Dette er en oppfølger til denne posten, men la meg kjapt oppsummere. I USA pågår nå oppsigelser av boliglån amass. Dette betyr at lånetagere som f.eks ikke kan betale låneavdragene må gjøre opp med banken, eller at banker som har pant i bolig overtar boligen. Problemet er at slik som boliglån ble oppstykket og solgt videre gjør det vanskelig for banker å bevise hvem som faktisk eier lånet som lånetakere betaler på.
I den forrige blogposten om dette henviste jeg til en ’60 Minutes’ reportasje om akkurat dette. Lynn Szymoniak var en av de som akkurat nå krangler med banken sin, Deutsche Bank, om hvem som eier lånet. Det hele startet med at banken ville heve renten på lånet, men i følge låneavtalen kan 1) ikke rentehevingen være større enn en gitt prosent og 2) hevingen må gjøres og kunngjøres innenfor visse datoer i året.
Deutsche Bank bommet på disse tidsfristene, men satte opp renten uansett. Szymoniak påpekte dette og sluttet å betale det hun mente var en altfor høy sum fra en ulovlig renteheving. Banken saksøkte og det var i denne prosessen Szymoniak, som også er en av USAs fremste eksperter på forfalskning, begynte å lure. Etter etterforskning kunne hun bevise at signaturer som skulle bekrefte lånedokumenter var forfalsket.
Så hva gjør Deutsche Bank:
After she’d been sued, Szymoniak said, she began investigating the documentation on Florida foreclosures, uncovering alarming irregularities, including signatures that were apparently forged. If so, those signatures allowed banks to push foreclosures through overly quickly, charge improper fees and assert improperly inflated borrower debts.
Shortly after appearing on «60 Minutes» Szymoniak won a major victory in her own foreclosure case. The court found that Deutsche Bank was unable to demonstrate ownership of her mortgage, which had originally been issued by the defunct subprime mortgage lender Option One, and threw the case out.
Deutsche Bank was permitted to refile their case if they could obtain proper documentation, however. And on Friday, May 6, Szymoniak received a notification from the bank’s lawyers that she was again being sued for foreclosure.
But Deutsche Bank wasn’t just going after her. The bank was also attempting to sue her son, Mark Cullen, who is currently pursuing a graduate degree in poetry at the New School in New York. Cullen hasn’t lived in Szymoniak’s house for seven years and is not a party to any aspect of her mortgage — he has no interest in either the property or the loan, and never has had any such interest, according to Szymoniak.
«It is just absolute harassment,» Szymoniak said. «He doesn’t own anything, for god’s sake! He’s getting a masters in poetry. He not only doesn’t have any money, he’s never going to have any money.»
And other Florida foreclosure experts say it’s difficult to interpret Deutsche Bank’s move as anything other than retaliation for Szymoniak’s media presence. If it is not, in fact, retaliation, they argue, then Deutsche Bank’s lawyers have demonstrated rank incompetence.
«It sounds crazy,» said Margery Golant, a principal with the foreclosure defense law firm of Golant & Golant PA in Florida. «I can think of no legitimate reason, if he doesn’t have some connection to the property or to the mortgage, to include him in an action to foreclosure.»
«It’s an intimidation tool,» said Matt Englett, a partner at the Florida law firm Kaufman Englett Lynd PLLC. «Most people, they get scared and they get nervous and I think that’s the effect that they’re trying to have on him and his mother.»
«If he’s not an owner of the house, it’s pretty clearly just vindictive,» said Joshua Rosner, the managing director of Graham Fisher & Co., a mortgage investment firm. «If they’re doing it intentionally, that’s one hell of a statement. If they’re doing it randomly, that’s still pretty incredible.»
The experts said the lawsuit against Szymoniak’s son could also have negative implications for him beyond the immediate costs of fighting the foreclosure case, even though he has no financial interest in anything related to it.
«He’s going to have a lawsuit out there against him,» Englett said, «so if someone were to do some kind of background check against him, that would come up.»
Og nei, USA har ikke et forbrukerråd som kan forenkle kontrakter, sikre eierskap og notarisering av lånedokumenter. OM det så er boliglån eller kredittkort.