Maryland Foreclosure Attorney: Ocwen Could Lose License in CA

Reuters international is reporting that OCWEN, the behemoth, mortgage servicing company is facing a potential of a license suspension in CA due to problems with the state regulator.

The Department of Business Oversight  is the state agency that regulates mortgage servicing companies in CA. As part of its oversight,it has requested information from Ocwen and allegedly, Ocwen has been slow to provide that information. The case is still pending and will go before an administrative law judge later this year.

Consumer  Financial Protection Bureau accusations against OCWEN

1. Engaged in illegal foreclosure practices

2. Deceived consumers about foreclosure alternatives and improperly denied loan modifications

3. Took advantage of homeowners with servicing shortcuts and unauthorized fees

The Wall Street Journal has the following great timeline for OCWEN’s dealings with regulators and numerous fines or settlements. The original posting is here.

A timeline of events:

September 2011: New York state’s superintendent of financial services, Benjamin M. Lawsky, reaches a pact with Goldman Sachs Group Inc. approving the sale of its mortgage servicing business to Ocwen Financial Corp., with new standards to prevent foreclosure abuses.

November 2011: Mr. Lawsky approves the sale of Morgan Stanley MS -0.93%’s mortgage servicing business to Ocwen, imposes similar foreclosure abuse conditions.

October 2012: Ocwen agrees to pay $750 million in cash and stock to acquire Homeward Residential Holdings Inc, a lender and servicer.

December 2012: Mr. Lawsky, citing alleged violations of the 2011 agreement, refuses to approve Ocwen’s plans to approve to buy Homeward Residential and the mortgage-servicing unit of Residential Capital LLC, demanding that Ocwen bring on a monitor to oversee the company’s mortgage operations. Mr. Lawsky later approves  to the Homeward and Residential Capital deals after Ocwen agrees to put the monitor in place.

December 2013: Ocwen reaches a $2.1 billion settlement with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and 49 states over alleged homeowner abuses.

February 2014: Mr. Lawsky blocks Ocwen’s plans to buy the rights to collect payments on $39 billion of loans from Wells Fargo WFC -0.38% & Co., citing concerns about the company’s rapid growth. Mr. Lawsky also says he is examining Ocwen’s relationships with affiliated firms, saying he has uncovered potential conflicts of interest.

August 2014: Mr. Lawsky alleges that Ocwen earned as much as $65 million a year from distressed homeowners by routing home insurance fees to affiliated companies; Ocwen says it will restate earnings due to accounting problems and discloses Securities and Exchange Commission investigation of dealings with related companies.

October 2014: Mr. Lawsky says Ocwen backdated thousands of letters to borrowers that prevented them from being able to promptly correct problem loans. Ocwen apologizes. Ocwen sets aside $100 million for New York settlement.

November 2014: Ocwen, Wells Fargo cancel planned sale of mortgage-servicing business.

December 2014: Ocwen criticized by mortgage-settlement watchdog over its compliance with the 2012 mortgage-practices settlement.

December 2014: Ocwen Executive Chairman William Erbey agrees to step down as part of $150 million settlement with Mr. Lawsky.

– Wallstreet Journal