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Best Practices

 

I will try my best to be as complete as possible with this answer while keeping it simple (not using legal-speak). If you're looking for something in a hurry try hitting Ctrl and F keys and then typing in the term you are specifically looking for. This may NOT be a comprehensive list as it is a work in progress to digest the final order. Please remember that no one assiciated with GetDShirtz is a lawyer, this is a layman's interpretation based upon the original Court document associated with the case it arose from. While in 2007 there was a proposed amendment to the original "best practices agreement", those amendments may not be reflected in this interpretation.

Also, keep in mind, that just because the Court order allows them to perform a certain action, your mortgage contract may not. Always read your mortgage contract to make sure they are not violating the terms.

 

 

If you have additional questions try checking out the FTC?s FAQ

 


Fairbanks/SPS May Not:

  1. Fail to accept as of the date received all amounts paid in connection with a loan against principal & interest due, before crediting taxes, insurance or fees[1] unless the loan has been referred to foreclosure[2]
  2. Fail to accept or credit as of the date received, amounts paid in connection with the loan that are less than the total amount due unless the loan is in foreclosure[3]
  3. Misrepresent expressly or by implication any amount the consumer owes
  4. Misrepresent expressly or by implication that any fee is allowed under the loan instruments, permitted by lay or imposed for services actually rendered
  5. Misrepresent expressly or by implication the amount, nature or terms of any fee or other condition or requirement of the loan
  6. Fail to make disbursements of escrow funds for insurance, taxes & other charges with respect to the property in a timely manner.
  7. Charge for force placed insurance before, at no cost to the consumer, 2 written notices providing clear & conspicuous instruction on how the consumer may demonstrate that he/she already has insurance & providing 30 days from the first notice sent & 20 days from the second notice for the consumer to demonstrate coverage
  8. Fail to accept any reasonable form of communication from a consumer of an existing insurance policy, including verbal confirmation of any existing policy number, insurance company or agent name.
  9. Force placing insurance when they know or fail to take reasonable action to determine whether the consumer already has a policy in place.
  10. Fail to refund all force placed insurance fees within 15 days of confirmation of a consumer?s existing policy.
  11. Place a consumer?s loan in default, assess later fees, or initiate foreclosure proceedings solely due to consumer?s nonpayment of insurance premiums
  12. Assess or collect any fee unless it is for services actually rendered and is:
    1. expressly authorized & clearly disclosed by the loan instrument & not prohibited by law
    2. expressly permitted by law & not prohibited by the loan instruments
    3. a reasonable fee for a specific service requested by a consumer & only after clear & conspicuous disclosure of the fee is provided & explicit consent is obtained from the consumer & such fee is not otherwise prohibited by law or loan instrument
  13. Assess or collect any fees prohibited by FHA statutory, regulatory or written handbook requirement.[4]
  14. Impose any fee or take any other action that is prohibited by any state or federal law or regulation
  15. Impose any fee or take any other action that is prohibited by loan instruments or other contractual agreement with the consumer
  16. Furnish any information to the credit bureaus which they know or consciously avoid knowing is inaccurate
  17. Fail to promptly notify the credit bureaus when they have determined that information previously furnished is not complete or accurate.
  18. Fail to provide the credit bureaus with corrections or other information with respect to a consumers status that is necessary for the bureaus to make any corrections to the consumer?s credit report.
  19. Furnish any incomplete or inaccurate information to the credit bureaus.
  20. Fail to report accounts as disputed to the credit bureaus when a consumer disputes the account.
  21. Fail to comply in any respect to the FCRA as amended or may be amended in the future.
  22. Fail to comply in any regard with RESPA as amended or Regulation X including but not limited to:
    1. failing to respond in a timely manner to a consumer?s qualified written request
    2. fail to notify in a timely manner the consumer in writing of any assignment, sale or transfer of the servicing rights to a consumers loan not less than 15 days prior to the effective date of transfer
    3. fail to notify in a timely manner the consumer in writing of any assignment, sale or transfer of the servicing rights to a consumers loan not less than 15 days after the effective date of transfer
    4. impose a late fee during the 60-day period beginning the effective date of transfer
    5. fail to protect a consumer?s credit rating
    6. fail to make timely escrow payments for insurance, taxes & other charges
    7. fail to provide annual escrow statements that clearly itemize payments for insurance, taxes & other separately identified charges
  23. Fail to maintain & provide adequate staffing of a toll-free phone number & address that are specifically dedicated to handling consumer disputes or questions.
    1. phones must be staffed at a minimum every Monday through Friday between the hours of 7 am to 8 pm EST, national holidays excluded
    2. they must maintain the number for 10 years from the date of the order
  24. Fail to acknowledge in writing any consumer disputes within 20 days after receiving it  and:
    1. Fail to complete an investigation of any consumer dispute within 60 days of receiving it[5]
    2. Fail to advise the consumer promptly & in writing the result of the investigation of the dispute, unless an oral dispute, within 20 days after receiving it
    3. Take any legal or other action to collect the disputed amount or any related charges until the dispute has been investigated & the consumer informed of the results of the investigation
    4. Threaten the consumer credit rating or reporting the consumer as delinquent based on the disputed amount until the consumer?s dispute has been investigated & the consumer informed of the result of the investigation
  25. Assess or collect any late fee or similar delinquency charge on a monthly payment when the only delinquency is attributable to late fees.
  26. Assess or collect any late fee or similar delinquency charge once a loan has been accelerated into foreclosure status

Fairbanks/SPS May Not For 5 Years After Date of Order Assess or Collect The Following Fees:

  1. Fees for demand letters, collection letters or notices.
  2. Fees for property inspections unless it is a reasonable fee for inspections actually performed IF:
    1. the consumer?s loan payment has not been received within 45 days of the due date
    2. the inspections are limited to the initial inspection & additional inspections are not more frequent than every 30 days ONLY if:

a. they have been unable to contact the consumer foe the previous 30 days or in the alternative have been able to contact the consumer but have determined the mortgaged property to be vacant

  1. Fees for broker?s price opinions unless it is a reasonable fee for a BPO that has actually been ordered & performed  IF:
    1. the consumer?s loan payment has not been received within 63 days of its due date
    2. the BPO is limited to the initial BPO only & during the course of delinquency are not more frequent than every 6 months
  2. Attorney fees unless:
    1. the fees are necessary to process a foreclosure sale of the property
    2. a law firm has actually performed these services
    3. a law firm has in fact charged Fairbanks/SPS for the services

Fairbanks/SPS May Not In Connection With Any Loan That Was In Default At the Time It Was Obtained:

  1. Use any false, deceptive or misleading representations or means in connection with the collection of any debt including but not limited to:
    1. falsely representing the character, amount or legal status of a debt
    2. falsely representing the character, amount or legal status of any services rendered or compensation which may be lawfully received by a debtor
    3. communicating or threatening to communicate with any person credit information which is known to be or should be known to be false, including failure to communicate that a debt is disputed

       

    4. using any false representation or deceptive means to collect a debt or obtain information concerning a consumer
  2. Use any unfair means to collect or attempt to collect a debt including but not limited to:
    1. collecting amounts not authorized by the agreement creating the debt  or permitted by law
  3. Fail to notify the consumer of their right to dispute & obtain verification of their debt & the name of the original creditor either in the initial communication or within 5 days thereafter
  4. Fail to comply with any aspect of FDCPA

Fairbanks/SPS With Regard To Any Loan Not in Bankruptcy or Forbearance Agreement May Not For 10 Years After Date of Order:

  1. Fail to timely inform the consumer at least 12 days prior to the due date of each monthly payment, at no cost to the consumer, the following information in a clear and conspicuous manner:
    1. the unpaid principal balance
    2. the monthly payment due as of the next due date & the due date
    3. the reason for any changes in the monthly payment amount &/or other amounts due
    4. a complete itemization of each & every fee assessed during the statement period
    5. the toll-free number & address for the consumer to use in the event they dispute any of the information provided
    6. the total amount due on the loan

Fairbanks/SPS May Not Take Any Action Toward Foreclosure Until:

  1. all records pertaining to the consumer?s loan have been reviewed to verify that the consumer has failed to make 3 full monthly payments
  2. confirmed that the consumer has not been the subject of any of the acts or practices prohibited by this Order, the loan instruments or law & if such acts have occurred that they have been remedied
  3. any disputes by the consumer have been investigated & the consumer has been notified as to the results of said investigation
  4. Records shall be maintained sufficient to document the steps taken to investigate and conclude each dispute.


With respect to loans using uniform loan instruments with a ?revision date? prior to 03/99 they may apply payments received in accordance with the provisions thereof .

This part is going before the Court pursuant to a 08/07 filing to amend the FTC agreement & has not yet been authorized by the court.

As long as the short is $25.00 or less pursuant to a 08/07 filing to amend the FTC agreement & has not yet been authorized by the court.

Only applies to FHA mortgage loans

An additional 30 days may be taken if they inform the consumer in writing

Last modified on Thursday, 14 April 2011 17:14
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