Skip to comments.Foreclosure Fraud: It's Worse Than You Think
Posted on 10/12/2010 3:45:12 PM PDT by TigerLikesRooster
Foreclosure Fraud: It's Worse Than You Think
Posted By: Diana Olick | CNBC Real Estate Reporter CNBC.com
| 12 Oct 2010 | 01:14 PM ET
There has been plenty of pontificating over the ramifications of foreclosure freezes on troubled borrowers, foreclosure buyers and the larger housing market, not to mention lawsuits, investor losses and bank write downs. There has been precious little talk of what the real legal issues are behind the robosigning scandal. Yes, you can't/shouldn't sign documents you never read, but that's just the tip of the iceberg. The real issue is ownership of these loans and who has the right to foreclose. By the way, despite various comments from the Obama administration, foreclosures are governed by state law. There is no real federal jurisdiction.
A source of mine pointed me to a recent conference call Citigroup had with investors/clients. It featured Adam Levitin, a Georgetown University Law professor who specializes in, among many other financial regulatory issues, mortgage finance. Levitin says the documentation problems involved in the mortgage mess have the potential "to cloud title on not just foreclosed mortgages but on performing mortgages."
The issues are securitization, modernization and a whole lot of cut corners. Real estate law requires real paper transfer of documents and titles, and a lot of the system went electronic without much regard to that persnickety rule. Mortgages and property titles are transferred several times in the process of a home purchase from originators to securitization sponsors to depositors to trusts. Trustees hold the note (which is the IOU on the mortgage), the mortgage (the security that says the house is collateral) and the assignment of the note and security instrument.
(Excerpt) Read more at cnbc.com ...
So..........banks are required to read documents but Congress is not?
It must be bad, if the ABCDEFetc. networkd are discussing it.
Things are going down the toilet at warp speed, November can’t get here soon enough.
Please also cover this case from a few years ago. This issue was out there a long time ago, but very few listened or took heed:
A landmark ruling in a recent Kansas Supreme Court case may have given millions of distressed homeowners the legal wedge they need to avoid foreclosure.
In Landmark National Bank v. Kesler, 2009 Kan. LEXIS 834, the Kansas Supreme Court held that a nominee company called MERS has no right or standing to bring an action for foreclosure. MERS is an acronym for Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems, a private company that registers mortgages electronically and tracks changes in ownership.
The significance of the holding is that if MERS has no standing to foreclose, then nobody has standing to foreclose on 60 million mortgages. That is the number of American mortgages currently reported to be held by MERS. Over half of all new U.S. residential mortgage loans are registered with MERS and recorded in its name. Holdings of the Kansas Supreme Court are not binding on the rest of the country, but they are dicta of which other courts take note; and the reasoning behind the decision is sound.
Eliminating the Straw Man Shielding Lenders and Investors from Liability
The development of electronic mortgages managed by MERS went hand in hand with the securitization of mortgage loans chopping them into pieces and selling them off to investors. In the heyday of mortgage securitizations, before investors got wise to their risks, lenders would slice up loans, bundle them into financial products called collateralized debt obligations (CDOs), ostensibly insure them against default by wrapping them in derivatives called credit default swaps, and sell them to pension funds, municipal funds, foreign investment funds, and so forth. There were many secured parties, and the pieces kept changing hands; but MERS supposedly kept track of all these changes electronically.
Lets add to he mix of “shortcuts” that MANY of the trusts were never created , the wall street banks just created accounting reports as if the trusts existed.. when you combine that with the fact that trusts are state regulated and in most cases must be registered and pay yearly registration fees (none of which was done) ,, you add another Mt. Everest sized hurdle for the banks (pretending to be the investors) must overcome.
You beat me to it.
The government can pass unread or not understood legislation. They will be held accountable in less than a month.
Private individuals and even local government are not so luckly. We're held accountable immediately.
OH... and lets add in that REMIC requirements were ignored meaning even on the performing assetts the tax exemptions for passthrough interest instruments (reits , mbs’s ) aren’t applicable and all these Wall Street banks owe back taxes on 100% of all the cash flow forwarded to the real investors. (plus penalties , plus intesest).
When all is said and done it will turn out that even if you actually paid off your mortgage, you don’t really own your house. The Government does.
On January 21st, Lloyd Blankfein left a peculiar voicemail message on the work phones of his employees at Goldman Sachs. Fast becoming America's pre-eminent Marvel Comics supervillain, the CEO used the call to deploy his secret weapon: a pair of giant, nuclear-powered testicles.
the solution is to say the deffective mortgage is no longer attached to the real property and is an unsecured claim. thus there is no lien to cloud the title.
Legally you are 100% correct ... I don’t know if we have the gonads to throw the “too big to fail” banks onto the rocks ... as they deserve.
But you can bet the government will find some way to prevent those homeowners from getting a free home at the expense of the financial system.
Actually, they hire a speed-reader to mock our system.
“Things are going down the toilet at warp speed, November cant get here soon enough.”
Sorry, Charlie, a Republican Congress (assuming such a thing comes about) is not going to have a quick fix for this problem.
It would be nice to see comments from a former General Counsel of a large title company. Exactly what are title companies likely to require before insuring title to properties that have passed through foreclosure?
Deficiencies in recorded chains of title can be fixed with curative paperwork if everyone in the chain of title will execute the required documents (at least that’s true in Texas). If previous owners of mortgages no longer exist or if their managers cannot determine for certain that they previously owned the mortgages (and so refuse to sign anything), then you gotta problemo Cochise. Otherwise, rack ‘em up and play pool.
There could be 10's of thousands of people guilty of FRAUD...if not a million or more.
Million of folks who are now paying mortgages may find they don't have clear title.