US Senator Maria Cantwell Calls on Federal Agencies to Release Records on Banks’ Foreclosure Practices

Cantwell Calls on Federal Agencies to Release Records on Banks’ Foreclosure Practices

With nearly 30,000 Washington state properties in foreclosure, Cantwell calls on federal agencies to improve transparency in effort to root out ‘robo-signing’

 

Wednesday, July 20,2011

 

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senator Maria Cantwell (D-WA) joined Senator Robert Menendez (D-NJ) and eight other senators in urging for increased transparency among mortgage servicers’ practices to prevent illegal foreclosures. In a letter sent today to the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, the Federal Reserve, and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, the senators urged the agencies to release information regarding each mortgage servicer’s performance to the public to prevent illegal foreclosure practices. The letter arrives in the wake of recent reports that illegal foreclosure “robo-signing” by banks is still rampant.

Rooting out illegal foreclosure practices would help ensure that Washington state homeowners are not being unfairly forced to leave their homes. Through the first six months of 2011, Washington state had the 15th highest foreclosure rate in the country. RealtyTrac reports that the state had 4,450 new foreclosure filings in June and that overall, there were 29,398 foreclosure properties.

“We believe it is essential that the items listed above be made available to the general public or the public will lack confidence in both the foreclosure review process and results,” said Cantwell and other Senators in the letter sent today. “This is particularly the case because the foreclosure reviews are being performed by consultants who are chosen by the mortgage servicers themselves, and those consultants often have conflicts of interest in that they are not prohibited from getting future business from those same mortgage servicers.”

Enforcement actions were initiated by federal regulators because of the “robo-signing” scandal from last year that revealed many servicers were wrongfully foreclosing on homeowners and not following existing foreclosure procedures and laws.  Robo-signing is when banks falsely swear that they have reviewed property documents that are necessary to foreclose on a homeowner’s house.  Recently both the Associated Press and Reuters reported that despite regulators’ assurances to the contrary, illegal robo-signing allegedly remains rampant in both foreclosure and non-foreclosure cases.

The request for disclosures is also based upon concern over the fact the consultants performing foreclosure reviews have conflicts of interest since they are chosen by the mortgage servicers they are hired to investigate and have done past or future business with those same mortgage servicers.  The Senators are requesting public release of Engagement Letters, Action Plans, Foreclosure Reviews, and other plans, policies, or processes submitted by mortgage servicers or third-party servicers to ensure that abuses in foreclosure practices are not being ignored by the review process.

The letter sent today was also signed by Senators Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Al Franken (D-MN), Daniel K. Akaka (D-HI), Mark Begich (D-AK), Bernie Sanders (I-VT), Jon Tester (D-MT), John D.  Rockefeller IV (D-WV), and Sherrod Brown (D-OH). All three regulators to whom the letter is addressed will appear before the Senate Banking Committee for a hearing at 10 a.m. tomorrow on the one-year anniversary of the enactment of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act.

 

Mr. John Walsh                                                           The Honorable Ben S. Bernanke

Acting Comptroller of the Currency                           Chairman

Office of the Comptroller of the Currency                 Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System Independence Square

250 E Street SW                                                         20th Street and Constitution Avenue NW

Washington, DC 20219-0001                                     Washington, D.C. 20551

Mr. Martin Gruenberg

Acting Chairman

Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation

Washington, D.C. 20429

Dear Acting Comptroller Walsh, Chairman Bernanke, and Acting Chairman Gruenberg:

We write today to urge you to make public critical information related to enforcement actions taken against mortgage servicers regarding their improper foreclosure practices.  This is especially important given this week’s allegations that mortgage servicers continue to engage in widespread “robo-signing” despite your assurances that these illegal actions would not continue.  Specifically, we request that you make public the following items related to the April 12, 2011 Consent Orders issued by your offices:

•           All “Engagement Letters” governing the mortgage servicers’ contracts with the consultants hired by the servicer to review that servicer’s foreclosure actions;

•           All “Action Plans” that mortgage servicers and third-party service providers are required to provide to regulators and that will outline the financial resources, organizational changes, measurement systems, governance controls, and timelines that will be adopted to correct improper foreclosure practices;

•           All “Foreclosure Reviews” completed by consultants for each bank, which will outline the results of their investigations into whether ownership of promissory notes or mortgages were properly documented, whether foreclosures were undertaken in accordance with state and federal law, whether calculations under the Home Affordable Modification Program and proprietary loan modification programs were done correctly, whether borrowers were charged excessive or improper fees and penalties related to delinquency, and whether any errors identified caused financial injury to borrowers, among other items;

•           Any other plans, policies, or processes submitted to your offices by mortgage servicers or third-party service providers pursuant to the April 12, 2011 Consent Orders whose disclosure is important to instill public confidence in the process and results of the foreclosure reviews. 

We believe it is essential that the items listed above be made available to the general public or the public will lack confidence in both the foreclosure review process and results.  This is particularly the case because the foreclosure reviews are being performed by consultants who are chosen by the mortgage servicers themselves, and those consultants often have conflicts of interest in that they are not prohibited from getting future business from those same mortgage servicers.   The information we are requesting is therefore necessary for the public to determine the independence of the consultants being engaged to perform the foreclosure reviews, the accuracy of the foreclosure reviews, the adequacy of the “Action Plans” in responding to your findings, whether servicer performance meets the goals they have established, and whether those homeowners who experienced harm (such as being improperly foreclosed upon or denied mortgage modifications when they should have been granted under existing criteria) are given appropriate remedies.  Based on a legal analysis by the non-partisan Congressional Research Service, we also believe that it is well within your regulatory discretion under existing laws to disclose this information in the public interest.  This is consistent with your previous determination in April that release of the Interagency Review of Foreclosure Policies and Practices, which was essentially an examination report of foreclosure practices, was also in the public interest.  We understand concerns about not revealing mortgage servicers’ proprietary information, but also believe that some disclosure can be done on a bank by bank basis without compromising proprietary information.

      Furthermore, we believe that the full disclosure of these documents to the public is necessary given the recent reports by both the Associated Press and Reuters of the continued widespread practice of “robo-signing” among mortgage servicers.  Both have alleged that servicers continue to file thousands of property documents that appear to be fabricated. Reuters also quoted a top representative from the mortgage servicing industry saying that the Consent Orders have “not put a stop to questionable practices.”  David Stevens, president of the Mortgage Bankers Association, tellingly said that some loan servicers “continue to cut corners” and “the real question is whether the servicer complied with all legal requirements.”

We respectfully request that all documents be made public and sent to Congress within one week of your office receiving them from mortgage servicers or third-party service providers.  If you have any questions about this request, please contact Amanda Fischer at (202) 225-2201 or Michael Passante at (202) 224-4744.  We appreciate your swift attention to this important matter.

###

SOURCE: http://cantwell.senate.gov/

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4closureFraud.org

Comments
14 Responses to “US Senator Maria Cantwell Calls on Federal Agencies to Release Records on Banks’ Foreclosure Practices”
  1. talktotennessee says:

    I am afraid the banks have bigger incentives or something in their pockets to bribe. . . er uh persuade all parties. It will be up to the people to foment a revolution against the powers that be.
    Watching League of Extraordinary Gentlemen.
    Now that is what we need on our side, something a little out of the ordinay: an honest man who has the people’s interests at heart.
    Where is Ralph Nadar and his ilk in our hour of need?

  2. Jim Bethea says:

    It’s late and I am making many typos but I went back and read some of the prior posts ~~ one that jumped out at my was the “LOST NOTES” comments~~~ lmao ~~ These banks do not have the original documents ~~PERIOD

    You can however track them via the security numbers of endorsements when and who they were sold to. They couldn’t even if they wanted to go back and find the proper holder of these notes and do a re-purchase but this would be so very criminal after they had sworn to the fact that they had lost them in their court documents???

    The judges and clerks in the recorder’s office know that these crooks don’t lose primary notes and that they also do not record PROMISSORY NOTES ~~ How can a bank who doesn’t even lose their el cheapo countertop pens becaused they are chained to the customers service counters, expect a resonable thinking person to believe they lose thousands of notes, but only the ones they need to produce in court to foreclose/ steal people’s property???

    Well sometimes when people are fortunate enough to be able to pay a mortgage off in full, will the banks tell them that they do not have the Deed and notes in this particular bank and they will have to ORDER them from their headquarters which will take about 30 days??? Yeah, 30 days to file a LOST NOTE via the master’s court and get a satisfaction of lien stamp from the Recorder of the Deeds Office ~~~ What a scam and fraudulent cartel of crooks~~

    NO SETTLEMENTS ~ JAIL TIME FOR THE ONES AT THE TOP WHO KNOW ALL ABOUT THESE ELEMENTS OF FRAUD THAT THEY CONTINUALLY — USE TO STEAL PROPERTIES FOR THEIR MASTERS

  3. Jim Bethea says:

    A little information may released concerning small community banks and savings and loans, but the Illuminati that owns the Federal Reserve Sys & major stockholdings in the big top 10 banks will never allow anyone including congress to touch these records….PERIOD

    Remember prior to 9/11 there was a massive lawsuit and US Atty Gen seemingly going after Citi and Chase for numerous counts of fraud …etc …etc

    Well all of the pertinent documents [of both Citi and Chase] that had been requested by court motions and subpenoas were where???? Yes, they were allegedly stored on computer servers and in file cabinet in BUILDING #7 ~~ Remember #7 was the building that fell faster than the twin towers but was not hit by anything???

    After all of these files had allegedly been diestroyed, both banks filed for an ACCELERATED HEARING under their statements that they wanted their case in court as soon as possible so that could get past all of these frivolous acqusations and get back to their regular business at hand….

    Well they had their acceleated hearing but the US Atty Gen and other prosecutors had no documented evidence at this time [the Atty Gen did not request any extensions of time either] and YES both cases and charges were DISMISSED ~~~ Later thtat same day over 10,000 pages of documents had unexpectedly appeared and from an unidentified source??? This was almost like a brazing attempt to say “you can’t touch us” !!!!

    So far no one talks much about the Illuminati owned banks? I hear a CSPAN hearing [while I was busy working] and one of the guys testifying [I can’t remember his name] was appointed to oversee the way the TARP monies were handled and was also given the authority to investigate ALLBANKS ~ In his sworn testimony he stated they when he found numerous violations of fraud within some of the TOO BIG TO FAIL [Illuminati controlled banks] he was told to focus on the savings & loans and community banks. He was also told that senate commities were handling these banks????? What the hell was that all about?? This should have been on the front pages of USA Today, New York Times, Palm Beach Post. Washington Post, etc, however, to DATE these facts and many many more daily findings of fraud within the Too Big to Fail banks remain silenced???? Forever, being hidden behind their magic curtain in the Land of Oz ~~~

    • lvent says:

      I read that one could easily say that one of those planes flew right into Chase headquarters. I believe 9-11 was the begining of the cover up for alot of shit that is happening right now.

    • lvent says:

      Did you ever see the you tube video entitled: CNBC SAYS ILLUMINATI CRASHES STOCK MARKET. I think your would find that one interesting.

    • lvent says:

      BOFA and CHASE and the FEDERAL RESERVE as well as WALL STREET are just proxies for the NEW WORLD ORDER……..THEY ARE FOLLOWING ORDERS FROM THE FOURTH REICH…….in VATICAN CITY……THE IHS-THE INTERNATIONAL HOLY SEE………

  4. Stan galyean says:

    The robo-signers broke the law, but so did the companies that hired them and created a business plan to make money off the robo-signers! Lock them all up. Based on what has happened so far, I don’t think any jail time is likely to happen.

  5. Kathleen Burt says:

    Cantwell is different from most of the others.. She doesn’t accept campaign money from lobbyists or corporations; she funds her own campaigns.( She’ used to own her own business..)

    I’m glad she wrote the letter and hope it does some good.

  6. i SO TIRED says:

    what i do not understand maybe someone can help if our own congress knows the foreclosures are all a fraud how do the continue, next question and i bet no one can answer because i do not even know the answer……..if it is true and all the mortgages were securitized and the notes were not transferred to the trusts per the PSA that some of us can not get (we have tried i have many emails to the SEC and they cant find my trust) and at the loan origination problems only the straw lender the large bank that facilitated the mortgage was on the note what about the entity that acually funed the loan??? why were they discluded from our notes and why were we not privy to what was going ot happen to our mortgages. why were we not told they were going to be sold as stocks and why were we offered as partners as an investor too since it was our signiture that funded the money. and the banks , whose brokers falsified mortgage applicaitons and appraisers were told to come in at sale price or look somewhere else for work (and most had to feed their kids) so they did what it took to come in at sale price. even though they know they used homes with sales that scewed properties values way up. homes with cash out at closing and homes flipped earning 40-50k in 6 months. normal underwriting standards would throw out thesecomparables.

    so with all these questions very few answers no one in jail

    oh and do not forget the modification fraud. how many times can a servicer lose paper work, move files and then write letters with lies to me, the occ, floridas ag bimbo, and senators. they did everything right and the homeowner did everything wrong
    and the daddy question of all: servicers told home owners that called in distress whom were not late ir missed a payment that they had to be in eminent default before we could apply for the hamp loan. i asked for this in writing i was told they could not put it in writing. i was promised that once i was eminent default i would apply for hamp and by 3 months later i should be in a hamp loan. well almost a year totally lied to in every aspect waiting for my court date. no money saved because of under employment. BK around the corner.

    one positive thing i heard was the BK judges make the bank produce real notes they do not approve robo signing

    and that comes down to my last question how do the judges allow thes papers if we all know they are fake..

  7. marvin Keith says:

    This consent order crap is an enormous cop-out. Cantwell’s letter is a proforma partisan blurb which is as fraudulent as the robo-signing itself. The only purpose of that letter is to stroke the Democrat base. Both parties are as dirty as the fraudclosers themselves. The judges, the attorney, everybody is dirty because they have the hapless homeowner to kick around. The few good guy attorneys are being attacked by their own probank associates. There is a Texas case where the goodguy was sanctioned by 78 consecutive phoney complaints the sheer volume of which, answered indivually as required, will prevent him from tending to his home owner defendants. This is paramount evil and will take years for God to avenge. I believe Obama is part of God’s wrath like a plague of vipers as is the heat of global warming. We have allowed goodnes to slide into the putrid cesspool with our highspeed commercialism and our politicized press as we pay the full price of slavery in its newest and oldest forms.

    • citizenaware says:

      Well put and most likely on the money!!!
      Food for thought here, there is such a deceptive bunch of rhetoric and deceit we should question all, yes it will take time, a lot of time but the fight must go on. Shake and sift people until a small grain of truth, should there be one, shines out. We have seen what they can do and what they will do and are doing as we try to keep up. I do believe we will be shown the path to freedom, be it here or elsewhere. Prepare your amour, it is getting bigger and nastier. Blessings to all.

    • Jeanette Ambrose says:

      So long as we wake we can turn it around but the hour is late.

  8. COCO says:

    I hope she is successful. It is a step in the right direction. The robo signers should be in jail as well as the notaries. They know that they are commiting crimes. Right now they are legal criminals. The public is confused. I know I am. Laws don’t seem to matter at all-not for the banks and their employees anyway. Put a few of them away for 10 years and you’ll see people refusing the banks and attorneys orders to commit fraud.

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