For Texas homeowners who are "underwater" in their mortgages or those who were foreclosed upon, there may be help on the way. Ocwen Financial Corp., will pay almost $70 million to Texas homeowners who lost their homes or are considered "underwater." This is to settle claims from state and federal regulators.
Those claims include that Ocwen abused the process used for mortgage servicing. For example, Ocwen is alleged to have charged inappropriate fees to mortgagees, denied homeowners loan modifications and did not list payments made by homeowners on their accounts.
The term "robo-signing" is used to describe a practice of notarizing foreclosure improperly and then filing them with the courts. Ocwen, which has around 750 employees in the northern part of Texas, was also accused of "robo-signing."
A little more than $8 million will be given to 12,074 former homeowners who were foreclosed upon. The remaining $61 million-plus will be used to help "underwater" homeowners. The number in this particular group of homeowners is not yet known. The deal does need the approval of a Washington federal court.
Foreclosures in the Dallas area have fallen in the last year ending in October 2013, with 7,264 homes lost as a result. The fall in mortgage foreclosures has also happened across the nation, but there are many homeowners who are still having difficulties. It's important that homeowners who are due part of the above settlement receive it. Ocwen may contact those homeowners who are due a refund or they may contact the lender directly. The affected foreclosures were done between Jan. 1, 2009, and Dec. 31, 2012, and Ocwen, Litten Loan Servicing and Homeward Residential Holdings were the companies involved.
Foreclosure is not something that anyone wants to experience. An attorney experienced in bankruptcy law can provide information about how a foreclosure may be prevented.
Source: dallasnews.com, "Texas homeowners to receive nearly $70 million in loan reductions or refunds under Ocwen Financial settlement" Hanah Cho, Dec. 20, 2013