Loan Modification

March 19th, 2018 by

Loan Modification and Foreclosure

Joshua Denbeaux, Esq. has been protecting the rights of NJ home owners since the housing crisis of 2008. He is one of the few attorneys to have brought cases and won in the NJ Supreme Court.

Loan Modification Representation

We can reveal your eligibility for a loan modification with a specific lender along with the terms and payment amounts to provide more successful outcomes.

Clients have found this helpful in order to make short term and long term financial decisions related to servicing their mortgage debt. We have the resources to research the specific trust, investor or servicer and identify the specific modification programs available to you by your lender and know the terms of that offer.

How it Works

We do an analysis of your eligibility for a loan modification based upon information about your loan.

We will be able to tell you :

1. Who actually owns your current loan.
2. What other loans exist within your pool.
3. See characteristics of the loan pool.
4. Loan history what loan terms for which you may be eligible.

From this information we can draw conclusions and make strong predictions about what the lender has offerred to borrowers in the past. We will be able to see if they are dealing with you fairly when they make the offer of the modification. Also we will be able to ascertain if the loan modification terms will be able to help your situation.

Benefit to Homeowners of Proactive Loan Modification Representation

If the loan modification application is not properly administered you have the right to bring a federal lawsuit against mortgage servicer and their attorneys.

We do all the work necessary to have the legal basis to protect your rights and bring a lawsuit if it comes to that. Often clients have started the loan modification process on their own and run into problems and misfortune such as losing their home due to loan servicing errors in handling their file. By having legal representation from the outset we are able to compile an accurate record of exactly what the loan servicer is doing and hold them accountable. If they have violated the law we can bring a suit against them.

Loan Modification Homeowner Rights

If the loan servicer neglects to administer the loan modification application carefully then they may be subject to penalties under the law know as The Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (“ RESPA”) and the Truth-In-Lending Act (“TILA”).

  1. The loan servicer upon receiving a complete loan application must issue a decision within 30 business days from the date of receipt.
  2. If any documents are missing or if the servicer needs additional documents they must advise the borrower within 5 business days after receipt of the application.
  3. While a complete application is being reviewed the loan servicer must stop all actions in a foreclosure.
  4. Provide information properly requested e.g. RFI about ownership of note and mortgage under TILA within 10 business days; and
  5. Provide information properly requested about loan payments, loan history, and other loan information within 30 business days.
  6. Provide payoff or reinstatement figures within 7 business days of receipt of written request.
  7. If a servicer violates these regulations, there can be liability under Regulations X and Z for statutory damages, attorney fees, and compensatory damages e.g. legal fees, loss of credit and other losses.

When Denbeaux and Denbeaux provides the representation for your loan modification we hold the lender accountable for following the these rules and document violations that can be used to sue the loan servicer and their attorneys. The primary benefits for the borrower of Denbeaux and Denbeaux involved are :

  • stopping the foreclosure process
  • getting you more time to arrange your finances
  • securing a loan modification

Our attorneys and experts have worked with loan modifications for our clients with these and other lenders:

Bank of America
Fay Servicing
Federal National Mortgage Association (Fannie Mae)
Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation (Freddie Mac)
Federal Housing Authority (FHA)
Selene Finance
Specialized Loan Servicing (SLS)
US Bank
Wells Fargo

CFPB Rules Establish Strong Protections for Homeowners Facing Foreclosure

New Rules Prevent Servicer Surprises and Runarounds for Mortgage Borrowers

WASHINGTON, D.C. — (January 17, 2013) The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) issued rules to establish new, strong protections for struggling homeowners facing foreclosure. The rules also protect mortgage borrowers from costly surprises and runarounds by their servicers.
“For many borrowers, dealing with mortgage servicers has meant unwelcome surprises and constantly getting the runaround. In too many cases, it has led to unnecessary foreclosures,” said CFPB Director Richard Cordray. “Our rules ensure fair treatment for all borrowers and establish strong protections for those struggling to save their homes.”

Mortgage servicers are responsible for collecting payments from mortgage borrowers on behalf of loan owners. They also typically handle customer service, escrow accounts, collections, loan modifications, and foreclosures. Generally, borrowers have no say in choosing their mortgage servicers. Lenders frequently sell loans to investors after the mortgage deal is signed, and the investors, not the consumers, often choose the servicers.
Even before the financial crisis, the mortgage servicing industry at times experienced problems with bad practices and sloppy recordkeeping. As millions of borrowers fell behind on their loans as a result of the crisis, many servicers were unable to provide the level of service necessary to meet homeowners’ needs. Many simply had not made the investments in resources and infrastructure to service large numbers of delinquent loans. Consumers complained about getting the runaround and being hit with costly surprises. Now, with millions of homeowners in distress, many borrowers are continuing to experience serious problems seeking loan modifications or other alternatives to avoid foreclosure.

Strong Protections for Struggling Borrowers

The CFPB’s mortgage servicing rules ensure that borrowers in trouble get a fair process to avoid foreclosure. Borrowers shouldn’t have to worry about mortgage servicers cutting corners or losing applications for relief. They should be told about their options and given time to apply and be considered for loan modifications and other alternatives. Most of all, they shouldn’t be surprised by the start of a foreclosure proceeding until they have had time to explore all available options. If they act diligently to seek alternatives, they should not face a foreclosure sale before their applications have been evaluated. The new protections for struggling borrowers include:

Restricted Dual-Tracking: Under the CFPB’s new rules, dual-tracking – when the servicer moves forward with foreclosure while simultaneously working with the borrower to avoid foreclosure – is restricted. Servicers cannot start a foreclosure proceeding if a borrower has already submitted a complete application for a loan modification or other alternative to foreclosure, and that application is still pending review. To give borrowers reasonable time to submit such applications, servicers cannot make the first notice or filing required for the foreclosure process until a mortgage loan account is more than 120 days delinquent.

Notification of Foreclosure Alternatives: Servicers must let borrowers know about their “loss mitigation options” to retain their home after borrowers have missed two consecutive payments. They must provide them a written notice that includes examples of options that might be available to them as alternatives to foreclosure and instructions for how to obtain more information.

Direct and Ongoing Access to Servicing Personnel: Servicers must have policies and procedures in place to provide delinquent borrowers with direct, easy, ongoing access to employees responsible for helping them. These personnel are responsible for alerting borrowers to any missing information on their applications, telling borrowers about the status of any loss mitigation application, and making sure documents get to the right servicing personnel for processing.

Fair Review Process: The servicer must consider all foreclosure alternatives available from the mortgage owners or investors – those with decision-making power over the loan – to help the borrower retain the home. These options can range from deferment of payments to loan modifications. And servicers can no longer steer borrowers to those options that are most financially favorable for the servicer.

No Foreclosure Sale Until All Other Alternatives Considered: Servicers must consider and respond to a borrower’s application for a loan modification if it arrives at least 37 days before a scheduled foreclosure sale. If the servicer offers an alternative to foreclosure, they must give the borrower time to accept the offer before moving for foreclosure judgment or conducting a foreclosure sale. Servicers cannot foreclose on a property if the borrower and servicer have come to a loss mitigation agreement, unless the borrower fails to perform under that agreement.

No Surprises
Mortgage borrowers should not be surprised about where their money is going, when interest rates adjust, or when they get charged fees. The CFPB’s rules help every borrower, whether struggling or not, by bringing greater transparency to the market with clear and timely information about mortgages. These rules include:

Clear Monthly Mortgage Statements: Servicers must provide regular statements which include: the amount and due date of the next payment; a breakdown of payments by principal, interest, fees, and escrow; and recent transaction activity.

Early Warning Before Interest Rate Adjusts: Servicers must provide a disclosure before the first time the interest rate adjusts for most adjustable-rate mortgages. And they must provide disclosures before interest rate adjustments that result in a different payment amount.

Options for Avoiding Costly “Force-Placed” Insurance: Servicers typically must make sure borrowers maintain property insurance and if the borrower does not, the servicer generally has the right to purchase it. The CFPB’s rules ensure consumers will not be surprised by this insurance, which often can be more expensive than the insurance borrowers buy on their own. The rules say servicers must provide more transparency in this process, including advance notice and pricing information before charging consumers. Servicers must also have a reasonable basis for concluding that a borrower lacks such insurance before purchasing a new policy. If servicers buy the insurance but receive evidence that it was not needed, they must terminate it within fifteen days and refund the premiums.

No Runarounds
When mortgage servicers make mistakes, records get lost, payments are processed too slowly, or servicer personnel do not have the latest information about a consumer’s account, the consumer suffers the consequences. The CFPB’s rules will require common-sense policies and procedures for handling consumer accounts and preventing runarounds. These rules include:

Payments Promptly Credited: Servicers must credit a consumer’s account the date a payment is received. If the servicer places partial payments in a “suspense account,” once the amount in such an account equals a full payment, the servicer must credit it to the borrower’s account.
Prompt Response to Requests for Payoff Balances: Servicers must generally provide a response to consumer requests for the payoff balances of their mortgage loans within seven business days of receiving a written request.
Errors Corrected and Information Provided Quickly: Servicers must generally acknowledge receipt of written notices from consumers regarding certain errors or requesting information about their mortgage loans. Generally, within 30 days, the servicer must: correct the error and provide the information requested; conduct a reasonable investigation and inform the borrower why the error did not occur; or inform the borrower that the information requested is unavailable.

Maintain Accurate and Accessible Documents and Information: Servicers must store borrower information in a way that allows it to be easily accessible. Servicers must also have policies and procedures in place to ensure that they can provide timely and accurate information to borrowers, investors, and in any foreclosure proceeding, the courts.

Today’s rules originate from the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, which directed the CFPB to implement reforms for the mortgage servicing industry. The CFPB announced in August that it was considering a number of proposals to implement the Dodd-Frank Act requirements and address systemic problems in the industry. Today’s rules are a result of the public’s feedback on those proposals.

Recognizing that small servicers approach servicing quite differently, the CFPB made certain exemptions to today’s mortgage servicing rules for small servicers that service 5,000 or fewer mortgage loans that they or an affiliate either own or originated. These servicers are mostly community banks and credit unions servicing mortgages for their customers or members.

The mortgage servicing rules take effect in January 2014. The CFPB plans to work with mortgage servicers to ensure an easy transition to implementation. To help with compliance, the CFPB will, among other things, be issuing plain language implementation guides and, in coordination with other agencies, releasing materials that help servicers understand supervisory expectations. For many of the new rules that require specific notifications, the rule contains model and sample forms. As the effective date approaches, the CFPB will also give consumers information about their new rights under these rules.

The mortgage servicing rules can be found Thursday
A summary of the rules is available at:
A factsheet about the rules can be found at:

Bank of America Loan Modification Scam

February 10th, 2018 by

Woman Says Bank Foreclosed On Her Home Despite Making Mortgage Payments

(Running time: 1 minute 37 seconds)

Here in her own words is Ms. Kim Shibles telling her story in her own words about her experience with Bank of America before she found Denbeaux and Denbeaux. After hearing her brief one on one with CBS Producer Mary McKeever, you can click the link at the end of her video and see the CBS feature that ran in November. If you want to skip Ms. Shibles and the CBS feature is below:

CBS New York / Pittsburgh November 17, 2017  (Running time 2 min 31 seconds)

“I purchased my home Feb.20, 2004. In 2010 I received through the mail an offer from Bank of America (my mortgage bank), soliciting me for the Making Homes Affordable program, which was a President Obama sponsored mortgage modification program at the time. I was approved within two weeks to be part of a trial program, with a three month stipulation that if the payments were made on time the new modification would remain intact and be made into a permanent fixed loan. Prior to this offer, my history of making payments to Bank of America was impeccable and I had no knowledge of nor had ever attempted to contact Bank of America to modify my loan. During this same time period, I was experiencing a disruption of Survivor benefits for one of my sons, which would amount to a loss of roughly $12,800 for the year. This was a tremendous loss considering I am a widowed mother of three and have sole custody of and exclusively care for my severely handicapped grandson. Needless to say this modification was a god send to me at the time. In fact, it was this hardship that made me eligible for the modification in the first place, according to Bank of America.

For the entire three month trial period I made my payments perfectly on time and in compliance with my agreement with Bank of America. For reasons unbeknownst to me, Bank of America never notified me after the trial period had ended, and never sent any forms or statements reflecting the new modification payments. After contacting them on the telephone, I was instructed just to keep making the same payments as I had done for the last three months. This lasted for ten months. On January 1st, 2011, Bank of America sent me a bill for roughly $8,000, reflecting the difference from my original mortgage payments and the modification payments that I had been making.

Along with this billing notice, Bank of America stated that I was no longer eligible for the modification program and they were intending to foreclose on my home if l did not pay the $8,000. At the time raising $8,000 seemed like raising a million.

After a lengthy conversation on the telephone, a representative from Bank of America advised me if I filed a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, I could clear some of my debts and now be eligible for a second modification. Based solely on their advice, I filed a Chapter 7 bankruptcy case, and in June of 2012, cleared most of my debts and refiled for the modification with Bank of America. Two weeks later Bank of America sent me a notice, stating that I was not eligible for a modification.

In March of 2014, after many, many telephone calls and conversations with Bank of America, I went through the arduous process of sending form after form, and request after ridiculous request from Bank of America for piles of information concerning the application for a third mortgage modification. At the same time Bank of America was still going through the foreclosure process and assured me that they could stop the foreclosure or any sheriff’s sale, once the modification was approved. It was becoming apparent to me that Bank of America was never going to modify my loan and that I could really lose my house, and the stress of this was taking it’s toll on me. What I didn’t understand was why Bank of America would do such a thing. I had done everything that I was instructed to do, but it seemed like it was never going to be enough.

Several months later I received a notice that my home would be going to sheriff s sale on July 23rd, 2014. On July 16th, I went to the sheriff’s office and gave them a payment to postpone the sale. At 3:30 that same afternoon, I received a call from the sheriff s office, informing me that I could come and pick up the check that I had paid for the postponement, because Bank of America canceled the sale, due to an incomplete FHFA certificate. At 6:30 p.m., on the same day, I received a call from Rayne Lynn Sykes’ assistant. Rayne Lynn Sykes is the Bank of America representative that had been helping me with the modification. Her assistant informed me that I would be very happy to hear that they canceled the sale of my home, because the underwriter was putting the mortgage together. I started to feel relieved but was still apprehensive. Interestingly, another date for sheriff’s sale came and went on August 20th, 2014, and again another postponement by Bank of America. I would like to make it clear that these postponements by Bank of America were not made on my behalf or for any sympathy on their part for me, but due to lack of paperwork and procedural issues on their part.

After that call, I did not hear from Bank of America until October of 2014, when they informed me that a company called BSI would be the new servicer of the loan. Shortly thereafter I was served papers from the sheriff s office giving me a new date of December 10th 2014, for the sale of the house. At this point I just did not know what to believe, because all along Bank of America had deceived me into thinking that I would never lose my home and that the modification would take place.

On December 9th, 2014, I went to the sheriff s office again to postpone the sale and was able to get a postponement and a new date of January 7th, 2015. As suggested by the sheriff s office, I returned at 8:30 a.m. on the morning of January 7th, 2015 to submit and pay for my second (official) postponement. Representatives at the sheriff s office told me to call in at 1:00 p.m. and check to see the status of the sale. They informed me that Bank of America again postponed the sale and that I would get my check back and not be charged for the second postponement. Ironically, right around the same time, I received a certified letter from BSI, stating that there was help for me and still time to get a loan modification.

The stress and anxiety from all of this is really affecting my health and my family. I will be 50 in April, and I’ve raised my three boys by myself since they were one, three and eight years old. In 2012, I went to Louisiana to get my grandson out of foster care and bring him to my home. My grandson Logan is severely handicapped and I was the only person that was willing to take on the responsibility of his care. Logan is the light of my life and we live day by day not knowing what’s coming next or whether we will be homeless tomorrow. Basically, I feel like I am a victim of a fraudulent mortgage. I cannot be put out in the cold with this child. I thank you for any help that you may extend to me on this matter.”

This is Kim in Josh’s office discussing her case with CBS. She is a brave and courageous homeowner to stand up for her rights and also come forth and talk about her case publicly. These next videos are about loan modifications, loan servicing and the banks.

Josh answers the question how his approach to foreclosures is different.

Short answer : the firm takes into account contract law. He suggests that other lawyers offerring foreclosure defense haven’t held loan servicers to account for breach of contract is a tool they should be using.  (Running time 2 min 28 seconds)

In this recorded phone call Josh answers the question about how the intake of documents and analysis is the foundation of  the claim. (Running time 1 min 44 seconds)

In this video Josh answer question of what are the ways to challenge a foreclosure case. (Running time : 1 min 39 seconds)

Download a copy of the Foreclosure Guide to know the steps involved in a foreclosure and the exact legal process.

he Step by Step Guide to NJ Foreclosure Defense

Foreclosure Process w Summary – June 2017

Denbeaux Wins in Supreme Court on Behalf of Homeowner with Loan Modification

August 16th, 2017 by

Homeowners with Loan Modifications No Longer at the Mercy of Banks

NJ Supreme Court unanimously rules a loan modification agreement is a permanent agreement and cannot be unilaterally altered by mortgage lenders

WESTWOOD, NJ (August 15, 2017) – In a major victory for distressed NJ homeowners, the NJ Supreme Court reversed two lower court decisions and ruled that loan modification agreements are binding contracts and must be treated as permanent agreements.

The decision GMAC Mortgage L.L.C. v. Tamilynn Willoughby, Docket No. A-97-15 (2017), enforced the original negotiated settlement agreement and disallowed the changes that the lender unilaterally made to the agreement, which ultimately resulted in the homeowner (Willoughby) losing her home.

Joshua Denbeaux, Esq.

Attorney Joshua Denbeaux (Willoughby’s legal representative) declared, “This case forces courts to honor contracts between banks and homeowners. The potential ramifications of this decision are staggering. When you combine this ruling with past court decisions (such as Gonzalez vs. Wilshire Credit) which ruled that lenders who deceive borrowers during the course of mortgage servicing are committing consumer fraud, it potentially means that every breach of contract by a bank is an act of consumer fraud.” (The penalties for Consumer Fraud are severe, including triple damages, plus costs and attorneys’ fees.)

Denbeaux continued, “So this decision is a huge game-changer, not only in the damages phase, but also in the liability phase. And the recent appellate decision stating that you don’t have to bring these claims to the foreclosure courts but can bring them separately, means that you don’t have to deal with the foreclosure judges. You can go to the law division and have your case decided by a jury.”

According to court documents, a permanent loan modification agreement was reached in May 2010 under the auspices of the Residential Mortgage Foreclosure Mediation Program which the chancery courts failed to recognize. Furthermore, there was nothing in the agreement to suggest that after a period of a year, GMAC could unilaterally demand that Willoughby had to agree to new different terms than were previously set forth in the Settlement Memorandum.

According to the syllabus provided by the Office of the Clerk, “Willoughby satisfied all contingent terms of the May 2010 Agreement, rendering the Agreement permanent and binding. Despite being compelled to engage in subsequent mediations and negotiations in an effort to save her home, Willoughby did not voluntarily abandon the May 2010 Agreement. The chancery court should have granted her pro se motion to enforce the Agreement as a permanent loan modification.”


What Wells Fargo Being Accused of Illegal Loan Mods Means to You

June 16th, 2017 by

A class action lawsuit alleges in the Wells Fargo mortgage business put through unauthorized changes to home loans held by customers in bankruptcy.

A lawyer in Brownsville, Tex., who represents some of the plaintiffs, said he first thought that Wells Fargo had made a clerical error. Then he saw another case and realized that it was pattern of filing false documents with the federal court.

The big take away on this story is that seemingly harmless clerical errors in documents related to consumer finance may actually be evidence of a violation of the law. This can make all the difference in something as important as your home, your mortgage, or any kind of loan when facing a loan default or foreclosure.

Senior Partner Joshua Denbeaux trains and coaches lawyers at Denbeaux and Denbeaux to recognize the errors and patterns of practice by banks, debt collectors and loan servicing companies that violate laws such as the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, (FDCPA), the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), the Truth in Lending Act (TILA)the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA) and the Consumer Fraud Act.

First consultations are done personally by Josh Denbeaux so that errors are spotted and violations are exposed that may violate your rights that protect your home, your credit and your money.

If you are having any kind of problem related to financial consumer rights, such as being late on payments on a home mortgage and heading for default, call us now to schedule a no-charge free consultation at (201) 664-8855.

In the consultation you will get three things:

  1. a comprehensive review of your unique situation.
  2. knowledge of what will happen if you decide to take further action (or not).
  3. an opinion of whether your desired outcome is within reach.

Past clients have expressed a feeling of relief and a tremendous burden been lifted after meeting with Josh. You will have the confidence gained by having the certainty of what will happen next.

The story:

NTY Wells Fargo Is Accused of Making Improper Changes to Mortgages


Even as Wells Fargo was reeling from a major scandal in its consumer bank last year, officials in the company’s mortgage business were putting through unauthorized changes to home loans held by customers in bankruptcy, a new class action and other lawsuits contend.

The changes, which surprised the customers, typically lowered their monthly loan payments, which would seem to benefit borrowers, particularly those in bankruptcy. But deep in the details was this fact: Wells Fargo’s changes would extend the terms of borrowers’ loans by decades, meaning they would have monthly payments for far longer and would ultimately owe the bank much more.

Any change to a payment plan for a person in bankruptcy is subject to approval by the court and the other parties involved. But Wells Fargo put through big changes to the home loans without such approval, according to the lawsuits. The changes are part of a trial loan modification process from Wells Fargo. But they put borrowers in bankruptcy at risk of defaulting on the commitments they have made to the courts, and could make them vulnerable to foreclosure in the future.

A spokesman for Wells Fargo, Tom Goyda, said the bank strongly denied the claims made in the lawsuits and particularly disputed how the complaints characterized the bank’s actions. Wells Fargo contends that the borrowers and the bankruptcy courts were notified.

“Modifications help customers stay in their homes when they encounter financial challenges,” Mr. Goyda said, “and we have used them to help more than one million families since the beginning of 2009.”

According to court documents, Wells Fargo has been putting through unrequested changes to borrowers’ loans since 2015. During this period, the bank was under attack for its practice of opening unwanted bank and credit card accounts for customers to meet sales quotas.

Outrage over that activity — which the bank admitted in September 2016, when it was fined $185 million — cost John G. Stumpf, its former chief executive, his job and damaged the bank’s reputation.

It is unclear how many unsolicited loan changes Wells Fargo has put through nationwide, but seven cases describing the conduct have recently arisen in Louisiana, New Jersey, North Carolina, Pennsylvania and Texas. In the North Carolina court, Wells Fargo produced records showing it had submitted changes on at least 25 borrowers’ loans since 2015.

Full story click here.

HAMP Eligibility Ends December 30, 2016‎

November 21st, 2016 by

CFPB Compliance Bulletin Reminds Debt Collectors that In Person Collection Attempts Often Violation of Federal Law

By Adam Deutsch

With the end of HAMP we are coming to the end of an era.  If you are struggling to pay your mortgage or have defaulted on your mortgage and your loan is owned or serviced by a bank that took federal money through TARP you must not let the opportunity to seek a modification under the Home Affordable Modification Program or HAMP pass you by.  The deadline to submit an application is Friday December 30, 2016. I have seen first hand this program change lives and help families.  To be considered, your application does not need to be complete with all documentation submitted, but you do need to have the process started before the end of the year.  Find out what must be submitted by clicking this link.

Joshua Denbeaux, Esq.

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If you submit your HAMP application before the deadline make sure to keep a record of all documents submitted, and how you submitted them.  If you are sending your application by mail, pay to have it tracked so you can confirm receipt.  Unfortunately, some loan servicers purposefully deny loan modifications under false pretenses, claiming the application was filed late, incomplete or that it was never received.  When this happens, it is your record keeping that can make the difference in obtaining relief.

Denbeaux & Denbeaux are specialized experts in utilizing federal laws that govern the servicing, ownership, and modifying of mortgage loans.  Bankruptcy, is probably not the best solution although we hear too often from homeowners who are lead to believe their only choice is to make the drastic decision to file a bankruptcy.  Without using bankruptcy we have obtained Court Orders in New Jersey Federal Court highlighting the wrongful behavior of banks in reviewing homeowners for loan modifications (Block v. Seneca).   Denbeaux & Denbeaux uses its knowledge of the federal courts and federal law to take foreclosure fights out of state court, resulting in loan modifications and monetary awards.  Even if you have lost your home, we may be able to get you relief.


FCRT: CFPB Reveals Mortgage Servicing Problems

July 5th, 2016 by

In this episode of the FCRT Adam Deutsch discusses the CFPB supervisory report on the mortgage servicing industry. He reviews the report and provides additional insight for homeowners in relation to RESPA , the Real Estate Settlement and Procedures Act.

In this eleventh issue of Supervisory Highlights, (6/23/16) we share findings from recent supervisory examination observations in mortgage servicing.

To provide additional context for readers, we integrate these recent observations with observations from previous editions of Supervisory Highlights by subject matter – loss mitigation acknowledgement notices; loss mitigation offers and related communications; loan modification denial notices; policies and procedures; and servicing transfers.  The report also discusses Supervision’s approach mortgage to servicing exams, including a description of recent changes to the mortgage servicing chapter of the CFPB Supervision and Examination Manual.

CFPB Announcement of the Supervisory Report

Extract from the Introduction of the Report:

Mortgage servicers play a central role in homeowners’ lives by managing their mortgage loans. Servicers collect and apply payments, work out modifications to loan terms, and handle the difficult process of foreclosure. As the financial crisis made clear, weak customer support, lost paperwork, and mishandled accounts can lead to many wrongful foreclosures and other serious harm.

Since consumers do not choose their mortgage servicers they cannot take their business elsewhere. To improve practices in the servicing market, the Dodd-Frank Act Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act (Dodd-Frank Act) imposed new requirements on servicers and gave the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) the authority to implement those new requirements and adopt additional rules to protect consumers.

The CFPB released rules, effective January 10, 2014, to improve the information consumers receive from their servicers, to enhance the protections available to consumers to address servicer errors, and to establish baseline servicing requirements that provide additional protections for consumers who have fallen behind on their mortgage payments. Supervisory examinations of mortgage servicers now generally focus on reviewing for compliance with these servicing rules and for unfair, deceptive, and abusive acts or practices.


Download the full report here from this

Fraudulent Banking Practices, Poor Loan Servicing Behind NJ High Foreclosure Rate

October 21st, 2015 by

Joshua Denbeaux, Esq.

If the bank could get everything they wanted you’d be out of your house by now. They have to lie to you encourage you not to contest the foreclosure. They say that the foreclosure is not yet scheduled to make you think it is right around the corner, when it is down the road. Don’t listen to the banks who are misrepresenting facts to their own benefit.

Adam Deutsch, Esq.

Clients believe they have resolved their foreclosure issues by agreeing to a loan modification, only to discover that after a few months their servicer has breached the agreement. Some servicers stop accepting loan modification payments; others manipulate the rate payments so that the homeowners are paying more than agreed upon.

Poor Loan Servicing Reason for NJ Leading Nation in Foreclosures

October 20th, 2015 by

NJ Leads Nation in Foreclosures Due to Poor Loan Servicing

NJ law firm Denbeaux & Denbeaux says continued mortgage-servicing problems, such as breached loan modification agreements, play a major role in why the state leads the nation in foreclosures, and is the cause for the recent RealtyTrac report which revealed that NJ has highest foreclosure rate in the U.S.

New Jersey consumer rights and foreclosure defense lawyer, Adam Deutsch, Esq., of the law firm Denbeaux and Denbeaux has noticed a significant increase in the number of homeowners pushed into foreclosure and collections due to the conduct of the mortgage servicer rather than the borrower’s ability to pay.

A recent report by RealtyTrac reveals that as of the third quarter of 2015, New Jersey has again claimed the highest foreclosure rate in the United States. The report also states that foreclosure activity in New Jersey has increased 27% from this time last year. Among those not surprised by the RealtyTrac findings is Denbeaux & Denbeaux Senior Associate Attorney Adam Deutsch.

UPDATE 10/18/16 : As of September 2016 , foreclosure rate for New Jersey was the highest in the country with 1 in every 544 homes

“I have noticed a large increase in the number of homeowners with loan modification problems,” said Deutsch. “Clients believe they have resolved their foreclosure issues by agreeing to a loan modification, only to discover that after a few months their servicer has breached the agreement. Some servicers stop accepting loan modification payments; others manipulate the rate payments so that the homeowners are paying more than agreed upon. A third pattern is that servicing of the loan is transferred and the new company refuses to honor the agreement.”

Deutsch surmises that the 27% jump in NJ foreclosures since this time last year may also have something to do with the recent increase in mergers in the mortgage servicing industry. The changing business models brought on by the mergers could be forcing homeowners into foreclosures that did not exist previously. Regardless of the issue, Deutsch instructs homeowners to seek legal counsel sooner than later.

“Time is on the side of the homeowners, but only if they take action. In the past, I saw many borrowers talking to their loan servicer and passively trusting that wrongful conduct would be corrected. They would only come to us after years of being misled. Amendments to federal laws that became effective in early 2014 have resulted in new opportunities to obtain meaningful relief for borrowers who have been lied to, injured, or otherwise harmed in the loan servicing and collection process. Unfortunately, the banking industry continues to abuse borrowers, and borrowers have not been made aware that they can sue the bank to enforce their rights.. These federal laws can have major impacts on a homeowner’s case, from issues relating to loan origination, misapplication of interest rates and escrow charges in loan servicing, and improper debt collection efforts. Relief has to be sought quickly, with some statutes having time limits as short as one year. This is why it is so important to keep good records and speak to a knowledgeable attorney as soon as the borrower thinks there is a problem.” Deutsch concluded.

The law firm of Denbeaux and Denbeaux is located at 366 Kinderkamack Road Westwood New Jersey 07675. Tel: 201-664-8855 or email pr(at)denbeauxlaw(dot)com.

Denbeaux and Denbeaux is a family operated law firm with a tradition of excellence in consumer rights and family law. Formed in 1989, Denbeaux & Denbeaux is a law firm dedicated to providing top level legal representation to its clients. Their work has been featured in major media sources throughout the country including CNN, MSNBC, NPR, C-SPAN, CBS Evening News, the Associated Press, The Star Ledger, and The Record.

The partners, Marcia Denbeaux and Joshua Denbeaux, represent individuals and businesses in New Jersey State and Federal Trial and Appellate Courts. The firm primarily practices civil litigation, with a concentration in , consumer fraud, commercial litigation, matrimonial law, business, insurance coverage litigation, and mortgage foreclosure defense.

Filed under

NJ Foreclosure, Housing, Finance and Consumer News of the Day 9/22/15

September 22nd, 2015 by

News of the day relating to foreclosure, housing and finance impacting NJ homeowners and consumers as selected by the law firm of Denbeaux and Denbeaux. These is the top  story that is trending , and has caught people’s attention so far today.

Sinister visions of America in crisis: Hollywood finally gets foreclosures right in “99 Homes”

A little less dramatic but maybe more important to homeowners is the news that comes about loan modifications seemingly on the rise, as foreclosures diminish on a national average. However, there is still bleak news in New Jersey for homeowners, as foreclosures were on the rise as compared to a year ago for the same period in July.

Loan Modifications Outpaced Foreclosure Sales in July

Below is a list of stories from around the country that specifically mention foreclosure that we also may provide some further discussion on  later today.


Seattle Bubble (blog)

Foreclosures Back to Pre-Bust Levels Around Seattle

Seattle Bubble (blog)
It’s been a few months since we took a detailed look at foreclosure stats in King, Snohomish, and Pierce counties, so let’s update those numbers.
CBS News

Sinister visions of America in crisis: Hollywood finally gets foreclosures right in “99 Homes”

But in “99 Homes,” director Ramin Bahrani offers the most authentic portrait of theforeclosure crisis ever committed to film. Bahrani spent weeks in …
“99 Homes”: During the real estate downturn, sunny Florida turns downcast – The Real Deal South Florida (press release) (registration) (blog)
Wicked Local Rochester

STATEHOUSE ROUNDUP: Autumn signals busy season on the Hill

Wicked Local Rochester
The Senate on Thursday dove into the weeds of foreclosure law, passing legislation that would limit the window for former homeowners seeking to …
Highlands Today

Development stopped by real estate bust gains traction

Highlands Today
Shoop said the bank is pleased to have one of the properties it has held under foreclosurefor years to be active again. He said the amount of …

Darrell Turner of Turner Tree & Landscape files lawsuit against former Rep. Ronald Reagan

Bradenton Herald
In separate actions, Turner faces three foreclosure suits filed by 1st … Reagan was involved in a separateforeclosure lawsuit for a property he owned …
Black Star News

15 -Year Battle: Connecticut Homeowner Claims Bank Of New York Wants To “Steal” Home 

Black Star News
He says a Connecticut Superior Court Judge granted BNY strict foreclosure even after the IRS placed a federal tax lien on the property. The whole …

Group opposes Goldman purchase of GE deposits

… conduct,” the letter said, citing a 2013 foreclosure settlement, and concerns about whether it met certain obligations to pay for foreclosure prevention …

Positive results seen for August Norfolk County real estate market

Wicked Local Weymouth
Another positive result that occurred in August was the reduced number of foreclosure deeds filed and maybe more importantly, a significant reduction …


Episode 8 – Financial Consumer Rights Talk – Know Your Rights Part II (RESPA). Loss Mitigation and Loan Modification Through the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act

June 29th, 2015 by

Episode 8 – Know Your Rights Part II. Loss Mitigation and Loan Modification Through the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA)

In episode 8 of the FCRT we discuss regulations governing loan modifications.  The podcast highlights homeowner rights relating to RESPA and loss mitigation procedures including how to appeal a denial of a loan modification application, and rules that prohibit banks from conducting a foreclosure sale while a loss mitigation application is under review.

Real Estate Settlement Procedure Act Regulation X 12 C.F.R. 1024.41


Foreclosure defense and loss mitigation boot camp