Daily Archives: January 2, 2013

No Federal Jurisdiction in JP Morgan Chase And Other Mortgage Lenders Mortgage Fraud Spat

(CN) – Chase and other mortgage lenders cannot keep federal jurisdiction over RICO claims Prudential Insurance filed in New Jersey, a federal judge ruled.
From 2005 to 2007, Prudential Insurance Company of America, Prudential Bank and Trust FSB, and the Gibraltar Life Insurance Company Ltd. purchased more than $523 million in residential mortgage-backed securities from J.P. Morgan Securities LLC, J.P. Morgan Mortgage Acquisition Corporation, Chase Home Finance LLC, J.P. Morgan Acceptance Corporation I, Chase Mortgage Finance Corporation, Chase Funding Inc., EMC Mortgage LLC, Master Funding LLC, and Bear Stearns Asset Backed Securities I LLC.
In an April 2012 complaint against the banks in Essex County Superior Court, Prudential claimed that J.P. Morgan abandoned underwriting guidelines, causing default rates on mortgage loans to soar while certificate values plummeted.
Prudential further alleged that J.P. Morgan knowingly lied, violating laws against fraud, negligent misrepresentation, the New Jersey Civil Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organization (RICO) Act, and the 1933 Securities Act.
J.P. Morgan removed the case to U.S. District Court, claiming that the suit arises out of international financial operations under the Edge Act. It also said entities that backed several of the securities Prudential purchased have since entered bankruptcy.
U.S. District Judge William Walls remanded the case back to state court on Dec. 20.

Read on.

Fiscal Cliff Deal To Block Pay Hike For Congress

Good! they don’t deserve a pay hike!

WASHINGTON — Legislation to prevent the government from going over the so-called fiscal cliff will also block a $900 automatic pay hike for members of Congress.

It’s one more reason for lawmakers to vote for the measure extending Bush-era tax cuts on individual income up to $450,000 while increasing rates for earnings above that threshold.

Under a 1989 law, lawmakers are supposed to receive automatic cost-of-living pay hikes, but as Congress’ approval ratings have fallen, lawmakers have routinely voted to reject the raise.

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Arnold Palmer, Nancy Pelosi, John Boehner

Ball v The Bank of New York: Missouri homeowners have a right to sue securitization trusts for wrongful foreclosure

A must read…

Foreclosure Review Scrapped On Eve Of Critical Watchdog Report, Congressman Says

The program, known as the Independent Foreclosure Review, was supposed to give homeowners who believe that their bank made a mistake in handling their foreclosure an opportunity for a neutral third party to review the claim. It’s not clear what factors led banking regulators to abandon the program in favor of a settlement, but the final straw may have been a pending report by the Government Accountability Office, a nonpartisan investigative arm of Congress, which was investigating the review program.

Rep. Brad Miller, a North Carolina Democrat, told The Huffington Post that the report, which has not been released, was “critical” and that the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, which administers the review, was aware of its findings. Miller said that that one problem the GAO was likely to highlight was an “unacceptably high” error rate of 11 percent in a sampling of bank loan files.

The sample files were chosen at random by the banks from their broader pool of foreclosed homeowners, who had not necessarily applied for relief. The data suggests that of the 4 million families who lost their homes to foreclosure since the housing crash, more than 400,000 had some bank-caused problem in their loan file. It also suggests that many thousands of those who could have applied for relief didn’t — because they weren’t aware of the review, or weren’t aware that their bank had made a mistake. Some of these mistakes pushed homeowners into foreclosure who otherwise could have afforded to keep their homes.

Miller said the news that a settlement to replace the review was in the works caught him by surprise, and stressed that he had no way of knowing whether the impending GAO report had triggered the decision.

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What Are the Most Dangerous Countries for Banks?

As recent initiatives by Wells Fargo and Silicon Valley Bank have shown, U.S. banks are seeking to grow their businesses internationally, initially to serve existing U.S. clients that operate in other countries and then to expand their own business abroad.

“As we’ve seen the U.S. economy not do as strongly as we would have hoped in the last few years, we’ve seen a lot of our clients looking for new opportunities in emerging frontier markets,” says Angela Mancini, vice president and head of global client services for the Eastern Geo Market of the Americas at Control Risks Group. The London-based company monitors political, security, operational and regulatory risk around the world on a daily basis. It maintains an online dashboard of these risks called Country Risk Forecast.

Read on.

LIZ COURSEN, A SARASOTA AUTHOR, SUES JPMORGAN CHASE (WAMU) FOR RACKETEERING OVER FRAUDCLOSURE

SARASOTA – Self-help author Liz Coursen was not looking to set a precedent when she decided to go after the big Wall Street investment bank that foreclosed on her Sarasota home. She just wanted her house back.

But JPMorgan Chase and Washington Mutual have tried to quash her federal racketeering lawsuit twice, so far without success, putting the Sarasota resident in the unlikely position of potential giant killer. If the suit proceeds and Coursen prevails, her case might serve as a legal roadmap for other borrowers.

Wall Street firms — targeted in reams of litigation after they handed out billions of dollars during the real estate boom only to grab assets back during the recession — have blocked most individual plaintiffs.

But not the 53-year-old author.

At least part of that is because of Coursen herself, who spent five lonely years acting as her own counsel in court. Her case, which alleges conspiracy and corporate deceit, gained more traction in recent months, thanks to Sarasota attorney Jacqulyn Mack, who specializes in consumer law and took the case last November.

Rest here…

Michigan governor signs foreclosure prevention legislation

Gov. Snyder signed legislation on Friday to help Michigan homeowners avoid foreclosure.

The Legislation was sponsored by Sen. Darwin Booher, R-Evart.

Read on.