Mortgage Servicers in the Hot Seat in Bankruptcy Court
Just two weeks ago, we posted an entry in which we applauded a Brooklyn judge for tossing out foreclosure requests where the banks had made mistakes in the foreclosure proceedings or in their foreclosure applications.
It seems like the trend of sticking it to the banks is continuing. We couldn’t be happier.
Case in point: The New York Times recently ran an article describing how a Phoenix bankruptcy judge ordered a high-ranking Wells Fargo executive to testify under oath in the bankruptcy case of a homeowner.
The homeowner, Bobbi Giguere, had submitted an application for a loan modification, but heard nothing from Wells Fargo for months, despite her repeated phone calls to the bank. She submitted three applications in total. Still, she never received an answer as to whether she was approved or denied the loan modification. Finally, in order to save her three-bedroom home, Mrs. Giguere filed for bankruptcy.
Ordered by the bankruptcy judge to give answers as to why Mrs. Giguere never received a response to her loan modification requests, Wells Fargo sent senior vice president Joseph Ohayon to testify. Mr. Ohayon explained that Mrs. Giguere had repeatedly failed to provide a financial worksheet in her application. From her files, Mrs. Giguere produced a letter from Wells Fargo describing the paperwork that she needed to file for a loan modification. After reading the letter in the witness chair, Mr. Ohayon admitted that Mrs. Giguere was right. The letter did not ask for a financial worksheet.
The judge continued to press Mr. Ohayon on why Mrs. Giguere, or, for that matter, thousands of other loan modification applicants, was never told that their loan modifications were denied. Mr. Ohayon responded: “Customer communication is something we’re taking a serious look at, your honor.”
We sure hope that’s true. At least Wells Fargo agreed to schedule a three-day seminar in Phoenix, where customers who submitted loan modification applications were able to meet with bank representatives to learn whether their applications were approved or denied. Mortgage servicers may have a long, long way to go, but this is a start.
Contact Freedom Law Firm today for a free consultation at 702-903-1208.