Bank Of America Freezes All Foreclosures In 23 States

Bank of America announced Friday that it was halting foreclosures in each and every case that hadn’t gone to judgement. They became the third major bank to put the brakes on foreclosures after revelations that document processing firms were allegedly forging papers and signatures on a massive scale.

However, BoA went further than JP Morgan Chase and GMAC/Ally Bank by stopping cases across the board, and not just the ones they felt hinky about.

Note that this only affects cases in the 23 states that require a judge to sign off. Those states are Connecticut, Florida, Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Nebraska, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Vermont, Wisconsin.

Bank of America to Freeze Foreclosure Cases [NYT]

PREVIOUSLY
JPMorgan Chase Suspends 56,000 Foreclosures
Foreclosure Firm Allegedly Forged Bank Execs’ Signatures On Affidavits
GMAC Bungled Foreclosure Affidavits In 23 States
GMAC Halts Evictions In 23 States

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  1. TuxthePenguin says:

    Anyone want to take a guess at how many people are going to go to jail over all this fake documentation…

  2. Thyme for an edit button says:

    Next: BofA ramps up foreclosures on homes with current payments or no mortgage in remaining 27 states. Citizens warned to watch out for piles of dead fish in their homes and to keep a vigilant eye on pet parrots.

  3. myCatCracksMeUp says:

    So, in the other 27 states and DC they’ll keep foreclosing on people with incorrectly filled out paperwork and paperwork with forged signatures. Nice of the banks.

    • Gulliver says:

      The laws in the other 27 states are different. They do not require the same paperwork, so that paperwork can not be forged. For example, in Michigan, a notice of pending foreclosure sale MUST be place don the home. It must be at least 30 days out. THEN once it is sold at the sheriffs sale, the homeowner has 6 months in which to redeem the sale (pay the mortgage in full or refinance). THEN once the 6 months is up, the bank must file a notice of eviction, where you can appear in court to defend your right to stay. Some states once the sale happens, the new owner can walk in, but that is NOT the case in some states.

  4. madtube says:

    BoA is nothing but a bunch of industrious asshats. While I am glad they realized the error in the foreclosure process, who knows how many people lost their home the should not have. I am not saying that all of the foreclosures by them are incorrect; maybe only a fraction of a percent are wrong. That still means people who paid in the system and did things right came home to law-enforcement saying this is not your house anymore. The house that you were paying for.

    • Difdi says:

      Makes me wonder if some or all of those stories we’ve seen in the past, where BofA foreclosed on a house that never had a mortgage with BofA, might have been caused by forged paperwork…

  5. sleze69 says:

    As a homeowner with a mortgage with another company who is current on his bills, I am very happy that BoA will not try to foreclose on my house.

    • blogger X says:

      Shh!!! Don’t speak up too loud!

    • LadySiren is murdering her kids with HFCS and processed cheese says:

      Excuse me, sir but I’m with B of A and I have some legal papers you need to sign at once.

    • catastrophegirl chooses not to fly says:

      nah, they’re only halting the ones they have paperwork on. they’ll be around to sell your house on the courthouse steps sooner or later.

    • Difdi says:

      That won’t save you. BofA has foreclosed on people who had mortgages with companies unrelated to BofA before. BofA has even foreclosed on properties that never had a mortgage with anyone before.

    • ShadowFalls says:

      Not only have they been known to foreclose on people who didn’t even have a mortgage with them, you have no way of knowing if your mortgage is going to be acquired by them at some point. The only way to feel relatively safe, is to not have a mortgage.

  6. Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

    It’s sad that it takes BoA months to realize fraud is occuring, while the rest of us are reading about forclosures on homes that don’t even have mortgages with BoA.

  7. Ilovegnomes says:

    As someone with a mortgage with BofA, recently we received a letter that our payment was late. The notice was sent/dated on the date that our mortgage was due (making it not late yet) and we have receipts that it wasn’t late. I went down to the local branch to confirm that it was not late and that there was not a problem processing our payment (we have our other accounts elsewhere). While following up on this issue, customer service verified that they had sent a bunch of these letters out in error due to a computer glitch.

    After reading all of these nightmare stories with my lender….. other than refinancing elsewhere (which we may do in the future but can’t do at this very moment), what can a home owner do to protect themselves against these bank errors that have the potential to run us out or our home when we do pay on time? We live in the CA if that helps.

    • TuxthePenguin says:

      The easiest way to protect yourself is to have your payments set to autopay by ETF/ACH transactions. They can try to play the game “Your payment wasn’t processed…” but if you can show that the ETF/ACH settled on the date it was due, the courts will take it as the day it was paid.

      Record keeping. And SHOW UP TO COURT if you get a summons.

      • Ilovegnomes says:

        My question is, is it possible for an error to occur with autopay that you would make your payment late? Currently, we go into our local branch and pay so that we have a paper trail on BofA’s stationary (receipt) and is time/date stamped. We save all of our receipts. I thought this might be the best level of protection but I’ve never run into legal trouble before, so I’m wondering which would be the better option in a dispute.

        • ShruggingGalt says:

          Yes, there is always a chance that the ACH could fail to go through due to some computer glitch, with either their computer or your bank’s.

          It is remote, but if it’s your bank’s fault, it doesn’t absolve you of making a late payment – that’s between you and your bank to sort out, not the mortgage company.

        • Tom Foolery says:

          While working in collections for Wells Fargo, this is the option i always recommended to customers who lived near a bank branch. The payment would take a couple of days to post to the account (bank branches and home mortgage operate almost completely separate from each other), but you’d have a reciept and confirmation that the payment was made.

    • brassservices@yahoo.com says:

      Challenge everything. Go to the Recorders Office for the county where your property is located. Get a copy of the recorded “NOTICE OF DEFAULT” and of the recorded “NOTICE OF TRUSTEE SALE” off the Official Records. You’ll pay a couple of dollars in copy fees, so consider taking a digital camera and taking a picture of the document on their computer screen to save you the cost. Print them out or view them at home on Adobe when you have a chance to sit and relax. Check every word and phrase and piece of information. If ANYTHING is spelled wrong, numerically inaccurate, omitted or otherwise wrong, then send them a letter stating that it is a material flaw and that you reject the notice as invalid. This can “reset” the clock, forcing them to refile the notice. It buys you some time to try to get a loan modification, at the least.

    • brassservices@yahoo.com says:

      Challenge everything. Go to the Recorders Office for the county where your property is located. Get a copy of the recorded “NOTICE OF DEFAULT” and of the recorded “NOTICE OF TRUSTEE SALE” off the Official Records. You’ll pay a couple of dollars in copy fees, so consider taking a digital camera and taking a picture of the document on their computer screen to save you the cost. Print them out or view them at home on Adobe when you have a chance to sit and relax. Check every word and phrase and piece of information. If ANYTHING is spelled wrong, numerically inaccurate, omitted or otherwise wrong, then send them a letter stating that it is a material flaw and that you reject the notice as invalid. This can “reset” the clock, forcing them to refile the notice. It buys you some time to try to get a loan modification, at the least.

      Also, as we noted below in a prior post, check to see who signed the notices. If the trustee did not do so and some contractor far “down the line” did so (without authority), then this sounds awfully similar to the situation being reported on herein.

    • brassservices@yahoo.com says:

      Challenge everything. Go to the Recorders Office for the county where your property is located. Get a copy of the recorded “NOTICE OF DEFAULT” and of the recorded “NOTICE OF TRUSTEE SALE” off the Official Records. You’ll pay a couple of dollars in copy fees, so consider taking a digital camera and taking a picture of the document on their computer screen to save you the cost. Print them out or view them at home on Adobe when you have a chance to sit and relax. Check every word and phrase and piece of information. If ANYTHING is spelled wrong, numerically inaccurate, omitted or otherwise wrong, then send them a letter stating that it is a material flaw and that you reject the notice as invalid. This can “reset” the clock, forcing them to refile the notice. It buys you some time to try to get a loan modification, at the least.

      Also, as we noted below in a prior post, check to see who signed the notices. If the trustee did not do so and some contractor far “down the line” did so (without authority), then this sounds awfully similar to the situation being reported on herein.

  8. BuddhaLite says:

    And this folks is why you hire a lawyer for any type of legal procedure.

  9. smo0 says:

    I love how Nevada isn’t on that list.. even though it’s in the top 3 for foreclosures….

    I can only imagine that the states listed aren’t really “problem” states…. way to ignore the bigger picture and skirt by with a few fireworks for PR…

    fuck these people, really.

    • coffeeculture says:

      those states are judicial foreclosure states, CA and NV are non-judicial foreclosure states thus problematic court documents aren’t a problem because no court is involved.

    • Tom Foolery says:

      I think Florida would qualify as a “problem” state.

  10. FatLynn says:

    What’s the quote about how Americans will do the right thing after they’ve tried everything else?

  11. MustWarnOthers says:

    I think the Government, regulators and customers/consumers as a whole should just back off of the banks.

    They’ve had it pretty tough the last two years.

    It should be glaringly obvious to everyone in this Country that the free market will work itself out. Why should BofA be responsible to come up with documentation proving ownership of title?

    There is an inverse relationship between de-regulation and corporate morality right?

    • TuxthePenguin says:

      Maybe you’re missing one key fact in this whole debacle… There is an government entity involved that is not doing its job either. You know, the legal system that is supposed to process these and spot errors.

      Where is that failure in your mythical de-regulation causes all the world’s evils?

      • MustWarnOthers says:

        The sarcasm was spread on too thick I think.

        abridged version:

        Large banks can go fuck themselves, and the idiots that think that the free market will keep people playing faily in it can also drive off a cliff as well.

  12. peebozi says:

    It costs less for them to stop the foreclosure process then to move ahead as is.

    If it was less expensive for them to continue operating the same way then they’d go that route.

    If they based their decision on anything other than increasing their shareholders value then they are shirking their capitalistic and “free market” responsibilities.
    Obviously, murdering delinquent mortgagees is less financially feasible then stopping the foreclosure process or they would have to choose murder

  13. brassservices@yahoo.com says:

    It’s funny how, in San Mateo County, CA, over the past year, a number of recording firms have required their independent contractors to print out emailed Notice of Default and Notice of Trustee Sale documents, sign them and record them in the land records against property. These contractors receive the emails from their parent firm’s title insurer clients, who in turn receive directions from a trustee firm, far “up” the food chain. It seems to me that a private contractor has no business, authority or right to sign a paper that will take a person’s home away from them, when they have no written authority under law or contract to do so. Just sayin’…