Independent Foreclosure Review Check

On May 31, 2013, in Foreclosure, by Robbie L. Vaughn, Esq.

Independent Foreclosure Review Check

Many people have called our office because they are/were in foreclosure and  recently received an Independent Foreclosure Review check.  Most of them ask the following questions:

Why am I receiving this Independent Foreclosure Review Check?

An agreement, providing for Independent Foreclosure Review, was reached by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and the Federal Reserve Board with several mortgage servicers.

The Independent Foreclosure Review is supposed to determine whether  homeowners, who were in foreclosure between January 1, 2009 and December 31, 2010, suffered financial injury because of “errors” made by their mortgage servicer during the home foreclosure process .

This agreement includes the following Mortgage servicers, their affiliates, or subsidiaries: Aurora, Bank of America, Citibank, Goldman Sachs, HSBC, JPMorgan Chase, MetLife Bank, Morgan Stanley, PNC, Sovereign, SunTrust, U.S. Bank, and Wells Fargo.

The above Servicers have agreed to pay a total of $3.6 billion in cash payments to eligible  borrowers.  The payment amounts appear to vary.

And the #1 question… 

Can I cash my Independent Foreclosure Review Check?

Maybe!

The checks we have seen state the following:

  • The payment is final.
  • There is no process to appeal.
  • “By cashing or depositing the check, you do not waive any legal claims against your servicer and you may pursue additional actions related to your foreclosure.”

Therefore, it does not appear that you have anything to lose by cashing your  Independent Foreclosure Review check.  HOWEVER, you should seek legal advice from an attorney who is fully aware of your current situation.

The above  is not legal advice, but  The Law Firm of Vaughn & Weber, PLLC is here to assist you! Call (516) 858-2620 to schedule an appointment with an attorney.

 

 

CitiMortgage Workshop on Long Island

On July 28, 2012, in Foreclosure, Message/News Board, by Robbie L. Vaughn, Esq.

Long Island Workshop for CitiMortgage Customers

From Citibridgetrack.com:

CitiMortgage invites you to meet in person to review your homeowner assistance options at the Citi® Road to Recovery event. Meet one-on-one to discuss possible mortgage solutions available for your specific situation.

Tuesday, July 31, 2012
12:00 PM – 7:00 PM
Islandia Marriott Long Island
3635 Express Drive North
Islandia, NY 11749

Forms you will need.
Video about the event.

If you have questions about this blog post, loan modification, or home foreclosure in general, The law Firm of Vaughn and Weber is here to assist you. Call 516-858-2620 to schedule a free consultation.

Bankruptcy only if 500k in debt?

On January 17, 2012, in Bankruptcy, Debt settlement, by Robbie L. Vaughn, Esq.

Don’t file a Chapter 7 bankruptcy unless you have 500k in debt!

That’s pretty much what a radio show host recently said. We can’t see how this is good advice. There is no minimum amount of debt that one must have in order to file bankruptcy! Even more disturbing was the fact that the host appeared to be offering some sort of debt settlement guide or program they created.

First, Debt settlement can work, but you need money to settle! You have to be able to  make a lump sum or monthly payments.

Secondly, we have had clients with very little debt file bankruptcy. Many individuals file bankruptcy to prevent home foreclosure, head off an impending lawsuit, discharge a judgment obtained against them etc.

Finally, Bankruptcy is not for everyone. We suggest that you speak with an attorney about bankruptcy and debt settlement before making a final decision.

As always, the Law Firm of VAUGHN & WEBER, PLLC is here to assist you.  We are conveniently located in the heart of Nassau County, Long Island, at 393 Jericho Tpke., #208, in Mineola, NY.  Contact us at (516) 858-2620 to arrange a FREE consultation with a bankruptcy and debt settlement attorney.

The following article is from NY Attorney General Cuomo’s website. It calls for suspension of foreclosures by mortgage servicers engaged in “robo-signing” and offers sound advice to New York homeowners who are facing foreclosure proceedings.

ATTORNEY GENERAL CUOMO EXPANDS PROBE OF NEW YORK FORECLOSURE ACTIONS

Demands information from Bank of America, JP Morgan Chase, Wells Fargo and GMAC Mortgage/Ally ~ Calls for suspension of foreclosures by mortgage servicers engaged in “robo-signing” in New York until accuracy of court documents and integrity of process are assured

NEW YORK, NY (October 12, 2010) – Attorney General Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that he is seeking information from four major mortgage servicers – Bank of America, JP Morgan Chase, Wells Fargo and GMAC Mortgage/Ally – concerning the filing of affidavits that falsely attest the signer has personal knowledge of the facts presented in home foreclosure proceedings, a practice known as “robo-signing.”

In view of the prevalence of this practice in the industry, Cuomo also called on mortgage servicers engaged in “robo-signing” in New York to immediately suspend all foreclosure actions in the state until they correct their procedures to comply with New York law and can assure the public and the courts that integrity has been restored.

“I will not allow New Yorkers to lose their homes due to mortgage goliaths that buck the system by submitting affidavits signed without knowledge of the facts,” said Attorney General Cuomo. “Such conduct is a fraud upon our courts and a slap in the face of New Yorkers struggling to get by in this economy. My office will continue to root out these practices so homeowners receive the full protections afforded by our judicial system.”

Recent reports indicate that employees of these mortgage servicers routinely signed affidavits submitted in foreclosure proceedings without personal knowledge of the underlying facts or verification of loan file information, and without even reading the documents they signed. This practice, known as “robo-signing,” has tainted the integrity of the foreclosure process by which homeowners in New York lose their homes. Bank of America, JP Morgan Chase and GMAC Mortgage announced that they were temporarily halting pending foreclosures, while Wells Fargo has not suspended foreclosures despite the deficiencies uncovered.

Attorney General Cuomo is calling on these mortgage servicers to submit documents and information to his office concerning how foreclosure documents are prepared, verified, attested to and notarized, and how required notices are provided to New York homeowners. The letters request that the mortgage servicers stop re-filing foreclosures that had been suspended (and in Wells Fargo’s case, cease proceeding with pending foreclosures) until the Attorney General’s Office is assured that reliable and fair procedures are in place and that accurate, trustworthy documentation will be submitted to the New York courts. The letters also request that the mortgage servicers refrain from filing any new foreclosures until they can provide assurances that their procedures comply with New York law and are neither tainted nor inaccurate.

Because of the gravity of these transgressions and the high volume of foreclosures, Attorney General Cuomo is calling on all mortgage servicers engaged in “robo-signing” in New York to immediately suspend all pending foreclosure actions in the state, including evictions and foreclosure sales. Cuomo is also requesting that the mortgage servicers not file any new foreclosures until the companies correct their procedures.

Tens of thousands of New Yorkers have been devastated by the foreclosure crisis. In fact, the foreclosure rates in Nassau and Suffolk Counties rank among the ten highest in the nation. More than 60,000 New York homes are currently in foreclosure, and 130,000 New York homeowners have received pre-foreclosure notices this year after falling behind on their mortgage payments.

In addition to his office’s review of Bank of America, Chase, Wells Fargo and GMAC Mortgage/Ally, Attorney General Cuomo is working with other state attorneys general, banking regulators and other interested parties to assess the veracity of servicers’ foreclosure filings and ensure the fairness and accuracy of their processes.

Attorney General Cuomo advises New York homeowners who are facing foreclosure proceedings to do the following:

  • Contact the court to find out the status of your foreclosure proceeding.
  • Seek representation or advice from a qualified attorney. If necessary, contact your local bar association or legal services office for a referral. If you are unable to retain counsel, carefully review any documents filed thus far with the court to ensure their accuracy.
  • If you have not done so already, immediately contact your lender or servicer to discuss available alternatives to foreclosure such as a loan modification.
  • For a general description of the foreclosure process, refer to www.nyprotectyourhome.com/fc_timeline.html.
  • Consult with a government-approved housing counseling agency. To find counselors approved by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) in your local area, call 800-569-4287 or visit www.hud.gov. A list of housing counselors also can be found via the NYS Banking Department at www.banking.state.ny.us.
  • Call HOPE NOW at 1-888-995-HOPE. HOPE NOW is an alliance of housing counselors, mortgage companies, investors and other mortgage market participants that provides free foreclosure prevention assistance.
  • If you live in New York City, call 311 to schedule free foreclosure counseling sessions at the Center for New York City Neighborhoods.

New York homeowners who believe their homes were foreclosed based upon false or inaccurate documents filed in court by their lender or servicer should seek representation from an attorney. They may also file a complaint with the New York Attorney General’s Bureau of Consumer Frauds & Protection by calling 800-771-7755 or visiting www.ag.ny.gov.

The investigation, led by Special Deputy Attorney General for Consumer Frauds & Protection Joy Feigenbaum, is being handled by Special Counsel Mary Alestra, Assistant Attorney General Brian Montgomery and Deputy Bureau Chief Jeffrey Powell of the Bureau of Consumer Frauds & Protection under the direction of Executive Deputy Attorney General for Economic Justice Maria Vullo and Deputy Attorney General for Economic Justice Michael Berlin.

As always, The Foreclosure Defense Law Firm of VAUGHN & WEBER, PLLC is here to assist you. We are conveniently located in the heart of Nassau County, Long Island, at 217 Willis Avenue in Mineola, NY 11501. Contact us at (516) 858-2620 to arrange a FREE consultation with a foreclosure defense lawyer.

Please visit our Foreclosure category to learn more about foreclosure issues.

The information you obtain at this site is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. You should consult an attorney for individual advice regarding your own situation. This website is Attorney Advertising. It does not form an attorney-client relationship. We are a debt relief agency and a law firm that helps people file for bankruptcy relief under the U.S. Bankruptcy Code – Title 11. Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome. Proudly assisting residents of Long Island, Nassau county, Suffolk county, New York City, Queens, Brooklyn, Bronx, Staten Island, Manhattan