Sources say the bank faced more than 15,000 consumer complaints last year for failing to properly assist homeowners who exercised their legal right to seek a home loan modification under the HAMP program. Some of the bank’s fraudulent activities included:
Stalling tactics. Rather than perform their duty to take HAMP requests seriously, Bank of America and its primary vendor, Urban Lending, reportedly sent consumers frivolous paperwork requests in an effort to delay the HAMP process.
Incorrect income qualifications. In order to qualify for a home loan modification under the government’s unique program, homeowners must show that they have a relatively low income. In several cases, Bank of America intentionally inflated the incomes of consumers in order to avoid having to extend an offer for a home loan modification.
Improper modification denials. In many cases, Bank of America simply denied HAMP applications from homeowners who clearly qualified for the program, without offering an adequate explanation for the decisions, according to investigators.
Since HAMP was the crown jewel of President Obama’s efforts to reduce the rate of home foreclosures, federal regulators are taking these allegations seriously. Under ideal circumstances, the HAMP program allows consumers to make trial payments on a plan that could eventually allow them to lower their burdensome mortgage.
The program was designed to provide aid for at least three million homeowners during its first year, but it fell well short of the target. Initially, this is was interpreted as a failure of the legislation itself, but recent accusations show that financial institutions like Bank of America were also responsible for HAMP’s tepid performance.
Nevertheless, the program remains alive and well, despite efforts by mortgage lenders to cripple it. If you have a home mortgage that is worth more than the actual value of your house, contact an Illinois foreclosure defense attorney today to learn more about your legal options.