In a complaint filed August 30, 2011, Nevada Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto alleges Bank of America “engaged in a pattern and practice of deceptive conduct in violation of the Nevada Deceptive Trade Practices Act (“DTPA”), Nev. Rev. Stat §§598 et seq.” In addition, the State alleges they also “materially and almost immediately violated the Consent Judgment that countrywide entered with the State on February 24, 2009”. Bank of America bought Countrywide early in 2008. As a successor in interest, it is liable for the violations of Nevada law.
The 48 page complaint documents other allegations, such as failure of Bank of America to provide loan modifications to eligible borrowers in a timely manner, initiating foreclosures while modifications were pending, requesting that consumers submit full documentation despite the Consent Judgment’s agreement to “streamline” modifications.
One northern Nevada homeowner has been attempting to obtain a modification from Bank of America on her home for over a year. She has submitted documents via fax, Fedex and had numerous conversations on the phone with representatives of Bank of America who would give her conflicting answers. She would receive daily phone calls requesting payment despite the fact that she had submitted her paperwork as requested. No matter how many times she answered the phone and told the representative the same thing, they called daily, requesting payment. Finally, out of frustration, she requested they quit calling. Only after providing a written request, as required, did she finally stop getting the repeated calls.
At one point, she received a denial of her modification. The reason? She was told there was a deadline (unknown and undocumented in any paperwork) that she failed to meet. However, she was then told she could appeal. She appealed the decision. The appeal was accepted. A few weeks later, though she submitted updated paperwork, she received a “trial modification”. The problem? The modification was based on dated and old paperwork. Her income had changed. She has since sent another letter to Bank of America requesting they reconsider her modification using the document she most recently submitted.
Though the homeowner has not been served a Notice of Default, she worries that time is nearing. She recently received a refund from the bank.
If the complaint filed by Attorney General Masto proves to be true, she may find the bank cannot foreclose. The allegations include that Bank of America “misrepresented, both in communications with Nevada consumers and in documents they recorded and filed, that they had authority to foreclose upon consumers’ homes as servicers for the trusts that held these mortgages. Defendants knew (and were on notice) that they had never properly transferred (omitted) these mortgages to those trusts, failing to deliver properly endorsed or assigned mortgage notes as required by the relevant legal contracts and state law. Because the trusts never became holders of these mortgages, Defendants lacked authority to collect or foreclose on their behalf and never should have represented they could