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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Robosigning focuses attention on title companies

"If there is not a clear chain of title in the foreclosure process, how can there be a clear chain of title for the person buying foreclosed property?"
"Given our report, it calls into question whether entities selling a foreclosure really have the right to transfer that property to somebody else.
" said San Francisco Assessor-Recorder Phil Ting.

Complete article:

Chain of title - proof of who really owns a house - underpins the entire U.S. system of real estate.

Broken chain of title due to slipshod paperwork was a serious issue uncovered in the nationwide robosigning scandal and again last month in a city report that found San Francisco foreclosure paperwork riddled with errors.

Those revelations draw new attention to title companies, which insure a home's clear title for both buyers and lenders.

"If there is not a clear chain of title in the foreclosure process, how can there be a clear chain of title for the person buying foreclosed property?" said San Francisco Assessor-Recorder Phil Ting, who commissioned the audit. "Given our report, it calls into question whether entities selling a foreclosure really have the right to transfer that property to somebody else."

When the robosigning issue first exploded on the scene in October 2010, major title insurers briefly stopped writing policies for some foreclosed properties. That could have stopped foreclosure sales cold: Without title insurance, a bank will not issue a mortgage.

Meanwhile, properties with no guarantee of clear title are sold for all cash every day on the steps of California courthouses as the final step in the foreclosure process. The investors buying these properties get a discount in part because of the title uncertainties.

But the title insurance industry said its concerns have been addressed and it's not worried about the latest disclosures undercutting the assurances it provides people who buy foreclosed houses from banks.

"When robosigning first came to light publicly, it caused the industry to pause, almost hiccup for a second, in that would we be able to meet our obligations and protect homeowners who purchased homes out of foreclosure if these irregularities had occurred in the process?" said Steve Gottheim, legislative and regulatory counsel for the American Land Title Association, the industry's trade group. "The whole goal of that small period was to get more information. When we had more information, the industry was able to get back to what it does best, insuring title."

Not egregious

That additional information consisted of finding that some of the paperwork defects were not that egregious and of reviewing legal statutes, he said.

"Folks who buy (property) and have no knowledge that there may be some defect in the chain of title are protected very strongly by state law," he said. "Every state provides protection to bona fide purchasers of real property for value."

It's a high bar for the purchaser to know about a title defect. Media reports, or even government reports like the one produced by Ting, would not be sufficient, he said.

Suppose the previous homeowner camps out in front of the house with a sign saying the foreclosure was unjust?

"It would take a lot more than picketing the property," he said. "It would take really good evidence and a court order that says it was an illegal foreclosure."

Gottheim said title insurers are prepared to step up when issues arise.

"At the end of the day we are the folks who are going to be on the front lines protecting the new homeowner," he said. If a homeowner has purchased a title insurance policy and a defect in the foreclosure comes up after the fact, we will stand there and protect them."

No wave of lawsuits

However, he said there has not been a wave of lawsuits by foreclosed-upon people seeking to take back their properties.

"They don't have the money to bring these lawsuits," he said. "Even if they have a valid lawsuit and a chance to win, which state law would make very difficult for them, if they did win, they get the house back, but also get back the mortgage which they were unable to pay."

Anne Anastasi, president of the title association and owner of a Pennsylvania title firm, expanded on that point in congressional testimony in November 2010.

She said that if a court does find for a foreclosed-upon borrower, in theory they would receive title (subject to a mortgage), the lender would have its mortgage reinstated, and the person who had later purchased the foreclosed-upon home would have their money refunded.

But in practice, because the previous owner would still not be able to afford the mortgage, she said: "Rather, the purchaser would keep their home and the person who was foreclosed upon would be compensated by their lender for their loss."

California courts have rejected faulty paperwork as a reason to overturn foreclosures. But in a 2011 ruling, in US Bank vs. Ibanez, the Massachusetts Supreme Court upheld a decision finding foreclosures invalid when banks could not prove they owned the underlying mortgage. Another Massachusetts case, Bevilacqua vs. Rodriguez, built upon the Ibanez decision to take away property from someone who bought it after a flawed foreclosure and return it to the former owner who had defaulted on the mortgage. However, it left the door open for the foreclosing bank to conduct a new foreclosure process to clear the title.

Whether the Massachusetts decisions might help persuade California judges to follow suit is an open question.

Key Questions

What about people who lose their house to foreclosure? Would the title insurance they got when they first bought their homes help them later on if the foreclosure paperwork was riddled with mistakes?

The answer is a clear no. Title insurance only covers what happens before you buy a house, not afterward.

"Title insurance guarantees your title when you purchase the house, it doesn't include you against subsequent clouds on the title," said Diane Thompson, a lawyer with the National Consumer Law Center.

"We are not insuring anything the lender will do in the future, such as foreclose correctly," Gottheim said. "That's the risk and responsibility of the lender; we don't give those assurances."

Carolyn Said is a San Francisco Chronicle staff writer.

This article appeared on page D - 1 of the San Francisco Chronicle

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The practice of robo-signing, that contributed much to the country's mortgage dilemma, appears to be making a revival. Charge card companies are more and more often being captured mass-verifying borrowers and then taking them to court, backed with mistaken documents. Source for this article: robo-signing
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The practice of robo-signing, that contributed much to the country's mortgage dilemma, appears to be making a revival. Charge card companies are more and more often being captured mass-verifying borrowers and then taking them to court, backed with mistaken documents. Source for this article: robo-signing

The idea that robo-signing by banks involved in credit card litigation is new is absolutely absurd.

This activity was exposed by Mr. Roper here at the Forum several years ago, but the dishonest and corrupt site administrator deleted Mr. Roper's threads on this important subject.

Mr. Roper's investigations had uncovered use of robo-signed credit card affidavits as early as 2008 and news stories about this appeared not only here at the Forum, but also in the mainstream news media.

Although the site adminsitrator deleted Mr. Roper's most important posts on this subject, information about this can still be found elsewhere on the web.  Do a search using keywords to include "Martha Kunkle" as well as "Portfolio Recovery Associates".

I used the information Mr. Roper provided to look up cases about this some time ago.  Here are a few excerpts:

"At [*6] some point during the course of the collection action, PRA obtained an affidavit from Washington Mutual Bank, Providian Bank's successor in interest, which purported to verify Hempel-Dubois's indebtedness to Providian Bank.  The affidavit, which was dated July 2, 2007, appeared to be signed by "Martha Kunkle/mm," whom the affidavit identified as "the designated agent of Providian National Bank." (Doc. 6, Ex. 1, p. 3).  In fact, Hempel-Dubois alleges, Martha Kunkle never worked for either Providian Bank or Washington Mutual and died prior to the date her signature was forged on the affidavit.  Hempel-Dubois alleges that by January of 2008, Providian knew that the affidavit was fraudulent and that it lacked reliable documents to prove that Hempel-Dubois was indebted on either account. [3]  Nevertheless, it continued with its collection action in the Laconia District Court. [4]

[3]  Hempel-Dubois alleges that as part of a Montana class action unrelated to the present case, PRA stated in court documents that "it knew of the falsity of the Kunkle affidavit earlier than 2008. . . ." (Amended Complaint, Doc. 13, ¶ 27)."

Dubois v. Portfolio Recovery Associates, LLC, Civil No. 11-cv-09-JD, 2011 DNH 126; 2011 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 92144 (U.S. Dist. NH August 17, 2011).

"P2. On January 3, 2008, the Court ordered Portfolio to make Martha Kunkle (Kunkle) and Amy Jo Cauthern-Munoz (Cauthern-Munoz) available for videotaped depositions no later than February 1, 2008, at the Edwards Law Firm in Billings, Montana.  Portfolio did not make those persons available for depositions.  In her Rule 37 Motion, Cole seeks sanctions including a judgment in the case in favor of her and an award of her attorney fees and costs.

. . .

P5. Portfolio did not make Kunkle and Cauthern-Munoz available for depositions as the Court required in its Order of January  [*4] 3, 2008.  The Court believes prior events necessitating the Order of January 3, 2008, are key in determining the propriety of discovery sanctions.

. . .

P7.  In a Motion for Summary Judgment, filed May 8, 2007, Cole sought judgment in her favor maintaining that Portfolio was not the real party in interest as required under Rule 17(a), M.R.Civ.P.  Cole based her motion on the premise that there was not an effective assignment of the debt from Providian to Portfolio.  Cole's first set of discovery requests to Portfolio, which were served November 10, 2006, include the following:

REQUEST FOR PRODUCTION NO. 9: Please produce any and all documents reflecting the alleged assignment of Ms. Cole's debt to Portfolio.  In her supporting brief filed on May 8, 2007, as a part of her Motion for Summary Judgment, Cole maintained that in spite of her discovery request, Portfolio had failed  [*5] to produce evidence of a legal assignment.  The record reveals that Portfolio subsequently answered the discovery and that Cole's counsel received the responses on May 31, 2007.  In response to Request for Production No. 9, portfolio answered:

OBJECTION. The Purchase and Sale Agreement pertaining to the purchase of the debtor's account contains confidential and proprietary trade secret information.  Without waiving said objection, see the attached Affidavit of Providian National Bank reciting the non-privileged details of the transaction.  Portfolio's response to Request for Production No. 9 references an "attached Affidavit of Providian National Bank reciting the non-privileged details of the transaction."  That document is an affidavit dated May 24, 2007, and ostensibly signed by Martha Kunkle, Designated Agent (the "Kunkle affidavit" or "affidavit").  The Kunkle affidavit was notarized by Amy Jo Cauthern-Munoz.

P8.  Cole filed a motion to strike the Kunkle affidavit on June 1, 2007.  That motion was initially based on Cole's con-tention that the contents of the affidavit were not based on Kunkle's firsthand knowledge.  On July 19, 2007, the day of the hearing on the Motion for Summary Judgment, [*6] Cole filed information appearing to show that the signature on the affidavit was not that of Martha Kunkle.  At the hearing on July 19, the Court stated it was not prepared to strike the affidavit, but that it had serious concerns about the affidavit's verity.

P9.  Cole filed Defendant's Motion for Sanctions on July 27, 2007.  In that motion, Cole asked for sanctions under Rule 56(g), M.R.Civ.P., arguing that Portfolio filed the Kunkle affidavit in bad faith.  Cole also asked that the Court reopen discovery so that she could that she could depose Martha Kunkle and Amy Jo Cauthern-Munoz, who notarized the Kunkle affidavit.  On August 22, 2007, the Court reopened discovery for the limited purpose of allowing Cole to depose Kunkle and Cauthern-Munoz.

P10.  On October 11, 2007, the Court entered its Order on Motions for Summary Judgment & Order Setting Hearing.  As to Cole's May 8, 2007, Motion for Summary Judgment, the Court observed that the record did not yet contain evidence establishing an issue of fact regarding an assignment from Providian to Portfolio.  Nevertheless, the Court said that it would not decide the motion while there were unresolved issues surrounding the Kunkle affidavit.  The [*7] Court set Cole's motion for sanctions under Rule 56(g), M.R.Civ.P., for hearing.

On November 13, 2007, Cole filed a motion seeking, in part, to compel the depositions of Kunkle and Cauthern-Munoz.  In short, Cole represented that she was not making headway in arranging for the depositions.  As stated above, on January 3, 2008, the Court ordered Portfolio to make Kunkle and Cauthern-Munoz available for videotaped depositions no later than February 1, 2008.  On January 18, 2008, Portfolio filed a motion asking the Court to dismiss this matter without prejudice.  In its supporting brief, Portfolio acknowledged that it sought dismissal because it was unable to produce Kunkle and Munoz for depositions.  Cole filed her Rule 37 Motion on February 8, 2008. 


P11.  At the onset, it appears that Cole's Motion for Summary Judgment, filed May 8, 2007, should now be granted.  Kunkle and Cauthern-Munoz have not been deposed and the verity of the Kunkle affidavit has not been proven.  As such, Portfolio has not demonstrated a factual question regarding the assignment of Cole's alleged debt.  In fact, at the last hearing on March 31, 2008, Portfolio conceded its claim and advised that it would dismiss  [*8] the same with prejudice.  Therefore, the collection of the debt is no longer at issue.  At that same hearing, the Court directed Triel Culver to file an affidavit of attorney fees from the filing date of Martha Kunkle's affidavit in May, 2007.

P14.  [*10] The consequences which the sanction inflicts upon Portfolio must relate to the nature of the discovery abuse and the extent of the resulting prejudice to Cole.  Culbertson-Froid-Bainville Healthcare Corporation v. J.P. Stevens & Co., Inc., supra.  Cole filed evidence on July 19, 2007, which indicated that the signature on the Kunkle affidavit was not that of Martha Kunkle.  Therefore, Portfolio had notice of the issue.  On October 11, 2007, the Court entered its Order on Motions for Summary Judgment & Order Setting Hearing.  As of that date, Portfolio was aware that its case hinged on a showing of a valid assignment and that the Kunkle affidavit was its only evidence.  With certain exceptions, the Court believes Cole's attorneys fees incurred subsequent to July 19, 2007, relating to the Kunkle affidavit, should be awarded as a sanction."

Portfolio Recovery Associates, LLC v. Cole, No. DV-06-134, 2008 Mont. Dist. LEXIS 558 (Mont. Dist. October 8, 2008)

See also Portfolio Recovery Associates, LLC v. Cole, No. DV-06-134, 2007 Mont. Dist. LEXIS 469 (Mont. Dist. October 11, 2007)


Be sure to print out and save a copy of this post right away, because the corrupt site administrator of the Forum will remove this post as it does others in these criminal's ongoing campaign to discredit and malign Mr. Roper!

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Here is another clue:

The reason that Martha Kunkle was unavailable to appear for her deposition was because she was already dead.  This is Martha M. Kunkle (b 25 Jan 1922, d 24 Oct 1995 - Tarrant Co., TX).  Ms. Kunkle's Social Security Number was 448-05-3799.  A copy of her Texas death certificate can be obtained from Tarrant County, Texas, or the State of Texas.

Remarkably, as shown by Mr. Roper, Ms. Kunkle seems to have executed the affidavit for Portfolio after her death.

Ms. Kunkle also executed many other affidavits in other collections cases.
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Mr. Roper posted about Martha Kunkle in late 2008.

The news media finally picked up the story in 2010:

WSJ: "Dead Soul Is a Debt Collector" (December 31, 2010)

Every couple of years when credit card robo-signing comes back into the news, media outlets pick this up again:

American Banker: "'Robo' Credit Card Suits Menace Banks" (January 30, 2012)

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On the lighter side, searching the web I found that Martha Kunkle is a contributor at Hoocoodanode:

She certainly has a lot of energy for a dead person!

If Martha votes for Pres. Obama as many times as she falsely swore to affidavits for Portfolio Recovery Associates, LLC, maybe Obama can carry Texas and stay in office another four years to steal the rest of the homes in the U.S.
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Someone should try to get a photograph of Martha Kunkle's grave marker to use as evidence when ever the banks use her affidavits!!

Does anyone live in the Dallas - Fort Worth area?  She died in Tarrant County and some records say she once lived in Arlington.  I bet she is buried around there somewhere.
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