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Secret Documents Show Weak Oversight of Key Foreclosure Program

The Obama administration trumpeted its
flagship program to prevent foreclosures, known as HAMP. But it provided shockingly
ineffective oversight.

(Image: The Associated Press)

Nov. 12: This post was updated to include details of documents ProPublica obtained after the story's publication.

The Obama administration launched its main program to prevent foreclosures in the spring of 2009 with $50 billion and abundant promises. What the Home Affordable Modification Program, or HAMP, lacked — and wouldn’t have for years — was effective oversight of the big banks that were crucial to the program’s success.

Documents obtained by ProPublica shed new light on this failing in 2009 and 2010, when the foreclosure crisis was at its peak and six million American homeowners were in danger of losing their homes. HAMP required mortgage servicers to offer loan modifications to eligible homeowners so that their monthly payments would be lower. The servicers — the largest of which were owned by the banks that had fueled the crisis in the first place — were in charge of reviewing homeowner applications, but the government set the rules and was supposed to supervise their work.

But the documents show that the government did not complete a major audit of the two largest banks in the program, Bank of America and Wells Fargo, until over a year after the program launched.

Such audits were rare at the other large mortgage servicers throughout 2009 and 2010, according to the documents. During these years, when the government provided little oversight and administered no sanctions, servicers reviewed 2.7 million modification applications and denied two-thirds of them. Meanwhile, homeowners regularly complained they had been mistreated by servicers in the program.

The documents also show how the Treasury Department coddled servicers that weren’t complying with the program’s rules. Once a year, servicers are required to certify that they are complying with the program’s rules. But servicers define for themselves what it means to comply. A company that admits violating the rules is allowed to merely submit a cover letter with their certification stating the exceptions and how it would fix the problems.

For instance, on September 28, 2010, PNC Mortgage submitted its certification. Along with that certification, it disclosed five “instances of noncompliance” or “gaps,” as it called them, along with its plans to address the issues (“steps”).

 

Like all of the documents ProPublica received, PNC’s letters are heavily redacted, so the nature of their “gaps” and “steps” remains secret.

The Treasury defended the oversight of HAMP. “The robust nature of our compliance program, together with the steps we have taken to strengthen protections for homeowners under the program, are critical reasons why homeowners who enter HAMP today show a strong likelihood of long-term success to avoid foreclosure,” said a Treasury spokeswoman.

Prying loose the documents

The documents were hard to obtain. They came as a result of two Freedom of Information Act requests by ProPublica. Initially, the Treasury Department, which administers HAMP, refused to release any documents at all. It was only after ProPublica appealed the denial that Treasury agreed to release some documents, although with large portions blacked out.

One of our requests has dragged on for more than two years, and even after all that time, the department continues to withhold certain documents, though it says it intends to turn over more. (See here for a full index of the documents we’ve obtained so far. If we receive more, we will add them to our collection when we receive them.)

Update: On Nov. 9, ProPublica received another batch of documents. Treasury said it was the final response to our requests. We've updated our index to reflect the new documents.

In some cases, the Treasury even withheld the documents of servicers who never objected to their release. When ProPublica informed the Treasury that certain servicers had said they had no objection to releasing the documents, the Treasury finally turned them over.

“It seems like they’re trying to prevent the information from getting out,” said Rick Blum, coordinator of the Sunshine in Government Initiative, a coalition of media groups. FOIA protects business trade secrets from being divulged, but Blum doubts whether that exception is being fairly applied in this case. The documents mainly concern how servicers were breaking HAMP’s rules, he noted, and “a screw-up is not a trade secret.”

A Treasury Department spokeswoman said HAMP has brought “an unprecedented level of transparency” to the mortgage servicing industry and servicers are “subject to an unprecedented level of compliance oversight.”

That’s damning by faint praise, say consumer advocates. “The reason that the level of transparency and accountability is ‘unprecedented’ is because no one has ever held servicers to account. Just because you have something where before there was nothing, that doesn’t mean that something works or is effective,” said Diane Thompson of the National Consumer Law Center.

Audits slow and rare

By now, HAMP’s disappointing performance is well known. The program was launched with President Obama’s promise to help three to four million homeowners avoid foreclosure. Three and a half years later, the program is only approaching 1.1 million modifications. It’s spent just $4 billion of its original $50 billion budget.

A recent study found a big reason for the program’s failure was that, despite all its rules, it didn’t change the behavior of the biggest banks. The banks did a poor job of modifying loans before HAMP was launched and weren't much better after.

To oversee the program, the Treasury awarded Freddie Mac a $209 million contract to be the program’s watchdog. Freddie Mac formed a group, called Making Home Affordable – Compliance, or MHA-C for short, but it got off to an inauspicious start. In August 2009, Treasury rejected its first reviews of servicers as inadequate because they were “inconsistent and incomplete” and its staff was “unqualified.”

The Treasury has refused to turn over MHA-C’s audit reports — with one exception. The servicer GMAC Mortgage expressly consented to the release of the documents. Those audits, we reported last year, revealed that the servicer had seriously mishandled many loan modifications. MHA-C’s audits themselves contained numerous errors, calling into question the competence of the reviews.

The Treasury didn’t dispute the fact that no major audits of the biggest banks were completed until well after HAMP’s launch. But the spokeswoman said “it is important to note that Treasury began unprecedented reviews of servicer compliance with program directives within the first months of program implementation.” Those earlier “compliance activities” included “on-site reviews” and “sampling of homeowner loan file reviews,” she said.

But the GMAC audits show how cursory those earlier reviews could be. In December 2009, MHA-C reviewed a sample of files, but when it reported its findings to GMAC, it told the servicer that the report was “being provided for informative purposes only, and no response is required from you at this time.” GMAC itself was not the subject of a major audit until July 2010. It was never penalized.

In the new batch of documents, the government has kept secret the audits themselves. But ProPublica has obtained the servicers’ written responses to the audits (see here for an index of the documents). The Treasury scrubbed or withheld almost all of the responses’ substantive content. Even so, they reveal some basic facts.

The watchdog was very slow to conduct major audits of the biggest servicers. MHA-C’s first major audit of Bank of America, the largest servicer in the program, wasn’t completed until July of 2010, more than a year after HAMP launched. The first major audit of Wells Fargo was completed in August of 2010.

By July of 2010, Wells and Bank of America had already denied about 430,000 homeowners a HAMP modification.

Even for big banks that received an audit sooner, oversight was infrequent, the documents show. JPMorgan Chase, the other mortgage servicing titan, received a major audit within HAMP’s first year, but through all of 2009 and 2010, it only responded to two major audits. CitiMortgage, the fourth largest servicer, only received three major audits in that time period.

When Treasury did conduct a major audit of one of the big banks, it often reviewed files that were many months old. A Wells Fargo audit delivered in March of 2011, for example, covered a “review period” of “May/June 2010.”

Once the audits were finished and delivered to the servicers, there was another delay: servicers had a month to respond with “action plans with implementation dates” to address the problems.

A Bank of America audit in late November of 2010 was based on information that was six months old. One month later, Bank of America replied: “In the Report, you requested that Bank of America management respond to the observations, and if we agree, provide a detailed remediation plan, and if we disagree, provide a detailed explanation and evidence to support our position." A page of redacted text follows, so the substance of the bank’s response remains secret.

Bank of America spokesman Rick Simon declined to discuss the communications: “As part of the MHA compliance reporting, servicers may provide information and statements that are of a proprietary and confidential nature, with the full expectation that the Department of Treasury and its agents will treat it appropriately.”

Banks evaluate themselves

In September 2010, the robo-signing scandal hit. A number of the nation’s biggest banks announced they were halting foreclosures to investigate whether they had submitted false filings to courts. The revelations drew immediate attention to mortgage servicers’ failings and eventually led to action by bank regulators and state and federal law enforcement.

Yet the same month that the scandal erupted, mortgage servicers submitted their first annual certification to the Treasury Department that they were complying with HAMP’s rules.

The certifications were toothless. In fact, following a fox-guarding-the-henhouse model, servicers could certify that they were complying even when they were not.

It was up to the servicer to decide whether it was in “material compliance,” according to the certification form. What rose to the level of being a material problem? A Treasury directive gave guidance that is so vague it borders on no guidance at all: “This evaluation of materiality may or may not be quantifiable in monetary terms and should include, but is not limited to, consideration of the nature and frequency of noncompliance as well as qualitative considerations, including the impact on Program goals and objectives.”

If the servicer found that it was, by its own definition, noncompliant, it was required to list the problems and its “action plan” in a separate “cover letter” to be sent with the certification filing. But that was it. There was no penalty.

The Treasury continues to withhold many of the cover letters from ProPublica. Among the documents the Treasury is still keeping secret are the letters for the four largest servicers in the program (Bank of America, Wells Fargo, JPMorgan Chase, and Citibank), although the Treasury has produced their certifications.

Update: On Nov. 9, ProPublica received the cover letters for Bank of America, Wells, Chase, and Citi, among other servicers. All four letters disclosed the banks were not in compliance with HAMP's rules, but Treasury redacted the details.

Still, the documents that ProPublica has received show that several servicers claimed they had no problems to report.

“None to the best of our knowledge,” wrote a GMAC Mortgage executive.

There are reasons to question that statement. Two months earlier, a MHA-C audit had found a number of problems at the servicer, including that it had miscalculated homeowner income in more than 80 percent of audited cases. And that same month, September 2010, GMAC had kicked off the robo-signing scandal by halting its foreclosures across the country.

GMAC spokeswoman Susan Fitzpatrick said the company has “rigorous internal and external controls in place that maintain consistent compliance with HAMP guidelines” and that the servicer was materially compliant with HAMP’s rules when it filed the certification. “The foreclosure issues identified in September 2010 are not related to servicer compliance with HAMP guidelines.”

The Treasury said the certifications were “only one part of a more comprehensive process” that included its audits. “While Treasury uses these certifications as part of the compliance process, certainly we do not rely solely on servicers to self-identify and report their weaknesses,” said the department’s spokeswoman. Servicers were allowed to define materiality for themselves in the certifications because, she said, a “‘one size fits all’ approach would not have been practical.”

“All instances of non-compliance are tracked and pursued to ensure that servicers have and are executing against remediation plans, and that any potentially-affected homeowners are identified and re-evaluated if applicable,” she said.

Penalties were late and fleeting

It was only in the wake of the robo-signing scandal that Treasury decided to take punitive action against servicers breaking HAMP’s rules. In June 2011, it withheld the program’s subsidies to the three largest servicers in the program. HAMP provides incentive payments to servicers, as well as borrowers and investors, to encourage modifications. The servicer subsidies would stop until the banks showed “substantial improvement,” Treasury said.

Wells Fargo soon received a passing grade, but the Treasury continued to withhold subsidies from Bank of America and JPMorgan Chase until the payments were restored as part of the February 2012, $25 billion national mortgage settlement between federal agencies, 49 states, and the five largest servicers. Together, the servicing subsidiaries of Chase and Bank of America have received about $509 million in subsidies through the program.

When asked for comment about HAMP’s limited oversight, the three largest servicers in the program all pointed to Treasury’s recent assessments of how servicers comply with the program’s rules. Those assessments show the banks requiring only “moderate improvement.”

 

David Plummer

Nov. 8, 2012, 6:10 p.m.

Hi there!

Have you tried contacting Neil Barofsky, author of Bailout: An Inside Account of How Washington Abandoned Main Street While Rescuing Wall Street? (I think he teaching at some university/college in NYC.)Cheers,

Dave P.

James M. Fitzsimmons

Nov. 8, 2012, 6:44 p.m.

November 8, 2012. Sorry if I seem cynical but you are a bit late on providing this information, aren’t you? Maybe you will do an investigative piece on Benghazi now.

Richard Isacoff

Nov. 8, 2012, 7:28 p.m.

The news isn’t that there was no oversight by Fed regulators, but rather that no one cared then or NOW.  How much of the $40B+ is still left. Maybe, on a case by case basis as part of the flawed independent review, homeowners who lost houses because of HAMP failure to police itself/servicers, can be compensated notwithstanding the $26B BAC et al settlement.

In fairness to Treasury at the time, Congress was so stingy in enforcement powers that almost no one could ever sue any servicer for anything. This is one time that the Borrowers could have helped the process if anyone had listened to them or their Counsels. I spent hours and hours on cases that could have been resolved if my clients had private rights of actions - strictly a Congress matter - it would have had to be specifically set-out in the legislation. I litigated it enough to know.

The failure to disclose at this point is not tolerable. The big banks have been indemnified by the settlement, save for misrepresentations to Treasury but it appears it knows all of the “warts” anyway. Last - if take away all of the black “magic markers” (yes I am that old) how wuld anyone redact? There’s our fix for the future.

Richard Isacoff

And the economy remains in the ditch. Due to a lack of over site, Do nothing attitude.

Yep, I’m on my 6th HAMP app….they keep denying, I keep submitting.

Over 5 years.  We have been trying to get someone to listen to our case for over 5 years.  We have forged documents, a broken chain of title, we were held to a prepayment penalty we DID NOT SIGN nor agree to.

The list of fraud goes on and on….not to mention all the evidence that confirms the fraud…and companies like Countrywide get to reopen as PennyMac and say things like, “Well, that wasn’t us, it’s not our fault!”

We have legitimate cause and they get to make excuses and turn around and extort more money from us on the pretense of modifying…..

I’m so mad I could explode.

Mortgage analyst

Nov. 8, 2012, 10:10 p.m.

To sherry:

Pay your mortgage on time and you will have no problems.  Searching for technical excuses why you don’t have to pay is the wrong approach.

@Mortage analyst

Ok Brilliant mind what do you suggest when the economy goes south and homeowners lose their jobs use all their savings and the bank won’t work with you to keep you in your home as the government bails out the banks with TARP and the banks use the money to make lots and lots of profit for themselves while people are being foreclosed on left and right in this country when all they want to do is work with the bank to stay in their home and pay their mortgage “on time”?

To Mortgage analyst;

Like most arrogant people who assume that millions of people are just “deadbeats”, your analysis is wrong.  Not only did we pay our mortgage we had to pay over $300,000 trying to straighten out the fraud, caused by the predatory loan.

That is why I am so mad I could explode.  I have to listen to pompous idiots like you, who have make assumptions based on their own lack of knowledge and fail to take into account the following:


Following is a list of settlements that not only acknowledge illegal behavior, but serve as evidence that the home-buyers were not the perpetrators of this fraud:

10/6/2008 – $8.68 billion dollar settlement with Countrywide for the State of California – relief for home-buyers -
8/3/2010 - $600 million dollar settlement with Countrywide Financial with the New York City Pension Funds – relief for homebuyers – 0
10/15/2010 - $67.5 million settlement with the SEC – relief for homebuyers – 0
2/2/2011 – Former Countrywide executives make a $6.5 million settlement with California - relief for homebuyers – 0

6/29/2011 – B of A settles with 22 institutional investors for 14 billion.  – relief for homebuyers – 0
7/20/2011 – Countrywide settles a class action suit for charging excessive fees to more than 450,000 borrowers. – relief for homebuyers - ?
12/21/2011 – Countrywide settles bias suit for $335 million dollars for discrimination – relief for homebuyers – ?

2/12/2012 - 48 State settlement against 5 of the largest banks for $26 billion dollars - most of the funds used to balance State budgets…relief for homebuyers - negligible

With all the settlements and court cases regarding bank fraud still pending, the lenders are still allowed to foreclose and remove families from their homes.  This is making countless families homeless and destroying the moral of millions of American citizens.

  Yet the evidence tells us that these families have been lured into liar loans and later into default:

A)  The FBI estimates that 80 percent of all mortgage fraud involves collaboration or collusion by industry insiders.
B)  Register of Deeds, John O’Brian has documented massive fraud.
C)  San Francisco study found 85% error in foreclosures

and I could go on…...with REAL evidence and COMPREHENSIVE studies….not just some knee-jerk rambling.

Try reading the SIGTARP reports, good place for an ANALYST to start.

To the arrogant, ignorant “Mortgage Analyst”
Excuse me, but you certainly haven’t “analyzed” the true, factual profile of homeowners who get dooped when applying (loosely used term) modifications, have you.  First of all, securitized loans/assets are fraudulent because homeowners signed mortgages/deeds of trusts and promissory notes with phony “lender” names. The true owners were the investors/certificate holders.  Homeowners had no clue who their “real” lender was and the entity foreclosing, more than likely, had no standing whatsoever.  Secondly, you are assuming homeowners that applied for modifications did not make their payments. What an inaccurate assumption.  I have 1600 homeowners who have contacted me - victims of one loan servicer.  Many who were current were told to go 90 days late “in order to qualify” for a “modification”.  Many didn’t even ask for a modification but only wanted to convert to a fixed interest rate and were willing and able to increase their payment amount.  After being “promised” a fixed rate IF you go late, many did.  What did they get?  A Notice of Default and thousands of dollars in fees and penalties.  They were then offered a “workout agreement” which was just a ploy to get them further into default.  So don’t be so pompous and self righteous..

“Weak oversight?” It’s not a mistake. INTENTIONALLY weak oversight. After all, what is most important is criminal banksters and financial fraud masters grabbing as much money as possible at all times.

Thank you Jim C. and others and Pro Publica for your investigation report.  The haves will not stop fraud and greed until together we protest in great numbers.  Meanwhile we need to challenge congress daily until we can elect people of integity who are not reps of big business and cannot be bought.  We need to stop allowing them to control our democracy.  It is an entrenched system and hard to break but we must.

pamela jean exley

Nov. 13, 2012, 5:36 p.m.

i still cry after losing my home of 15 years to these uncaring bastards. me and my husband were lied to repeatedly and given the runaround even at one point told to call a number which was for a sex hotline. i hope i see the day these bastards are shut down for good and prosecuted and put in jail. i used to have faith but they have beaten us down for ever trusting these scum.

All,
I have followed this story for a few years now, and have even posted here prior…I too was going through this aggrivation with Citimortgage. I applied for, qualified for and was assured time and time again that the modification was coming. Next thing I get is a new agent handling my paperwork, and it has once more magically disappeared!! (How convenient for them, in causing their own delays in processing the modification)  After submitting all documents for a third time, I was finally told the truth….Citimortgage had sold my loan to another bank (though they neglected to ever inform me who this was or might be) and as such legal proceedings for my foreclosure commenced around August of 2010. My home of 24 years was to be sold at public auction as of December of that year, unless I could come up with an outrageous amount of money they had deemed my penalties and late fees, though making each and every arranged payment they had sought throughout their treachery. I was now forced to file a chapter 13, in hopes that I might retain the home, and make some arrangement to negotiate a re-payment of their bogus claims….they would NOT negoatiate, and were never made to justify their claims, though I had my own documentation straight from my own bank, in black and white. (This was not the concern of the bankruptcy court, as all they were interested in, was they we came to terms through each of our legal counsels.)
I fought this battle all the the way, and found it could not be won….I ended up having to convert to a Chapter 7, and walk away from the home that I had spent all those years not only paying for, but had spent how many more hours and dollars to renivate and upgrade over all those years.
As of first of this month, I have now joined the countless others that have been railroaded throughout this process, and now am the lucky ones to still have a job, but now pay the rent to my landlord….how lucky can one be???
I find little solace in the Independent Review, as we will more than likely find this to be just as flawed or worse…I’ve already made one effort to be included as I know how badly the HAMP program was run and audited, so I can only come to the same conclusion that this one will be more of the same.  I will be making a second appeal with this as somehow, someway, I want to make the point that these big banks can’t destroy lives and walk away without at least having to make some good of those they’ve ruined by their actions!
Pam, I’m sorry to hear that you too lost your home, and it seems we all may become part of this sinking boat, if we don’t make our own stand and fight this fight. I don’t cry about it, but I certainly do use a whole lot more blue language these days, as this has now become my mission…bring the banking industry down!!~

The greed and fraud will continue onward until our representatives in Congress decide they want it to stop.  But right now, the lobbyists are too strong and Congress has too many freebies and perks.  Why should they stop when they sit in their ivory tower unscathed.  So we must continue to pursue the media.  Thank you Paul Kiel for continuing to report the truth.  We can’t continue to cry; we must fight - and fight with knowledge and truth.  Educate yourself.  READ.  Two of the best books to educate yourselves are The Big Short by Michael Lewis and a newly published foreclosure book “Overcoming Foreclosure” that has made all this fraud understandable for the homeowner and helps them fight.  This book was written by a brilliant attorney and friend, Norman Sirak. You can purchase it on Amazon and I highly recommend it!!!  We must stand up and fight and we can only do that by educating ourselves.  If you try to fight by going into court and saying, “your Honor, they were mean and unfair” the Judge will just say “you owe the loan, don’t you - I’m not going to give you a free house”. And you’ll mistakenly answer “yes, your honor, but….”.  And you’re booted out the door.  You can’t fight that way.  The Note and Deed of Trust were fraudulent and never named the real lender. The loan was immediately reconfigured into a security and sold, probably even before you signed on the dotted line..  It had to be sold twice to be bankruptcy remote and eligible for a REMIC trust.  But those sales were not recorded on anything but the MERS registry.  There were no assignments to these new “purchasers” because they weren’t really purchasing anything.  And MERS…. they were never a beneficiary.  At best they were a nominee for some lender (that went bankrupt).  So how can they still act as nominee.  There was no “writing” that transferred their “nominee-hood” to a new lender.  So they are nominee for no one.  How can they assign “all beneficiary interest” to Aurora or Citibank or anyone?  Follow the money trail.  Banks/Servicers have been paid over and over again PLUS they took your house.  All this is explained in Norman’s book.  I’ve read every White Paper, every Amicus Brief, hundreds of lawsuits and this book sums everything up so you can understand and learn how to fight back. Please don’t take my words as legal advise - educate yourself and read.  Then you won’t remain a victim, but an advocate for change.  Good luck.  Love you all. We must help each other because the courts just don’t want to “get it”.  Their pensions are tied up in these fraudulent mortgage backed securities. Somehow we must disclose this fraud to them in such a way they cannot look away.

Of course we leave the fox to guard the henhouse!! Banks are still too big to fail and have not substantially changed from 2008 when they put the US in the hole. If this doesn’t change we will be back there again…soon.

I represent folks that are attempting to modify their mortgages under HAMP. I do this at no cost to them. I have become somewhat of an expert in this area and I have, so far, always been successful in obtaining a modification for my clients (52 so far). Until I ran into PNC Bank. They seem to thumb their noses at the law and they do not care one whit how bad they hurt people — or what laws they are ignoring. Currently, I am fighting a battle (on behalf of a client) against PNC Bank. They seem to be the all time worst when it come to compliance and behaving legally. My client was just declined for a modification based on laws that were issued in 2003! The Treasury Department mortgage regulations have been updated many times since 2003 (when HAMP did not yet exist) - yet PNC Bank has ignored all of the “new” rules that have come into existence over the last 5 years! The latest bunch of regulations were issued 08/12/2012. PNC Bank ignores them all and references old rules and regulations when they decline a mortgage modification.

I have been using the good offices of the CFPB - but found them to be, virtually, useless. While they are a repository and a conduit for helping one to get their (HAMP) application in front of the bank, they seem to be unable to offer any more help than that. They have highly incompetent “intake workers” (who often do not speak good English). These folks that answer the phones at the CFPB can do nothing but, write down your complaint - and direct you to their web site. So, even though I am not a tea bagger, I have found CFPB to be just another, worthless, government agency. It is impossible to find a highly competent executive who has the ability to listen to the facts and to offer any help to the consumer at all.

I could write for hours how incompetent PNC bank is and what they are doing to screw people around. But, for the purposes of this post, I will finish with what they (incorrectly) said were the reasons that my client was denied.
1) “You did not re-affirm your mortgage when you filed bankruptcy in 2010” - THIS IS 100% INCORRECT AND IT IS ON PAGE 35 OF 35 OF THE BANKRUPTCY DISCHARGE THAT WAS SUBMITTED TO PNC….: ”Mortgage loan reaffirmed and I intend to stay in the home.”

2) “Your back end ratio is above 55%” Again, the idiots at PNC bank do not know how to do arithmetic. $3000 in monthly income and $1200 in monthly expenses does not equal 55%.

3) “You cannot remove your co-borrower.” YES I CAN! Per HAMP regulations: Co-Borrower An occupying co-borrower may be considered for HAMP if a quitclaim deed evidencing that the non-occupying co-borrower has relinquished all rights to the property has been recorded. Servicers must refer to investor guidance to determine which parties are required to sign the HAMP documents.

My client’s co borrower (his girlfriend) did sign a quitclaim deed and she did sign a warranty deed relinquishing all rights to the property!  Yet, PNC says that this cannot be done.

I spent an hour on the phone with the rep from CFPB filing an appeal. This consists of me stating very slowly what the problem is and the CFPB representative writing down every word (verbatim). I could tell he was nice guy that made minimum wage and was not very bright. I asked, “…could I be transferred to someone with a brain?” “No” he responded, “that will not happen.” When I tried to tell him that PNC was using outdated regulations and rules on which to base their decisions — he did not know what regulations were. I told him that the Treasury regulations could be found at:  http://www.allregs.com.  He replied, “We are not allowed to look at those!”So, we have entered another 60 to 90 day period where PNC bank will delay, lie and obfuscate.

This article is part of an ongoing investigation:
Foreclosure Crisis

Foreclosure Crisis: Banks and Government Fail Homeowners

Banks and the government have fallen short in helping homeowners in danger of foreclosure.

The Story So Far

Systemic failures at the country’s banks and mortgage servicers have exacerbated the most severe foreclosure crisis since the Great Depression, and government efforts to limit the damage have fallen short. ProPublica created an unrivaled database of homeowners who have faced foreclosure, opened a Facebook page to encourage homeowners to share their stories, wrote profiles of some of them, and incorporated their experiences into our reporting. We also provided a comprehensive rundown of the numbers behind the crisis.

More »

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