Mortgage Servicing Fraud
occurs post loan origination when mortgage servicers use false statements and book-keeping entries, fabricated assignments, forged signatures and utter counterfeit intangible Notes to take a homeowner's property and equity.
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Hi all! I have been researching the internet like a nut...I came across this group & thought, while I'm not dealing with a foreclosure situation, I am dealing with quite a mess. I thought MAYBE I could seek out some advice from people who are more knowledgeable than myself. For starters, I'm just a wife & mom, I thought I was buying a house, figured all involved (seeing this is what they do for a living & are regulated by federal laws) were doing what is protocol for a home purchase. It January 1996, I signed a "lease to own" agreement that was drawn up by the homeowners lawyer. Well, they never did. I still have a copy. I paid all of my monthly payments as agreed. I decided I was interested in purchasing the home. So, I contacted a broker...he suggested I do a "refinance" on the property...that way I wouldn't have to come up with money down, etc. So, in August of 2003, the homeowners added me to their deed. I lived in Baltimore MD at that time, this was a second home...the closing agent (who's office was located in Owings Mills, MD) came to my home to sign. It was May 4th, 2004. It was just her & I at this closing. I (like many others, don't understand half of the documents) therefore, just signed where I was told. The loan funded, the now previous homeowners had been given a check for the amount of equity in the home that had originally been agreed upon...YAY, I finally own it. Well........I want to sell the home now. So I called a real estate agent to list the property. She said, "Tiff, I cant sell your house". WHY...because there are 2 other peoples names on your deed. WHAT??? Those 2 people being the previous home owners. They were supposed to sign a Quit Claim upon disbursement of funds. Ok I thought, I'll just call him & his wife & tell them the situation & ask them to sign off the deed. Noooo, he wants more money to sign off the deed...in a tune of $30K... he has NO grounds. This is unbelievable. So, after crying, I decided to call my bank & tell them what was going on. The funny thing is...they were fine with the situation. So, I asked them to send me a copy of ALL my closing docs. I called my county & requested the docs they had. Once I received a copy of my closing packet from the bank, I noticed a BIG problem. Yes, every paper had my name on it...the HUD, settlement, yada, yada, but the deed of trust had been altered from what I signed & was given copies the day of closing. Their names had been typed in above mine on the front page & on the last page...my name was clear & signed on a dotted line...their names looked as if they had been copied & pasted? You know how a faxed signature looks grainy & had strange dark spots around the letters of the signature itself? That's how this looked. The line they signed on was straight not dotted. THE BIGGER issue for me was that when I signed that document, I was the ONLY name on the doc. (I think I would have noticed their name being attached to my deed of trust) The closer & I were the ONLY ones at this closing which again took place in my home in Baltimore MD, she notarized it there & all. The other 2 names were NOT in my home...they lived in Charlotte,NC. So, I signed it, the notary signed & stamped it...that paper read, I, (notary's name) a Notary Public, do hereby certify that (my name), (then just above my name was crammed & typed in their names), personally appeared before me this day & acknowledged the due execution of the foregoing instrument on this day May 4th, 2004... I couldn't believe what I was seeing. Not only had this been added after it left my home, but it was a complete lie. These people were NOT at my home. Plus, the bottom of every page of the Deed of Trust, I had to initial. All copies still had my initial EXCEPT the very last page I just described above. So, I then call my county's register of deeds....they tell me that all 3 names are in fact on the deed & because the Deed of Trust did not change, then neither would have the deed. OK, so, I call the closing company. They tell me that my file is so old..it would take a couple of weeks to order out of storage & that (this woman...I'll call her Sue) would be calling me back as soon as she received the closing package in hand. OK, so while I'm waiting on that...I decide to look at the Closing Instructions for Closing. There under "PROPERTY REQUIREMENTS/ UNDERWRITING/ CLOSING REQUIREMENTS" I see, plain as day.... DEED TO BE EXECUTED GIVING (MY NAME ONLY) FULL INTEREST IN PROPERTY, TO BE RECORDED WITH MORTGAGE. So now it looks like I need to call the Title Insurance company. I call them, they were sold to another company. I track down that company & phone number...call them, I know I made over 30 phone calls. All which would say my policy was located in another office. I don't have a copy of my Title Insurance Policy. I NEVER received a copy. I finally spoke with a woman today that (I guess felt sorry for me) She finally called me back @ 7pm this evening to tell me the reason no one could locate my policy is because my name was NOT on the policy. ONLY the 2 precious home owners. She said she spoke with her superior who forwarded her a copy of the policy but that he had called a short time after the e-mail to tell her that the policy had been written wrong & to tell the home owner she would do her best to track it down & get back to me. Well, she actually told me this. She said this gentleman told her it would need to be "doctored" before they could send it to me, but again, to keep me in the dark until that could happen. She told me she wanted me to keep her name out of it, but that she was forwarding me the e-mail where they had been corresponding. I get the e-mail & I COULD NOT BELIEVE WHAT I WAS SEEING. This woman kind enough to attach a copy of the original policy (which she told me to tell anyone interested, that I had located it in the closing packet that I already had) but as I'm reading this e-mail...(small world) the woman "Sue" I had spoken to at the closing company asking for copies of the closing packet (that she would have to order out of storage) I see HER name..."Sue" had e-mailed this gentleman yesterday telling him that it was URGENT that he call her. That she had a client that wanted a copy of the original closing package & there were some issues that needed "fixing". Remember, this was the same man....(this woman at the title insurances co.) her superior that she had sent the request to...who told her to put me off until it could be doctored.
NO one I have talked to can believe this is possible. That it's the craziest mess they have ever heard of. Honestly, the worst part of it all...there is NO WAY I can possibly afford an attorney. PLEASE HELP ME...PLEASE!!?? I don't know what to do. I've called the FTC, OCC, Attorney Generals office, none of which are any help. Has anyone ever heard of anything like this before? Do I have a recourse, a case, a leg to stand on?? I'm stuck in a home, that I have FULL financial responsibility for but can't sell. Every mortgage payment I make is just putting money in the other peoples pockets, because again, on the Deed of Trust & Deed...they have one half vested interest in. I'm going to lose my mind. Now that I've wrote a novel, thanks so much for listening...any suggestions are so very, very appreciated!
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Unregistered

Hello? Help, thoughts, anyone? Please.

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Unregistered
This is not something you can tackle on you own.

You NEED to get a real estate attorney.
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Unregistered

I really hate to come across as harsh, but between your decision to use the very smallest font size and to run an epicly long post through only two paragraphs without breaking it up, I CANNOT EVEN READ YOUR POST.

 

What I am able to garner from what I CAN read, it seems that you have been defrauded by the seller, possibly acting in collusion with the Lender. You seem to have enabled this fraud by never consulting a lawyer in the purchase transaction.

 

An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure! You could have probably spent $500 to $1,000 to have a lawyer represent you in the purchase transaction or at least had one or more sophisticated friends look over the documents. Instead, you simply TRUSTED the seller, the lender and the title company.

 

Whether you can even make out ANY case at all depends wholly upon the evidence you actually have. The WRITTEN RECORDS are going to be the most important. Otherwise, you are going to get into a "he said" / "she said" transaction.

 

YOU are going to bear the burden of proving any fraud or conclusively showing that the actual transaction was other than is shown on the paperwork. IF you insisted on obtaining COPIES of every document you signed AT THE TIME THAT YOU SIGNED THEM, and KEPT THE COPIES, then this will be trivial.

 

But it seems you merely signed everything presented to you to INCLUDE A WRITTEN ACKNOWLEDGEMENT THAT YOU WERE GIVEN COPIES and then neglected to get such copies. It is now routine for title companies to send a person around to the borrower's home and to obtain signatures in a casual way. This purports to be for the borrower's convenience, but it really simply affords a very nice alibi for NEVER giving the borrower copies of the SIGNED DOCUMENTS. You will get some UNSIGNED COPIES which PROVE NOTHING.

 

Separate from fraud, ALTERATION OF AN INSTRUMENT AFTER ITS EXECUTION can VOID the document. But this helps you little, because what you OUGHT TO HAVE BEEN LOOING FOR IN A PURCHASE TRANSACTION IS THE DEED. If the seller deeded the property to you AND THEMSELVES, this is something that YOU SHOULD HAVE NOTICED. 

 

Frankly, the LENDER and mortgage investor ought NEVER to agree to such an arrangement. It would APPEAR that the seller fraudulently gave you a deed for LESS than you had contracted to purchase. The originator may have later noticed this and demanded that the other "co-owners" also sign the security instrument.

 

The subsequent alteration of the mortgage, deed of trust or other mortgage security instrument might very well VOID this security instrument. It would NOT likely void the separate note.

 

Neither would it overcome problems you have with the seller's deed.

 

You have a real legal mess on your hands. You need to find a very experienced real estate lawyer. Even so, a satisfactory outcome is far from assured.

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Unregistered
You are going to have to find and hire a competent lawyer in this field, whether
you can afford it or not.

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Texas
As other have said, you need to find a good real estate attorney, not just some attorney.
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Unregistered
Sounds like you stand to win and win big but your going to have to come up with legal services somehow good luck
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t

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Sounds like you stand to win and win big but your going to have to come up with legal services somehow good luck

 

 

This is FAR from an EASY CASE.  Nor is it likely that the victim of the fraud is likely to "win big" in ANY WAY.

 

This person will be LUCKY to emerge with a clean title.

 

UNLESS this borrower purchased an owner's title policy, the title insurer OWED HER NO DUTY.

 

*

 

It appears to me from the facts recited that the sellers ended up giving the fraudulent deed which deeded the property to both themselves and the true purchaser.  She was unrepresented and too ignorant to even examine the deed.

 

When the TITLE COMPANY, acting as the agent for the originating lender noted the problem, it addressed the matter ONLY by obtaining additional signatures from the sellers on the mortgage or deed of trust OR by assenting to the forgery of their signatures on the security instrument.

 

This is likely to be TOTALLY UNACCEPTABLE to the mortgage investor which probably THOUGHT THAT IT WAS PURCHASING A PROPERLY UNDERWRITTEN LOAN TO THE PURCHASER ONLY.

 

But since the buyer probably FAILED to buy an owner's title policy, the title company OWED HER NO DUTY AT ALL.  It owed a duty to the ORIGINATING LENDER.

 

The mortgage investor will probably try to PUT THIS LOAN BACK TO THE ORIGINATOR IF THE DEFECT IS BROUGHT TO THE MORTGAGE INVESTOR'S ATTENTION.

 

The title company is scrambling and trying to cover its' butt with its Lender's title policy exposure, which now runs in favor of the mortgage investor.

 

While receipt of the e-mail, etc., is DRAMATIC and might be some good leverage, the buyer will be LUCKY to be able to use this as a basis to get back to where she OUGHT TO HAVE BEEN had she employed a lawyer in the first place.

 

ANYONE WHO BELIEVES BASED UPON THESE FACTS THAT THE BORROWER HAS EITHER THE LENDER OR THE TITLE COMPANY OVER A BARREL JUST DOESN'T UNDERSTAND THE LAW!

 

The purchaser needs to find an exceptionally good lawyer, will have to pay thousands of dollars and will be LUCKY to emerge with a good title to the property.

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B.L.
You say you can't afford an attorney but honestly I don't see how you can afford to be without one in this situation. I would donate plasma, get a 2nd, 3rd, 4th job if I had to.
 

I think you have a very good case here. I however don't think you can expect to get out of this easily, cheap, or quickly.
 

I don't think an owners title policy is relevant here. The title insurance covers the lender from any mistakes made by the company that closed your loan.
What this means is that you have a case against the closing company which will be paid by the policy that covered them. The note will be covered, you won't see the money, but done correctly you should have a home free and clear.
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t

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You say you can't afford an attorney but honestly I don't see how you can afford to be without one in this situation. I would donate plasma, get a 2nd, 3rd, 4th job if I had to.

I think you have a very good case here. I however don't think you can expect to get out of this easily, cheap, or quickly.

I don't think an owners title policy is relevant here. The title insurance covers the lender from any mistakes made by the company that closed your loan.


What this means is that you have a case against the closing company which will be paid by the policy that covered them. The note will be covered, you won't see the money, but done correctly you should have a home free and clear.

  

 

You seem to be disconnected from reality.  There is NO FREE AND CLEAR house in the buyers future.  The question is really going to be whether the buyer has a valid fee interest in the house AT ALL (other than as joint tenants with the prior owners/sellers).

 

In a typical transaction, there is a written agreement of sale.  Here, since the buyer was IGNORANT, bought into the rent to own nonsense and seems not to have employed an attorney AT ALL, it is questionable whether an agreement of sale even exists or IF IT EXISTS, whether it contains the SAME defects.

 

We do NOT KNOW what the paperwork says, EXCEPT that we have been told that the deed does NOT convey a full fee interest to the buyer.

 

The title policy protects the LENDER, NOT the buyer.  The Lender seems to have a signature on the security instrument from the co-owners.  It is UNCLEAR what title issue exists FROM THE PERSPECTIVE OF THE LENDER.  The ONLY real issue is that the closing instructions probably called for the closing in the name of the single anticipated buyer.  The issue is then probably the deviation from the closing instructions.

 

The mortgage investor can probably put the loan back to the originator.  The originator can TRY to file a claim against the title company, but I seriously DOUBT that is going anywhere, because it seems LIKELY that the originator KNEW ABOUT and CONCEALED the mischief from the investor.

 

The  buyer's valid complaint is NOT that the sellers were added to the security instrument.  It is that the sellers took joint ownership under the DEED.

 

THIS IS SOLELY AN OWNER'S TITLE ISSUE!

 

WITHOUT an OWNER's TITLE POLICY, the buyer has NO CLAIM TO FILE against insurer.  Only the LENDER can file a claim and the title insurer will DEFEND THE LENDER ONLY.  UGGH!  The LENDER gets free representation.  The seller can rely on the poor evidentiary record and the WRITTEN documents.  The buyer GOES OUT OF POCKET for legal expense in an UPHILL FIGHT.

 

This is going to be EXPENSIVE, TIME CONSUMING and very possibly will result in an UNFAVORABLE OUTCOME.

 

If you think that this is some sort of easy slam dunk cause of action, you are quite clueless.

 

What do you think the borrower's cause of action is going to be?  What are the borrower's claims going to be as to each defendant?

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