Some Minnesota homeowners should get some assistance, under the terms of the foreclosure settlement deal announced last week.
The $25 billion settlement with Minnesota and 48 other states includes cash payments, refinancing and principal reductions for people who had home loans with Bank of America, JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo, Citigroup and Ally Financial. Minnesota’s portion of the bank-funded settlement is up to $280 million…
Swanson said the settlement aims to prevent future foreclosures by putting in place new, strict standards for loan servicers. Applications for loan modifications and short sales must be processed within 30 days. And banks can’t start foreclosure proceedings on a borrower with a pending loan modification…
Minnesota Attorney General Swanson is urging people who think they may be eligible for help from the settlement to contact her office.
Dig, I’ve got more links, information, and remarks, below the fold.
This is called “The Top Twelve Reasons Why You Should Hate the Mortgage Settlement,” and it’s been widely linked in the progressive blogosphere. There’s no way to really quote a representative summary; here’s the conclusion:
As we’ve said before, this settlement is yet another raw demonstration of who wields power in America, and it isn’t you and me. It’s bad enough to see these negotiations come to their predictable, sorry outcome. It adds insult to injury to see some try to depict it as a win for long suffering, still abused homeowners.
A lot of people, including far too many associated with the White House, wanted the lenders/foreclosure machines let off entirely. After all, they claim, rather piteously, the money men were just engaged in the exalted undertaking of “creating shareholder value” via the “magic of the market.”
Hard to believe that anyone still buys that crap, but when you’ve become rich and powerful due to the sick, twisted reality – or are convinced that you’re going to, someday, since Almighty Reagan guaranteed it – well, I suppose that that’s a pretty powerful motivator to buy into any kind of ostensibly likely-sounding bulls**t, as justification. Especially if you’re none too bright to begin with.
This article isn’t positive, either, on the whole, but it worked for me to lift the following from:
The banks are getting off pretty damn easy on the financial side of this. What makes the settlement less of a disaster than what it looked like even a few months ago is that, thanks to the concerted efforts of a handful of attorneys general (Eric Schneiderman of New York, Kamala Harris of California, Catherine Cortez-Masto of Nevada, Beau Biden of Delaware, Martha Coakley of Massachusetts and Lori Swanson of Minnesota) who refused to sign on to an agreement that gave the banks blanket immunity, legal immunity has been limited to banks very narrowly to robo-signing issues, and investigation of the residential mortgage backed securities market can still procede.
The lawsuits brought by Schneiderman in New York, Biden in Delaware and Coakley in Massachusetts will proceed. Additionally, Harris has preserved her right to undertake separate litigation under the California False Claims Act. What’s more, no private rights of action have been waived-individual homeowners can still sue for foreclosure fraud.
The concessions that those hold-out attorneys general were able to wring out the banks were critical for investigations and potential prosecutions in the massive fraud these banks committed. Those investigations, at the state and federal level, if pursued with vigor and a real intention to hold the banks accountable could potentially do what this settlement absolutely won’t: Force the banks to reform.
Overall, I’d call this typical Obama: trying to get the best deal he can, for as many people as he can, out of a degraded, corrupt system. I’d have pushed harder (that $300 billion figure that I’ve seen used, frequently, sounds a lot more like it); it’s easy for me to sit here and type that. I don’t have his job, and I can’t really get my head around the harsh, all-but-insane corner of reality that he wakes up to, every damn day.