Kansas Receives Settlement In Mortgage-Abuse Deal

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

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UPDATE: Thursday, February 9, 2012

Federal officials say the five largest mortgage lenders have reached a $25 billion settlement with 49 states over foreclosure abuses that took place after the housing bubble burst.

More than 4,000 Kansas homeowners who lost homes to foreclosure and others still struggling to keep their homes out of foreclosure may be eligible for relief.

The settlement is expected to bring more than $50 million to Kansas in the form of direct payments. It is one of the largest consumer protection settlements in state history.

Eligible Kansans will be contacted and offered the chance to file a claim. More information is available at the Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Hotline at (800) 432-2310.

The banks will have three years to fulfill the terms of the landmark deal.

The deal also ends a separate investigation into Bank of America and Countrywide for inflating appraisals of loans from 2003 through most of 2009. Bank of America will pay $1 billion to settle that federal probe.

Oklahoma is the lone holdout and will receive no money.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Federal officials say a deal has been reached between states and the nation's biggest mortgage lenders over foreclosure abuses.

The Justice Department says the settlement will be announced at a 10 a.m. EST news conference Thursday.

The nationwide settlement stems from abuses that occurred after the housing bubble burst. Many companies that process foreclosures failed to verify documents. Some employees signed papers they hadn't read or used fake signatures to speed foreclosures — an action known as robo-signing.

The deal would be the biggest involving a single industry since a 1998 multistate tobacco deal. It would force the five largest mortgage lenders to reduce loans for about 1 million households. The reduced loans would benefit homeowners who are behind on their payments and owe more than their homes are worth.

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