Move over robo-signing…
During the foreclosure crisis, a number of lenders, servicers, law firms, and others engaged in a practice where employees basically rubber-stamped thousands of foreclosure cases without reviewing any of the relevant details.
That practice came to be known as robo-signing.
Now, a new lawsuit from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau sheds light on a similar practice that apparently exists within the debt collection industry – let’s call it “robo-suing.”
The CFPB on Friday filed suit against debt collection law firm Forster & Garbus, accusing the New York firm of filing thousands of debt collection lawsuits against borrowers despite allegedly conducting only superficial reviews of the relevant documents before deciding to sue.
According to the CFPB, creditors and debt buyers refer credit card, auto loan, student loan, home equity loan debts, and others to the firm for collection. Among the companies that have used Forster & Garbus are Citibank and Discover, according to the CFPB.
Since Jan. 1, 2014, Forster & Garbus’ clients have placed more than 136,700 accounts with the firm for collection.
According to the CFPB, during the time in question (2014 through 2016), Forster & Garbus employed approximately 10 or 11 attorneys, in addition to its two named partners.
Despite that small roster of attorneys, Forster & Garbus files suits in New York courts on a “massive scale,” the CFPB claims.