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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Do not even know where to begin...

My mom and dad and grandparents owned 2 houses next together..They were rent houses...They sold one of the houses years ago..The title company listed both lots in the papers... All have died since then but my mom..She has paid taxes on this house for years..She did not get a tax statement on this house for the last 2 years and went to try to find out why and got no answers. Her renter called her today and said the people next door who were suppose to be buying one house only came over and told them it was their house and told them to get out and told them they were gonna sue my mom for the rent she collected all these years...So mom went to the title company and the lady told her the house was gone and to get over it..Someone told her all she could do at this point was sue the title company. Is this true? My mom and dad did not look at what they signed years ago I guess..Mom said the date on the title deed is wrong and they had my grandmothers name wrong along with listing lot 10 & 11 instead of just lot 10...What can she do at this point? What kind of attorney does she need..Can' she in turn sue the people in the house for all the back taxes she has paid since they claim the house is theirs due to the title companys huge mistake years ago. Is there any chance she will keep the property. I am so scared for her...My dad has been gone 3 years now and she can't afford this..This rent house is just a shack...My husband thinks she should file bankruptcy and sell the house she lives in to one of us. In case those people try to sue her...I cannot even believe this is happening...I emailed the appraisel district tonight to ask them when the name was changed on the taxes..It had to be in the last 2 years, but why would they have waited that long?????Please any and all info would be appreciated....Thanks Jana
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Your mom need a good real estate lawyer. He will help her to check the following :
 1.  If the 2 houses have 2 different addresses
 2.  If the 2 houses have 2 different tax folio numbers.
 3.  Verify the term and addresses on Sale contract and the closing statement.
 4. Verify the wording of the deed written at the Sale by the Title company.

Usually first lawyer consultation is free. Tell her to take all documents related to the properties to show to at least 3 different Real Estate Lawyers to seek their advices.
Best wishes.
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William A. Roper, Jr.

Ann has given you some very good advice!  You need to find an experienced real estate lawyer who already understands the law in this area.  You cannot possibly afford to pay a lawyer to learn arcane aspects of real estate law.

That being said, the facts of the case you describe somewhat remind me of a recently decided Ohio appellate case which bears reading for sheer amusement, if for no other reason.  The case is:

Wells Fargo Bank Minn. v. Mowery, Case No. 09CA3300, COURT OF APPEALS OF OHIO, FOURTH APPELLATE DISTRICT, SCIOTO COUNTY, 2010 Ohio 1650; 2010 Ohio App. LEXIS 1368, April 5, 2010, File-Stamped.

This case may be viewed for free (after free registration) at the LexisOne site:

It is also posted directly on the Ohio court site at:

(Although it is easier to just get this case at the Ohio Court site, I am a big fan of LexisOne, where almost ALL reported appellate decisions nationally from the past ten years are available for FREE.)

In Mowery, deeds for two adjacent properties were transposed in a divorce settlement.  The parties to the settlement treated the separation of property as they had agreed, but the deeds did not reflect that disposition.  One property was improved (had a house).  The other property was a vacant lot.

Wilma McCLURG thought she was getting the house (and in fact DID occupy the house during her lifetime).  Her husband was supposed to have gotten the vacant lot.  But the deeds were issued incorrectly.

Later, Mrs. McCLURG obtained a mortgage on the property.  The bank, its title insurer, appraiser and/or surveyor failed to note that the property for which Mrs. McCLURG actually had title and offered to mortgage was a vacant lot.

Both Mr. and Mrs. McCLURG later died, neither discovering the error and these two properties passed to their heirs (subject to the mortgage).  The mortgage on the property fell into default and the bank foreclosed.  It was surprised to discover that it foreclosed only on the vacant lot!

The mortgage investor sought reformation of the deeds to reflect the original intention of the parties, to enable it to foreclose on the property it THOUGHT it was securing by mortgage.

In a very well reasoned decision, the Ohio appellate court found:

In relation to the Mortgage Mistake, we find that The Money Store’s negligence was not excusable.  The Mortgage included the legal description of the Undeveloped Parcel, and The Money Store was in the mortgage business.  Therefore, it was not excusable for The Money Store to have believed the Mortgage actually applied to any property other than the Undeveloped Parcel.  A sheriff’s deputy discovered that the Undeveloped Parcel is a vacant lot simply by visiting the property.  Had The Money Store undertaken even a cursory amount of due diligence, it would have discovered the true nature of the Undeveloped Parcel.  A mortgage company’s failure to learn the most basic facts about a mortgaged property cannot be excusable negligence.

As the assignee of the Mortgage, Wells Fargo stands in the shoes of The Money Store.  EMC Mtge. Corp. v. Jenkins, 164 Ohio App.3d 240, 2005-Ohio-5799, at ¶20; Cleveland Trust Co. v. Elbrecht (1940), 137 Ohio St. 358, 360.  Thus, Wells Fargo cannot have a greater right to reform the Mortgage than The Money Store had.  See W. Broad Chiropractic v. Am. Family Ins., Franklin App. No. 07AP-721, 2008-Ohio-2647, at ¶15, citing Citizens Fed. Bank, F.S.B. v. Brickler (1996), 114 Ohio App.3d 401, 410.   And because The Money Store’s own inexcusable negligence would have precluded their reformation of the Mortgage, Wells Fargo may not seek reformation of the Mortgage as The Money’s Store’s assignee.


The children of the McCLURGs, heirs to both deceased parents, found that the undeveloped parcel they thought was being bequeathed by their father was actually subject to their mother's mortgage, was subject to the lender's foreclosure judgment.  But they unexpectedly found that the more valuable improved property, which they had expected would be lost through foreclosure sale, had passed to them unencumbered, free and clear!


Transactions ARE sometimes subject to rescission based upon mutual mistake of fact or reformation to reach the result intended by the parties.  But the case you describe is complex.  Had the mortgage investor discovered the mistake in a timely way during the lifetime of Mrs. McCLURG, it almost certainly could have sought a reformation of the mortgage to reflect the intention of the parties.  Trying to belatedly reform a transaction decades after a mistake and after the death of the parties to the mistake is somewhat more problematic, particularly where the party seeking relief was negligent.

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