Monday, November 12, 2012

Wells' Whistleblower Claims Foreclosure Retaliation After Providing Negative Testimony Against Outfit In Suit; Says Feds Used Her Affidavit To Score Big, Then Left Her Out To Dry

In Baltimore, Maryland, Baltimore City Paper reports:

  • A former Wells Fargo loan officer whose affidavit about company practices played a key roll in multiple lawsuits against the bank says her former employer is retaliating by illegally trying to take her Eastern Shore house in foreclosure.

    Elizabeth Jacobson has written to Federal Housing Finance Agency and other regulators, claiming that Wells Fargo, which services the loan on the $529,000 house she bought in 2007, returned all seven of the payments she made under a government-sponsored loan workout. She was scheduled to face a foreclosure hearing on Nov. 5.

    I was denied [a loan modification] five days after the president of Wells Fargo testified before Congress that he had read my affidavit,” Jacobson says. “I contend they singled me out by returning the payments.”
  • Jacobson’s affidavit—made part of Baltimore City’s landmark suit against Wells Fargo—said the company paid her and others bonuses for targeting high-interest loans to African-Americans and Hispanics. Wells Fargo settled the case last summer for an estimated $175 million (“Bank Payback,” Mobtown Beat, July 18). The company admitted no wrongdoing. It has always said that Jacobson’s charges were false.

    When she worked for Wells, Jacobson said she earned six figures routinely, clearing $700,000 in 2004. After she left the company and blew the whistle, her financial status changed. Today she and a partner operate a foreclosure consultancy company from the Eastern Shore.

    We’re admitted as bank foreclosure examiners and loan securitization auditors,” Jacobson says by phone from the passenger seat of her partner’s car. “In six or seven circuit courts in Maryland we’re admitted as experts.”
  • Armed with knowledge of sloppy foreclosure practices, Jacobson says she plans to fight her former employer on every front. “I want the foreclosure to be dismissed, then I want to go after Wells Fargo under the civil rights laws,” she says. “The DOJ [Department of Justice] used my affidavit to settle that big lawsuit . . . [then] they left me out to dry.”
For more, see Whistleblower Blowback (Wells Fargo employee who exposed questionable practices faces foreclosure).

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