Bank of America Breaking Rules and Governor Scott Expediting Foreclosures…Where Should Homeowners Turn?
Last week, Florida’s Attorney General Pam Bondi bashed Bank of America for violating the rules of the National Mortgage Settlement that was reached last year with the nation’s five largest banks. Bondi accuses Bank of America of failing to modify mortgages efficiently. More specifically, Attorney General Bondi says the banks are not providing a single point of contact and are mis-managing files, including losing various borrower documents. Bondi is not alone in her accusations; New York’s Attorney General, Eric Schneiderman has threatened to sue Bank of America and Wells Fargo for noncompliance issues with the settlement as well. While Bondi has not ruled litigation out, she is focusing at open discussions with the Banks to help resolve these matters in the short term.
The remarks by Bondi come at the same time as Governor Scott’s signing of the speedy foreclosure bill over the weekend. The Bill, which has now been signed into law, allows banks to streamline the foreclosure process by making homeowners “show cause” as to why a foreclosure judgment should not be immediately imposed. The law is widely viewed as a pro-lender piece of legislation. Accordingly, a group of Florida defense attorneys has already begun the process to challenge the new law through legal action.
So what can Florida homeowners do to protect themselves? Here are out suggestions:
- Don’t wait to retain an attorney until it is too late. Consult with a real estate attorney as soon as you find yourself falling behind on payments.
- If you are going through a loan modification or a re-finance, demand a single point of contact with the bank.
- Always keep written notes of the documents you have provided and names of individuals who you have spoken with at the bank.
Call and write the Attorney General’s Office if you are having issues with the bank.