Wednesday, February 29, 2012

LPS Investor Sues Directors of Lender Processing Services, Inc for Alleged Breach of Fiduciary Duties

San Diego, CA -- (SBWIRE) -- 02/29/2012 -- An investor in NYSE: LPS shares filed a lawsuit against directors over Lender Processing Services, Inc. over alleged breaches of fiduciary duties in connection with Lender Processing Services’ default operations.

Investors who are current long term investors in Lender Processing Services, Inc. (NYSE: LPS) shares, have certain options and should contact the Shareholders Foundation at mail@shareholdersfoundation.com or call +1(858) 779 - 1554.

  • The plaintiff alleges that that defendants breached their fiduciary duties and that the board of directors was made expressly aware of the issues with Docx, an Lender Processing Services subsidiary, but did not end the robo-signing practice, which is a process in which unverified documents are automatically generated and submitted in foreclosure and bankruptcy proceedings.
  • The plaintiff alleges that in September and October of 2010, news articles across revealed that many of the automatically-generated documents used in judicial foreclosure proceedings and bankruptcies were improper and invalid and that the volume of Lender Processing Services documents filed in the wake of the financial crisis made clear that the paperwork was frequently automatically generated with very little, if any, factual investigation into whether the foreclosing entity had a legal right to foreclose on the property, and other facts critical to the proceedings.

In December 2011 a lawsuit was also filed by the Office of the Attorney General of the State of Nevada. This lawsuit alleged among other things that Lender Processing Services and certain of its subsidiaries engaged in a pattern and practice of falsifying, forging and/or fraudulently executing foreclosure related documents, resulting in numerous foreclosures that were predicated upon deficient documentation, and implemented a widespread scheme to forge signatures on key documents, to ensure that volume and speed quotas were met.

Those who are current long term investors in Lender Processing Services, Inc. (NYSE: LPS) shares, have certain options and should contact the Shareholders Foundation.

Contact:
Shareholders Foundation, Inc.
Trevor Allen
3111 Camino Del Rio North - Suite 423
92108 San Diego
Phone: +1-(858)-779-1554
Fax: +1-(858)-605-5739
mail@shareholdersfoundation.com

Attorney General Kamala D. Harris Joins Legislative Leaders to Unveil California Homeowner Bill of Rights


SACRAMENTO - Attorney General Kamala D. Harris today announced the California Homeowner Bill of Rights designed to protect homeowners from unfair practices by banks and mortgage companies and to help consumers and communities cope with the state's urgent mortgage and foreclosure crisis.

Joined by Senate President pro Tem Darrell Steinberg and Assembly Speaker John A. Pérez, Attorney General Harris announced her sponsorship of six bills designed to guarantee:
  • Basic standards of fairness in the mortgage process, including an end to dual-track foreclosures
  • Transparency in the mortgage process, including a single point of contact for homeowners
  • Community tools to prevent blight after banks foreclose upon homes
  •  Tenant protections after foreclosures
  •  Enhanced law enforcement to defend homeowner rights - paid for by fees imposed on banks
  • A special grand jury to investigate financial and foreclosure crime

"California communities and families are being devastated by the mortgage and foreclosure crisis. We must ensure the deceptive practices that caused it never happen again," said Attorney General Harris. "The California Homeowner Bill of Rights will provide basic fairness and transparency for homeowners, and improve the mortgage process for everyone."

The legislation builds on the California commitment announced by Attorney General Harris earlier this month, which is expected to result in $18 billion of benefits for California homeowners. That agreement included reforms for mortgages owned by the five banks that were signing parties. The California Homeowner Bill of Rights will strengthen those protections, make them permanent, and apply them to all mortgages in the state.

"When I secured the California commitment, I made clear it was only one of many steps I am taking to comprehensively address the mortgage and foreclosure crisis," Attorney General Harris continued. "I want to thank Senate President pro Tem Steinberg, Assembly Speaker Pérez and all the other lawmakers who are supporting this urgent package of legislation for homeowners."

"I want to congratulate the Attorney General on the victory she won on behalf of the people of California," said Speaker John A. Pérez. "Our state has suffered greatly as the result of bad actors in the banking and financial industries, and this settlement holds them accountable as we continue the difficult work of recovering the housing market and stemming the tide of foreclosures, evictions and auctions."

"Millions of Californians have already lost their homes to foreclosure and the mortgage crisis is far from over," said Senate President pro Tem Darrell Steinberg. "This landmark settlement negotiated by Attorney General Harris helps thousands of Californians but thousands more need the same help. We need to put these protections into law so that more people can save their homes."


CALIFORNIA HOMEOWNER BILL OF RIGHTS LEGISLATIVE PACKAGE

If passed, the following bills would:

ASSEMBLY BILL 1602 / SENATE BILL 1470
THE FORECLOSURE REDUCTION ACT OF 2012

Authors: Assemblymen Mike Eng and Mike Feuer; Senators Mark Leno, Fran Pavley, and Senate President pro Tem Darrell Steinberg
  • Require creditors to provide documentation to a borrower that establishes the creditor's right to foreclose on real property prior to recording a notice of default.
  • Require creditors to provide documentary evidence of ownership, the chain of title to real property, and the right to foreclose, at the time of the filing of a notice of default.
  • Prohibit creditors from recording a notice of default when a timely-filed application for a loan modification or other loss mitigation measure is pending.
  • Prohibit creditors from recording a notice of sale when a timely-filed application for a loan modification or other loss mitigation measure is pending.
  • Prohibit creditors from recording a notice of sale while a borrower is in compliance with the terms of a trial loan modification or after another loss mitigation measure has been approved.
  • Require creditors to disclose why an application for a loan modification or other loss mitigation measure has been denied.
  • Require that notices of foreclosure sales be personally served, including notices of foreclosure sale postponement.
  • Provide homeowners with a private right of action in instances in which the requirements set forth in the legislation are not followed

ASSEMBLY BILL 2425 / SENATE BILL 1471  -  DUE PROCESS REFORM LEGISLATION


Authors: Assemblywoman Holly Mitchell; Senators Mark DeSaulnier and Fran Pavley
  • Require creditors to provide a single point of contact to borrowers in the foreclosure process who will be responsible for providing accurate account and other information related to the foreclosure process and loss mitigation efforts.
  • Require creditors to provide a dedicated electronic mail address, facsimile number and mailing address for borrowers to submit information requested as part of a loan modification, short sale or other loss mitigation option.
  • Authorize borrowers to challenge the unlawful commencement of a foreclosure process in court.
  • Impose a $10,000 civil penalty on the recordation or filing of "robosigned" documents, defined as documents that contain information that was not verified for accuracy by the person or persons signing or swearing to the accuracy of the document or statement.
  • Require that certain documents be recorded in a county recorder's office.

ASSEMBLY BILL 2314 / SENATE BILL 1472  -  BLIGHT PREVENTION LEGISLATION

Authors: Assemblywoman Wilmer Carter; Senator Fran Pavley
  • -Prevent blight enforcement actions from being taken against new purchasers of blighted property for 60 days, provided that repairs are being made to the property.
  • Require banks that release liens on foreclosed property to inform local code enforcement agencies of the release so that demolition of blighted property can proceed.
  • Increase fines against owners of blighted property from $1,000 per day to $5,000 per day, and allow the imposition of the costs of a receivership over blighted property to be imposed directly against the owner of blighted property.

ASSEMBLY BILL 2610/ SENATE BILL 1473 - TENANT PROTECTION LEGISLATION

Authors: Assemblywoman Nancy Skinner; Senator Loni Hancock
  • Require purchasers of foreclosed homes to honor the terms of existing leases and give tenants at least 90 days notice before commencing eviction proceedings.

ASSEMBLY BILL 1950 - ENHANCEMENT OF ATTORNEY GENERAL ENFORCEMENT

Author: Assemblyman Mike Davis
  • Impose a new $25 fee to be paid by servicers upon the recording of a notice of default. The fee would be deposited into a real estate fraud prosecution trust fund that would support the Attorney General's efforts to deter, investigate and prosecute real estate fraud crimes, including the work of the Mortgage Fraud Strike Force.
  • Extend the statute of limitations from one year to four years from the date of discovery for violations of law commonly occurring in connection with foreclosure-related scams, including acting as a real-estate agent without a license and charging up-front fees for loan modification services.

SENATE BILL 1474 / ASSEMBLY BILL 1763 - ATTORNEY GENERAL SPECIAL GRAND JURY

Authors: Assemblyman Mike Davis; Senator Loni Hancock
  • Authorize the Attorney General to impanel a special grand jury for the purposes of investigating and indicting multi-jurisdictional financial crimes against the state.
Related Attachments

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

INJUNCTION GRANTED AGAINST JPMORGAN CHASE BANK FOR WAMU HELOC

Injunction Granted in Case Alleging Predatory Lending Practices filed by Law Office of Kenneth Eade

Los Angeles, California (PRWEB) February 27, 2012 

The Law Office of Kenneth Eade announced today that on February 23, 2012, the United States District Court for the Central District of California granted a preliminary injunction in Case No. CV-116809 DSF, to cease any attempts by the bank to collect on a home equity line of credit (HELOC) or to supply any negative information based on the HELOC to credit reporting agencies, in a case that marks a blow to the successor of Washington Mutual Bank's (WAMU) alleged predatory real estate loans prior to the Economic Crash of 2008.

In a first amended complaint, filed January 6, 2012, the plaintiff alleges that WAMU issued both a first mortgage and the HELOC in what Eade alleged as a predatory loan practice, to cover the purchase price of a home in Southern California, according to the first amended complaint in the case. As a result of the real estate crash, both loans went into foreclosure in 2008. Despite the fact that the plaintiff obtained a buyer on a short sale for the property, WAMU ignored the short sale offer and foreclosed, according to the first amended complaint. According to the Court order, on September 25, 2008, nine days after the foreclosure sale, WAMU was seized by the FDIC and its banking assets were purchased by JP Morgan Chase. However, despite the California anti-deficiency statutes, which bar collection of a deficiency on purchase money mortgages after foreclosure, JP Morgan Chase attempted to collect nearly a $250,000 deficiency on the HELOC, and reported it negatively on the plaintiff's consumer credit profile. The first amended complaint in the case alleges a violation of the California Consumer Legal Remedies Act (CLRA) and the federal Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA).

In his reply memorandum to the opposition to the injunction filed Febuary 16, 2012, Eade contended that it was "in the public interest that Chase should not be permitted to report outstanding deficiency balances that are barred from collection by state statutes that were enacted to provide those same consumers with relief. Such statutes were enacted to balance the equities between the consumer and the banks; to protect the consumer and give him power against entities such as the defendant, one of the largest banks on the world... The California legislature enacted the anti-deficiency statutes in light of the foreclosures and abusive deficiency judgments obtained by lenders during the Great Depression. Spangler v. Memel, 7 Cal. 3d 603 (1972). Eade contended in the reply that the real estate lending practices of the large banks were a huge contributing factor to the Economic Crisis of 2008, and the Defendant should not benefit from the result of these practices, especially in light of the ban on collection of deficiency balances in California."

Eade also stressed in the reply memorandum, the "importance of fairness to the consumer is a vital element of the legislative history of the Fair Credit Reporting Act. That, in cases where creditors are able to exercise non judicial remedies to recover their collateral to loans and then seek deficiencies, such as in this case, it is essential that consumers such as the Plaintiff have a remedy for creditors who break the law."

The Court found that the plaintiff established a likelihood of success on the merits of his case in granting the injunction, and found that the balance of the equities and public interest tipped in favor of the plaintiff. The Court found that Chase is providing derogatory information to reporting agencies based on a debt that it is likely legally barred from collecting and enjoined it from doing so pending the outcome of the case, according to the Order.

Friday, February 24, 2012

JPMorgan Chase Receives $100 Million New Markets Tax Credits Award

JPMorgan Chase & Co.

News Release

JPMorgan Chase Receives $100 Million New Markets Tax Credits Award

Chicago, February 24, 2012 - JPMorgan Chase [NYSE: JPM] Friday pledged to further expand its investment to support new jobs and service in low-income communities after receiving the U.S. Treasury Department's largest allocation of tax credits. Chase received $100 million in the latest round of New Markets Tax Credit awards. The $100 million award was the largest of the $3.6 billion in allocations granted to more than 70 organizations this year.

"This award is recognition of our company's commitment to community development," said Matt Reilein, senior vice president, Chase. "It will allow us to grow that commitment and support the communities we serve. At Chase, we have an established track record of using New Markets financing to support projects that create quality jobs and services in low-income communities. We will use this award to amplify our initiative in support of access to healthcare services and to healthy foods in low-income communities."

Chase has been an active leader in the New Markets industry since the beginning of the program, investing more than $900 million in projects in 2011 alone. For example, with the help of a Chase New Markets Tax Credit equity investment, Community Health and Social Services Center in southwest Detroit, was able to expand into a larger facility allowing them to double their healthcare capacity and provide space for additional social service agencies.

This latest allocation brings the firm's total awards since the program began to $410 million. The additional funds will help Chase deepen its commitment to New Markets, allowing the company to continue to expand its participation.

During the New Markets allocation ceremony in New Orleans, U.S. Treasury Deputy Secretary Neal Wolin said, "For so many vital economic development projects across the country, the New Markets Tax Credit has been a critically important piece of the puzzle. This targeted tax credit has a strong record of spurring economic growth in low-income and distressed communities across our country." The Deputy Secretary was joined by U.S. Senator Mary Landrieu, U.S. Representative Cedric Richmond, and Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFI) Fund Director Donna Gambrell at the announcement.

The New Markets program is administered by the U.S. Department of the Treasury. It is designed to stimulate economic growth and job creation in low-income communities by providing much-needed investment capital, financial counseling and other services. Awardees are selected after a highly competitive and rigorous government review process.

About Chase

Chase is the U.S. consumer and commercial banking business of JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE: JPM), a leading global financial services firm with assets of $2.3 trillion and operations in more than 60 countries. Chase serves consumers and small businesses through 5,400 bank branches, 16,800 ATMs, mortgage offices, and online and mobile banking as well as through relationships with auto dealerships and schools and universities. Chase also has issued more than 90 million credit cards. More information about Chase is available at www.chase.com.
View all Releases

Thursday, February 16, 2012

CALIFORNIA'S FORECLOSURE PROCESS IS UTTERLY BROKEN

FORECLOSURE IN CALIFORNIA: A CRISIS OF COMPLIANCE; San Francisco February 2012

 San Francisco audit of foreclosures finds irregularities in 99% of the foreclosures.  Shame on the banks.  Shame on the Trustees.  Shame on Lender Processing Services, JPMorgan Chase Bank NA, and the other major banks.

On February 15, 2012 Phil Ting, Assessor-Recorder, Office of the Assessor-Recorder, San Francisco released the above report prepared by Aequitas Compliance Solutions, Inc.  Ting retained this independent audit firm to review 382 residential mortgage loan transactions (the "subject loans") that resulted in foreclosure sales occurring January 2009 through October 2011 during which period there were 2,405 foreclosure sales in San Francisco.  The subject loans represent approximately 16% of the total.  See Press Release.

Aequitas identified one or more irregularities in 99% of the subject loans.  In 84% of the loans they identified what appear to be one or more violations of law.  

The report provides a valuable "California Primer" to help the reader understand the report's findings and to fully appreciate its significance it is helpful first to have some basic knowledge or residential mortgage lending and the foreclosure process in California.  

The report reaches the conclusion that with so many homes being foreclosed and with so little oversight, California's foreclosure process appears to be utterly broken.

"What is at stake here is more than merely fairness and minimal due process.  Foreclosures impact not only homeowner but also entire communities and housing markets.  The integrity of California's record title system is also at stake because the validity of title for subsequent purchasers is dependent on those that preceded it."
 NEW YORK TIMES ARTICLE "IRREGULARITIES IN FORECLOSURES" BY GRETCHEN MORGENSEN

SF Audit Finds Irregularities in 99 Percent of Foreclosures


Saturday, February 4, 2012

GECCMC 2005-C1 Plummer Street v. JPMorgan Chase Bank

http://law.justia.com/cases/federal/appellate-courts/ca9/10-56219/10-56219-2012-02-01.html
Justia.com Opinion Summary:

This case arose from a landlord-tenant dispute in the wake of the WaMu failure in September 2008. GE alleged that Chase failed to pay rent on two properties under lease agreements that Chase assumed after it purchased WaMu's assets and liabilities from the FDIC pursuant to terms of a written Purchase & Assumption Agreement (P&A Agreement). GE filed suit against Chase alleging breach of the lease agreements and the district court granted Chase's motion to dismiss GE's complaint on the grounds that GE lacked standing to enforce or interpret the terms of the P&A Agreement. The court held that because GE was not an intended third-party beneficiary of the P&A Agreement, GE had no enforceable rights under that contract. Accordingly, the judgment was affirmed.

JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America, and Wells Fargo Bank Sued by AG Eric Schneiderman


Hot off the presses.  The lawsuit was filed earlier today in New York.
---
Bloomberg
Bank of America Corp., Wells Fargo & Co. and JPMorgan Chase & Co. were sued by New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman over the creation and use of a mortgage database.
The banks’ use of the database, known as MERS, has led to deceptive and fraudulent foreclosure filings in New York state and federal courts, Schneiderman said in a statement today.
“The banks created the MERS system as an end-run around the property recording system, to facilitate the rapid securitization and sale of mortgages,” the attorney general said. “Once the mortgages went sour, these same banks brought foreclosure proceedings en masse based on deceptive and fraudulent court submissions.”
Delaware Attorney General Beau Biden last year sued Merscorp Inc., which operates the mortgage registry, accusing it of deceptive trade practices. Merscorp was also named as a defendant in Schneiderman’s lawsuit.



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