Did you receive an Independent Foreclosure Review Settlement Check from RUST? (The Independent Foreclosure Review Administrator)

If so, you may be wondering what the check is for and how it might impact your foreclosure.

Earlier this year thirteen mortgage servicing companies subject to enforcement actions for deficient practices in mortgage loan servicing and foreclosure processing reached an agreement in principle with the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency aka OCC to provide allegedly more than $9.3 billion in cash payments and other assistance to help borrowers. The sum includes $3.6 billion in direct cash payments to eligible borrowers and $5.7 billion in other foreclosure prevention assistance, such as loan modifications and forgiveness of deficiency judgments. The servicers participating in the settlement includes Aurora, Bank of America, Citibank, Goldman Sachs, HSBC, JPMorgan Chase, MetLife Bank, Morgan Stanley, PNC, Sovereign, SunTrust, U.S. Bank, and Wells Fargo.

What Does This Mean for Me?

It means that if your home was foreclosed upon or a foreclosure was initiated between the dates of January 1, 2009 and December 31, 2010 by one of the above servicers, you should expect a cash payment from RUST.

What’s the Catch?

One concern that has been raised is whether you waive your rights to sue your servicer if you cash the check (and it doesn’t bounce)[1].

Both the OCC and Federal Reserve has assured the homeowners receiving these checks that it doesn’t preclude them from filing a lawsuit against the lender/servicer of their loan.  Typically unless there is language on the back of the check or you have signed an agreement agreeing that by accepting and cashing this check you waive all rights against the named servicer.  The checks I have seen do not contain any such language and based upon the representations by the OCC and Federal Reserve you should be safe in cashing the checks.

Am I Eligible?

If you want to verify that your eligible for a cash payment as a result of the Independent Foreclosure Review Settlement you can do so by contacting RUST, the Independent Foreclosure Review Administrator, at 1-888-952-9105, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. – 10 p.m. ET or Saturday, 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. ET.

Unfortunately you cannot appeal the determination of the amount of the Independent Foreclosure Review Settlement Check you receive.  But again this check does not preclude you from taking action against the lender/servicer by either your ongoing lawsuit or by initiating a lawsuit as it relates to an attempted foreclosure or a foreclosure that has been completed.

[1] There were reports last week the first checks were not being honored due to the lack of funds from the account which should be paying said settlements.  We have been advised by the FDIC that those issues have been resolved.

For more information about how we can help you and your foreclosure case, please contact us for a free consultation

For the latest foreclosure information visit Foreclosure News