Tag Archives for " loan modifications "

Bank Employees Given Bonuses To Foreclose? Instead of HAMP? Hmmm…

An ex-Bank of America employee in court documents has alleging that Bank of America gave bonuses out to their employees for foreclosing on homeowners. 

It is alleged that employees were rewarded with gift cards and cash incentives to meet specified quotas of foreclosures. 

Well, what do you know, this statement says that they were told to postpone and drag out the home modification requests. Hmmm, I wonder if all those homeowners that called us to do a short sale for them here in Wellington, Royal Palm Beach, Lake Worth, Port St Lucie, Miami and Cooper City and West Palm Beach after they were served with those home modification decline notices and on the same day being served with their foreclosure lis pendens papers. 

We always did find that too much of a coincidance. 

One of the loss mitigation specialists said that they were drilled on knowing that it was their job to maximize the banks’ fees by pushing out the modification process by “any means we could”. While I totally get that the bank is to look after their investors and shareholders it is not ethical to lie about it. Just say you are not doing loan modifications! Don’t pull people along in false hopes. 

They were instructed to tell the homeowners when they called in to check the status of their modification request that their modification was under review when in fact it was not under review. 

Homeowners who were turned down for permanent loan modifications have hired attorneys to take their claims to court. The attorneys representing the homeowners say that they have more than one witness. That they have at least 7 former employees that are verfifying the allegations. 

Bank of America has denied the allegations. 

Florida Foreclosure Attorney is Disbarred- Another One Bites The Dust

Florida Foreclosure Attorney is Disbarred – Another One Bites The Dust 

This time it is Fort Lauderdale attorney William Timothy O’Toole. The Florida Attorney General sued the  Foreclosure Defense and Loan Modification operation that O’Toole ran. 

The Florida State Supreme court disbarred him this week. The disbarrment must last at least 5 years. 

In April he was suspended in what is called an “emergency suspension” on the allegation that his business was causing “great public harm”. This is what the court order said. 

The name of his company is “O’Toole’s Summit Legal Group” and is in Boca Raton Florida. This company employed sales people who would make calls to homeowners all over the country not just here in Florida. He worked with at least 3,000 clients according to the court order. 

These salespeople would charge up front fees of $2,000 to $3,000 and promised to save struggling homeowners from foreclosure. But the law suit says, that this attorney and his company did little to nothing to work on the cases. There are dozens of complaints by homeowners who paid this money and got nothing in return. These complaints went to the Florida Attorney General. 

O’Toole has been a member of the Florida Bar since 1992. He has been involved in 20 bar complaints. 

In October the Florida Attorney General got a court order to shut down his operation. 

The disbarment order also says that O’Toole became partners with a non-attorney named Randy Baker and split his fees with him which is against bar rules. 

The order also says that O’Toole led clients to believe that he was handling their cases when in fact, people he hired who had NO legal training were the ones taking care of his clients. 

This happens alot where the attorney becomes partners with someone who is not an attorney since the law passed here in Florida stating that only attorneys can accept upfront fees from a client for a loan modification.  But attorneys can only charge those fees if they are a part of a bigger case. 

We know attorneys who are approached often with these sorts of scenarios. The attorneys we know say this is unethical and they run away from those people who are trying to circumvent the law. 

The Florida Bar came out to warn attorneys about joining forces with non-legal businesses who are trying to skirt the law forbidding taking the upfront fees. 


FHA Extends Missing Mortgage Payments To 12 Months

FHA is extending the unemployment benefit of allowing homeowners with FHA loans to go from missing from four months to twelve months to keep qualifying homeowners from losing their homes to foreclosure.

This is supposed to help a small group of homeowners who default on FHA loans which right now is about 3.500 homeowners per month who are unemployed while they try to find a job.
The administration came out to say that expanding this assistance will help the economy and that they hope that other lenders will follow their lead in allowing homeowners to miss up to 12 months of mortgage payments if they are unemployed.
Banking consultants are not hopeful that this program will expand beyond FHA except in certain situations. Their position is if a homeowner does not make their mortgage payments for a year, gets the extended relief for that year, what happens after they default after the 12 months? Who will take the loss?
Community activist groups are saying this is a way to break the link in America between losing your job and losing your home.

This is interesting because out of that 3,500 borrowers per month this could help– only a very small percentage of those people will be helped actually and out of those helped, most will default anyways. That is what the HAMP program is proving.

It is human nature to choose the path of least resistance.People how live in their homes without making house payments get used to using their money for other things besides housing. It is very hard for most people to start paying a mortgage payment after they have been living mortgage and rent free for a year. It also does not create the motivation to get back to work.

This is yet another program from the administration that is not even going to make a drop in the bucket. It will follow down the path of failure as did HAMP and HAFA. They don’t get it. Government is not a business and they don’t know how to run businesses or programs that actually benefit people. Instead they create more frustration.

Let the chips fall where they may and we would get through this mess much faster. All they are doing is prolonging the inevitable.