But think bigger, remember Stephan was signing docs for 5 years. Before the crush of foreclosures were the crush of assignments of mortgages to create those bundles of mortgages sold as derivatives! This could be evidence for derivatives fraud lawsuits in years to come. Lack of due diligence or fraud in bundling? I was reminded of this by the article at Huffington Post/Business with the red flag image titled, “New Proof Wall Street Knew its Mortgage Securities Were Sub-Par” 9/25

    Now, will GMAC be required to re-execute every document signed by Stephan and all their other staff who were similarly robo-signing without a notary in the room? I hope, yes! Title companies will NEED this clarity.

    Who can force this clean up? Otherwise you have an unresolved mess on many thousands of properties. A cloud on title which every one of these appear to be, can tie a property in knots for future sale, or future financing.. So what happens to all these other owners whose clear title have been damaged?

    And if Ally/GMAC LLC say they can’t trace it now, it would be a lie because notaries are required to keep journals with an entry for every document they sign, so the notary stamp can be later verifed. So absent the journal with the proper entry also would seem to be material reason to challenge if a notary is valid as well. And robo-signor signatures will be self evident as they surface in new transfers of title through the years to come once the list of names of those identified are built.

    For a fast short education in notary requirement go to any states’ secretary of state and ask for the appllication and the materials to study. Also get a rules of civil procedure book(a law book so ask your staff attorney to easily get to one of them.) which I believe will spell out which documents require a notarization. Remember a notary is a witness attesting to checking credentials that the person is who they say they are, and eyeball witnessing of the actual signing. You must sign in front of the witnessing notary.

    A court clerk will not even accept many filings and documents into a file until they see the notary affixed to it.

    The bigger story is the eroding of contract law, one of the foundations of our cvilization, and of fundamental real property rights of ownership.
    The foundations of secure wealth are being roughly shaken.

    Yes it is part of why we have been called first world rather than third world. – a functioning system of landholder laws duly upheld.
    That this practice Stephan exposed is systemic per attornies looking into it, is huge huge bad news for our society. And obviously this has the power to mess with forthcoming statistics that can move markets. Or even topple a major bank as the slowdown jams banks books. Remember every month a bad loan sits unresolved costs them more financial loss.

    Also what about prosecution of J. Stephan for lying to multiple judges on those affidavits? How is he to be held accountable?
    Are there any whistleblower offers or amnesty offers for notaries involved or other robo-signors or others close to same to step forward?

    There is also the potential nightmare mess of many buyers of notes who gave over their money, who did not get their lien on the properties purported to be securing their money. Now see a bankruptcy in the middle with court rulings, distributions to debtors, and shareholders involved. Or numerous notes fouled up this way sitting in bundles of mortages that secure credit default swaps on mortgages. Reits that have bought these already discounted bundled mortagages may be in for a rude awakening, as values of these bundles plunge further.

    This is my personal opinion coming from a related background and current interest in these mattters as an investor making offers to purchase, & being a former real estate broker.. I am Not an attorney, so consult an attorney to confirm any legal information before using it. I still haven’t read more than a portion of what is available online.

    Elaine Colorado Springs CO

  2. Michael says:

    Better late than never .. except for the people illegally made homeless and those who are being foreclosed on and evicted by every other bank that seemed to act virtually identical.

    Time for a national moratorium, the opening of the entire MERS database to show who transferred what, a coordinated criminal task force to throw the perps into a house they can’t get be evicted from … and, of yeah banks, time for you to set aside reserves far in excess of your net worth for the damages you’ll be forced to pay.

    As Guido said at the end of the movie .. “Time of your life, eh kid(s)?”

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