Never Ending Foreclosures
Foreclosure filings were reported on 124,419 U.S. properties in January 2014, an 8 percent increase from December but still down 18 percent from January 2013. Foreclosure filings were reported on 1,361,795 U.S. properties in 2013, down 26 percent from 2012 and down 53 percent from the peak of 2.9 million properties with foreclosure filings in 2010. But still, 9.3 million U.S. residential properties were deeply underwater representing 19 percent of all properties with a mortgage in December 2013, down from 10.7 million homes underwater in September 2013.
In 2006 there were 1,215,304 foreclosures, 545,000 foreclosure filings and 268,532 Home Repossessions. By 2007 foreclosures had almost doubled – up to 2,203,295 with 1,260,000 foreclosure filings and 489,000 Home Repossessions. 2008 saw an even further increase to 3,019,482 foreclosures, 2,350,000 Foreclosure filings and 679,000 Home Repossessions. In 2009 – 3,457,643 foreclosures, 2,920,000 foreclosure filings, and 945,000 Home Repossessions. 2010: 3,843,548 foreclosures, 3,500,000 foreclosure filings, and 1,125,000 Home Repossessions. 2011: 3,920,418 foreclosures, 3,580,000 foreclosure filings, and 1,147,000 Home Repossessions. Then January to September 2012: 1,616,427 foreclosures 1,382,000 foreclosure filings and 572,844 Repossessions. The remainder of 2012 – September through December saw an additional 2,300,000 foreclosures, 2,100,000 foreclosure filings and 700,000 Repossessions. In other words, from 2006 through 2012, there were a total of 21,576,117 foreclosures; 17,637,000 foreclosure filings; 5,926,376 Home Repossessions. The foreclosures added to the repossessions is equal to: 27,502,493. The numbers are staggering.
Many of the homes have been wrongfully foreclosed upon, where either the party had not been in default, or the foreclosing party lacked standing to foreclose. It has become almost as lawless as the wildwest, or comparable to a shark feeding frenzy.
 All of the foreclosure figures came from RealtyTrac: http://www.realtytrac.com/content/foreclosure-market-report
 http://www.statisticbrain.com/home-foreclosure-statistics/Statistic Verification Source: RealtyTrac, Federal Reserve, Equifax
New Legal Issues – Jeff Barnes Esq., Foreclosure Defense Nationwide
NEW LEGAL ISSUES COMING UP IN TRIAL AND APPELLATE COURTS
DECEMBER 16, 2013
December 16, 2013
With the release of the US Bank admissions per our post of November 6, 2013; the issuance of the opinions from the Supreme Courts of Oregon and Montana holding that MERS is not the “beneficiary”; and recent opinions from various jurisdictions which are now, finally, holding that securitization-related issues are relevant in a foreclosure, a host of new legal issues are about to be litigated in the trial and appellate courts throughout the country. It has taken six (6) years and coast-to-coast work to get courts to realize that securitization of a mortgage loan raises issues as to standing, real party in interest, and the alleged authority to foreclose, and that the simplistic mantra of the “banks” and servicers of “we have the note, thus we win” is no longer to be blindly accepted.
One issue which we and others are litigating relates to mortgage loans originated by Option One, which changed its name to Sand Canyon Corporation and thereafter ceased all mortgage loan operations. Pursuant to the sworn testimony of the former President of Sand Canyon, it stopped owning mortgage loans as of 2008. However, even after this cessation of any involvement with servicing or ownership of mortgage loans, we see “Assignments” from Option One or Sand Canyon to a securitization trustee bank or other third party long after 2008.
The United States District Court for the District of New Hampshire concluded, with the admission of the President of Sand Canyon, that the homeowner’s challenge to the foreclosure based on a 2011 alleged transfer from Sand Canyon to Wells Fargo was not an “attack on the assignment” which certain jurisdictions have precluded on the alleged basis that the borrower is not a party to the assignment, but is a situation where no assignment occurred because it could not have as a matter of admitted fact, as Sand Canyon could not assign something it did not have. The case is Drouin v. American Home Mortgage Servicing, Inc. and Wells Fargo, etc., No. 11-cv-596-JL.
The Option One/Sand Canyon situation is not unique: there are many originating “lenders” which allegedly “assigned” mortgages or Deeds of Trust long after they went out of business or filed for Bankruptcy, with no evidence of post-closing assignment authority or that the Bankruptcy court having jurisdiction over a bankrupt lender ever granted permission for the alleged transfer of the loan (which is an asset of the Bankruptcy estate) out of the estate. Such a transfer without proof of authority to do so implicates bankruptcy fraud (which is a serious crime punishable under United States criminal statutes), and fraud on the court in a foreclosure case where such an alleged assignment is relied upon by the foreclosing party.
As we stated in our post of November 6, the admission of US Bank that a borrower is a party to any MBS transaction and that the loan is governed by the trust documents means that the borrower is, in fact, a party to any assignment of that borrower’s loan, and should thus be permitted to seek discovery as to any alleged assignment and all issues related to the securitization of the loan. We have put this issue out in many of our cases, and will be arguing this position at both the trial and appellate levels beginning early 2014.
Jeff Barnes, Esq., http://www.ForeclosureDefenseNationwide.com
Thoughts on Foreclosures
James and I were working outside, and he called me over and we began talking about that which occupies most of out time…
Many people don’t realize it, but there are many unseen reasons that people are foreclosed on. After putting people into toxic loans, and putting those toxic loans into pools with numerous other toxic loans, there was just a matter of time before the loans would go default, we all know that, the payments would become unmanageable.
But many people, those who came to a better standing than they had been before, and being more prosperous, and even those who were not, would have gone on to refinance those loans. That could not be allowed to happen, because the loans would be paid off and the loans dissolved. How do you stop someone from refinancing their loan? Foreclose before they can.
They could not have anyone pulling the loans out of the Trusts that the loans had allegedly gone into, there was no money in the Trusts anyway. The Banksters have a way of turning everything into a matter of profit.
Foreclosure Defense Nationwide – Jeff Barnes, Esq
Jeff Barnes, Esq. On the Ball!
US BANK ADMITS, IN WRITING FROM THEIR CORPORATE OFFICE, THAT THE BORROWER IS A PARTY TO AN MBS TRANSACTION; THAT SECURITIZATION TRUSTEES ARE NOT INVOLVED IN THE FORECLOSURE PROCESS; HAVE NO ADVANCE KNOWLEDGE OF WHEN A LOAN HAS DEFAULTED; THAT THE “TRUE BENEFICIAL OWNERS” OF A SECURITIZED MORTGAGE ARE THE INVESTORS IN THE MBS; AND THAT THE GOAL OF A SERVICER IS TO “MAXIMIZE THE RETURN TO INVESTORS” November 6, 2013
We have been provided with a copy of U.S. Bank Global Corporate Trust Services’ “Role of the Corporate Trustee” brochure which makes certain incredible admissions, several of which squarely disprove and nullify the holdings of various courts around the country which have taken the position that the borrower “is not a party to” the securitization and is thus not entitled to discovery or challenges to the mortgage loan transfer process. The brochure accompanied a letter from US Bank to one of our clients which states: “Your account is governed by your loan documents and the Trust’s governing documents”, which admission clearly demonstrates that the borrower’s loan is directly related to documents governing whatever securitized mortgage loan trust the loan has allegedly been transferred to. This brochure proves that Courts which have held to the contrary are wrong on the facts.
The first heading of the brochure is styled “Distinct Party Roles”. The first sentence of this heading states: “Parties involved in a MBS transaction include the borrower, the originator, the servicer and the trustee, each with their own distinct roles, responsibilities and limitations.” MBS is defined at the beginning of the brochure as the sale of “Mortgage Backed Securities in the capital markets”. The fourth page of the brochure also identifies the “Parties to a Mortgage Backed Securities Transaction”, with the first being the “Borrower”, followed by the Investment Bank/Sponsor, the Investor, the Originator, the Servicer, the Trust (referred to “generally as a special purpose entity, such as a Real Estate Mortgage Investment Conduit (REMIC)”), and the Trustee (stating that “the trustee does not have an economic or beneficial interest in the loans”).
The second page sets forth that U.S. Bank, as Trustee, “does not have any discretion or authority in the foreclosure process.” If this is true, how can U.S. Bank as Trustee be the Plaintiff in judicial foreclosures or the foreclosing party in non-judicial foreclosures if it has “no authority in the foreclosure process”?
The second page also states: “All trustees for MBS transactions, including U.S. Bank, have no advance knowledge of when a mortgage loan has defaulted.” Really? So when, for example, MERS assigns, in 2011, a loan to a 2004 Trust where the loan has been in default since 2008, no MBS “trustee” bank (and note that it says “All” trustees) do not know that a loan coming into the trust is in default? The trust just blindly accepts loans which may or may not be in default without any advanced due diligence? Right. Sure. Of course. LOL.
However, that may be true, because the trustee banks do not want to know, for then they can take advantage of the numerous insurances, credit default swaps, reserve pools, etc. set up to pay the trust when loans are in default, as discussed below.
The same page states that “Any action taken by the servicer must maximize the return on the investment made by the ‘beneficial owners of the trust’ — the investors.” The fourth page of the brochure states that the investors are “the true beneficial owners of the mortgages”, and the third page of the brochure states “Whether the servicer pursues a foreclosure or considers a modification of the loan, the goal is still to maximize the return to investors” (who, again, are the true beneficial owners of the mortgage loans).
This is a critical admission in terms of what happens when a loan is securitized. The borrower initiated a mortgage loan with a regulated mortgage banking institution, which is subject to mortgage banking rules, regulations, and conditions, with the obligation evidenced by the loan documents being one of simple loaning of money and repayment, period. Once a loan is sold off into a securitization, the homeowner is no longer dealing with a regulated mortgage banking institution, but with an unregulated private equity investor which is under no obligation to act in the best interest to maintain the loan relationship, but to “maximize the return”. This, as we know, almost always involves foreclosure and denial of a loan mod, as a foreclosure (a) results in the acquisition of a tangible asset (the property); and (b) permits the trust to take advantage of reserve pools, credit default swaps, first loss reserves, and other insurances to reap even more monies in connection with the claimed “default” (with no right of setoff as to the value of the property against any such insurance claims), and in a situation where the same risk was permitted to be underwritten many times over, as there was no corresponding legislation or regulation which precluded a MBS insurer (such as AIG, MGIC, etc.) from writing a policy on the same risk more than once.
As those of you know who have had Bloomberg reports done on securitized loans, the screens show loans which have been placed into many tranches (we saw one where the same loan was collateralized in 41 separate tranches, each of which corresponded to a different class of MBS), and with each class of MBS having its own insurance, the “trust” could make 41 separate insurance claims AND foreclose on the house as well! Talk about “maximizing return for the investor”! What has happened is that the securitization parties have unilaterally changed the entire nature of the mortgage loan contract without any prior notice to or approval from the borrower.
There is no language in any Note or Mortgage document (DOT, Security Deed, or Mortgage) by which the borrower is put on notice that the entire nature of the mortgage loan contract and the other contracting party may be unilaterally changed from a loan with a regulated mortgage lender to an “investment” contract with a private equity investor. This, in our business, is called “fraud by omission” for purposes of inducing someone to sign a contract, with material nondisclosure of matters which the borrower had to have to make the proper decision as to whether to sign the contract or not.
U.S. Bank has now confirmed, in writing from its own corporate offices in St. Paul, Minnesota, so much of what we have been arguing for years. This brochure should be filed in every securitization case for discovery purposes and opposing summary judgments or motions to dismiss where the securitized trustee “bank” takes the position that “the borrower is not part of the securitization and thus has no standing to question it.” U. S. Bank has confirmed that the borrower is in fact a party to an MBS transaction, period, and that the mortgage loan is in fact governed, in part, by “the Trust’s governing documents”, which are thus absolutely relevant for discovery purposes.
Jeff Barnes, Esq.,
From Living Lies – On Stopa’s Courage, and Appellate Court’s Bias
Attorney Mark Stopa Shows Guts Confronting Appellate Court Bias
Posted on October 4, 2013 by Neil Garfield
I have just received a copy of a daring and tempestuous motion for rehearing en banc filed by the winner of the appeal. The homeowner won because of precedent, law and common sense; but the court didn’t like their own decision and certified an absurd question to the Florida Supreme Court. The question was whether the Plaintiff in a foreclosure case needs to have standing at the commencement of the action. Whether it is jurisdictional or not (I think it is clearly jurisdictional) Stopa is both right on the law and right on his challenge to the Court on the grounds of BIAS.
The concurring opinion of the court actually says that the court is ruling for the homeowner because it must — but asserts that it is leading to a result that fails to expedite cases where the outcome of the inevitable foreclosure is never in doubt. In other words, the appellate court has officially taken the position that we know before we look at a foreclosure case that the bank should win and the homeowner should lose. The entire court should be recused for bias that they have put in writing. What homeowner can bring an action or defend an action where the outcome desired by the courts in that district have already decided that homeowners are deadbeats and their defenses are quite literally a waste of time? Under the rules, the Court should not hear the the motion for rehearing en banc, should vacate that part of the decision that sets up the rube certified question, and the justices who participated must be recused from hearing further appeals on foreclosure cases.
Lest their be any mistake, and without any attempt to step on the toes of Stopa’s courageous brief on an appeal he already won, I wish to piggy back on his brief and expand certain points. The problem here might be the subject of a federal due process action against the state. Judges who have already decided foreclosure or mortgage litigation cases before they even see them are not fit to hear them. It IS that simple.
The question here was stated as the issue of standing at the commencement of the lawsuit. Does the bank need to have a claim before it files it? The question is so absurd that it is difficult to address without a joke. But this is not funny. The courts have rapidly evolved into a position that expedited decisions are better than fair decisions. There is NOTHING in the law that supports that position and thousands of cases that say the opposite is true under our system of law. Any judge who leans the other way should be recused or taken off the bench entirely.
In lay terms, the Appellate Court’s certified question would allow anyone who thinks they might have a claim in the future to file the lawsuit now. And the Court believes this will relieve the clogged court calendars. If this matter is taken seriously and the Supreme Court accepts the certified question for serious review it will merely by acceptance be making a statement that makes it possible for all kinds of claims that anticipate an injury.
It is bad enough that judges appear to be ignoring the requirement that there must be an allegation that a loan was made by the originating party and that the Plaintiff actually bought the loan. This was an obvious requirement that was consistently required in pleading until the courts were clogged with mortgage litigation, at which point the court system tilted far past due process and said that if the borrower stopped paying there were no conditions under which the borrower could win the case.
It is bad enough that Judges appear to be ignoring the requirement that the allegation that the Plaintiff will suffer financial damage unless relief is granted. This was an obvious requirement that was consistently required in pleading until the mortgage meltdown.
Why is this important? Because the facts will show that lenders consistently violated basic and advanced protections that have been federal and State law for decades. These violations more often than not produced an unenforceable loan — as pointed out in law suits by federal and state regulators, and as pointed out by the lawsuits of investors who were real lenders who are screwed each time the court enters foreclosure judgment in favor of the bank instead of the investor lenders.
It is not the fault of borrowers that this mess was created. It is the fault of Wall Street Bankers who were working a scheme to defraud investors by diverting the real transaction and making it appear that the banks were principals in the loan transaction when in fact they were never real parties in interest. Nobody would seriously argue that this eliminates the debt. But why are we enforcing that debt with completely defective mortgage instruments in a process that confirms the fraud and ratifies it to the damage of investors who put up the money in the first place? The courts have made a choice that is unavailable in our system of law.
This is also judicial laziness. If these justices want to weigh in on the mortgage mess, then they should have the facts and not the stories put forward by Wall Street that have been proven to be pure fiction, fabrication, lies and perjury. That the Court ignores what is plainly documented in hundreds of thousands of defective mortgage transactions and the behavior of banks that resulted in “strangers to the transaction” being awarded title to property — that presents sufficient grounds to challenge any court in the system on grounds of bias and due process. If ever we had a mass hysteria for prejudging cases, this is it.
Neil Garfield | October 4, 2013 at 9:26 am | Tags: bias, Mark Stopa, motion for rehearing en banc, recusal, removal of judge, standing | Categories: CORRUPTION, Eviction, foreclosure, foreclosure mill, investment banking, Investor, MODIFICATION, Mortgage, Motions, Pleading, politics, securities fraud, Servicer | URL: http://wp.me/p7SnH-5GX
Why Does No One Do Anything?
Protesters Turned Into Those Whom They Were Protesting SUX!
BY NOOTKABEAR ON SEPTEMBER 30, 2013
You know, I have been thinking a lot lately about why it is that the Protesters from the 60′s and early 70′s are really pissing me off nowadays. They act like a bunch of sheep or cattle. The whole country is running amock and nobody says a damned thing about it. IT SUX!
I have come to the realization that the Protesters from the 60′-70′s turned into the very thing they were protesting, except even more so. It SUX!
You would have thought that those protesters would have gone on to make a difference, and that there would not be all of this corruption that we deal with on a daily basis. The flower children, peace – love and rock & roll. What the hell happened? Those people forgot everything about why they were protesting in the first place. They forgot “let’s love one another”, forgot about “live and let live”. Hell they are worse than the people they were protesting, because they are hypocrites.
Now, they go sludging along, fuck it if everyone is being foreclosed upon, even if they paid for the property in full. Fuck it if we have WWIII because our president is a fuck up. Fuck it if Russia nukes us. Fuck it if the Japanese have ended life on earth with their meltdown problem. Fuck it if Russia’s Putin now speaks when the United States should have been speaking. Fuck it if the Christians are being slaughtered. Fuck it if there are no jobs. Fuck it if Obamacare causes all of us to be denied healthcare we are entitled to.
Fuck it, Fuck it, fuck it. THIS SUX! This is not who we are. This is not what are forefathers would have accepted. This is not how we got to where we were.
So this week, the Protesters, turned cattle, sheep and couch potatoes are what SUX!!!
Thank You Living Lies, Neil Garfield, For Telling It Like It Is!
New post on Livinglies’s Weblog
Bank of America whistle-blowers By David Dayen Great Story!
(Credit: Sashkin via Shutterstock/Salon)
Bank of America’s mortgage servicing unit systematically lied to homeowners, fraudulently denied loan modifications, and paid their staff bonuses for deliberately pushing people into foreclosure: Yes, these allegations were suspected by any homeowner who ever had to deal with the bank to try to get a loan modification – but now they come from six former employees and one contractor, whose sworn statements were added last week to a civil lawsuit filed in federal court in Massachusetts.
“Bank of America’s practice is to string homeowners along with no apparent intention of providing the permanent loan modifications it promises,” said Erika Brown, one of the former employees. The damning evidence would spur a series of criminal investigations of BofA executives, if we still had a rule of law in this country for Wall Street banks.
The government’s Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP), which gave banks cash incentives to modify loans under certain standards, was supposed to streamline the process and help up to 4 million struggling homeowners (to date, active permanent modifications numberabout 870,000). In reality, Bank of America used it as a tool, say these former employees, to squeeze as much money as possible out of struggling borrowers before eventually foreclosing on them. Borrowers were supposed to make three trial payments before the loan modification became permanent; in actuality, many borrowers would make payments for a year or more, only to find themselves rejected for a permanent modification, and then owing the difference between the trial modification and their original payment. Former Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner famously described HAMP as a means to “foam the runway” for the banks, spreading out foreclosures so banks could more readily absorb them.
These Bank of America employees offer the first glimpse into how they pulled it off. Employees, many of whom allege they were given no basic training on how to even use HAMP, were instructed to tell borrowers that documents were incomplete or missing when they were not, or that the file was “under review” when it hadn’t been accessed in months. Former loan-level representative Simone Gordon says flat-out in her affidavit that “we were told to lie to customers” about the receipt of documents and trial payments. She added that the bank would hold financial documents borrowers submitted for review for at least 30 days. “Once thirty days passed, Bank of America would consider many of these documents to be ‘stale’ and the homeowner would have to re-apply for a modification,” Gordon writes. Theresa Terrelonge, another ex-employee, said that the company would consistently tell homeowners to resubmit information, restarting the clock on the HAMP process.
Worse than this, Bank of America would simply throw out documents on a consistent basis. Former case management supervisor William Wilson alleged that, during bimonthly sessions called the “blitz,” case managers and underwriters would simply deny any file with financial documents that were more than 60 days old. “During a blitz, a single team would decline between 600 and 1,500 modification files at a time,” Wilson wrote. “I personally reviewed hundreds of files in which the computer systems showed that the homeowner had fulfilled a Trial Period Plan and was entitled to a permanent loan modification, but was nevertheless declined for a permanent modification during a blitz.” Employees were then instructed to make up a reason for the denial to submit to the Treasury Department, which monitored the program. Others say that bank employees falsified records in the computer system and removed documents from homeowner files to make it look like the borrower did not qualify for a permanent modification.
Senior managers provided carrots and sticks for employees to lie to customers and push them into foreclosure. Simone Gordon described meetings where managers created quotas for lower-level employees, and a bonus system for reaching those quotas. Employees “who placed ten or more accounts into foreclosure in a given month received a $500 bonus,” Gordon wrote. “Bank of America also gave employees gift cards to retail stores like Target or Bed Bath and Beyond as rewards for placing accounts into foreclosure.” Employees were closely monitored, and those who didn’t meet quotas, or who dared to give borrowers accurate information, were fired, as was anyone who “questioned the ethics … of declining loan modifications for false and fraudulent reasons,” according to William Wilson.
Bank of America characterized the affidavits as “rife with factual inaccuracies.” But they match complaints from borrowers having to resubmit documents multiple times, and getting denied for permanent modifications despite making all trial payments. And these statements come from all over the country from ex-employees without a relationship to one another. It did not result from one “rogue” bank branch.
Simply put, Bank of America didn’t want to hire enough staff to handle the crush of loan modification requests, and used these delaying tactics as a shortcut. They also pushed people into foreclosure to collect additional fees from them. And after rejecting borrowers for HAMP modifications, they would offer an in-house modification with a higher interest rate. This was all about profit maximization. “We were regularly drilled that it was our job to maximize fees for the Bank by fostering and extending delay of the HAMP modification process by any means we could,” wrote Simone Gordon in her affidavit.
It is a testament to the corruption of the federal regulatory and law enforcement apparatus that we’re only hearing evidence from inside Bank of America now, in a civil class-action lawsuit from wronged homeowners, when the behavior was so rampant for years. For example, the Treasury Department, charged with specific oversight for HAMP, didn’t sanction a single bank for failing to follow program guidelines for three years, and certainly did not uncover any of this criminal conduct. Steven Cupples, a former underwriter at Bank of America, explained in his statement how the bank falsified records to Treasury to make it look like they granted more modifications. But Treasury never investigated. Meanwhile, the Justice Department joined with state Attorneys General and other federal regulators to essentially bless this conduct in a series of weak settlements that incorporated other bank crimes as well, like “robo-signing” and submitting false documents to courts.
These affidavits, however, should return law enforcement to the case. William Wilson, the case management supervisor, alleges in his statement that this “ridiculous and immoral” conduct continued through August of 2012, when he was eventually fired for speaking up. That means Bank of America persisted with these activities for at least six months AFTER the main, $25 billion settlement to which they were a party. So state and federal regulators could sue Bank of America over this new criminal conduct, which post-dates the actions for which they released liability under the main settlement. Attorneys general in New York and Florida have accused Bank of America of violating the terms of the settlement, but they could simply open new cases about these new deceptive practices.
They would have no shortage of evidence, in addition to the sworn affidavits. According to Theresa Terrelonge, most loan-level representatives conducted their business through email; in fact, various email communications have already been submitted under seal in the Massachusetts civil case. State Attorneys General or US Attorneys would have subpoena power to gather many more emails.
And they would have very specific targets: the ex-employees listed specific executives by name who authorized and directed the fraudulent process. “The delay and rejection programs were methodically carried out under the overall direction of Patrick Kerry, a Vice President who oversaw the entire eastern region’s loan modification process,” wrote William Wilson. Other executives mentioned by name include John Berens, Patricia Feltch and Rebecca Mairone (now at JPMorgan Chase, and already named in a separate financial fraud case). These are senior executives who, if this alleged conduct is true, should face criminal liability.
Bank accountability activists have already seized on the revelations. “This is not surprising, but absolutely sickening,” said Peggy Mears, organizer for the Home Defenders League. “Maybe finally our courts and elected officials will stand with communities over Wall Street and prosecute, and then lock up, these criminals.”
Sadly, it’s hard to raise hopes of that happening. Past experience shows that our top regulatory and law enforcement officials are primarily interested in covering for Wall Street’s crimes. These well-sourced allegations amount to an accusation of Bank of America stealing thousands of homes, and lying to the government about it. Homeowners who did everything asked of them were nevertheless pushed into foreclosure, all to fortify profits on Wall Street. There’s a clear path to punish Bank of America for this conduct. If it doesn’t result in prosecutions, it will once again confirm the sorry excuse for justice we have in America.
Update: Read the full affidavits from the active court case here.
David Dayen is a freelance writer based in Los Angeles, CA. Follow him on Twitter at @ddayen.MORE DAVID DAYEN.
<a href="http://www.gopetition.com/petitions/mandated-national-land-record-audit.html">National Land Records Audit Petition | GoPetition</a>
Lenders, Banksters, Courts, and all you other liars and thieves…
COMES NOW… proceeding in Propria Persona, and respectfully files Plaintiff’s Opposition to Defendant Federal National Mortgage Association’s Motion to Dismiss, and shows this Honorable Court the following pertinent facts:
Federal National Mortgage Association (“Fannie Mae”) has filed their Motion to Dismiss, pursuant to O.C.G.A.§ 9-11-12(b), and on the claims that Plaintiff is a borrower who defaulted in repayment of his mortgage loan, resulting in the foreclosing on the real property which served as collateral for the loan. Plaintiff contends that had the banking and mortgage industry not been so greedy, they would not have over inflated the values through falsified appraisals on properties; they would not have been telling Borrowers not to worry, they can work out an affordable loan that will get you into that house you always dreamed of, while knowing in the back of their minds, that when the Borrower claims that they believed and relied upon their lenders, and what they had been told; the response would then be that the relationship had been nothing more than creditor – debtor and that you should not have relied upon the lies you had been told, because you are at different ends of the spectrum, with totally different interests. My Grandmother would say that America has gone to hell in a handbag.
We have headed into an era where the foreclosing entities are allowed to forge and falsify documents, because the borrower defaulted on their payments, and they need those documents that they are forging and falsifying in order to foreclose upon that Borrower, and the original documents no longer exist. Plaintiff was of the belief, that if you signed a contract, that the Original contract had to be kept in order for it to be collected upon, simple contract law. As it is in these foreclosure/wrongful foreclosure cases, the only time the documents are referred to contracts, is when the documents are referred to as in the Borrower failed to honor the contract by timely making their payments every month. Any other time, the words contract, does not exist. Should a Borrower mention the word, or words Note or Promissory Note, it is sacrilege and the Borrower is “claiming the show me the note theory”, or “vapor money theory”, which is a cue to the Court to dismiss because Georgia does not have a law that the foreclosing entity has to show you the Note. And then, there are the entities that think that they can talk to, and treat the pro se litigants any way they please.
No one would be in this mess, if Fannie Mae, US Bank,Wells Fargo, Bank of America, Aurora, Litton, Taylor Bean and Whitaker, Cenlar, GMAC, Wachovia, Popular, Countrywide, MERS, and a whole slew of other entities had not gotten greedy, eased the underwriting, slacked off on checking tax forms and employment, and had not lied that the borrowers could afford it, this loan will allow you to buy the home you always wanted.
L. Randall Wray: The $7 Trillion Question That Haunts Banks
L. Randall Wray
Professor of Economics and Research Director of the Center for Full Employment and Price Stability, University of Missouri–Kansas City
The $7 Trillion Question That Haunts Banks
Posted: 03/16/2012 4:09 pm
I’ve been writing about the MERS monster since 2010. Here is one of my early pieces.
I suppose it is now safe to reveal that a staffer of Representative Marcy Kaptur put me on the trail of this fraud — in dollar terms it has to be the single biggest fraud in human history. In sheer utter disregard for law, it is certainly the most audacious fraud in Western history. To tell the truth, I had never heard of MERS until she called. If you recall the Michael Moore movie, Rep. Kaptur stood on the steps and told homeowners facing foreclosure to stay in their homes. She was right: the banksters have no legal claim on the homes they are foreclosing. Foreclosure is theft. Any bank that used MERS has no legal claim on property — there are 65 million such mortgages to which no bank has a legal claim to foreclose.
And, to be sure, even those mortgages that were not run through MERS are suspect if they are handled by any of the five biggest servicers. These servicers keep such shoddy records that they cannot be trusted to accurately credit payments. They’ve been adding on fees and penalties that were unwarranted since they cannot keep track of records.
Folks, there are $7 trillion of securitized mortgages. It was (mostly) the securitization process that demanded fraud. Securitization could never have been profitable — it was a flawed way to go about financing homeownership. It was simply too expensive to compete with Jimmy Stewart thrifts. It required fraud to show profits. (As Bill Black always says: fraud is a sure thing. It is always the most profitable way to run a business — until you get caught.)
In addition to the MERS monster, we also know the securities did not meet the "reps and warranties" claimed. The banks that did the securizations will continue to get sued to take back bad mortgages. They are trying to shovel as many of these back to Fannie and Freddie as they can so that Uncle Sam will take the losses — as discussed in my previous blog they are now doing it through sale of servicing rights.
And of course Uncle Ben has helpfully put a lot of them on the Fed’s balance sheet. This is all part of the cover-up to avoid the obvious: all these big banks are massively insolvent as soon as the courts wake up to the fact that the whole damned real estate finance onion is layer upon layer of fraud.
But let us stick to the MERS fraud.
There should be an immediate and complete halt to all foreclosures in the US, and all foreclosures that have been completed over the past decade should be nullified. Yes that will get messy. But continuing with foreclosures will make the mess immeasurably worse. This foreclosure crisis is not going to stop.
No one should buy any bank-owned real estate because it is probable that eventually the US will return to the rule of law. The property will be returned to the rightful owners — those who were illegally kicked out of their houses.
Now that might be a pipe dream, but if the US is not going to be a nation ruled by law then it will not survive.
The biggest banks — including the GSEs — created MERS and proceeded to destroy our nation’s real estate property law. That is not an overstatement. Robo-signing is just one small and inevitable consequence of the fraud. The truth is that foreclosure cannot go through without fraud because the banks do not have the documents to show clear title.
Banks don’t have them because they do not exist.
There are no records because that was MERS’s business model: destroy all records of ownership while speeding the securitization process.
And since the mortgages themselves were often frauds (designing "affordability products" that homeowners could not afford), many would end in delinquency. So MERS was designed to speed the foreclosure process — it would be so much easier to foreclose if you didn’t bother with documents, records, and property law. Just kick the owners out, take the home, sell it, and reboot the whole scam again.
Another whistleblower has come forward, this one from CBO. Lan Pham was fired because she refused to get with the program: the government is supposed to help the banksters cover up their frauds, NOT expose them! She refused. So she was fired. Now she tells her story.
I won’t repeat her entire story — you can read it at Zerohedge. Here are a few quotes from Lan Pham, the CBO whistle-blower:
I was repeatedly pressured by the CBO Assistant Director, Deborah Lucas… to not write nor discuss issues in the banking sector and mortgage markets that might suggest weakness in these sectors and their consequences on the economy and households…
…Issues at the heart of the foreclosure problems pertain to securitization….and the Mortgage Electronic Registration System (MERS), which purports to have legal standing on electronic records of ownership on about 65 million…mortgages… MERS…facilitated Wall Street’s ability to expedite the pooling of subprime mortgages into MBSs by bypassing standard ownership transfer procedures as the housing bubble escalated…
The implications have profound financial and economic consequences that would be of compelling interest to Congress and the public, but the CBO sought to silence a discussion of such risks, that in reality have been materializing. These risks put into question the ability of investors or bondholders to make claims on the collateral (the homes) that underlies trillions of dollars in MBSs, the bulk of which are now guaranteed by …Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. This affects $10 trillion in residential mortgage debt outstanding, of which $7 trillion in mortgage-backed securities (MBSs)…
The CBO dismissing such issues prevents an analysis of the risks, so that the public may be forced again to shoulder the consequences for which they have not been a given a voice or a choice.
Essentially, the chain of title on securitized mortgages appears broken, whether or not there is a foreclosure. This would pertain to most homebuyers in the past 10 years as most mortgages were securitized by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac providing the guarantees, and the largest banks ("The $7 Trillion MBS Problem – Foreclosure Problems and Buybacks"). Recall that these same entities founded MERS, which expedited securitization and purported to have foreclosure authority from its electronic records of ownership on about 65 million mortgages. "Robo-signing" emerged as fraudulent or defective documents were used or created to establish the legal authority to foreclose as MERS faced legal challenges; as of July 22, 2011, foreclosures could no longer be initiated in MERS’ name. At last year’s pace, some figures suggest it could take lenders in New York 62 years to clear their foreclosure inventory, 49 years in New Jersey and a decade in Florida, Massachusetts, and Illinois.
It is unclear how the recent State attorney generals’ agreement to a proposed yet unpublished terms of the $25 billion robo-signing settlement would repair the chain of title issues that continue to mutate. In January 2011, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court reversed the foreclosure actions of two banks for lacking proof of clear title, followed by a decision in October 2011 that a buyer who purchased a house that was improperly foreclosed upon does not make the buyer the new owner of the house; the sale does not transfer the property.
A striking little mention fact of the Massachusetts foreclosure case was that the lenders could not show that the two mortgages were part of the securitization pool. Let’s consider a thought exercise. Others have the raised the question: if the entity that has been taking the homeowners’ mortgage payments is not the real owner, what happens when the true owner(s) of the mortgage shows up? Are homeowners on the hook again for those ‘missed’ mortgage payments? It was not uncommon for mortgages to be sold multiple times, and it is my understanding that loans were intentionally not given unique identifiers as it moved from origination or purchase through to securitization.
This is what I’ve been arguing since 2010. This will not go away — no matter how much the Administration, the Congress, and the banks try to cover it up.
Cross-posted from EconoMonitor
Guilford County, North Carolina Register of Deeds Want The Mess Cleaned Up!
STATE OF NORTH CAROLINA IN THE GENERAL COURT OF JUSTICE
SUPERIOR COURT DIVISION
NATURE AND SUMMARY OF THIS ACTION
1. This lawsuit seeks to have Defendants clean up the mess they created in
Guilford County’s public property records and to hold Defendants accountable for their unfair and deceptive trade practices.
COUNTY OF GUILFORD GUILFORD COUNTY, ex rel. JEFF L.
THIGPEN, GUILFORD COUNTY REGISTER OF DEEDS,
LENDER PROCESSING SERVICES, INC.;
DOCX, LLC; LPS DEFAULT SOLUTIONS,
INC.; MERSCORP HOLDINGS, INC.;
REGISTRATION SYSTEMS, INC.; WELLS
FARGO BANK, N.A.; WELLS FARGO
HOME MORTGAGE, INC.; BANK OF
AMERICA, N.A.; JPMORGAN CHASE
BANK, N.A.; CHASE HOME FINANCE
LLC; EMC MORTGAGE CORPORATION;
MIDFIRST BANK; SAND CANYON
CORPORATION; CITI RESIDENTIAL
LENDING, INC.; GREEN TREE
SERVICING, LLC; AMERIQUEST
MORTGAGE COMPANY; USAA
FEDERAL SAVINGS BANK; AMERICAN
HOME MORTGAGE SERVICING, INC.;
MOREQUITY, INC.; U.S. BANK
EQUICREDIT CORPORATION OF
FINANCIAL SERVICES CORP.; ARGENT
MORTGAGE COMPANY, LLC; THE
BANK OF NEW YORK MELLON; THE
BANK OF NEW YORK MELLON TRUST
COMPANY, N.A.; CAPITAL ONE, N.A.;
FIRST FRANKLIN FINANCIAL CORP.;
NAVY FEDERAL CREDIT UNION; and
WEICHERT FINANCIAL SERVICES;
New York sues banks over foreclosures – Feb. 3, 2012
New York sues banks over foreclosures
- By Jennifer Liberto@CNNMoneyFebruary 3, 2012: 3:15 PM ET
New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman has sued the big banks over their use of a private electronic mortgage registry.
WASHINGTON (CNNMoney) — The New York attorney general sued some of the nation’s biggest banks on Friday, accusing them of unlawful and deceptive practices for relying on a private electronic registry that tracks mortgages.
Attorney General Eric Schneiderman on Friday sued Bank of America (BAC, Fortune 500), Wells Fargo (WFC, Fortune 500), JPMorgan Chase (JPM, Fortune 500), as well as the Mortgage Electronic Registration System Inc. (MERS) in New York state court.
Schneiderman says that the banks created the electronic registry as an "end-run" around the public property recording system to help them more quickly buy and sell parts of mortgages. He said the system helped banks create "deceptive and fraudulent court submissions" and improperly foreclose on homeowners.
"Our action demonstrates that there is one set of rules for all — no matter how big or powerful the institution may be — and that those rules will be enforced vigorously," said Attorney General Schneiderman in a statement.
Foreclosure settlement could be coming
MERS runs a database created in the 1995 to digitize and centralize the paperwork surrounding the bundling and selling of the loans. MERS members include most of the large banks in the mortgage industry. More than 70 million loans are registered in the MERS system, including 30 million that are active, according to the New York attorney general’s office.
The New York suit alleges that the database was used by the big banks to transfer ownership of mortgage debt without paying government registration fees and properly recording the transactions. The system also concealed the identities of the holders of mortgage debt from borrowers, the suit claims.
"MERS’ conduct, as well as the servicers’ use of the MERS System, has resulted in the filing of improper New York foreclosure proceedings, undermined the integrity of the judicial process, created confusion and uncertainty concerning property ownership interests, and potentially clouded titles on properties throughout the State of New York," according to a statement by the New York Attorney General.
MERSCORP, parent company for Mortgage Electronic Registration System Inc., said the company refutes the attorney general’s claims, adding that federal and state courts nationwide have already upheld the MERS’ business model, according to a statement.
One Washington research analyst notes that the New York charges are similar to past cases brought against MERS, and that so far, "the industry has won most of those challenges," said Jaret Seiberg, of Guggenheim’s Washington Research Group "The ones they lost tend to be on narrow issues.
In December the Massachusetts attorney general filed a lawsuit against the same banks, as well as Citigroup (C, Fortune 500) and GMAC Mortgage, alleging similar complaints. That case is still pending.
Schneiderman is also leading a working group of federal and state officials that the president put together to investigate mortgage securities fraud.
At the same time, Schneiderman is also considering whether New York should sign on to a mortgage servicing settlement agreement that federal officials and state attorneys general have been negotiating for a year with the nation’s largest banks that service mortgages.
Nye Lavalle, We Applaud You for Your Efforts to Expose Robo-Judges Signing Robo-Orders!!!
Message for My Friends & Colleagues –From: Nye Lavalle
Sent: Friday, October 28, 2011 3:50 PM
Please Read Entire Email
NOTE: to all blogs!!!
Please post the email to the AGs, I wrote last week that I did not send you. I wrote them in confidence.
However, since they have failed to act and respond I think the way to get to them AND GET RESPONSES AND ACTION is to publicly publish all my warnings and my letters so there is a VERY public record of notices and warnings to them.
They may wish to ignore me again, but I and hopefully each of YOU, won’t let them! So, please read You may also publish and post, separately, my letter attached to FHFA’s OIG.
I am taking the gloves off, its that time! Attorney General Beau Biden did us all proud and right yesterday, despite the political reality that he faces in a state that hosts as corporations, the banks, Wall St. firms, and system he is attacking. I would ask that each of you kindly read the entirety of this letter and to assist me help each of you and this nation of ours and force the other AGs and elements of our government and the media to be as bold and brave as Beau Biden!
Beau knows MERS! LOL He certainly not only vindicated me and my decade-old fight against MERS and my predictions, but all of us, especially Max, April, Judges Logan and Gordon (would love to interview each now) and let me not forget our favorite jurist, Judge Schack!
Let us not forget the crooked judges too, like Craig Schwall and Louis Levenson in Fulton Co who will be getting their comeuppance next month in both courts of law and public opinion (the media). We need to have media focus on the Judges who get it and the judges we have evidence of corruption on. (including our tapes) This will be one of our new objectives. We also need to expose Robo-Judges™ who issue Robo-Orders™!
We’re starting a new movement in America. Our new movement will complement the Occupy Wall Street and Occupy the Internet movements by assisting those trying to help or most importantly IGNORING TO HELP our nation and states. That is the media who is trying to help and some in government like Beau Biden. The other AGs and regulators that ignore us will be publicly noticed and later publicly embarrassed if they fail to act, since a "record" of notices, warnings, and actions or inactions will be publicly displayed now and for the years to come that anyone can access. We shall begin with Names!!
The name for these new movements shall be Occupy The Government & Occupy The Media! As for the media, we shall and I request that you respect their time and their space.
The first step is that I want each of you to provide me, Lisa, Michael, Matt and everyone of our colleagues and comrades in arms with an email list of ALL media and government contacts you have in two separate email address books for Outlook or AOL. We will then discuss content to send by each of us to these contacts. For the media, we will target great story ideas for each journalist and editor we have befriended and has supported the cause. We will also provide a host of information, facts, and evidence for their investigative needs. The media is not only our friend, but our greatest ally in this movement, next to the Internet!
For government, we will create letters and petitions and forward to them in masse! Also, we will document and forward complaints, and evidence of fraudulent bank behavior. They are either with us, or against us! They get to choose and so do we, by a vote. It’s time to stop picking leaders by social issues, but real life issues. You’re either a bank bitch and for them or you’re not (like Beau).
I want to do to the AGs, all regulators, and politicians, what I did to CEOs and boards years ago, paper them and "put them on notice" to act. Let’s see if they ignore our warnings this time around since doing so, will surely jeopardize their political and/or professional aspirations. As they move up the political food chain, we will have a record of what they were warned of and what they did or didn’t do so that their prior actions can be judged by voters and regulators alike.
I am reminded of Gandhi’s quote "First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win." We’re now winning, so it’s time to pile in on as the bankster’s lawyers would say. Over the years, I have created a "hit list" and "target list" of enemies and foes and have guarded carefully very personal information about them. While information is power, knowledge of what to do with that information, and the wisdom to know when its right to use, is key. I suggest you each do the same!
Next, I will begin writing more letters and more warnings based on my experience and I will start doing some polling with the help of supporters and sponsors I will seek from law firms. This will accomplish a few goals. First, it will bring national media attention and coverage to the issues and second, media attention, business and leads to the law firms than sponsor my research. My research has traditionally garnered national media attention and the front pages of virtually every newspaper as well as television and radio. It will once more, do so again.
As for Beau Biden, his complaint is a masterpiece and must read and pins the tail on the ASS (sorry, Donkey was way too kind) so to speak in MERS. In effect, he is not only seeking to shut down every MERS foreclosure in DE, but seeking to foreclose on MERS itself! I wonder what ASSet protection MERSCORP and its enablers have in place.
I have previously called the racketeering acts of the servicers the "default servicing enterprise." However, Beau kept it simple and called it the "foreclosure enterprise." I agree. From this day forward, when we discuss or refer to this racketeering enterprise, let’s all agree to call it and refer to it as the FORECLOSURE ENTERPRISE! Let’s get that mantra up and explain it for what it is, an enterprise which is key for RICO actions, both state and federal, which is where we will be going next with the evidence we have all uncovered. Make Foreclosure enterprise as widely known and accepted as robo-signing and fraudclosure!
In his complaint and his exhibits, Beau Biden has laid the foundation for attacking MERS and every lender. In every case where MERS is ANYWHERE in the chain (current or prior loans) you must file his complaint and exhibits with the court with a notice for the Court to take "judicial notice" of the complaint. Next, you must also file all of the county recorder lawsuits. Remember, building a record is the most important thing you can do in a case. This is how we will also expose the corrupt judges we have evidence on. An analysis of their record and rulings will assist media and also how we vote them out. We shall approve and disprove of judges and politicians and make our voices known, regardless of party affiliation. We will make them sign pledges and contracts, so we know where stand.
We will get our friends in person, email, and on Facebook, to work with us, petition, send emails, make phone calls and focus attention on issues and those who fight and oppose us. We will gather lists of names too and personal and email addresses for protesters.
Our first petition will be the abolishment of MERS and I am drafting Lisa Epstein to create the first draft using the relief that Beau seeks in his lawsuit to be the first petition of our group. Lisa, please copy me, Jacqs, April, Dan, and Max on it and we’ll get out soon!
Friends, its time! 2012, the Mayans predicted would be the end of the world "as we know it!" I’m reminded of the song "its the end of the world as we know it, its the end of the world as we know it. If we believe and act, we can do it! I know we can and i know we will!
It’s time my friends, time to get immediate attention and use the legal strategy the the banks and foreclosure mills created called "piling on" after football piling on. Let’s get to the media, get to the government, get to judges, and get to the people. Let’s Occupy Government and The Media and take control of the destiny God has given each of us! 2012 is upon us. The Mayans were right, its the end of the world as we know it, and the start of a new world, not new world order, as we desire and want it to be free of banks, political influence, and corruption!