In yet another settlement, JPMorgan Chase has admitted to filing tens of thousands of documents that were not reviewed by the people who had signed and authenticated to their accuracy. Many in the banking and legal community are shocked that Chase would admit to such wrongdoing in more than 50,000 fraudulent payment change notices. In court documents, it was stated that Chase “improperly signed, under penalty of perjury, by persons who had not reviewed the accuracy of the notices”.
During the investigation, it was discovered there were as many as 25,000 of the 50,000 fraudulent notices signed in the names of employees no longer working for Chase. This was a classic case of robo-signing, using signatures of former employees. The other 25,000 notices were signed by people employed by a third party vendor on issues other than checking the authenticity of the filings.
Chase also admitted they failed to file notices in a timely manner, failed to have accurate notices of mortgage payment changes and failed to provide proper and timely escrow statements.
The Department of Justice (DOJ) proposed settlement requires Chase to pay more than $50 million in cash payments, mortgage loan credits and loan forgiveness to more than 25,000 homeowners who were, or are in bankruptcy. Under the settlement, Chase will pay out:
- $22.4 million in credits and second lien forgiveness to approximate 400 homeowners who received improper notices during their bankruptcy cases,
- $10.8 million to more than 12,000 homeowners in bankruptcy through credits and refunds for payment increases/decreases not filed in bankruptcy court nor given notice to homeowners in a timely manner,
- $4.8 million to more than 18,000 homeowners not receiving accurate and timely escrow statements.
- $4.9 million through an approximate payment of $600 per loan to more than 8,000 homeowners whose escrow payments were inconsistent with escrow statements given to homeowners
- $7.5 million to be contributed to the American Bankruptcy Institute’s endowment for financial education and support for the Credit Abuse Resistance Education Program
Chase also agreed to make necessary changes to its technology policies, procedures and other systems to ensure these errors do not happen again.
It is still profitable for banks to knowingly commit errors; it cheaper for banks to robo-sign and pay settlements than to properly execute documents. Unfortunately, homeowners are the ones really paying the price for such errors.
If you are in foreclosure or facing foreclosure, contact The Gantenbein Law Firm for assistance. Gantenbein Law Firm is the only foreclosure defense law firm in Colorado that has an in-house loan modification specialist to provide additional assistance with your loan modification. Call 303-618-2122.
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