Three of the largest banks in the US are reportedly being sued by the state prosecutor for New York, Eric Schneiderman, over claims that they misused a national private electronic mortgage registry and facilitated the illegal seizure of homes.
Mr Schneiderman is accusing Wells Fargo, Bank of America and JPMorgan Chase of pursuing improper foreclosures on homes by misusing the information in the Mers loan registry owned by Merscorp, which is also named in the lawsuits.
It is alleged that foreclosures on many homes were pursued despite the fact that Merscorp did not possess or own the proper promissory note at the time, and therefore these foreclosures did not have legal standing.
The complaint states that since 2006, JPMorgan filed 85 foreclosures under Mers’ name, whilst BofA filed 95 and Wells Fargo filed 110. It goes on to accuse the banks of covering their tracks by backdating documents.
Wells Fargo, which along with the other banks will have to rely on its professional indemnity insurance if it loses the case, commented on the allegations, saying:
“We refute the attorney-general’s claims and will defend the case vigorously in court.”