Ocwen accused by USA, state agencies of mortgage servicing violations
21 April 2017, 03:18 | Kelvin Horton
Shares of Ocwen Financial (OCN) imploded on Thursday, losing half its volume after USA and state regulators said they had sued the mortgage-servicing giant on the grounds that it illegally foreclosed on borrowers, cut corners and failed to carry out basic duties.
Those are just a few of the violations the CFPB alleged in its 93-page complaint.
In a statement, West Palm Beach, Florida-based Ocwen vowed to defend itself against the CFPB's "unfounded claims", saying it had cooperated fully with the bureau's inquiries and that the regulator was overreaching. As of December 31, Ocwen serviced almost 1.4 million loans with an aggregate unpaid principal balance of $209 billion, the CFPB said.
Mortgage servicing companies are an intermediary between homeowners and the bank that they borrowed the money from.
In its lawsuit, authorities allege that Ocwen failed at even the most basic tasks for a mortgage servicer.
Meanwhile, the federal Consumer Financial Protection Bureau in Washington accused the mortgage-servicing giant of basic errors, such as ignoring customer complaints, sending inaccurate monthly statements and not properly crediting payments.
If you purchased or otherwise acquired Ocwen shares and would like more information regarding the investigation, we encourage you to contact Michael Goldberg or Brian Schall, of Goldberg Law PC, 1999 Avenue of the Stars Suite 1100, Los Angeles, CA 90067, at 800-977-7401, to discuss your rights without cost to you. That order forced William Erbey, then executive chairman, to step down from his roles at Ocwen and related companies.
A department spokeswoman said that Ocwen handles just over 45,000 loans in MI. According to the lawsuit, Ocwen's head of services called the company's technology "an absolute train wreck".
"The consumer bureau has uncovered substantial evidence that Ocwen engaged in unfair and deceptive practices", CFPB Director Richard Cordray said, adding that thousands of customers were harmed.
In a cease-and-desist order, the North Carolina commissioner said that according to a business plan Ocwen submitted to the state regulators, the company might not be able to remain afloat if it fixed all its problems, given the considerable costs to its systems and anticipated regulatory penalties.
Neglected to properly investigate and respond to complaints about errors.
Numerous errors, the CFPB says, came about through Ocwen's flawed proprietary servicing system that the company's servicing head once referred to as a "train wreck".
In February, Ocwen reached a separate agreement with California regulators and agreed to pay more $225 million in refunds and loan forgiveness to Californians settling allegations that sloppy practices led to violations of state and federal mortgage rules over the last several years.
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