AG columnist, Russell Shaw has remained our most vocal advocate for homeowners and agents having to battle Bank of America. His “Bank of America retard division for short sales ” article that outlines the unfair, irrational and possibly illegal behavior of Bank of America remains one of the most read articles here at AG on most days, almost a year after it was originally published.
In steps the Texans
We’ve awaited the day that someone stood up to the documented abuses in a fashion that would impact Bank of America’s bottom line, and today, a group of homeowners are no longer taking it lying down. In true Texas fashion, a class action complaint was just filed and a jury trial has been demanded. Today,
the Texas Housing Justice League joins the 15 homeowners in the suit against Bank of America and its subsidiary BAC Home Loans Servicing.
Interestingly, the claim is using RESPA (Real Estate Settlement and Procedures Act) as grounds for the complaint. The other eight claims are as listed below:
- Count Two: Breach of Contract – Loan Modification Agreement
- Count Three: Breach of Contract – Forbearance Agreement
- Count Four: Breach of Contract-Promissory Note and Deed of Trust
- Count Five: Violation of the Texas Property Code
- Count Six: Breach of Oral Contract-HAMP Trial Modification
- Count Seven: Unreasonable Collection Efforts
- Count Eight: Intentional Misrepresentation
- Count Nine: Texas Debt Collection Act
About the plaintiffs:
According to the Texas Housing Justice League, “Plaintiffs are and represent people who purchased their first homes between 1994 and 2006, usually with loan assistance from the Federal Housing Administration and the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. Their loans were all serviced by Defendant BAC, which is a wholly owned subsidiary of Defendant Bank of America, N.A.”
They continue, by noting that “The lawsuit complains not of poor customer service by BAC, but
of a systematic home loan servicing scheme that includes hours of telephone runaround, misleading and inconsistent information, lost correspondence, verbal abuse, and extensive delay, all of which have documented costs not only in terms of money, but in health. The facts in this case reveal the harsh reality that underlies the loan servicer’s press statements about loan modifications and forbearance agreements following collapse of the U.S. housing market.”
A suitable summary of the suit:
Denver Realtor, Kristal Kraft says, “In the interest of time, I will now use only the keywords describing the gripes against Bank of America as accused by the Texas Homeowners.
‘Scheme, misleading, inconsistent, lost correspondence, verbal abuse, extensive delay, money, health, harsh, shuffled, no resolution, dysfunctional, barrage of misinformation, misdirection, deliberate inactivity, abuse, harassment, yo-yo. blocked at every turn, labyrinth of transfers, hundreds of hours on the telephone, transferred, never speak to same person again, contradictions, complaints meet with resistance, no supervisors available, unaccountable departments, asked to sign same documents three, four or even five times, negotiators who would not return telephone calls, not isolated incidents, pattern and practice by Bank of America.’ ”
What will happen next?
One of the Plaintiff’s lawyers, Robert Doggett said on ForeclosureBuzz.com, “It would be hard to imagine that Bank of America and BAC will fight the facts of the case; the question will likely be whether they can get away with it. The servicer will likely claim that poor “customer service” is something that must be accepted like a slow waiter or a bad movie. The difference is of course that homeowners are not merely customers that should expect to be mistreated and lied to — homeowners have a contract with the holder of their home loan and these servicers are the agents for the holder — and moreover, servicing a home loan is not in the realm of someone forgetting your fries or being tricked into seeing Gigli.”