Administrative Agency Residential Real Estate Civil Remedies

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Nonprofit Seeks to Enjoin DOJ Settlement with JP Morgan

On February 10, non-profit corporation Better Markets, Inc., filed a complaint in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia against the United States Department of Justice and the Attorney General of the...more

GSEs: Ability-to-Repay and Qualified Mortgages

Yesterday, the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) announced that it is directing Fannie Mae ("Fannie") and Freddie Mac ("Freddie") to limit their future mortgage acquisitions to loans that meet the requirements for a...more

FHA: Mortgagee Review Board - Administrative Actions

Periodically, we review with you the types of administrative actions taken by HUD's Mortgagee Review Board (MRB). The review of the MRB's published administrative actions should be considered a teaching moment for all FHA...more

Waiting for the CFPB

My sources tell me that the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) will soon announce substantial monetary penalties and other administrative actions against a large nonbank. I guess it is inevitable that when such an...more

CFPB's Gang of Seven (Final Rules)

This has been a busy month for the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB). Since the advent of the New Year, the CFPB has issued seven Final Rules that impact residential mortgage loan originations. The finale was...more

Is the Fed's Settlement with Mortgage Servicers Good for the Market?

On January 7, 2013, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) and the U.S. Federal Reserve Board announced an $8.5 Billion settlement with 10 of the nation's top residential loan servicers ending independent...more

Federal Reserve Announces Another Major Cash Settlement with Mortgage Servicers: $8.5 Billion to be Paid in Cash, Used to Help...

In a joint press release issued by the Federal Reserve and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, news this past week is that 10 mortgage servicers around the country have entered into a settlement agreement with the...more

CFPB's Final Rule: Ability-to-Repay and Qualified Mortgages

Yesterday, I provided an outline of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's (CFPB's) Regulatory Agenda for 2013. As if on cue, the CFPB has accommodated us today with the first of its forthcoming issuances. This pertains...more

FDIC Obtains Jury Verdict And Settlement In Separate Actions In California District Court Against Former Bank Officers And...

On December 7, the FDIC, as receiver of a failed bank, obtained a jury verdict in its favor in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California against a group of former bank officers. FDIC v. Van Dellen, No....more

Cook County property owners can cut property tax bills by filing a protest in 2013

Each year, the Cook County Assessor reassesses one-third of the nearly 1.8 million parcels in Cook County. For 2013, the 13 townships located in the north and northwest sections of Cook County will be reassessed starting in...more

Fannie Mae Updates Maximum Allowable Attorney Fees, Provides Standard Short Sale FAQs

On December 13, Fannie Mae issued Servicing Guide Announcement SVC-2012-26 to update the maximum allowable foreclosure attorney fees for mortgage loans, participation pool mortgage loans, and MBS mortgage loans serviced under...more

2/3 Of DOJ’s Nearly $5 Billion Recovery Under False Claims Act Derived From Whistleblower Suits in 2012

On December 4, the Justice Department announced a record-breaking recovery of $4.9 billion in settlements and judgments in civil cases brought under the False Claims Act (FCA) for the fiscal year ending September 20, 2012....more

National Mortgage Settlement Monitor Issues Progress Report

On November 19, Joseph Smith, Jr., the Monitor of the national mortgage settlement, released a report on the consumer relief activities of the five banks that are parties to the settlement. Between March 1, 2012 and September...more

Bank Argues Government’s False Claims Act Case Violates National Servicing Settlement

On November 1, one of the five banks that entered into a comprehensive mortgage servicing settlement earlier this year with the federal government and 49 state attorneys general invoked that agreement in defense of claims...more

Florida Attorney General Announces Plan to Distribute $300,000,000 in Foreclosure Settlement Proceeds: News Release of the Week

A few weeks ago, we discussed the fight between Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi and the Florida Legislature over $334,000,000 that came to Florida as part of its settlement deal with the five Big Banks in the national...more

Wells Fargo: Department of Justice Not Playing Fair

Wells Fargo has recently cried foul, claiming that the Department of Justice’s latest lawsuit against it in the Southern District of New York violates the terms of a settlement agreement Wells had previously reached with the...more

FHFA Action Against Countrywide Deemed Timely

On October 18, Judge Mariana R. Pfaelzer of the Central District of California denied Countrywide’s motion to dismiss an action brought by the Federal Housing Finance Authority seeking relief in connection with purchases by...more

U.S. Sues Bank of America for Alleged Mortgage Fraud Against GSEs

On October 24, the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York filed suit against Bank of America and Countrywide seeking damages for over $1 billion in alleged losses suffered by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac....more

Illinois Appellate Court Decides Two FOIA Cases on Fees that Public Body Can Charge and Justification for Attorneys’ Fees

In two recent decisions, the Illinois Appellate Court clarified the fees that a public body can charge for copying records pursuant to a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request and the circumstances justifying the...more

Federal Government Sues Bank of America for Fraud: Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac Want Actuals and Exemplary Damages From Countrywide...

The federal government has sued the second-biggest bank in the country, Bank of America Corp., in United States District Court for the Southern District of New York for fraud. That's right: fraud, which brings with it the...more

U.S. Sues Wells Fargo Over Allegedly Defective FHA Mortgages

On October 9, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York filed suit against Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York....more

California Homeowner Bill of Rights

The California Homeowner Bill of Rights, which the California Senate and Assembly enacted on July 2, 2012, was very recently signed into law by the Governor on July 12, 2012 (“The Act”). These new foreclosure laws will not...more

FHFA Sues HSBC Entities For RMBS Representation and Warranty Breaches

On September 26, the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) brought an action against HSBC Finance Corp. in New York State court. FHFA’s summons with notice alleges that HSBC, as successor-in-interest to Decision One Mortgage...more

CERCLA and Original Sin -- Who Has to Pay For Other People's Contamination

In an environmental dispute between innocents involving a Church and a downgradient property owner, a federal court recently found the Church, although without original sin, was less innocent and should bear all the costs of...more

Another Nail in the Public Nuisance Litigation Coffin: The 9th Circuit Affirms Dismissal of the Kivalina Claims

On Friday, in Native Village of Kivalina v. ExxonMobil,the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals may have sounded the death knell for public nuisance litigation concerning the impacts of climate change, affirming dismissal of the...more

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