The CFPB’s Impact in California

Have you heard? Yesterday was the 5th anniversary of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.  In that short time, the agency has built a reputation for dramatically increasing transparency into the financial services market, leveling the playing field between consumers and financial corporations, and putting bad actors on notice that they will face consequences.

bday cake

Senator Elizabeth Warren is widely credited with the idea of an agency that would stand up for financial consumers, and the CFPB was included in the Dodd Frank financial reform that was passed in response to the mortgage meltdown.

While advocates had repeatedly warned federal and state regulators and elected officials about the predatory mortgages that were being made, these warnings fell on deaf ears.

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Predatory loan advertising

In the summer of 2013, CRC and our allies urged the US Senate to confirm Richard Cordray as director of the CFPB and we were happy to see that he confirmed on July 16, 2013.

CFPB confirm!

CRC and our allies delivering over 25,000 petitions from Californians, urging the US Senate to confirm Richard Cordray.

Since then, Cordray and his CFPB colleagues have been busy!

In an April snapshot about California and complaints submitted by Californians, the CFPB reported:

1) As of April 1, 2016, Californians had submitted 118,900 of the total 859,900 complaints the CFPB had received at that point, or about 14%.

2) Complaints from Los Angeles and San Francisco accounted for nearly 50% of these complaints.  (CRC won’t claim credit for all of the San Francisco complaints, but we receive a fair amount of phone calls from harmed consumers and we frequently suggest making a complaint to the CFPB if it is accepting complaints for that particular product.  Not only does this hopefully lead to redress for the affected consumer, but it also helps the CFPB to see if there are concerning trends- for example if a lot of consumers are complaining about a particular company or product).

3) Speaking of “lots of complaints about a particular product,” mortgages were #1 most complained about product in the April snapshot, accounting for 32% of complaints.  In fact, complaints from California were more likely to be about mortgages as compared to the number of complaints made about mortgages at the national level (about 26%).

4) Debt collection was also frequently complained about, representing 24% of all California complaints, as compared to 26% nationally.

5) Most complained about companies: The CFPB received the most complaints from California consumers about Bank of America, Wells Fargo and Experian.

We’re including five examples of how the CFPB has stood up for consumers below:

1) Stopping Illegal Harassment of Payday Loan Borrowers: The CFPB has stopped companies from engaging in illegal and predatory behavior- like Ace Cash Express illegally harassing their customers into rolling over their payday loans. In announcing the settlement, Director Cordray explained: “This culture of coercion drained millions of dollars from cash-strapped consumers who had few options to fight back.”   Take a look at this graphic from the CFPB’s settlement with Ace Cash Express.  It’s from their new employee training manual and provides a clear diagram on how Ace tried to keep its borrowers caught in the payday loan debt trap:

ACE Cash Express

2) Targeting Enablers Too: The CFPB doesn’t just target bad actors, it also targets companies that enable bad actors- like this California based lead generator (D and D Marketing, doing business as T3Leads (T3)) that sold consumer loan applications as “leads” to small-dollar lenders. The CFPB explained that “T3 failed to vet or monitor its lead generators and lead purchasers, exposing consumers to the risk of having their information purchased by actors who would use it for illegal purposes. T3 allowed its lead generators to attract consumers with misleading statements and took unreasonable advantage of consumers’ lack of understanding of the material risks, costs, or conditions of the loan products for which they apply. T3’s conduct was unfair and abusive….”

To understand why online lead generators can be so bad for customers, take a look at this NPR Story: I applied for an online payday loan: here’s what happened next.

3) Loan Modification Scam Artists: In some ways, California was ground zero for the mortgage meltdown, especially since many of the most predatory lenders (like Countrywide) were headquartered in Southern California.  Since the mortgage meltdown, more bottom-feeding vultures have emerged, preying on desperate homeowners with promises of costly loan modifications that never materialize.  In July 2014, the CFPB, FTC, and state regulators announced a sweep against these scam artists.  The Bureau filed three lawsuits against these companies and individuals who had collected more than $25 million in illegal fees for services that were never delivered.  California was also “well-represented,” with a number of these scam artists located in our state. The CDPB’s complaint alleged that one of these firms,  Clausen, Cobb, and CCMC “managed, staffed, and supported the deceptive loan modification operations of Stephen Siringoringo’s southern California law firm. The State Bar of California initially referred the misconduct to the CFPB.”

4) Predatory Mortgage Loan Servicing: The CFPB hasn’t only gone after scam artists- it’s also worked to stop companies who are cutting corners and hurting their customers in the process.  One such company is Ocwen, a mortgage loan servicer.  In 2013, the CFPB announced a $2 billion settlement against Ocwen for “systemic misconduct at every stage of the mortgage servicing process.”  The settlement also covered homeowners with loans from Litton (a servicer formerly owned by Goldman Sachs who had also received low marks for the way it treated its customers) and Homeward Residential Holdings LLC (formerly American Home Mortgage Servicing Inc.).

5) Protecting Mortgage Customers: During the “Wild West” days of mortgage lending leading which later caused the mortgage meltdown, lenders routinely rewarded their staff members for putting customers into more expensive mortgages.  Surprisingly, this practice was allegedly still in place at RPM Mortgage, according to a 2015, $19 million settlement with the CFPB.

If you’d like to learn more about the CFPB, check out these resources:

Consumers Count: Five years standing up for you

Bill Creating Foreclosure Protections for Widows and Heirs Explained in New Video

pic 2 SB 1150

“Red tape foreclosures” are a problem that are continuing to plague surviving homeowners throughout California, according to housing counselors and attorneys.

New legislation introduced by Senator Leno and Senator Galgiani, The Homeowner Survivor Bill of Rights, Senate Bill 1150, would address this problem.

SB 1150 clarifies the responsibilities of a mortgage lender when a borrower dies and passes the home along to a survivor who wishes to assume the home loan. The legislation ensures that heirs receive accurate information about loan assumption and foreclosure prevention programs. It also gives survivors a single point of contact with the lender and the ability to simultaneously apply for loan assumption and modification. SB 1150 is sponsored by the California Alliance for Retired Americans, Housing and Economic Rights Advocates and California Reinvestment Coalition.

A new interview with Kevin Stein, associate director of the California Reinvestment Coalition, explains the problems surviving homeowners are facing and how SB 1150 would address it.

If you would like to learn more after watching the video, visit: www.survivorbillofrights.org

Supporters of SB 1150 include

  • California Association of Retired Americans (co-sponsor)
  • Housing and Economic Rights Advocates (co-sponsor)
  • California Reinvestment Coalition (co-sponsor)
  • Attorney General Kamala Harris
  • AARP California
  • AIDS Legal Referral Panel
  • Bay Area Legal Aid
  • California District Attorneys Association
  • California Nurses Association
  • California Professional Firefighters
  • California Rural Legal Assistance, Inc.
  • California Rural Legal Assistance Foundation
  • CALPIRG
  • Capital Impact Partners
  • Community Housing Developers, Inc
  • Community Legal Services of East Palo Alto
  • Consumer Federation of California
  • Courage Campaign
  • Fair Housing of Marin
  • Family Caregiver Alliance
  • Institute on Aging
  • Justice in Aging
  • Legal Services of Northern California
  • Los Angeles County Democractic Party
  • National Center for Lesbian Rights
  • National Housing Law Project
  • Nehemiah Corporation of America
  • Neighborhood Housing Services of LA County
  • Project Sentinel
  • Public Counsel
  • Public Law Center
  • Renaissance Entrepreneurship Center
  • Rural Community Assistance Corporation
  • SEIU California
  • The ARC and United Cerebral Palsy California Collaboration
  • United Domestic Workers of America, AFSCME Local 3930, AFL-CIO
  • Unite Here
  • Western Center on Law and Poverty

California Reinvestment Coalition comments on CITNA Bank Community Reinvestment

Editor’s note: Earlier this month, CRC submitted the following letter as part of CITNA Bank’s Community Reinvestment Act exam.  For more information on CRC’s concerns with OneWest’s and CIT Bank’s reinvestment histories, visit www.badbankmerger.com.

November 16, 2015

Assistant Deputy Comptroller Robert Phelps
Office of the Comptroller of the Currency
Chicago Midsize Office
1 South Wacker Drive Suite 2000
Chicago, IL 60606

Cindy Tran
CRA Officer
CITBNA, N.A.
888 East Walnut Street
Pasadena, CA 91101

Re:       CRC comments regarding CITBNA CRA and Fair Lending Examination

Dear Mr. Phelps and Ms. Tran,

The California Reinvestment Coalition submits these comments on CIT Bank’s (CITBNA) CRA performance in California. We request that these comments be considered as part of the OCC’s current CRA and fair lending examination of CITBNA. We further request that these comments be placed in CITBNA’s Public CRA File.

The California Reinvestment Coalition (CRC), based in San Francisco, is a nonprofit membership organization of nonprofit organizations and public agencies across the state of California. We work with community-based organizations to promote the economic revitalization of California’s low-income communities and communities of color through access to financial institutions. CRC promotes increased access to credit for affordable housing and economic development for these communities.

On the heels of a contentious bank merger process that revealed multiple CRA and fair lending concerns raised by a large number of organizations and individuals, we urge the OCC to:

Consider the Extensive Record from the Merger Process

We opposed the Bank’s recent merger in what was one of the most protested bank mergers in recent history. Over 21,000 individuals and over 100 organizations registered concerns. The OCC and the Federal Reserve held a rare public hearing at which a large number of organizations and consumers testified to certain CRA weaknesses and consumer protection failures of the Bank, while also raising a number of fair housing and fair lending concerns.

There were a number of compelling stories of abuse recounted by OneWest and Financial Freedom customers and their families, and a number of compelling stories offered by community development practitioners in the Bank’s assessment area, documenting and lamenting the Bank’s poor CRA performance. We understand that all of relevant information, testimony, comment letters and other evidence presented during the merger process will be considered as part of this exam.

CRC hereby resubmits our eighth comment letter on the merger, attached, which calls for a fair lending investigation into evidence of disparities in the Bank’s foreclosure, lending, branch, REO property maintenance, and reverse mortgage servicing practices. Prior letters raised numerous concerns about the Bank’s poor reinvestment record, its weak reinvestment commitments, and its problematic compliance with consumer protection laws and regulations. We appreciate that the OCC will consider all of these comments, and those of all commenters, during this examination process.

In fact, the OCC conditional approval order suggested that a number of issues raised during the merger were better addressed during the CRA and fair lending examinations of the Bank. In discussing concerns about OneWest Bank’s foreclosure and REO property maintenance practices, the OCC notes it will “continue to assess potential discrimination as part of its supervisory process.”[1] Pursuant to 12 CFR 25.28(c), the results of the OCC’s evaluation of a bank’s CRA performance may be adversely affected by evidence of discriminatory or other illegal credit practices. In that regard, we note the most recently published CRA Evaluation of Bank of America which resulted in a lower CRA Rating for Bank of America in light of fair lending and credit practices concerns and settlements.[2]

Scrutinize and Investigate Questionable Letters of “Support”

While we certainly agree that the OCC should consider all public comments submitted during the merger process, including those of bank supporters and positive comments about the Bank’s performance, we urge the OCC to scrutinize those emails resulting from the Bank’s solicitation of support letters for the merger via its website, which resulted in several form letters being submitted. The OCC on the 2nd page of its merger approval order notes, “Approximately 1,700 of the letters resulted from an email campaign initiated by CITG and OWB seeking support for the merger.”[3]

Yet, as CRC has noted previously, we have come to understand that a number of these alleged “supporters” may not have supported the merger at all, and we are very much concerned about the prospect that the public comment process was manipulated and that certain “letters of support” were fraudulent.

Early on, CRC did notice certain irregularities in the email addresses expressing support for the Bank. Then CRC received a disturbing email on September 21, 2015. An individual, apparently under the misunderstanding that CRC supported this merger, expressed dismay that a letter of support for the OneWest CIT Bank merger was sent to the regulators in his name. He decried the “bogus email” support letter, and noted it “is not mine and I did not authorize or send this email, and I did not authorize for you to use my name and address to be used for any support of One West and CIT Merger, I have no affiliation or whatsoever to this companies and would like you to stop using my name, address or email address…”

Most troubling, the individual indicates that somebody created a yahoo email address using his full name, without his knowledge. It appears that this same email was also sent to the OCC and the Federal Reserve Board. It is unclear what steps if any the OCC and the Federal Reserve plan to take in response to this email.

This email is shocking and suggests that one or more people may have manipulated the public comment process and committed a fraud on the federal regulatory agencies which rely on public input to inform their deliberations.  In follow up “spot checks” of about 150 email addresses attributed to the petition organized by OneWest’s CEO, at least 25 of the email addresses appear to be non-existent.

In an attachment of 593 petitions in support of OneWest’s call to not hold a public hearing, posted on the Federal Reserve’s website, 100% of the petition signers had Yahoo email accounts- an oddity that adds to our concerns (Yahoo has, approximately, a 3% market share for email accounts).  We further understand that when an email was sent to these individual email addresses, 30%, or 180 of the 593 emails, bounced back, and for the handful of people who replied to the email, some may have indicated that they actually had not supported the merger as their “petitions” purportedly suggested.

Moreover, if the “time stamps” on the emails are accurate, there was an extremely large number of people who cared enough about this merger to sign onto their computers in the middle of the night- with a large number of emails being sent to the Federal Reserve and OCC around 2am on the night of February 13, 2015.

It occurs to us that it is only happenstance that the individual noted above discovered that his name was used improperly and fraudulently, and that it is not to be expected that this information would have ever found its way to us or to the regulators. In other words, if other people had their names used without their authorization, and if unauthorized Yahoo email accounts were created on their behalf, this fraud may have gone undetected. There is no reasonable explanation for all of these oddities occurring relating to “support” letters sent via the Bank’s website.

We accuse no specific person or organization of wrongdoing. But at the same time we are greatly disturbed at the possibility that the OCC and the Federal Reserve community input process may have been compromised. The CRA is a law that allows for and encourages community participation and in so doing, allows for a community perspective to be considered by regulators as they determine how best to supervise, regulate and oversee financial institutions.

We urge the OCC and the Federal Reserve to investigate this matter further, and we would hope that CITBNA would likewise be interested in helping regulators get to the bottom of this. How many letters of support were submitted to the regulators without the knowledge of the purported author? Who is responsible? And what are the regulators going to do about it in order to send the message that manipulating a public process is a serious offense, and to ensure this does not happen again?

Do the Federal Reserve and OCC public comment email systems (and OWB website) have safeguards to “catch” such oddities?  A similar issue occurred in the recent “net neutrality” debate, and the system used to process Congress’ email was able to catch fraudulent emails.

Consider New CRA Performance Data for CITBNA Which Shows Continuing Problems

New data made public and analyzed after the conditional merger approval order further demonstrate that CITBNA (CIT and OWB) has not been meeting community credit needs.

Philanthropy. As one example, according to the OCC’s conditional approval order, the level of OWB CRA qualifying contributions in its assessment areas since its last Performance Evaluation appears to have gone done for each of the last 4 years:

  • $1,675,500 in 2012;
  • $1,127,900 in 2013;
  • $1,054,000 in 2014; and
  • $302,000 as of May 2015.[4]

CITBNA apparently commits to increase the size of annual contributions to $5 million per year, which is positive. Yet, given the Bank’s presence and size in California and data received from 17 California banks, we estimate that 12 or 13 other banks devote a higher percentage of their deposits for CRA purposes than will CITBNA under its new CRA commitment. Again, CITBNA lags its peers.

CRC urges all banks to devote at least .025% of California deposits towards philanthropy in California, and that 50% of all contributions should support critical housing and economic development activities. OWB’s past performance and CITBNA’s most recent commitments do not suggest it will meet these benchmarks.

Affordable Housing. CITBNA has identified affordable housing as a priority need in its assessment area. Yet the Bank notes that “mortgage lending will not be the primary focus of CITBNA,” that Low Income Housing Tax Credits “will not be appropriate investments for CITBNA,” and that “multifamily lending historically has not been a key part of its loan origination strategy.”[5] Which leads one to wonder how CITBNA plans to address the critical community need it has identified. The Bank noted that it originated $89 million in CRA-qualifying multifamily loans in LMI census tracts since its inception, but it does not specify whether these loans would qualify as Community Development loans for CRA purposes, and whether these loans financed the development or preservation of deed restricted affordable housing (see below for a further illustration of how multifamily lending does not allows help, and can actually harm, low income communities).[6] We trust this information will be forthcoming in the bank’s CRA exam results.

Community Development. We urge the OCC to continue to scrutinize activities for which the Bank seeks community development credit. We note again that one of the Bank’s Responses to an Additional Information Request during the merger process revealed that OneWest overstated its community development loan activity by a whopping $75 million in an October 30, 2014 letter and had to revise and reduce its projections based on feedback from its regulator. The record should be clear as to what kinds of lending OneWest improperly sought to classify as community development lending, and more information should be provided on what kinds of loans OneWest still counts as “community development lending.”

Relatedly, CRC recently became aware that certain other banks (not necessarily OWB or CITBNA) were seeking CRA community development credit for loans made to investors to purchase small, Rent Controlled buildings in LMI tracts, without the regulator (or perhaps the lenders) knowing that the investor purchasers plans were to evict all of the tenants (mostly seniors, low income, long term, and often, of color) and to convert the low cost rental housing into expensive homeownership Tenancies in Common. Regulators must scrutinize purported community development lending and investments to ensure that these activities actually benefit communities.

Additionally, the Bank in its Draft CIT Bank, NA Community Benefits Plan sets an investment goal that is opaque, in that it targets investments to 8% of Tier 1 Deployed Capital. CRC urges all institutions to devote at least .25% of California deposits for community development investments each year. Additionally, CITBNA should not rely on Mortgage Backed Securities to meet its community development investment targets, as MBS are generally not impactful or value added for community development activities.

Home Lending. In 2014, OneWest appears to have originated only 102 first lien, home purchase or refinance loans in California. Of these 102 loans:

  • Only 1 was originated to an African American borrower
  • Only 6 were originated to Asian borrowers
  • Only 7 were originated to Latino borrowers
  • Only 14 loans were originated to LMI borrowers, compared to 77 to upper income borrowers
  • Only 38 loans were originated in neighborhoods of color, which is not impressive for a bank with an assessment area focused around Los Angeles
  • Only 6 loans were originated in LMI neighborhoods.

These home lending numbers are very low in terms of overall home lending originated to California homeowners and homebuyers, and also well below the proportional lending by the industry as a whole in California. For all HMDA reporters in 2014 in California, lending to:

  • African American borrowers comprised 2.8% of all loans, compared to 1% for OWB
  • Asian borrowers comprised 13.5%, compared to 6% for OWB
  • Latino borrowers comprised 16.8%, compared to 7% for OWB
  • Neighborhoods of color comprised 47%, compared to 38% for OWB
  • LMI neighborhoods comprised 16%, compared to 6% for OWB.

The Bank only approximated the industry benchmark for lending to LMI borrowers, at 14% of all loans. Yet the industry as a whole doubled CITBNA’s proportional lending to African American, Asian American, and Latino borrowers, as well as to Low and Moderate Income neighborhoods, raising both fair lending and CRA concerns.

Small Business Lending. For small business lending, OneWest appears to have originated only 70 CRA reportable loans in 2014 in California, down from 88 loans in 2013:

  • Only 1 of these loans was in an amount less than $100,000
  • Only 10 of these loans were in amounts of $100,000 to $250,000
  • Fully 59 of these loans were in amounts over $250,000
  • Only 26 loans, or 37% of “small business” loans, were made to smaller businesses with less than $1 million in revenue.

For CIT small business lending in 2014, the Bank originated 448 small business loans in California, offering loans in lower loan sizes (this is positive), but not to smaller businesses (this is not positive):

  • 291 of these loans were in amounts less than $100,000
  • 126 loans were in amounts between $100,000 and $250,000
  • 31 loans were in amounts over $250,000
  • Yet zero of these “small business” loans were to small businesses with under $1 million in gross revenue.

Of 518 CRA reportable small business loans in 2014 from OWB and CIT, only 26 loans, or a paltry 5%, were to smaller businesses, those with less than $1 million in revenue. CRC urges all institutions to strive for fully 50% of all small business lending to be for businesses with under $1 million in revenue.

Branches and deposits. According to publicly available branch and deposit data analyzed via the CRA Wiz program for 2014:

  • Of 74 CITBNA California branches, only 8, or 10.8% of branches were in LMI neighborhoods. This is even less than the low percentages discussed during the merger. Perhaps this reflects a lag in data reporting, and the actual proportion of branches in LMI neighborhoods is slightly higher. Regardless, the industry in California has roughly twice the proportion of branches in LMI communities than does CITBNA.
  • Of 74 CITBNA California branches, only 31, or 42% of branches are in neighborhoods of color, even though 57% of deposits derive from neighborhoods of color.

Taken together, the data do not reflect the performance of a Bank that is helping to meet community credit needs: almost no home lending to LMI borrowers and neighborhoods, miniscule small business lending to smaller businesses, no multifamily loan products, plans to reduce investments in Low Income Housing Tax Credits which help finance affordable housing development, decreasing philanthropy through May of 2015, low branch presence in LMI communities (even compared to peers), but continuing foreclosures and fair lending concerns.

Consider the Large Number of Consumer Complaints That Have Been Filed Against CITBNA

One important measure of how well a Bank is meeting community credit needs can be found in consumer complaint data. The CFPB Consumer Complaint Database represents a primary, accessible, uniform way in which consumers can express their concerns about bank performance.

A review of the CFPB database reveals that nearly 1,400 complaints have been filed by consumers with the CFPB against CITBNA (CIT and OWB) since December 2011. Most of these complaints (90%, or 1,270 complaints) are related to CITBNA’s “Mortgage” products; of which 209 are related to “reverse mortgages.”  It appears that over 50 reverse mortgage complaints have been filed with the CFPB against OWB and CITBNA in 2015, since the CFPB’s initial data reporting of complaints through 2014.

CRC has filed a lawsuit challenging HUD’s denial of our Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) fee waiver request in which we are seeking additional information about the number of complaints filed with HUD against OneWest relating to its reverse mortgage servicing performance, and we will be happy to share this data if we prevail in obtaining this information.

During the merger process, the FRB, via an Additional Information Request, sought data from the Bank about complaints it had received directly from consumers. The Bank reported receiving directly an astonishing 812 complaints, even though the Bank chose to report on complaints received only AFTER it sold most of its servicing rights. The OCC should determine the number of complaints received directly by the Bank during the time frame covered by this exam, and make that information part of the record and its deliberations as to whether the Bank has been meeting community credit needs.

The large number of complaints filed with the CFPB, as well as the number of complaints filed with the OCC and CITBNA directly, should be reflected in the Bank’s CRA Performance Evaluation. As we have urged with PEs of other banks, the OCC should confirm in CITBNA’s Performance Evaluation the number, nature and disposition of OCC complaints.

Further, the OCC, through this examination process and its other supervisory powers, must ensure that CITBNA and its affiliates are complying with fair housing, fair lending, and consumer protection laws, including the California Homeowner Bill of Rights and HUD HECM regulations such as Mortgagee Letter 2015-15 regarding Non Borrowing Spouses.

Consider the Harm Imposed on Communities by CITBNA

Past foreclosures. During the merger process, CRC and many other commenters pointed to the harm imposed by OWB on California communities as a result of 36,000 foreclosures, including 2,000 on reverse mortgage seniors, widows and their families.

Future foreclosures. And yet we know that CITBNA will be foreclosing on numerous additional families. A Freedom of Information Act request to the FDIC by CRC yielded the astonishing confirmation that the FDIC has paid over $1 billion to OWB under the loss share agreement to reimburse OWB for the costs of foreclosure, consistent with the agreement. But we also learned that the FDIC estimates another $1.4 billion in additional loss share payments will yet be made to CITBNA, presumably to reimburse the Bank for the costs of more than 36,000 additional foreclosures in California and untold numbers nationally.

Failure to repay $2.3 Billion in TARP. Additionally, we note once again the harm caused to U.S. Taxpayers by CIT Group in taking $2.3 billion in TARP funds, before declaring bankruptcy and wiping out its obligation to repay this money.

Reducing federal tax liability. Adding insult to injury, comments by CIT Group executives to investors suggest that the Bank intends to use its Net Operating Losses from the bankruptcy to offset expected profits from the recent merger in order to significantly reduce its federal tax obligations in ensuing years.

Reverse mortgage concerns and Non Borrowing Spouses. And of course, we reiterate concerns about potential servicing violations suffered by reverse mortgage borrowers, Non Borrowing Spouses (widows and widowers), and their families, as testified to and commented on as part of the merger process. We urge the OCC (and HUD) to closely monitor the Bank’s implementation of, and compliance with, HUD Mortgagee Letter 2015-15.

Evading HBOR accountability. We again call on the OCC to clarify that CITBNA should not invoke preemption as a way to evade accountability for alleged violations of California’s Homeowner Bill of Rights which is meant to protect residents of the Bank’s CRA assessment area from unlawful and unnecessary foreclosures. Avoiding responsibility and accountability in this way harms LMI communities and borrowers and leads to lost assets.

Confirm That the Bank Needs to Develop a Stronger CRA Plan

The Bank submitted a DRAFT CRA Plan in advance of the February 26 merger hearing. Indications from the Bank’s Community Needs Survey and the Community Day event held on October 6, 2015, suggest the Bank is NOT increasing its overall commitment of $5 billion in CRA activity over 4 years.

Under the conditional approval order, the Bank was supposed to have submitted its revised CRA Plan to the OCC on October 19, 2015. This plan has not been made public, though at the Community Day event the Bank indicated it would share with the public the revised CRA Plan, as well as that day’s power point presentation, if advised to do so by its newly formed Community Advisory Board. Presumably, either the Bank did not seek input from the CAB, the Bank did not heed the counsel of the CAB, or the CAB did not urge the Bank to be transparent with its CRA Plan.

If it is true that the Bank’s revised Plan is substantially the same as its draft Plan in terms of overall commitment, the Bank’s CRA Plan will be roughly ¼ the size of the CRA commitment of a much smaller (and younger) Banc of California, and roughly ½ the size of the CRA commitment of CITBNA’s peer, City National Bank, which despite having fewer deposits in California, committed to $11 billion in CRA activity over 5 years.

In any event, CITBNA’s performance in 2014 and going forward would leave it amongst the worst performing CRA banks in California, based on data received and analyzed by CRC. CRC and its members utilize a set of benchmarks to determine how well a bank is meeting community credit needs. Banks can demonstrate their performance in two ways: by 1) entering into a Community Benefits and Reinvestment Plan that specifies in a clear and transparent manner the bank’s CRA goals over a multi-year period; and 2) providing clear data on the bank’s CRA performance.

Of seventeen (17) California banks which 2014 data, information and reinvestment commitments we reviewed and analyzed, CITBNA would rank BELOW 12 of these institutions in terms of annual percentage of deposits committed to CRA purposes, using estimates from CITBNA’s draft CRA commitment. Of the 5 banks which currently appear to devote less of their proportional deposits for community reinvestment on an annual basis, 3 have not yet provided all of their data and could very well leapfrog CITBNA, moving CITBNA further down the list of reinvestment banks in California.

And this analysis considers 2014 actual performance by the other banks compared to future commitments by CITBNA. So, the few banks who did less in 2014 than CITBNA proposes to do in 2016, may yet exceed CITBNA’s actual CRA performance in 2016 and beyond. CITBNA did not provide data to CRC this year (for 2014 performance) or last year (for 2013 performance).

Conclusion

CITBNA’s overall performance in California Needs to Improve, and that is the CRA rating the Bank deserves. Given the size and reach of CITBNA, and the harm it has caused to communities via thousands of foreclosures and weak reinvestment, CITBNA has not met community credit needs. CITBNA now has an opportunity to turn the page, enhance its CRA Plan and be a constructive force for positive neighborhood revitalization and wealth accumulation for Southern California’s LMI communities and communities of color. But it should not be rewarded for poorly serving and failing to adequately commit to these communities. The Banks’ CRA Rating should reflect poor CRA performance, as well as any fair lending or fair housing violations established.

Thank you for the opportunity to comment. If you have any questions, you can reach me at (415) 864-3980.

Very Truly Yours,

Kevin Stein

Associate Director

Encl:    CRC’s 8th Comment Letter in Opposition to CIT/OWB merger

Cc:       Thomas J. Curry, Comptroller, OCC

Janet Yellen, Chair, Federal Reserve Board of Governors

Richard Cordray, Director, CFPB

Patrice Ficklin, CFPB

Barry Wides, Deputy Comptroller, OCC

Beth Castro, OCC Community Affairs

[1] Stephen A. Lybarger, OCC Conditional Approval, Letter to Joseph M. Otting Re: Application to Merge CIT Bank, Salt Lake City, UT with and into OneWest Bank, N.A., Pasadena, CA and Request for Waiver of Residency Requirement; OCC Control Numbers: 2014-WE-Combination-139872 and 2015-WE-DirectorWaiver-141909, July 21, 2015, p. 36, footnote 1, p. 37, footnote 73.

[2] Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, PUBLIC DISCLOSURE COMMUNITY REINVESTMENT ACT PERFORMANCE EVALUATION Bank of America, N.A., Charter Number:  13044, 100 North Tryon Street, Charlotte, NC 28202m December 31, 2011, available at: http://www.occ.gov/static/cra/craeval/oct14/13044.pdf (see page 14, Fair Lending or Other Illegal Credit Practices Review).

[3] Stephen A. Lybarger, OCC Conditional Approval, Letter to Joseph M. Otting Re: Application to Merge CIT Bank, Salt Lake City, UT with and into OneWest Bank, N.A., Pasadena, CA and Request for Waiver of Residency Requirement; OCC Control Numbers: 2014-WE-Combination-139872 and 2015-WE-DirectorWaiver-141909, July 21, 2015, p. 2.

[4] Stephen A. Lybarger, OCC Conditional Approval, Letter to Joseph M. Otting Re: Application to Merge CIT Bank, Salt Lake City, UT with and into OneWest Bank, N.A., Pasadena, CA and Request for Waiver of Residency Requirement; OCC Control Numbers: 2014-WE-Combination-139872 and 2015-WE-DirectorWaiver-141909, July 21, 2015, pp. 12, 13.

[5] Stephen A. Lybarger, OCC Conditional Approval, Letter to Joseph M. Otting Re: Application to Merge CIT Bank, Salt Lake City, UT with and into OneWest Bank, N.A., Pasadena, CA and Request for Waiver of Residency Requirement; OCC Control Numbers: 2014-WE-Combination-139872 and 2015-WE-DirectorWaiver-141909, July 21, 2015, pp. 20, 17, 21.

[6] Id. at 22.

How will AB 244 Help Widowed Homeowners in California?

foreclosure-home.gi.topWhy do widowed homeowners need help talking to their mortgage servicers, and how will SB 1150 help?

Explanation: Widows, orphans and other successor homeowners (hereinafter, “widows and orphans”, or, “successors in interest”) who were not listed on the original loan documents are losing their homes unnecessarily upon the death of their spouses and other family members, as servicers fail to work with them or give them a reasonable opportunity to seek a loan modification for which they may qualify.  Some servicers still refuse to talk to these residents.  Other servicers force successors to go through unnecessary and costly procedures, such as probate, which are not needed in every instance.  To see a recent, egregious example, read this Daily Kos post:  Bank of America tries to seize widow’s home while forgetting to mention that her loan was insured

New legislation introduced by Mark Leno and Cathleen Galgiani provides critical protections for widowed spouses and other survivors who assume home ownership responsibilities when the primary mortgage holder passes away. The Homeowner Survivor Bill of Rights, (Senate Bill 1150) closes a loophole in California law that fails to provide surviving spouses and children important protections against foreclosure that are available to other homeowners.  

Visit www.survivorbillofrights.org to learn more about this important new bill.

Need for SB 1150 is seen across the state by housing counselors: In 2013, 80% of California housing counselors responding to a CRC survey indicated that they were seeing widows and orphans clients.  In 2014, 87% of counselors responding to the most recent CRC survey indicated that CFPB rules intended to address the widows and orphans issue failed to fix the problem.  Nonprofit housing counselors and legal service lawyers report continuing problems faced by successors in interest.  As our population ages, we expect to see this problem increase in scope.

Servicers are not complying with existing obligations to better protect widows and orphans.  This proposal is neither entirely new, nor extraordinary.  Servicers are supposed to already have policies in place to prevent these abuses.  Yet the abuses continue.  This bill is needed.

UPDATE: To see how servicers are not complying, see press release from FTC and CFPB this week about a $63 million settlement with Green Tree Servicing.  The FTC and CFPB allege that Green Tree Servicing LLC made illegal and abusive debt collection calls to consumers, misrepresented the amounts people owed, and failed to honor loan modification agreements between consumers and their prior servicers, among other charges.

To see how Green Tree Servicing treated this California widow, read her story: 

“ELK GROVE (CBS13) —The mortgage was in her late husband George’s name. The decorated war veteran died in 2007.  Daughter, April, says she sent Green Tree his death certificate and the grant deed with her mother’s name on it, but says Green Tree will not work with them.”   Call Kurtis Investigates: Surviving Family Members Losing Homes Left By Loved Ones (CBS Sacramento, 11/1/2013)

 

AB244 bill: California legislators want to require mortgage servicers to speak to widowed homeowners but Chamber of Commerce, bank industry oppose

Thanks for the coverage Justice League!

Justice League

Hat tip from CAReinvestCoalition!

As Capital & Mainexplained: “It happens every spring: The start of baseball season and the Chamber of Commerce’s assault on legislation designed to improve the lives of Californians – many of them our most vulnerable residents.”

This time, The California Chamber of Commerce put Assembly Bill 244 on their “Jobs Killer” list. AB 244 is a bill that would help even the playing field for grieving spouses who are trying to speak to their mortgage servicer about keeping their family home.

If a spouse, partner, or parent, passes away and they were the only person listed on the mortgage, then it can create huge headaches for the surviving family member, in what has been called the “widows and orphan problem.” Despite having a legal interest in the home (many are on the title to the home), they are hitting a brick wall when they…

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OneWest Bank Foreclosure Tracker: How Many Families Are Losing Their Homes?

Editor’s note: We have compiled much of the information below (and a whole lot more!) on our website: www.badbankmerger.com.  Take a look and let us know what you think!

As we reported earlier, OneWest Bank has refused to disclose how many foreclosures it has conducted since purchasing IndyMac Bank in 2009.  Instead, the leadership of the two banks would like to continue processing foreclosures on US families, be reimbursed from the FDIC for doing so, and hope that nobody questions their foreclosure track record as they attempt to merge with CIT Group.

CRC and our members and allies remain hopeful the Federal Reserve and the OCC will require OneWest Bank to disclose this information to the public.

But, in the mean time, we are going to start posting OneWest foreclosure notices every day on our new OneWest Foreclosure Tracker. The bank has already foreclosed on tens of thousands of homeowners, but this tracker is starting from March 2015.

If you have a foreclosure notice with OneWest you’d like us to include, please email it to scoffey@calreinvest.org.  We can also post pictures of a foreclosure notice in your local paper.  If it is a Financial Freedom (subsidiary of OneWest Bank) foreclosure, we will indicate that with red ink.  Homeowners, attorneys, and surviving spouses all testified about their nightmare experiences interacting with Financial Freedom at at Federal Reserve hearing that you can read about here: SURVIVING HEIRS TESTIFY ABOUT THEIR EXPERIENCES WITH FINANCIAL FREEDOM AND ONEWEST BANK FORECLOSURES

OneWest Bank: Foreclosing on Families Across the United States

66. IN THE CIRCUIT COURT OF THE EIGHTEENTH JUDICIAL CIRCUIT IN AND FOR BREVARD COUNTY, FLORIDA CIVIL ACTION CASE NO.: 05-2014-CA-030380 DIVISION: ONEWEST BANK N.A., Plaintiff, vs. HIGHT, JOHN R et al, Defendant(s). NOTICE OF SALE PURSUANT TO CHAPTER 45 NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN Pursuant to a Final Judgment of Foreclosure dated 7 April, 2015, and entered in Case No. 05-2014-CA-030380 of the Circuit Court of the Eighteenth Judicial Circuit in and for Brevard County, Florida in which OneWest Bank N.A., is the Plaintiff and Courtney Page Hight, an incapacitated person, by and through, Pennie Page also known as Pennie Ann Hight, as Guardian, as an Heir of the Estate of John R. Hight also known as Johnny R.Hight, deceased, Tenant # 1 n/k/a Dorothy Wilkinson, Tenant # 2 n/k/a Paul Robinson, Tenant #3 n/k/a Julius Talpas, The Unknown Heirs, Devisees, Grantees, Assignees, Lienors, Creditors, Trustees, or other Claimants claiming by, through, under, or against, John R. Hight also known as Johnny R. Hight also known as John Robert Hight, deceased, United States of America, Secretary of Housing and Urban Development, are defendants,

65. IN THE CIRCUIT COURT OF THE EIGHTEENTH JUDICIAL CIRCUIT IN AND FOR BREVARD COUNTY, FLORIDA CIVIL ACTION CASE NO.: 05-2013-CA-037292 DIVISION: ONEWEST BANK, FSB, Plaintiff, vs. FOWLER, CHARLES A et al, Defendant(s). NOTICE OF SALE PURSUANT TO CHAPTER 45 NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN Pursuant to a Final Judgment of Foreclosure dated 8 April, 2015, and entered in Case No. 05-2013-CA-037292 of the Circuit Court of the Eighteenth Judicial Circuit in and for Brevard County, Florida in which Onewest Bank, Fsb, is the Plaintiff and Barefoot Bay Homeowners Association Inc, Mark Charles Fowler, Pamela Spuller, The Unknown Beneficiaries Of The Fowler Revocable Living Trust dated Novemebr 29, 1995, The Unknown Successor(s) Trustee(s) Of The Fowler Revocable Living Trust Dated November 29, 1995, are defendants…

64.  IN THE CIRCUIT COURT OF THE EIGHTEENTH JUDICIAL CIRCUIT IN AND FOR BREVARD COUNTY, FLORIDA CIVIL ACTION CASE NO.: 05-2013-CA-036826-XXXX-XX DIVISION: ONEWEST BANK, FSB, Plaintiff, vs. RICHARD F BELL, et al, Defendant(s). NOTICE OF ACTION To: THE UNKNOWN SPOUSE, HEIRS, BENEFICIARIES, DEVISEES, GRANTEES, ASSIGNEES, LIENORS, CREDITORS, TRUSTEES, AND ALL OTHER PARTIES CLAIMING AN INTEREST BY, THROUGH, UNDER OR AGAINST THE ESTATE OF RICHARD F. BELL, DECEASED Last Known Address: Unknown Current Address: Unknown ANY AND ALL UNKNOWN PARTIES CLAIMING BY, THROUGH, UNDER, AND AGAINST THE HEREIN NAMED INDIVIDUAL DEFENDANT(S) WHO ARE NOT KNOWN TO BE DEAD OR ALIVE, WHETHER SAID UNKNOWN PARTIES MAY CLAIM AN INTEREST AS SPOUSES, HEIRS, DEVISEES, GRANTEES, OR OTHER CLAIMANTS Last Known Address: Unknown Current Address: Unknown YOU ARE NOTIFIED that an action to foreclose a mortgage on the following property in Brevard County, Florida: LOT 12, BLOCK 338, PORT MALABAR UNIT NINE, ACCORDING TO THE PLAT THEREOF, AS RECORDED IN PLAT BOOK 15 PAGES 1 THROUGH 9, PUBLIC RECORDS OF BREVARD COUNTY,

63. The Property is subject to that certain Deed of Trust dated 3/23/2006, recorded 3/27/2006, under Auditors/Recorder’s No. 4143966, records of CLARK County, Washington, and an agreement to modify the terms and provisions of the said Deed of Trust, dated 12112/2007 from LEONID KUCHEROV A MARRIED MAN, as Grantor, to FIDELITY NATIONAL TITLE, as Trustee, in favor of INDYMAC BANK, F.S.B., as Beneficiary, the beneficial interest in which is presently held by OneWest Bank, FSB. 1/ No action commenced by the Beneficiary of the Deed of Trust is now pending to seek satisfaction of the obligation in any court by reason of the Borrower’s or Grantor’s default on the obligation secured by the Deed of Trust.

62. STATE OF NEW MEXICO COUNTY OF BERNALILLO SECOND JUDICIAL DISTRICT COURT No. D-202-CV-2013-06333 ONEWEST BANK, FSB, Plaintiff, vs. ADORACION ABRAMS, IF LIVING, IF DECEASED, THE UNKNOWN HEIRS, DEVISEES OR LEGATEES OF ADORACION ABRAMS, DECEASED, TYNA ABRAMS, UNITED STATES OF AMERICA BY AND THROUGH THE SECRETARY OF HOUSING AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT, GE MONEY BANK, THE UNKNOWN SPOUSE OF ADORACION ABRAMS, IF ANY AND THE UNKNOWN SPOUSE OF TYNA ABRAMS, IF ANY, Defendants. NOTICE OF SALE Notice is hereby given that on June 11, 2015, at the hour of 10:00 AM, the undersigned Special Master, will, at the front entrance of the Bernalillo County Courthouse, at 400 Lomas Blvd. NW, Albuquerque, NM 87102, sell all of the rights, title and interest of the above-named Defendants, in and to the hereinafter described real estate to the highest bidder for cash.

61. IN THE CIRCUIT COURT OF COOK COUNTY, ILLINOIS COUNTY DEPARTMENT – CHANCERY DIVISION ONEWEST BANK N.A. Plaintiff, -v.- JENNIFER MIMMS GOOCH, UNITED STATES OF AMERICA – DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT, CITY OF CHICAGO, SOUTH SUBURBAN REHABILITATION CENTER, LLC, UNKNOWN HEIRS AND LEGATEES OF KATE MIMMS, UNKNOWN OWNERS AND NONRECORD CLAIMANTS, WILLIAM P. BUTCHER, AS SPECIAL REPRESENTATIVE FOR KATE MIMMS (DECEASED) Defendants 14 CH 016044 2122 170TH STREET HAZEL CREST, IL 60429 NOTICE OF SALE PUBLIC NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that pursuant to a Judgment of Foreclosure and Sale entered in the above cause on April 6, 2015, an agent for The Judicial Sales Corporation, will at 10:30 AM on July 8, 2015, at The Judicial Sales Corporation, One South Wacker Drive – 24th Floor, CHICAGO, IL, 60606,

60. NOTICE OF SALE SUPREME COURT – COUNTY OF SUFFOLK ONEWEST BANK, FSB, Plaintiff -against- GAIL PUSKAS AS EXECUTRIX OF THE ESTATE OF JAMES WALTER UNDERHILL A/K/A JAMES W. UNDERHILL-DECEASED, SECRETARY OF HOUSING AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT, INTERNAL REVENUE SERVICE-UNITED STATES OF AMERICA,

59. OneWest Bank NA v. Rosetta A. Swainstonreal property;

58.  May 29, 2015 IN THE CIRCUITCOURT OF THE EIGHTEENTH JUDICIAL CIRCUIT IN AND FOR BREVARD COUNTY, FLORIDA CIVIL ACTION CASE NO.: 2015-CA-022533 DIVISION: ONEWEST BANK N.A., Plaintiff, vs. ANTHONY BASTONE , et al, Defendant(s)….YOU ARE NOTIFIED that an action to foreclose a mortgage on the following property in Brevard County, Florida

57.  Date Filed May 5, 2015 Case Number845101 Amount$83,481.34 Case Type Foreclosure Judge Judge J. Burnside Onewest Bank, NA 2603 Main St., Ste. 300 Irvine California 92614. Defendant: David Dove, et al. 1613 Plymouth Road Cleveland Ohio 44109

56. COUNTY OF MORRIS SUPERIOR COURT OF NEW JERSEY Morris County Chancery Division SHERIFF’S SALE NO. 15000412 DOCKET NO. F-008435-12 PLAINTIFF OneWest Bank, FSB DEFENDANTS- Sue C. Roberts, her heirs, devisees and personal representatives, and her, their, or any of their successors in right, title, and interest;

55. Onewest Bank, address not shown, vs. Charles Landers, individually and as Trustee of the Landers Family Revocable Living Trust, 958 Hunters Lane, et al., default on note for $190,688.12 plus attorney’s fees, costs, etc.

54. NOTICE OF SALE UNDER POWER STATE OF GEORGIA COUNTY OF RABUN Under and by virtue of the power of sale contained with that certain Security Deed dated August 19, 2009, from Vaughan Watts and Nancy V. Watts to Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems, Inc. as nominee for Financial Freedom Acquisition LLC, A Subsidiary Of OneWest Bank, FSB, recorded on September 2, 2009 in Deed Book J-35 at Page 448, Rabun County, Georgia Records, having been last sold, assigned, transferred and conveyed to OneWest Bank N.A. (formerly known as OneWest Bank, FSB) by Assignment and said Security Deed having been given to secure a note dated August 19, 2009, in the amount of $750,000.00, said note being in default, the undersigned will sell at public outcry during the legal hours of sale before the door of the courthouse of Rabun County, Georgia, on June 2, 2015, the following described real property (hereinafter referred to as the “Property”):

53. 226 Valleyview Drive, Franklin, buyer: Onewest Bank NA, seller: York Trustee Services LLC, Jan. 15, price: $247,526.

52. PUBLIC AUCTION – FORECLOSURE SALE Docket No.: CV14-6041672S Case Name: Onewest Bank, FSB v. Bernice Sullivan, The Widow, Heirs, and/or Creditors of the Estate, et al Property Address: 410-412 Hollister Avenue, Bridgeport, CT Type: Residential Sale Date: May 9, 2015

51. OneWest Bank NA v. Constance A. Feeney, real property.

50. AustinTown Neighbors: OneWest Bank NA v. Joan L. Armstrong et al, foreclosure.

49. Bradenton Herald: Estate of Glenn P. Lefevre et al, $198,746, Onewest Bank FSB, 2013-CA-000985, online.

48. Bradenton Herald: Woltz Revocable Trust under Trust Agreement et al, $176,107, Onewest Bank NA, 2014-CA-004502, online.

47. Bradenton Herald: Terri Ann Allen et al, $155,887, Onewest Bank NA, 2014-CA-003793, online.

46. Vindy.com: OneWest Bank NA v. Joan L. Armstrong et al, foreclosure.

45. Kaango.com: STATE OF CONNECTICUT RETURN DATE: MAY 12, 2015 :SUPERIOR COURT ONEWEST BANK N.A. :JUDICIAL DISTRICT OF :STAMFORD-NORWALK V. :AT STAMFORD THE WIDOWER, HEIRS AND/OR CREDITORS OF THE ESTATE OF :MARCH 20, 2015 ANTOINETTE D. BALZARINI A/K/A ANTOINETTE DALE BALZARINI, ET AL. NOTICE TO THE WIDOWER, HEIRS, AND/OR CREDITORS OF THE ESTATE OF ANTOINETTE D. BALZARINI A/K/A ANTOINETTE DALE BALZARINI AND ALL UNKNOWN PERSONS, CLAIMING OR WHO MAY CLAIM, ANY RIGHTS, TITLE, INTEREST OR ESTATE IN OR LIEN OR ENCUMBRANCE UPON THE PROPERTY DESCRIBED IN THIS COMPLAINT, ADVERSE TO THE PLAINTIFF, WHETHER SUCH CLAIM OR POSSIBLE CLAIM BE VESTED OR CONTINGENT. The Plaintiff has named as a Defendant, THE WIDOWER, HEIRS AND/OR CREDITORS OF THE ESTATE OF ANTOINETTE BALZARINO A/K/A ANTOINETTE DALE BALZARINI, and all unknown persons, claiming or who may claim, any rights, title, interest or estate in or lien or encumbrance upon the property described in this Complaint, adverse to the Plaintiff, whether such claim or possible claim can be vested or contingent, if not living, as a party defendant(s) in the complaint which it is bringing to the above-named Court seeking a foreclosure of its mortgage upon premises known as 128 CRESTWOOD DRIVE, STAMFORD, CT 06905

44. Houmato Today:  Defendant: Harold Conn Jr; Plaintiff: Onewest Bank; Executory Process; $N/A; Entry#126934 on 3/4/2015.

43. Middletown Press: LEGAL NOTICE FORECLOSURE AUCTION SALE MMX-CV-14-6012706-S Case Name: Onewest Bank N.A. v. Kristen L. Johansen, et al Property Address: 10 Cedar Street Essex, Connecticut Property: Residential Date of Sale: May 9, 2015

42. Farmington Independent: MORTGAGOR(S): Mary A. Hansen, a single person MORTGAGEE: Mountain Pacific Mortgage Company LENDER OR BROKER AND MORTGAGE ORIGINATOR STATED ON THE MORTGAGE: Mountain Pacific Mortgage Company SERVICER: OneWest Bank N.A.

DATE AND PLACE OF FILING: Filed November 27, 2007, Dakota County Recorder, as Document Number 2557780
ASSIGNMENTS OF MORTGAGE: Assigned to: Financial Freedom Senior Funding Corporation, a subsidiary of IndyMac Bank, F.S.B.; thereafter assigned to Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems, Inc. Thereafter assigned to OneWest Bank N.A.

41. Philly.com: CIVIL ACTION LAW  COURT OF COMMON PLEAS  PHILADELPHIA COUNTY  Number 140400230
OneWest Bank, FSB v.  Stephen D. Metas, Known Surviving Heir of Antoinette Metas, Deceased Mortgagor and Real Owner, Theresa Ann Freda, a/k/a Theresa Ann Metas, Known Surviving Heir of Antoinette Metas, Deceased Mortgagor and Real Owner,  Unknown Surviving Heirs of Antoinette Metas, Deceased Mortgagor and Real Owner, Christopher W.S. Metas, Known Surviving Heir of Antoinette Metas, Deceased Mortgagor and Real Owner, and Stephen D. Metas, Known Surviving Heir of Antoinette Metas, Deceased Mortgagor and Real Owner…

40. Amittyville Record: Premises being foreclosed: 150 Scott Avenue Deer Park, NY 11729 ACTION TO FORECLOSE MORTGAGE ON PROPERTY SITUATED IN SUFFOLK COUNTY SUPREME COURT OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK COUNTY OF SUFFOLK …………X OneWest Bank N.A. f/k/a OneWest Bank, FSB, Plaintiff, -against- Anna Lois Jones a/k/a Anna L. Jones and all the heirs at law, next of kin, distributees, devisees, grantees, trustees, lienors, creditors, assignees and successors in interest of any of the aforesaid defendants at law….

39. OneWest Bank NA v. Mary Sefner et al, foreclosure.

38. Onewest Bank v. unkown heirs, Mike T. Chytraus, Steve E. Chytraus, Elizabeth C. Nielson, Sudden Valley Community Association, United State of America, the state of Washington, occupants of the premises, foreclosure.

37. The Morning Journal: SHERIFF’S SALE OF REAL ESTATE Plaintiff: ONEWEST BANK N.A. Vs. Defendant: MICHAEL W. WILLIAMS, ET. AL. Case Number 14CV184651 Court of Common Pleas, Lorain County, Ohio In pursuance of an Order of Sale issued from said Court to me directed in the above entitled action, I will expose to sale, at public auction in the Commissioner’s Public hearing Room on the 4th floor of the Lorain County Administration Building, 226 Middle Ave., Elyria, Ohio on Wednesday, May 13, 2015 at 10:15 am or shortly thereafter the following described real estate

36. Asbury Park Press: Seized as the property of CARL GUNNAR SODERLING, ETC., ET ALS, and taken in execution at the suit of ONEWEST BANK, FSB, to be sold by Michael G. Mastronardy, Sheriff.

35. Daytona Beach News Journal: OneWest Bank NA v. Foye J. Hensarling, real property

34. Amityville Record: Date filed: 2/25/15 SUPPLEMENTAL SUMMONS Premises being foreclosed: 150 Scott Avenue Deer Park, NY 11729 ACTION TO FORECLOSE MORTGAGE ON PROPERTY SITUATED IN SUFFOLK COUNTY SUPREME COURT OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK COUNTY OF SUFFOLK …………X OneWest Bank N.A. f/k/a OneWest Bank, FSB, Plaintiff, -against- Anna Lois Jones a/k/a Anna L. Jones and all the heirs at law, next of kin, distributees, devisees, grantees, trustees, lienors, creditors, assignees and successors in interest…

33. The Vindicator: OneWest Bank NA v. Mary Sefner et al, foreclosure.

32. Alachua County Today: ONEWEST BANK, FSB, Plaintiff, JOHNNY L. WATTS et al,Defendant(s). NOTICE OF SALE PURSUANT TO CHAPTER 45 NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN Pursuant to a Final Judgment of Foreclosure dated 18 February, 2015, and entered in Case No. 01 2014 CA 000967 of the Circuit Court of the Eighth Judicial Circuit in and for Alachua County, Florida in which Onewest Bank, FSB, is the Plaintiff and Johnny L. Watts, Bertha L. Watts, United States of America Acting on Behalf of the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development,, are defendants, the Alachua County Clerk of the Circuit Court will sell to the highest and best bidder for cash in/on the lobby of the Alachua County Family/Civil Justice Center, 201 East University Avenue, Gainesville, FL 32601., Alachua County, Florida at 11:00AM on the 1st of May, 2015, the following described property as set forth in said Final Judgment of Foreclosure:

31. Daytona Beach News-Journal: OneWest Bank NA v. Jose A. Soto Rodriguez, real property

30. Daily Legal News: The Unknown Successor Trustees and/or Beneficiaries of the Kerver Family Revocable Living Trust dated February 22, 2002, whose last known address and present address are unknown, will take notice that on February 16, 2015, the undersigned, OneWest Bank N.A. c/o Financial Freedom, filed its complaint in the Court of Common Pleas, 1200 Ontario Street, Cleveland, Ohio 44113, of Cuyahoga County, Ohio, alleging that there is due the plaintiff the sum of $174,049.63 as of January 21, 2015, on a Home Equity Conversion Note secured by a mortgage deed of even date conveying the following described property to wit:

29. Daily Legal News: OneWest Bank, FSB c/o Financial Freedom, filed its complaint in the Court of Common Pleas, 1200 Ontario Street, Cleveland, Ohio 44113, of Cuyahoga County, Ohio, alleging that there is due the plaintiff the sum of $156,628.12 as of January 30, 2014, on a Home Equity Conversion Note secured by a mortgage deed of even date conveying the following described property to wit….Plaintiff further says that as the result of scrivener’s error and mutual mistake of fact between the parties thereto, the Granting Clause in the Home Equity Conversion Mortgage executed by the primary defendant does not contain the marital status of the mortgagor. Plaintiff is informed and believes that Marian Danzi was in fact unmarried at the time of the execution of the plaintiff’s mortgage. Because this mistake was the result of a scrivener’s error and mutual mistake of fact between the parties to said document, plaintiff is entitled to have the above described mortgage reformed to properly state “Marian Danzi, unmarried” in the Granting Clause of said mortgage. Plaintiff is further entitled to an order of this Court decreeing the property as described in Plaintiff’s mortgage be sold at Sheriff’s Sale.

28. Ashbury Park Press: Seized as the property of LANE A. CURTIS, ET AL, and taken in execution at the suit of ONEWEST BANK, FSB, to be sold by Michael G. Mastronardy, Sheriff.

27. Ashbury Park Press: Seized as the property of OSCAR C. CORLISS, ETC., ET ALS, and taken in execution at the suit of ONEWEST BANK, N.A., to be sold by Michael G. Mastronardy, Sheriff.

26. NewsLeaderOnline: ONEWEST BANK, FSB, Plaintiff, vs. THE UNKNOWN SPOUSE, HEIRS, BENEFICIARIES, DEVISEES, GRANTEES, ASSIGNEES, LIENOR, CREDITORS, TRUSTEES, AND ALL OTHER PARTIES CLAIMING AN INTEREST BY, THROUGH, UNDER OR AGAINST THE ESTATE OF FRANCES W. PACETTI A/K/A FRANCES PACETTI, DECEASED, et al,

25. Ashbury Park Press: OCEAN COUNTY SHERIFF’S SALE By virtue of the above stated writ, to me directed, issued out of the SUPERIOR COURT OF NEW JERSEY, CHANCERY DIVISION Docket No. F02315713 will be exposed to sale at public venue on TUESDAY the 7th DAY OF APRIL, A.D. 2015 between the hours of 12 o’clock and 5 o’clock (at 2 o’clock) Prevailing Time in the afternoon of said day at the Office of the Sheriff, Toms River, Township of Toms River, County of Ocean, New Jersey.Seized as the property of PETER JOHN VAIRO, ETC., ET ALS, and taken in execution at the suit of ONEWEST BANK, FSB, to be sold by Michael G. Mastronardy, Sheriff.

24. InYork: OneWest Bank N.A. v. Aron Richter, Known Surviving Heir of Isabelle R. Hooper, Deceased Mortgagor and Real Owner, Jennifer Richter, Known Surviving Heir of Isabelle R. Hooper, Deceased Mortgagor and Real Owner, John C. Hooper II, Known Surviving Heir of Isabelle R. Hooper, Deceased Mortgagor and Real Owner, Unknown Surviving Heirs of Isabelle R. Hooper, Deceased Mortgagor and Real Owner, and Sheree Hooper, Known Surviving Heir of Isabelle R. Hooper, Deceased Mortgagor and Real Owner NOTICE OF SHERIFF’S SALE OF REAL PROPERTY TO: Jennifer Richter, Known Surviving Heir of Isabelle R. Hooper, Deceased Mortgagor and Real Owner Your house (real estate) at 3009 Faith Lane, Red Lion, Pennsylvania 17356 is scheduled to be sold at Sheriff’s Sale on June 8, 2015 at 2:00 p.m. in the Sheriffs Office,York County Judicial Center, 45 North George Street, York, PA 17401 to enforce the court judgment of $139,995.17 obtained by OneWest Bank N.A. against you.

23. Eugene Weekly: ONEWEST BANK N.A., FKA ONEWEST BANK FSB, its successors in interest and/or assigns, Plaintiff, v. UNKNOWN HEIRS OF DOROTHY L. ROSDAHL; RICK R. ROSDAHL AKA RICK RAY ROSDAHL; DORA L. ROSDAHL;

22. Daily Legal News: 838024—Financial Freedom  OneWest Bank, N.A. vs. Lessie Curry aka Lessie Adams aka Lessie M. Curry, et al.

21. The Daytona Beach News-Journal: OneWest Bank NA v. Caryll A. Dunham, real property

20. Geuga County Maple Leaf: LEGAL NOTICE IN THE COURT OF COMMON PLEAS GEAUGA COUNTY, OHIO 14-F-000733 – OneWest Bank, N.A., Plaintiff vs. Daniel J. Sitkowski, aka Daniel Sitkowski, et al., Defendants

19. Lincoln Journal Star: By virtue of an order of sale issued by the District Court of Lancaster County, Nebraska, and pursuant to a decree of said Court in an action therein indexed at Case No. CI 14-1881, wherein OneWest Bank N.A. f/k/a OneWest Bank, FSB, is the plaintiff, and Charlotte Haas, Personal Representative of the Estate of Merlyn D. Brindley, Deceased, the Estate of Merlyn D. Brindley, the Heirs, Legatees, Devisees, Personal Representatives,

18. Knoxville News Sentinel: Shapiro and Ingle LLP, substitute trustee, to OneWest Bank, on Belt Road, $97,956.

17. Bradenton Herald: Richard Rowe et al, $485,191, Onewest Bank FSB, 2009-CA-007878, online.

16. Bradenton Herald: Rann Family Revocable Living Trust April 24, 1992 et al, $361,574, Onewest Bank FSB, 2013-CA-000692, online.

15. Middletown Press Classifieds: LEGAL NOTICE FORECLOSURE AUCTION SALE Docket No: MMX-CV14-6011234-S Case Name: OneWest Bank, FSB, OneWest Bank National Association vs. The Widower, Heirs and/or Creditors to the Estate of Shirley J. Rasmussen Property Address: 9 Woods Lane Clinton, CT Property Type: Residential Date of Sale: Saturday, April 11, 2015…

14.  Daily Legal News: Financial Freedom: 837783—OneWest Bank N.A. fka OneWest Bank, FSB vs. Jennifer Gayle Arshenovitz aka Jennifer Arshenovitz, et al. The unknown heirs, devisees, legatees, executors, administrators, spouses and assigns and the unknown guardians of minor and/or incompetent heirs of Bernard Arshenovitz, the place of residence of each being unknown, will take notice that on December 22, 2014, the undersigned, OneWest Bank N.A. fka OneWest Bank, FSB c/o Financial Freedom, filed its complaint in the Court of Common Pleas, 1200 Ontario Street, Cleveland, Ohio 44113, of Cuyahoga County, Ohio….

13.  News Leader Online: CASE NO.: 13-CA-000530-AXYX DIVISION: ONEWEST BANK, FSB, Plaintiff, vs. CLEO G COURSON, et al, Defendant(s). NOTICE OF SALE PURSUANT TO CHAPTER 45 NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN Pursuant to a Final Judgment of Foreclosure dated 2-10-15, and entered in Case No. 13-CA-000530-AXYX of the Circuit Court of the Fourth Judicial Circuit in and for Nassau County, Florida in which Onewest Bank, Fsb, is the Plaintiff and Dorothy Courson, Laura Gail Courson A/K/A Laura Gail Claxton, Nadine C. Courson, The Unknown Spouse, Heirs, Beneficiaries, Devisees, Grantees, Assignee, Lienors, Creditors, Trustees, and all other Parties claiming an interest by, through, under or against the Estate of Cleo G. Courson, Deceased….

12. TimesFreePress.com: SUBSTITUTE TRUSTEE’S SALE Sale at public auction will be on April 13, 2015 at 10:00AM local time, at the west door, Hamilton County Courthouse, 615 Walnut Street, Chattanooga, Tennessee, pursuant to Deed of Trust executed by John E. Clark, to Resource Real Estate Services, LLC, Trustee, on February 28, 2007 at Book GI 8266, Page 608; all of record in the Hamilton County Register’s Office. Party entitled to enforce security interest: OneWest Bank N.A, its successors and assigns 

11. Morning Sun Classifieds: FINANCIAL FREEDOM: MORTGAGE SALE – Default has been made in the conditions of a mortgage made by Shirley Henderson, fka Shirley A. Richardson, unmarried, original mortgagor(s), to Financial Freedom Senior Funding Corporation, a subsidiary of Lehman Brothers Bank, FSB, Mortgagee, dated January 31, 2003, and recorded on June 10, 2003 in Liber 1170 on Page 295, and assigned by mesne assignments to OneWest Bank N.A. as assignee as documented by an assignment, in Isabella county records, Michigan, on which mortgage there is claimed to be due at the date hereof the sum of Seventy-Four Thousand Three Hundred Thirty-Six and 60/100 Dollars ($74,336.60). Under the power of sale contained in said mortgage and the statute in such case made and provided, notice is hereby given that said mortgage will be foreclosed by a sale of the mortgaged premises, or some part of them, at public vendue, at the place of holding the circuit court within Isabella County, at 10:00 AM, on April 16, 2015.

10. Orlando Business Journal: ONEWEST BANK N.A., Plaintiff, vs. BONITA B. BEAR AKA BONITA B. BAGGETT, et al, Defendant(s). ________________________/ NOTICE OF SALE PURSUANT TO CHAPTER 45 NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN Pursuant to a Final Judgment of Foreclosure dated March 3, 2015, and entered in Case No. 35-2014-CA-001679 of the Circuit Court of the Fifth Judicial Circuit in and for Lake County, Florida in which OneWest Bank N.A., is the Plaintiff….

9. Daily Freeman Classifieds: SUPREME COURT – COUNTY OF ULSTER ONEWEST BANK, FSB, Plaintiff against CRAIG CRAWFORD, et al, Defendant(s). Pursuant to a Judgment of Foreclosure and Sale entered October 17, 2013.

8. The Times-Picayune: Michelle Drive 38212: Onewest Bank NA to OWB REO LLC, $50,000.

7. The McLeod County Chronicle: FINANCIAL FREEDOM MORTGAGEE: Cornerstone Mortgage Co.
LENDER OR BROKER AND MORTGAGE ORIGINATOR STATED ON THE MORTGAGE: Cornerstone Mortgage Co. SERVICER: OneWest Bank N.A.
DATE AND PLACE OF FILING: Filed April 2, 2009, McLeod County Recorder, as Document Number A-382814
ASSIGNMENTS OF MORTGAGE: Assigned to: Financial Freedom Senior Funding Corporation; Thereafter assigned to Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems, Inc.; thereafter assigned to OneWest Bank, N.A.
– See more at: http://www.glencoenews.com/content/foreclosure-reinert-1#sthash.j0KV10fe.dpuf

6. Daily Legal News: FINANCIAL FREEDOM 833316—OneWest Bank, N.A. vs. Carol McNeil, et al.

The unknown heirs, devisees, legatees, executors, administrators, spouses and assigns and the unknown guardians of minor and/or incompetent heirs of Carol McNeil, the place of residence of each being unknown, will take notice that on January 29, 2015, the undersigned, OneWest Bank, N.A. c/o Financial Freedom, filed its second amended complaint in the Court of Common Pleas, 1200 Ontario Street, Cleveland, Ohio 44113, of Cuyahoga County, Ohio, alleging that there is due the plaintiff the sum of $59,497.28 as of August 13, 2014, on a Home Equity Conversion Note secured by a mortgage deed of even date conveying the following described property to wit:

5. The Daytona Beach News-Journal: OneWest Bank FSB v. Georgette Derienzo, et al, 1150 Bryn Mawr Drive, Daytona Beach, single-family residence.

4. The Daytona Beach News-Journal: OneWest Bank FSB v. Stephen Perechodiuk, et al, 16 Oak Brook Drive, Ormond Beach, single-family residence.

3. MyCentralJersey.com: COUNTY OF MORRIS SUPERIOR COURT OF NEW JERSEY Morris County Chancery Division SHERIFF’S SALE NO. 15000105 DOCKET NO. F-35996-09 PLAINTIFF – ONEWEST BANK, FSB DEFENDANTS- EVA KELEMEN Writ of Execution. By virtue of the above stated Writ of Execution to me directed and delivered I will expose for sale at public vendue on Thursday THE 16th DAY OF April 2015 between the hours of two and five o’clock in the afternoon of said day, that is to say at 2:00 P.M.

2.The Beacon: SUPREME COURT – COUNTY OF SUFFOLK ONEWEST BANK, FSB,
V. CATHY Y. MORRIS, et al.
NOTICE OF SALE
NOTICE IS HEREBY
GIVEN pursuant to a Final Judgment of Foreclosure dated 10/5/10, and
entered in the Office of the
Clerk of the County of SUFFOLK, wherein ONEWEST
BANK, FSB is the Plaintiff
and CATHY Y. MORRIS, ET
AL. are the Defendant(s). I,

1. CASE NO.: 05-2013-CA-031056 DIVISION: ONEWEST BANK, FSB, Plaintiff, vs. THE UNKNOWN SUCCESSOR TRUSTEE(S) OF THE ARLEE L. MILLER REVOCABLE LIVING TRUST, DATED JANUARY 22, 1990 et al,

The OneWest Bank Foreclosure Tracker: Tracking Foreclosures Across the US

As you may know, OneWest Bank is proposing to merge with CIT Group, creating a Systemically Important Financial Institution, more commonly referred to as a Too Big To Fail Bank.

The California Reinvestment Coalition, along with 100 other California and national nonprofit organizations are opposing this merger, citing a lack of public benefit, concerns about both banks’ Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) records and the future CRA plan of the banks if the merger were to be approved by the Federal Reserve and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency.  In addition to the 100 national organizations who serve tens of thousands of clients every year, there are also over 21,000 people who have signed petitions sponsored by the Daily Kos and by National People’s Action against the merger.

Another issue that community leaders, homeowners, widowed/widower homeowners are deeply concerned about is OneWest’s foreclosure record.  OneWest has already received over $1 billion from the FDIC for its costs related to foreclosures, and the FDIC estimates it will pay OneWest (owned by billionaires) another $1.4 billion before 2019.

Since October 2014, CRC and other organizations have asked OneWest Bank to disclose the number of foreclosures it has processed since taking over IndyMac Bank in 2009.  We know from ForeclosureRadar.com data that OneWest Bank and its reverse mortgage servicing subsidiary, Financial Freedom, has conducted over 35,000 foreclosures in California.

But, so far, OneWest Bank has either refused to share additional information about foreclosures with its regulators, the Federal Reserve and the OCC, or the regulators have refused to share that information with the public.

So, starting today, we are launching the “OneWest Bank Foreclosure Tracker

Each day, we will be adding new foreclosure notices to this tracker.  If you have a link of a foreclosure notice you’d like to share, please send it to us.  Or, snap a picture of a notice in your local paper and we’ll upload it to the tracker.