Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Another County Takes Shot At Banksters Over Unpaid Fees For Unrecorded Mortgage Assignments; Lawsuit Seeks Class Status For All Pennsylvania Counties

In Washington County, Pennsylvania, the Pittsburgh Tribune Review reports:

  • Pennsylvania's 67 counties may have lost $100 million in fees because of a system that assigns mortgages without recording documents in county courthouses, according to a lawsuit filed by Washington County.

  • The county sued U.S. Bank Corp. of Minneapolis in Washington County Court, claiming the bank failed to pay a $52 recording fee when it acquired residential properties bundled in investment securities and sold them through the Mortgage Electronic Registration System Inc. of Reston, Va., known as MERS.


  • In the lawsuit, Washington County estimated it lost $1.6 million in recording fees over seven years from U.S. Bank's failure to record mortgages it acquired. Based on the estimated losses, about 30,470 mortgages were not recorded in the county.

  • Washington County Recorder of Deeds Deborah Bardella said that estimate may be low because the county does not know how many times the mortgages were assigned to different investors.

  • The lawsuit, filed Sept. 28, not only wants restitution from U.S. Bank but asks the court to require the bank to record prior mortgage assignments on all properties on which it foreclosed. The county also is seeking class-action status that would cover the lost recording fees in the state's 67 counties.

For more, see Counties lose $100 million in fees, suit claims.

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