U.S. District Court Hands Down Servicer Fee Decision

first_img About Author: Robyn Katz Is Rise in Forbearance Volume Cause for Concern? 2 days ago Governmental Measures Target Expanded Access to Affordable Housing 2 days ago in Featured, News Governmental Measures Target Expanded Access to Affordable Housing 2 days ago About Author: Melody R. Jones Data Provider Black Knight to Acquire Top of Mind 2 days ago Robyn Katz is the Managing Partner of McCalla Raymer LLC’s Florida Foreclosure Group. Katz is an authority on creditors’ rights and foreclosure and eviction law and has been practicing in these areas since 1999. Ms. Katz leads the firm’s Florida foreclosure offices, which are located throughout the state, in Fort. Lauderdale, Orlando, Panama City and Tampa. Tagged with: Attorney’s Fees Loan Servicers Subscribe About Author: Susan Reid Susan Reid joined McCalla Raymer, LLC as General Counsel in 2010. An industry icon, she has over 25 years of experience in commercial and residential real estate and mortgage banking. Immediately prior to joining the Firm, she spent 15 years as Associate General Counsel for Fannie Mae.  Print This Post The Week Ahead: Nearing the Forbearance Exit 2 days ago Attorney’s Fees Loan Servicers 2016-01-09 Brian Honea The Best Markets For Residential Property Investors 2 days agocenter_img U.S. District Court Hands Down Servicer Fee Decision Related Articles Melody Jones specializes in residential real estate; specifically, foreclosure, and title clearance. She currently serves as Managing Partner of McCalla Raymer’s Foreclosure and Title Clearance Groups in the states of Alabama and Georgia. January 9, 2016 4,543 Views Servicers Navigate the Post-Pandemic World 2 days ago Demand Propels Home Prices Upward 2 days ago Servicers Navigate the Post-Pandemic World 2 days ago Demand Propels Home Prices Upward 2 days ago Sign up for DS News Daily Share Save Home / Featured / U.S. District Court Hands Down Servicer Fee Decision The Best Markets For Residential Property Investors 2 days ago By Susan Reid, Robyn Katz, and Melody R. JonesIn Kevin Prescott v. Seterus, Inc., No. 15-10038, 11 Cir.; 2014 US App. LEXIS 20934, the court ruled that the defendant loan servicer, Seterus, violated § § 1692e(2) and 1692f(1) of Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), as well as the FCCPA (Florida Statute 559.55 et seq.) by including estimated attorney’s fees in a reinstatement quote to the borrower, Kevin Prescott. The court found that while the security agreement obligated Prescott to pay for attorney’s fees and other expenses actually incurred by the loan servicer as a result of his default nothing in the security agreement explicitly stated that Prescott must pay estimated fees and costs for future legal services.The question before the court was whether the least sophisticated consumer would have nonetheless understood the security agreement to obligate Prescott to pay such fees; the court held the answer to be no. The court further held the Defendant was not entitled to benefit from a bona fide error defense, as estimated fees/costs were not included as a result of an error.It is important to note that as a result of this decision, as well as two similar opinions in other jurisdictions, James L. Beard v. Ocwen Loan Servicing, LLC, Udren Law Offices, PC, and Cathy Moore, Civil No., (1:14-CV-1162, USDC, M.D.  Pennsylvania) and Dale Kaymark v. Bank of America, N.A. and Udren Law Offices, P.C., (W.D. Pa. No. 2-13-CV-00419), great care should be taken to include only incurred fees and costs in reinstatement or payoff quotes. Any other practice could expose servicers and law firms to liability.COMPLIANCE SUGGESTIONS FOR JUDICIAL STATES Law firms and servicers should be diligent to eliminate forecasted/estimated fees from their reinstatement and payoff quotes. Diligence should be exercised in providing the borrower with the most accurate figures available in a timely manner. Due to the timing of the requests for the reinstatement or payoff quotes versus the timing of the actions taken in the mortgage foreclosure cases, there may be fees or costs incurred during the time period between when the quote is provided and when the funds are due to be tendered (the “good through” date.)  This may result in fees or costs not being included in the amounts tendered by the borrowers.Servicers should consider significantly reducing the length of time payoff and reinstatement quotes are viable (shorten the good through date.) Servicers may want to require borrowers to contact the foreclosure law firm by email or phone at least two business days prior to tender of funds in order to update the quote. This will reduce the likelihood of additional fees and costs being incurred in the interim. In Florida, if there is a foreclosure case filed, the foreclosure firm must take the necessary steps to dismiss the foreclosure action once the loan has been reinstated or paid off. The attorney’s fees to dismiss the case, which may be construed as forecasted prior to the tender of funds, should not be included in reinstatement or payoff quotes. It is the expectation that the fees and costs related to filing the dismissal will be incurred and paid by the servicer.COMPLIANCE SUGGESTIONS FOR NONJUDICIAL STATESAs previously stated, law firms and servicers should be diligent to eliminate forecasted/estimated fees from their reinstatement and payoff quotes. Care should be exercised in providing the borrower with the most accurate figures available in a timely manner. Actions in non-judicial states move much more rapidly than judicial states. As such, fees and costs are usually incurred over short time frames. For example, publication costs are incurred the four weeks leading up to the sale date in some non-judicial states. Each week when a new publication runs, the cost increases.Often figures will be requested with good through dates leading up to just prior to sale or even 30 days or more in the future. It is also notable that the requests often are for “estimated” amounts. Providing estimates of potential future fees/costs is simply no longer advisable in light of Prescott. In order to reduce potential liability, consideration should be given to shortening the time frame of reinstatement and payoff quotes provided to borrowers to seven to 10 days. Further, when the fees and costs are requested in the client systems it is recommended that only incurred fees and costs be requested.  Servicers should strongly shy from providing quotes of long duration and any estimates to borrowers. 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Code will achieve the opposite of its purpose

first_img Comments are closed. Related posts:No related photos. Previous Article Next Article Code will achieve the opposite of its purposeOn 21 May 2002 in Personnel Today In the past, Personnel Today has campaigned for the Government to act toimprove the consultation process for introducing new legislation and thequality of employment regulations. When the Better Regulation Task Force was set up, we, along with manyemployers, hoped that the issue would finally be addressed. Last week, it wasencouraging to see the taskforce complain to the Information Commission aboutits notorious draft code of practice on the Data Protection Act. So far, so good. Unfortunately, the commission has chosen to ignore theletter from the taskforce, together with those from the CIPD and the CBI which promptedthem. It has told Personnel Today there will be no changes to the code (News,page 1). Up until now, the commission might have got away with dismissing employers’concerns with the retort: ‘Well, they would say that, wouldn’t they?’. However,ignoring a letter from the chairman of the Better Regulation Task Forceindicates the commission has become a law unto itself. The commission’s rationale for producing the code is nonsense and a recipefor red tape and confusion. It justifies the length of the code by arguing itis a comprehensive reference document for employers. If this was really its purpose, the commission should have made every effortto make it easy for managers to find specific requirements within the code, andit should have been crystal clear what parts required compliance and what wereincluded as examples of good practice. The purpose of the code is to stop people from breaking data protection lawbut the way it has been written will achieve the opposite – managers will beput off by its length and lack of clarity and will actually be more likely tobreak the law as a result. As it stands, the whole episode has been a waste of time and the real scopeof the legislation will have to be decided in the courts. By Noel O’Reillylast_img read more

BP reportedly looking to sell assets even if crude prices improve

first_img BP headquarters in London. (Credit: WhisperToMe/Wikipedia.org) BP is reportedly looking to divest a bulk of its oil and gas assets even if there is an improvement in crude prices as the company seems more inclined towards increasing its investment in the renewable energy sector.The UK oil and gas major is preparing to offload its stranded assets, reported Reuters citing three sources that are close to the company.The prices of crude oil have been impacted due to the ongoing Covid-19 crisis which has left several players in the oil and gas industry to revisit their budgets for the current year.According to the sources mentioned by the publication, the strategy was discussed during a meeting of the company’s executives meeting held last month. Reuters further reported that $17.5bn worth of assets in BP’s portfolio are no longer viable economically after the company had cut its long-term oil price forecast to $55 a barrel.Even if there is a jump in the crude prices to $65-$70 a barrel, the oil and gas major is not expected to pursue exploration activities at the assets and will rather use the improved market conditions as an opportunity to divest them, said the sources.BP hit by a loss of nearly $17bn in Q2 2020Last week, BP reported a $16.8bn loss for the second quarter of 2020 as the Covid-19 pandemic continued to adversely impact the global energy markets. This was in comparison to a profit of $1.8bn made by the company in the same period of last year.BP chief executive Bernard Looney had termed Q2 2020 to be among the toughest quarters faced by the company in its 110-year history.In February 2020, the company disclosed plans of pursuing a net-zero agenda and its ambition to become an “integrated energy company” in the next three decades.In the next 10 years, BP is targeting an increase by ten folds in its low-carbon investments to $5bn for developing 50GW of renewable energy capacity. At the same time, the company will aim at cutting down its oil and gas production by 40%, which is equivalent to nearly one million barrels of oil equivalent (mboe) per day – to about 1.5 mboe per day. BP is preparing to offload its stranded assets, reported Reuters citing three sources that are close to the companylast_img read more