The Nationwide Mortgage Settlement Protects Banks From Some Litigation, But Here's Where They're Still Exposed

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Photo: AP

Major banks are breathing a sigh of relief now that they get to write a big check and make a chunk of their exposure to lawsuits go away.BUT state attorney generals fought hard so not all of it would disappear, and now their press releases are making the rounds, lauding their achievement.

From Attorney General Schneiderman’s office (whose task force, as President Obama just said, still has all of its power) — here’s a list of legal claims regarding mortgage fraud that can still be made against banks:

  • All criminal claims.
  • All claims based on mortgage securitization misconduct, under securities fraud statutes, including New York’s Martin Act, and other sources of law. This includes securitization claims based on servicing, foreclosure or origination-related facts.
  • All claims directly against the private national mortgage electronic registry system known as MERS, as well as claims against financial institutions for the use of MERS in the Attorney General’s recently filed lawsuit over a wide range of deceptive and fraudulent practices in New York.
  • All claims for violations of fair lending laws that relate to discriminatory practices in loan origination.All tax claims, including any claim that the failure to transfer mortgage loans to the securitization trusts or other conduct violated tax rules.
  • All claims by counties for lost mortgage recording fees; and
  • All claims and defenses held by private and third parties, including those held by individual mortgage loan borrowers.

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