Mortgages Gone Missing

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

A White Plains homeowner had her housing debt cancelled when the bank trying to foreclose on the property couldn't prove it held the mortgage. Gretchen Morgenson from The New York Times and bankruptcy attorney David Shaev talk about the case and whether it has wider implications.


Gretchen Morgenson and David Shaev

Comments [15]

David B. Shaev from NYC

The fact is, that you seldom know who is the beneficiary owner of your mortgage/note. Normally, a servicer is assigned to collect your money and pass it onto the bondholders. The MERS system hides the identity of the originator and offtimes holder of the note from the homeowner in a cynical attempt to shield the parties from liability. By forcing these issues into the public arena, I hope to expose this practice and force the banks/mortgage companies, etc. to produce appropriate paperwork anytime they enter a court setting.
David B. Shaev
350 Fifth Ave.
NY, NY 10018

Nov. 02 2009 09:34 AM
Eugenia Renskoff from Williamsburgh, Brooklyn

Hello, I was of the country when my home foreclosed in GA. Had nowhere to turn. Eugenia Renskoff

Oct. 28 2009 02:43 PM
Eugenia Renskoff from Williamsburgh, Brooklyn

Hello, This brings back memories of my own foreclosure in GA in 2005. I was out of the country when it happened and had nowhere to turn. Eugenia Renskoff

Oct. 28 2009 02:42 PM
Linda Tirelli, Esq. from White Plains NY 10601

As a consumer bankruptcy attorney, I applaud Attorney Shaev for his fine work. I hope the media continues to pay attention to what happens in the US Bankruptcy Courts going forward.

The truth of the matter is, homeowners need to know the facts about how many mortgage documents are "missing" and the facts about how banks actually create false documents to cover up for their deficiencies. Attorney David Shaev's case is a prime example, but rest assured, its one of thousands of case out there with similar fact pattern. Banks will often manufacture documents instead of coming clean with the truth. I only wish bankruptcy lawyers had a fraction of the advertising budget the banks maintain. Kudos to Attorney Shaev.
Linda M. Tirelli, Consumer Bankruptcy Attorney
202 Mamaroneck Ave., 3rd Floor
White Plains, NY 10601

Oct. 28 2009 12:28 PM


Thom/10's question deserves at least a "Follow Up Friday"

Oct. 28 2009 12:05 PM
Thom from New Jersey

What about those of us who are paying our mortgages? How do we know we are paying to the right person?

Oct. 28 2009 11:50 AM
mozo from nyc

This has happened in Chicago to two properties. The first thing you have to identify in any foreclosure proceeding is the property and owner or owners. The problem in the two Chicago cases was that the mortgages were split up while they were "bundled" or securitized. More of these situations can and will have serious implications.

I used to be a real estate appraiser and have heard quite a bit of these stories from old colleagues in the last year.

Oct. 28 2009 11:43 AM

caller from n brunswick misses the point. at the very least this legal action requires banks to follow the existing law -- and reconsider their attraction toward grey areas. i doubt you have a problem with the first of my two points at minimum.

Oct. 28 2009 11:40 AM
Andy from Brooklyn

Brian, if the ownership is ultimately known that's fine. But the banks shouldn't be allowed to play fast and loose with the rules and regulations. If they want to toss someone out of their house they should be required to show the full documentation of ownership. It blows my mind that incomplete documentation trumped possession in the past.

Oct. 28 2009 11:39 AM
Joel from Briarcliff, NY

This is what Rep. Marcy Katur (OH) suggested to do when foreclosure comes to the door: Ask them to produce the paperwork.

Oct. 28 2009 11:38 AM
Jay from Norwalk, CT

How does a homeowner know if there bank has truthful information / ownership of a mortgage? The lawyer mentioned that their clients bank did not modify the loan. Many banks are not following through with modifications. Could there be a relationship?

Oct. 28 2009 11:36 AM
Merrill Clark from NYC

Very common defense in a foreclosure or bankruptcy to make the financial institution show they are the ultimate assignee in a list of long assignments.

Oct. 28 2009 11:35 AM
Andy from Brooklyn


Oct. 28 2009 11:35 AM
James from Brooklyn

Please please please let this become a national trend! It would be great to see these scummy banks hoisted by their own petard, worth even all my taxes that are being thrown at them in bailouts.

Oct. 28 2009 11:34 AM
Red Cent from Montclair, NJ

The segment description needs some editing:

Foreclosure as we know it took a turn in White Plains where a judge recently erased nearly half a million in mortgage debt (dollars or debts - I shouldn't have to reread a paragraph)on a property. It’s a home without an owner now (meaning abandoned?) and a precedent for lenders who can’t come up with proof of ownership (meaning lien?). Gretchen Morgenson from the New York Times has the story.

Oct. 28 2009 10:13 AM

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