02-10-2015, 09:39 PM
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: 39°27'33"N 77°58'04"W
My Ride: E46, E92 M3, R32 VW
Troops to Receive Millions Under Service Members Civil Relief Act
Screwed at home while being screwed abroad.
DoD News, Defense Media Activity
WASHINGTON, Feb. 9, 2015 – The Justice Department announced today that under its settlements with five of the nation’s largest mortgage servicers, 952 service members and their co-borrowers are eligible to receive over $123 million for non-judicial foreclosures that violated the Service Members Civil Relief Act.
The five mortgage servicers are JP Morgan Chase Bank N.A.; Wells Fargo Bank N.A. and Wells Fargo & Co.; Citi Residential Lending Inc., Citibank, NA and CitiMortgage Inc.; GMAC Mortgage, LLC, Ally Financial Inc. and Residential Capital LLC; and BAC Home Loans Servicing LP formerly known as Countrywide Home Loans Servicing LP (Bank of America).
In the first round of payments under the SCRA portion of the 2012 settlement known as the National Mortgage Settlement, 666 service members and their co-borrowers will receive over $88 million from JP Morgan Chase, Wells Fargo, Citi and GMAC Mortgage. The other 286 service members and their co-borrowers already have received over $35 million from Bank of America through an earlier settlement. The non-judicial foreclosures at issue took place between Jan. 1, 2006, and Apr. 4, 2012.
“These unlawful judicial foreclosures forced hundreds of service members and their families out of their homes,” said Acting Associate Attorney General Stuart F. Delery. “While this compensation will provide a measure of relief, the fact is that service members should never have to worry about losing their home to an illegal foreclosure while they are serving our country. The department will continue to actively protect our service members and their families from such unjust actions.”
“We are very pleased that the men and women of the armed forces who were subjected to unlawful non-judicial foreclosures while they were serving our country are now receiving compensation,” said Acting Assistant Attorney General Vanita Gupta of the Civil Rights Division. “We look forward, in the coming months, to facilitating the compensation of additional service members who were subjected to unlawful judicial foreclosures or excess interest charges. We appreciate that JP Morgan Chase, Wells Fargo, Citi, GMAC Mortgage and Bank of America have been working cooperatively with the Justice Department to compensate the service members whose rights were violated.”
Section 533 of the SCRA prohibits non-judicial foreclosures against service members who are in military service or within the applicable post-service period, as long as they originated their mortgages before their period of military service began. Even in states that normally allow mortgage foreclosures to proceed non-judicially, the SCRA prohibits servicers from doing so against protected service members during their military service and applicable post-military service coverage period.
Under the National Mortgage Settlement, for mortgages serviced by Wells Fargo, Citi and GMAC Mortgage, the identified service members will each receive $125,000, plus any lost equity in the property and interest on that equity. Eligible co-borrowers will also be compensated for their share of any lost equity in the property.
To ensure consistency with an earlier private settlement, JP Morgan Chase will provide any identified service member either the property free and clear of any debt or the cash equivalent of the full value of the home at the time of sale, and the opportunity to submit a claim for compensation for any additional harm suffered, which will be determined by a special consultant, retired U.S. District Court Judge Edward N. Cahn.
Payment amounts have been reduced for those service members or co-borrowers who have previously received compensation directly from the servicer or through a prior settlement, such as the independent foreclosure review conducted by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and the Federal Reserve Board. The Bank of America payments to identified service members with nonjudicial foreclosures were made under a 2011 settlement with the Department of Justice.
The NMS also provides compensation for two categories of service members:
-- Those who were foreclosed upon pursuant to a court order where the mortgage servicer failed to file a proper affidavit with the court stating whether or not the service member was in military service; and
-- Those service members who gave proper notice to the servicer, but were denied the full benefit of the SCRA’s 6% interest rate cap on pre-service mortgages. The service members entitled to compensation for these alleged violations will be identified later in 2015.