Articles Posted in Miami foreclosure

A federal bankruptcy court judge in California recently ordered Bank of America to pay a stunning $46 in damages after a years-long foreclosure nightmare that literally pushed one couple to the brink of death. house

The bulk of that $46 million will go toward public law schools and consumer attorney organizations to help fight back against similar abuses in the future.

In the ruling, Bankruptcy Judge Christopher M. Klein admonishes the top brass at the bank – not lower-tier workers. Further, the ruling is being interpreted as a sharp condemnation of the failure of government to police these types of interactions and protect homeowners  – even though banks should have been vulnerable to legal action on a massive scale for the actions leading to the foreclosure crisis and those that followed thereafter.  Continue reading

The Florida Democratic party is hanging in the balance, and now, the typical lowly race for Miami-Dade County’s Democratic Party committeeman has gone national, just ahead of a special election that will likely determine the fate of the party in Florida. Our own Bruce Jacobs, Miami foreclosure attorney, is at the forefront, seeking to rapidly fill the precinct chairs for the party is that those individuals can create a groundswell of support for Dwight Bullard, who is up against wealthy Miami real estate businessman Stephen Bittel, who also happens to be a major party donor. flag

Bullard is backed by Our Revolution, a political organization created by one-time Hillary Clinton rival Bernie Sanders. Bittel, meanwhile, was a staunch supporter of Clinton. He now has the backing of U.S. Rep. Keith Ellison of Minnesota, who at this point is the front-runner to lead the Democratic National Committee. Ellison’s support came as something of a surprise because he was a long-time, prominent Sanders supporter and also previously had the support of Our Revolution.

Jacobs served Our Revolution Miami as a Bernie Sanders delegate, and participated in the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia in that role. Jacobs now says he is hoping to drum up enough support among local Democrats to get involved as Precinct captains by the Dec. 15th deadline. The goal from there is to keep those individuals involved in politics, and further provide a strong movement within numerous local and state offices. Precinct captains are the only ones who can vote during leadership meetings, which is why filling these posts is so essential.  Continue reading

The Miami foreclosure defense lawyers at Jacobs Keeley have not been shy with criticism of the current presidential administration, in particular with regards to a failure to hold big banks and executives accountable for their central role in the foreclosure crisis. Unfortunately, it does not seem as if the new administration is going to take any more of a hard line on this kind of issue, despite repeated promises to “drain the swamp.” whitehouse

One must look no further than the recent appointment of Steve Mnuchin, Wall Street financier, to the cabinet as Secretary of Treasury. Mnuchin is a career banker. He spent 17 years at Goldman Sachs, ultimately attaining the position of partner. He oversaw a privately-owned hedge fund and later was a top fundraiser for Republican president-elect Donald Trump. He also worked for a time at a California bank that NPR recently referred to as a “foreclosure machine” in the midst of the housing bust.

Essentially, Mnuchin and others were searching for ways to turn a profit from the ruins of the housing market. He and a group of other billionaire investors purchased IndyMac, a bank that took a nosedive after its risky mortgage loans turned sour. He and the others bought it with a promise to pay future losses above a certain threshold – which they did, and after six years, sold it as OneWest at a $1.5 billion profit for $3.4 billion. How did they do this? On the backs of suffering homeowners.  Continue reading

Ocwen Financial holds the keys to some 17,500 defaulted home mortgage loans – and can’t continue to foreclose on a single one. stop

That is true at least for the time being, after the National Mortgage Settlement monitor announced the company is barred from foreclosure action after falling short of the required performance metrics.

The monitor announced the mortgage servicer failed on a key metric that requires the mortgage servicer to send a loan modification denial notification to the borrower. This notice needs to denote why the modification was denied, as well as the facts that weighed into this ruling by the servicer. It also must indicate a timeline in which the defaulted homeowner can offer evidence the decision was a mistake.

The National Mortgage Settlement office first announced the company wasn’t in compliance with this metric back in October. However, it’s now been seven months, and the company still hasn’t remedied the problem. That led the office to bring all of Ocwen’s foreclosures to a screeching halt.  Continue reading

A recent analysis by online residential real estate site Trulia encourages people in their 20s and 30s to take the plunge into home ownership, citing in its “Rent vs. Buy Report” that purchasing a home is now 23 percent less expensive than renting. That figure holds true across the country. Assuming a buyer age 24-to-34 can plunk down a 10 percent down payment, and combined with an interest rate that hasn’t been lower since 2012 and soaring rents in urban areas, Trulia calculated it’s actually 36 percent cheaper to buy than rent. house

It would seem a solid argument. But millennials don’t seem to be buying it – or those houses.

For a very long time, owning a home was an important ideal and a rite of passage in American culture. And to be sure, there can be plenty of benefits, including the fact that mortgage interest payments are tax deductible. Plus, monthly payments go toward helping the buyer – rather than a landlord – acquire and maintain an asset. Continue reading

In a recent article for the Daily Business Review, a highly-regarded legal industry publication, Miami Foreclosure Attorney Bruce Jacobs of Jacobs Keely weighs in on the issue of why lenders can’t flout the statute of limitations.gavel3

The piece, “Statute of Limitations Applies to Everyone, Even Lenders,” stems from the mortgage foreclosure case of Bartram v. U.S. Bank, for which the Florida Supreme Court will hear oral arguments on appeal from the 5th DCA on November 4th.

Statutes of limitations exist in both criminal and civil law for purposes of keeping the law both fair and predictable and preserving the court’s order. So for example, in personal injury cases, claimants have up to four years to file a claim, after which point the right to sue expires. For written contracts (which includes mortgages) the statute of limitations is five years. A claimant who waits any longer than that loses out on the right to have that case heard – regardless of whether damages are $10 or $10 million. Continue reading

Former Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke has two major regrets when it comes to his agency’s handling of the financial meltdown of 2008.book

First, he says he should have been more aggressive with his public relations to explain to the public why massive bailouts of the companies that caused the crisis were necessary. Secondly, he says many more Wall Street executives should be serving prison sentences right now for the role they played in triggering the Great Recession.

With regard to the later, he says in his new memoir, The Courage to Act: A Memoir of a Crisis and Its Aftermath, that the Justice Department and other law enforcement agencies were more focused on indictment or threats against large financial firms. Very little of the investigations focused on individual executives. And after all, he noted, wrongful and illegal acts that precipitated the economic crisis were not carried out by abstract firm. Rather, these were actions taken for the benefit of individuals. Continue reading

In a scathing article detailing dealings of former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, Rolling Stone’s Matt Taibbi writes about Holder’s lack of bank prosecutions in the wake of the housing market bust and how he may now be personally benefiting from that.
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Taibbi calls out Holder as “Double Agent,” parading “brilliantly” as the U.S. Attorney General when, in fact, he was “the best defense lawyer Wall Street ever had.”

To back this assertion, Taibbi notes that prior to him taking on the position of attorney general, Holder was a top attorney for the firm Covington & Burlington, which is known to be one of the best white-collar defense firms in the nation. In fact, it’s a go-to for those in hot water on Wall Street.
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The CEO of JPMorgan Chase & Co. has joined the billionaire club, according to the most recent report by Bloomberg News.
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Jamie Dimon, the assembler of Citigroup Inc. and now head of JPMorgan, has a net worth of $1.1 billion, derived primarily from a $485 million stake in the bank where he has been a chief executive officer since 2005. His investment portfolio was seeded by the profits he incurred from sales of Citigroup stock.

While many media outlets have been heralding his “unconventional” path to billionaire-hood by noting he didn’t take the track of most billionaires (who start businesses or head investment funds), it’s worth noting Dimon’s success was built on the backs of consumers, homeowners and taxpayers. Neither he nor his company suffered any significant losses as a result of their role in creating the financial crisis that nearly led America into another Great Depression.
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It’s been eight years since the global financial crisis sent American homeowners into a tailspin. Many were fighting tooth-and-nail to keep their homes, and millions lost that fight. For a significant number, it was an uphill battle as they coped with job losses and stagnant wages on top of the plummeting value of their homes and toxic mortgages. tighteneddollarroll.jpg

And now, private equity firms and hedge funds have found a way to exploit the holes left in these communities. Wall Street is snapping up distressed properties from Freddie Mac, Fannie Mae and HUD at an alarming rate, according to a new report from housingwire.com.

In fact, researchers discovered that some of the very same corporations responsible for the housing market crash are now buying and selling those vacant houses and delinquent mortgages created by the fallout.

Collectively, Wall Street has raised more than $20 billion to purchase notes on more than 200,000 U.S. homes.

These companies are seeing a new market for single-family rental units. Those same people who lost their homes to foreclosure have been forced to rent because they don’t have the credit to buy. Even when they do, they are edged out of the market by large firms that plunk down cash offers before families even have a chance.
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