Strapped To A "Rocket Docket" Built For Max Foreclosure Speed

Florida has special high-velocity courts presided over by retired judges that process foreclosures at the rate of 25 per hour. That’s potentially one evicted family every 2.4 minutes. Rolling Stone reporter Matt Taibbi sat in on one of these “rocket dockets” to show what goes on, marveling at the shoddy and fraudulent paperwork the banks are cramming through the courts.

A snippet:

There’s only one problem: The dates of the transfers are completely fucked. According to the documents, JP Morgan transferred the mortgage to Bank of New York on December 9th, 2008. But according to the same documents, JP Morgan didn’t even receive the mortgage from Novastar until February 2nd, 2009 — two months after it had supposedly passed the note along to Bank of New York. Such rank incompetence at doctoring legal paperwork is typical of foreclosure actions, where the fraud is laid out in ink in ways that make it impossible for anyone but an overburdened, half-asleep judge to miss. “That’s my point about all of this,” Kowalski tells me later. “If you’re going to lie to me, at least lie well.”

With poor paperwork so rampant, if you get wrongly foreclosed on, make sure you tell the lender “show me the note!”

Matt Taibbi: Courts Helping Banks Screw Over Homeowners [Rolling Stone] (Link goes to page 3 so you can skip the puffed-up preamble and get right to the action)

Want more consumer news? Visit our parent organization, Consumer Reports, for the latest on scams, recalls, and other consumer issues.