JOSEPH JONES and MEISA JONES,
and other similarly situated
WELLS FARGO BANK, N .A. ,
NATIONAL DEFAULT SERVICING
CO., STANLEY S. SILVA, and
UNITED TITLE OF NEVADA,
Last year’s robo-signing scandals delayed tens of thousands of foreclosures in the 23 states where the process is handled in court. A new controversy could complicate foreclosures in the other 27 states.
At issue is the notice of default, the first letter that a mortgage lender or servicer sends to a homeowner who has fallen behind on payments. The notice typically starts the formal foreclosure process in nonjudicial states such as California, Arizona and Nevada.
Every notice of default has a signature on it. But just like the infamously rubber-stamped affidavits in the robo-signing cases, default notices, in at least some instances, have been signed by employees who did not verify the information in them, court papers show. In several lawsuits filed in nonjudicial states, borrower attorneys are arguing that this is grounds to stop a foreclosure.
“Whoever signs the NOD needs to have knowledge that there is in fact a default,” said Christopher Peterson, an associate dean and law professor at the University of Utah.
Uh oh, this could be very bad for the “banks.”
The report goes on to say…
In a lawsuit against Wells Fargo & Co. in Nevada, an employee for a title company who signed default notices admitted in a deposition this month that he did not review any documents or know who had the right to foreclose.
“They are starting foreclosures on behalf of companies with no authority to foreclose,” said Robert Hager, an attorney with the Reno, Nev., law firm Hager & Hearne, representing the borrower in the case. “The policy of these companies is to just have a signer execute a notice of default starting foreclosure without any documentation to determine whether they are starting an illegal foreclosure.”
Well, doesn’t that sound familiar…
In a deposition on Jan. 4, Stanley Silva, a title officer at Ticor Title of Nevada Inc., said he “technically signed” default notices for clients, which were often acting as agents of other parties, which in turn worked for others.
Ahhh, sounds a bit like MERS…
Silva said under oath that he never reviewed any documents or knew what company was the holder of the original note at the time he signed the notice of default.
When asked by Hager if he signed notices of default “without verifying the accuracy of the information,” Silva replied: “Correct.”
“A huge percentage of notices of default and notices of trustee sales are legally questionable and probably void,” Hackett said. “Nobody with the authority to trigger the nonjudicial foreclosure process is triggering it — only third parties who claim they have the right to do so are triggering it.”
“Because there’s no court reviewing anything in nonjudicial states,” abuses are “probably even more rampant,” Gardner said. “This is just another example of robo-signing in a different context.”
So there you have it non-judicial states.
Here is a new area of attack on your new kind of Robo-signer…
Full deposition below…
Full Deposition of Stanley Silva, Notice of Default Robo-Signer