2013 National Mortgage Settlement Update

by Mila from West Covina, CA, USA

Ask Kate about National Mortgage Settlement for eligible homeowners: After nationwide mortgage servicers committed fraud by illegally foreclosing on distressed homeowners, they were forced to pay $25 billion to fund principal reductions, loan modifications, and refinancing efforts, and send payments to thousands of borrowers who lost their homes.


More National Mortgage Settlement Details

It's been one year since breaking news of the National Mortgage Settlement. This is the largest consumer financial protection settlement in our nation's history.

Timeline of Mortgage Settlement News

February 2015! Rust Consulting re-issues checks that expired because they never were deposited or cashed.

November 2013! Record breaking $13 billion JPMorgan Settlement earmarks $4 billion for borrowers.

August 2013! Joseph A. Smith, monitor for the National Mortgage Settlement begins final review to determine NMS success.

June 2013! Checks in the amount of $1480 to go out between June 10th and 17th.

May 2013! National Mortgage Settlement checks have been delayed again. Now Rust is saying to expect your check mid 2013.

April 2013! Timeline update for issuing payments to homeowners from the Independent Foreclosure Review Payment Agreement! Details in comments below!

February 2013! Borrowers who lost their homes in foreclosure also to receive funds!

2013 Independent Foreclosure Review Payment Agreement Update for Eligible Homeowners
The federal government and 49 state attorney generals forced 5 of the largest offending loan servicers to pay $25 billion to eligible homeowners, as well as participating states, and the federal government for illegally foreclosing on homeowners.
  1. Ally-GMAC
  2. Bank of America
  3. Citi
  4. JPMorgan Chase
  5. Wells Fargo
Why? Prepared documents were improperly signed (robo-signing) and contained unverified information, breaking laws that protect the rights of all homeowners, with or without mortgage difficulties.

Immediate relief, $17 billion, went to principal reductions of 1st and 2nd mortgages and loan modifications. An additional $3 billion went to refinancing of underwater mortgages. Partial funds have been designated to reform consumer and foreclosure protection and loan servicing standards. ***zzz-link-write-reps.shtml***

February 2013 News: Direct Payments to Foreclosed Homeowners

Here's the February 2013 update! $1.5 billion has been earmarked for homeowners who lost homes in foreclosure between January 1, 2008 and December 31, 2011.

Eligible homeowners were notified by mail and required to submit claims. If you received notification but have not heard back or have questions about your claim, call the National Mortgage Settlement Administrator at 866-430-8358.

By the way, the minimum payout to foreclosed homeowners is $840. Yes, if that miniscule amount doesn't rile you up, I don't know what will. $840 settlement for illegal foreclosure of the family home!
May 2013 Breaking News! Timeline for issuing payments to homeowners from the National Mortgage Settlement Agreement and update on amount! Details in comments below!

Arguments Against National Mortgage Settlement

2013 National Mortgage Settlement Update for Eligible Homeowners

I've heard the arguments that the settlement was not necessary because the homeowners failing to make house payments deserved foreclosure. Well, that attitude is a slippery slope.

Foreclosure laws were established to prevent the banks from illegally seizing homes. Yet this is exactly what happened during the robo-signing days. In order to foreclose more quickly, banks and loan servicers did not follow the basic and required legal channels set up to protect homeowners.

In short, banks and loan servicers committed fraud. This is unacceptable. It took a hard hit to their pocketbooks to wake up them up. Unfortunate for their investors but necessary.

Now it's time to hear from Mila in West Covina, California.

Mila asks Kate: National Mortgage Settlement and FHA Short Refinance

Hi Kate, Thanks for all the very helpful information in your website. My mortgage balance with Wells Fargo is $366,000. Underwater value is approximately $330,000.

I was denied a loan modification in 2012 due to my lack of hardship according to Wells Fargo. I have 1 late mortgage payment in October of 2012 but am now current with the help of relatives. However, one Wells Fargo rep told me I cannot afford the house and should short sale! What?

Anyway what's your opinion on the National Mortgage Settlement and FHA short refi. Wells Fargo says they have no idea. Can you direct me to a lender? Thank you very much. Mila

Kate Answers: National Mortgage Settlement and FHA Short Refinance

***zz-portrait-left.shtml*** Dear Mila,

Yes, it does seem the new tactic of the banks is to encourage homeowner default either through deed release (deed in lieu) or short sale of the property.

I have a strong hunch this is because the banks are not able to produce the original promissory note required by the government to foreclose on borrowers.

If not so serious, Wells Fargo's lack of sincerity is nearly humorous. That a Wells Fargo employee would tell you they have no idea about the National Mortgage Settlement or FHA Short Refinance is mind boggling.

Did these 5 mortgage giants learn nothing from their forced pay-out under the National Mortgage Settlement? Is their participation in the $25 billion fine for illegal conduct already swept under the carpet? I doubt their financial investors have forgotten!

FHA Short Refinance Options

Let's discuss the FHA Short Refinance. Contrary to its name, FHA Short Refinance is a plan for non-FHA borrowers that involves principal reductions.

This program started out a few years ago as an ingenious idea through Making Home Affordable. But lender participation dwindled quickly probably due to the cost. Today, the FHA Short Refinance option has stagnated in spite of proposals to revive and modify the plan into the HARP 3 refinance program.

By the way, go here to read the nuts and bolts of the FHA Short Refinance Program for Borrowers with Negative Equity.

FHA Short Refinance and HAMP Through Your Loan Servicer vs HARP

You asked about finding a lender. Unfortunately, because of the principal reduction to your mortgage balance, your loan servicer Wells Fargo is your only option for the FHA Short Refinance.

But here are two other suggestions. You are free to shop lenders for a HARP 2.0 refinance. My best advice is to ask your friends which mortgage professionals did a good job refinancing their homes.

Interview several and get written Good Faith Estimates. Ask for copies of their mortgage rate lock disclosures to review policies and avoid the heartache of losing a low interest rate.

Or (take a deep breath) apply to Wells Fargo for a HAMP loan modification.

Good luck and best wishes,


Ask Kate about Your Mortgage

Anyone can ask Kate a question or add a comment. (To comment, look for the link at the bottom of this page.)

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Rust Consulting to Mail Replacement Checks
by: Ask Kate

February 18, 2015:

Are you one of 800,000 foreclosed borrowers who never received their due compensation from Rust Consulting?

$500 million in replacement checks are getting mailed this week based on records showing which checks expired after never being cashed or deposited.

This could be GREAT news for many people.

Good luck and best wishes,

Independent Foreclosure Review
by: Cindy from Clarkston, MI

I received a 1099 the end of January from Rust Consultants. I never received my payment though. I contacted Rust who informed me they would reissue the check. That was February 5th when I spoke to them. They told me 4 to 6 weeks before it would arrive.

As of March 14th, still no check. I contacted Rust today and they told me the check was mailed on March 3rd. They told me to give it 3 weeks before it should arrive.

I got the 1099 with no problem but can't seem to get my check. What can I do?

Hi Cindy, Kate here...

My recommendation would be to wait the full 3 weeks. If no check comes in the mail, contact the Michigan Attorney General to file a formal complaint against Rust Consulting.

Start the complaint procedure by calling the Consumer Protection Division during the work week between 8:30 am and 4:30 pm at 517-373-1140 or 877-765-8388. I'd call first thing in the morning to avoid lengthy wait periods.

Best wishes, Kate

$13 billion JPMorgan Federal Mortgage Settlement
by: Kate Ford (Ask Kate)

Hi everyone. Kate here...

Go here for news and updates on the $13 billion JPMorgan Federal Mortgage Settlement.

It's a settlement that's shattering history. Let me know if you have any questions!

Sincerely, Kate

Mortgage Fraud at 73 years old
by: Mary Jane Alberts

I am 73 and I don't have another life to live to buy another home and gather all that Wells Fargo so happily took from me. I have been living on the streets and with other homeless room mates since this bank fraud.

I worked all my life for WHAT? My house was appraised for $185500 in 2007 and these scum bags sold my home to some very nice people for $58000.

I paid Mortgage Insurance Premiums for 8 years on my home and the bank got all the benefit plus $58000. Where is my protection?

I am not happy with the amount of money the National Mortgage Settlement thinks I should be happy about. This was my life! Wells Fargo would not make an effort to help me. I worked in banks most of my working life and know they can help people more than they do.

Hi Mary Jane, Kate here...

I urge you to take your story to elected officials and the press. Instructions for finding contact information are in the blue box up higher on this page.

Best wishes, Kate

P.S. I'll be posting today or tomorrow about the November 2013 $13 billion JP Morgan settlement with the government of which $4 billion is delegated to California homeowners.

Got it.......
by: Chimere B

I just want to say thanks soo much Kate for all of your helpful advice. I got my check today 10-15-2013. I advice everyone who hasn't gotten it to not give up by a long shot. Thanks Kate

Hi Chimere! Kate here...

I am so happy that you got your check. That is incredible news! And you are very welcome!

I also have some good news for YOU! I just posted about FHA's 'Back to Work' which is designed to help more foreclosed homeowners who want to buy a home!

No Check Still
by: Lisa

Hello Kate
I am so frustrated right now .. I have been told that I would get my check by the end of June - June came and went .. called Rust in July and said I would have my check by the end of July .. to no surprise .. still nothing.

So I contacted them again in August and was told by the end of August .. guess what it is not 9/11/13 and I still have no check.

When I called I am now being told I will get my check in the fall. Who can I reach out to on this? My house foreclosed in Indiana and I currently live in Tennessee. Rust has all my updated information.

I am very frustrated with how Rust loves to give the lovely scripting .. I have requested to speak to higher management there and yet I still cannot be given an answer. I am unclear on what the hold up is and no one can seem to assist.

Hi Lisa, Kate here. It's really a travesty how the government is sitting back and allowing Rust to abuse their power.

Besides using the contacts in the list at How to Contact Washington DC, State Governments, and Where to File Complaints, I urge you to reach out to TV stations and other media sources to tell your story.

If we can't get Rust to play fair, maybe we can shame or embarrass them into it.

Sincerely, Kate

So tired of their lies
by: Chimere B

Hello Kate love your site very helpful. I have still not gotten a payment from Rust. They are still running the same lies over and over. I'm taking your advise and emailing them calling and I'm in the process of snail mailing as well. I also in the process of using their own lies against them and it's all documented. I will update you with more soon thanks again...

Hi Chimere, Kate here. Thank you for letting me know and your kind words.

Rust has added their own layer of shame on top of the robo-signing debacle. It's a sad day that our government stands by while this is happening.

I will look forward to your update.

Sincerely, Kate

Is there anyone else that I should contact about my problem with rust consulting for the reissue of my national mortgage settlement check?
by: Carolyn L. from Temecula, California

Hi, Kate, I filed a complaint with the BBB in Minnesota against Rust Consulting. When I initially filed my claim, I sent them all of the information and told them that my spouse was deceased. They sent an incorrect check, and I returned the check in a voided status to them.

They initially said it will take 4-6 weeks to reissue and mail; however, it is the 9th week and I still have not received the reissued check.

When I filed a complaint with the BBB, a Rust Representative said it will be near the end of August. I told them that it was not acceptable because the service representatives that I called could not answer anything. Rust was contacted again by the BBB, and this time they said that it will be mailed on August 29th.

I don't believe them because of the previous problems that I have had. I filed a complaint against Rust Consulting with the OCC, and I received a response that they are looking into the issue. Please help.

Hi Carolyn, Kate here.

I have complied a list of people in higher places and specific agencies to write. I suggest you write one letter and keep sending it until they eventually pay attention to you.

Roll up your sleeves and start now! Here's the list: Go to How to Get Your Best Mortgage Rate and scroll down to the bottom of the page where you see "Contact Washington DC, State Governments, File Complaints".

Best wishes, Kate

Unregulated Mortgage Company
by: Your Name

Kate, I am a homeowner with HFC. They follow no government guidelines. They participate in no government programs.

My credit is destroyed because of them. I have been diligent in paying this high interest mortgage. Their attitude is either you pay it or we began the process to foreclose on your property. What can I do to get way from this predatory lender? Need Help in Maryland.

Hi, Kate here.

I have always wondered how Household Finance Corp escapes year after year from getting shut down. It isn't that they never get punished for their treatment of borrowers. For example, in 2002, HFC settled predatory lending charges to the tune of $486 million. Yet, here they still are today!

You should follow the same path as taken by other borrowers writing in here and report them to the authorities. How to Contact Washington DC, State Governments, and Where to File Complaints

Although refinancing may not be an option today, make it a long-term goal. Here are some tips to improve your credit scores by ending the bad credit syndrome.

Best wishes, Kate

Rust Check Re-issue
by: WG

Called aging for my weekly update. Still no check, still processing.

I continued to push and was essentially told that they are call center to field questions and have no real information.

I asked for answers beyond "it's processing." Finally I was told that he would order a research and have a supervisor call back.

When I asked when the answer was 1-3 weeks. I also think they have turned the volume on the hold music up to discourage you from staying on line. My ears are still ringing. Is there another number, address, or email address that can be used?

Hi WG, Kate here.

Truly pathetic, truly appalling behavior by Rust. Sigh.

Write one letter of complaint, make copies, add an original signature, and send one to each numbered group on this list.

Note that I have added a couple in addition to politicians, the last being added since you last wrote, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

Please keep me updated. Kate

Stopped payment on first Rust check
by: Charles Blackwell

I read the comments from the gentleman that mentioned he was told 4 to 6 weeks to issue me a new check after the first check had a stop payment which was on June 20th. It's been way after the 6 weeks and I have been lied to 4 different times by the settlement company. There is no use to call them because they're short with me and don't care attitude.

Right now I have 4 different numbers that has to do with complaints or given false information. One number is a complaint line directly to Washington DC. In your opinion should I take action immediately by calling these organizations?

Hi Charles, Kate here.

Yep, call them, email them, snail mail them now!

They are in such a state of confusion. Just this morning I found an envelope in my mailbox addressed to someone I've never heard of. My eyeballs almost popped out of my head when I saw Rust as the sender.

I wish I knew the intended recipient. I can only imagine how long he will wait for his check now.

In the same light, who knows where your check is! Don't be afraid to be a nuisance.

Good luck, Kate

P.S. Will you please share the contact information if you are successful at getting though to an actual human being?

Reissue Rust Check - Terrible Service
by: WG

I contacted Rust when my check did not arrive by July 1. They confirmed it had been mailed. At that time they stopped payment and said this would take 4-6 weeks.

I called at 4 weeks and was told that this was taking more like the 6 weeks. I called at 6 weeks and was told that it was processing since July 1.

When I challenged the time frame I was told that this was their standard statement for any issue and I could call back weekly for an update. This is terrible service.

Hi WG, Kate here.

Keep after them. Please let everyone know when you get the check. Good luck, Kate

The National Mortgage Settlement (whatever)
by: Rachel

Okay, My mother and myself owned the house and my mother didn't want anything from the National Mortgage Settlement (just her way). The call center said at first that if she didn't file, then I would be the only one getting the full payment.

So now they say it hasn't been determined if I will or not, and it's too late for my mom to file herself (for me).

So what do I do??

Hi Rachel, Kate here. That's awful! Contact your state's Attorney General and ask for advice and assistance.

Each state has a website with contact phone numbers for their departments. You can usually find your state's website by doing a search for your state's name.gov.

Once you are on the website, look for the Attorney General's information and phone number.

Call them up and tell them what happened. Ask for your next step in recovering the settlement money.

Very best wishes, Kate

Kate, I received a check in June addressed to the Estate of Clair (Last Name). I had to return the check alone with the Death Certificate. I still haven't got another check Will I get a check, or not? Can you help me? Sandra M.

Hi Sandra, Kate here.

I'm so sorry to hear this. Please follow the same steps that I gave to Rachel (see directly above.)

Hopefully, you made a copy of the check before returning it. But if not, still move forrwad with contacting your state Attorney General.

Best wishes, Kate

No Refund check of $1480
by: Joleen from Great Falls, Mt

Hi Kate, Not sure if you can help or not but I had a home in Kingsland, Ga. I have not received my check yet. I updated my file with my current address but have not received anything yet. Can you tell me who to contact? Thank You, Joleen N.

Hi Joleen, Kate here, I would start calling Rust Consulting daily until every person who answers phones there knows who you are.

Simultaneously, I'd contact the Attorneys General in both Montana and Georgia. Then write to the politicians for help on this list.

Best of luck and please let me know the outcome, Kate

Yet another fraud/divorce case
by: Anonymous

Yep, my check was split with my ex-husband too, despite the fact that the house was MINE in the divorce decree years before the foreclosure process started. And yet somehow he feels entitled to it "since it affected his credit too." What a jerk. I paid the mortgage after he was gone...and it was a "hair" more than $742!!!

I contacted the VA AG's office last week and sent them copies of my divorce decree but I have not heard back. Has anyone tried small claims?

Who would have thought they could have screwed up things even MORE. Never mind...probably everyone!

Hi, Kate here.

Disaster: affliction, blow, calamity...

Well, you get how I feel about this.

Thanks for sending in your comment, Kate

P.S. Would it cost too much to consult your divorce attorney?

State of California and National Mortgage Settlement
by: Jan from Surprise AZ, Maricopa County

I have received $1480.00 from the National Mortgage Settlement. Are there two programs, independent of each other, that are going to reimburse home owners who lost home through the incompetence of Bank of America?

Hi Jan, Kate here...

The Attorneys General from most of the states, including California, obtained a settlement (the National Mortgage Settlement) from the five major banks, Citibank, JP Morgan Chase - Mutual, Bank of America - Countrywide, Wells Fargo - Wachovia, and Ally Financial.

To the best of my knowledge, the state of California does not have an independent settlement agreement.

Perhaps you were thinking of the Independent Foreclosure Review, also administered by Rust Consulting. But those checks were sent out a few months before the National Mortgage Settlement payments began.

Scroll down the comments on this page for more on the Independent Foreclosure Review.

Hopefully that helps clarify, Kate

When the check's NOT in the mail...
by: Anonymous

I too was told that it would be four to six weeks before I would receive a check from the National Mortgage Settlement.

I called around the end of June since I hadn't received the check. I was told they had a lot of checks to reissue. Sounds to me like there were some mistakes made again by Rust Consulting.

Hi, Kate here...

Please post back here when the check finally comes. I so hope this is the case.

As far as Rust making mistakes, sadly, I am sure we don't know the half of it.


So mad!
by: Anonymous

I called National Mortgage Settlement. They said we were going to get a check.

We called back July 1st when we never received one. They said they don't know why they didn't mail us one but to wait 4-6 weeks for a letter in the mail.

What the heck! Frustrated!

Hi, Kate here.

That's a new type of response, at least new to me. I have not heard of it before. I don't even know what to say, I am so disgusted.

Please follow these steps to file your complaint and stomp your feet.

Will you let me know the outcome by posting back here? Thanks, Kate

Minnesota Better Business Bureau
by: Anonymous

Hi Kate. Can you please tell me how it is that Rust Consulting can have an A+ Rating with the Minnesota BBB? They have numerous complaints (mine included) from people who have not received their settlement checks.

Rust's initial written responses are all the same, then they go on to say that complaints were settled, although the consumer was not satisfied.

Also, I have not read where any checks were sent out. Does the BBB not know what's going on with Rust?

Hi, Kate here...

Good question! As patriotic as I am, I am afraid the corruption has reached an all-time high.

In fact, I just published HAMP Loan Modification Scheme Exposed which has the potential to turn into another suit similar to the robo-signing scandal.

I'll add BBB to my list. If homeowners begin to report Rust to the Better Business Bureau in all 50 states, surely their voices will be heard.

But the key is for all homeowners to rise up and start making a ruckus. It will take numbers to break through this corruption.

Best wishes and thanks for the question, Kate

National Mortgage Settlement
by: Chimere B from Millington,TN

Hi Kate, I'm at my wits end with Rust Consulting. I have gave them ear full after ear full and then they hang up on me. If that gets on their nerves they should try being in our shoes, the ones who hasn't received their check yet.

Do you have any suggestions on what else can be done to make them explain themselves on why so many of us have not received our payment as PROMISED? Thank you...

Hi Chimere, Kate here...

Hanging up on you? That's bad business! But they can afford to treat the public poorly when the outcome does not affect their profits. And that's sad! Even sadder, there are many in your same shoes.

Bottom line, you have to make some noise to the right people. A lot of it. So scroll down these comments for who to contact in each states' government and Washington DC (Attorney General, Senate, House of Representatives, the President...) and how to find their contact information.

I also suggest going to the press (newspaper, radio talk shows, TV...) and offering your story of illegal foreclosure and broken promises of restitution.

Best wishes for making a huge ruckus, Kate

Divorce and Error in Division of Funds
by: Lee W.

Hello. My ex wife and I divorced in 2007 and I was awarded the home and she was held unaccountable for it after that point. My house foreclosed in 2010 and I received a partial $740 check from the national mortgage settlement. Why is my ex wife given the other half? It was my debt and it was awarded to me! I am really upset over this as I had NO say in the matter! who should I contact? Thanks for any help, UPSET IN WA.

Hi Lee, Kate here...

Rust totally overrode your court mandated divorce decree! I'll bet you're upset!

Remember the delay in sending out checks? Of course you do! Rust explained the delay was due to divorces which complicated the divisions of funds. Apparently, they simplified the process with simple math: Divide it down the middle regardless of legal court documents affecting ownership.

I think going to Rust is a waste of time but you need to anyway, just to show you tried. Call them at 866-430-8358.

Then go straight to your state's Attorney General and demand the full amount. Why do I say to use your AG? Because the civil settlement was obtained by the states' attorneys general.

Best wishes, Kate

No NMS check as promised
by: Marge

Thanks Kate.

Unfortunately I filed a complaint with the Consumer Financial Protection agency who doesn't have Rust in their data base and do not know whom to put us to as they believe they cannot assist. They suggest calling Rust which is a waste of time. More script reading. I have also complained to Senator for GA as well as congressman and mayor, the BBB and tomorrow if there is no check I am going to contact GA consumer protection.

Just thought I would give you a heads up. I just don't see how the government can let them get away with this.

Hi Marge, Kate here.

I am disgusted by the lack of accountability, Marge. Here's one more thought. Offer to tell your story to a newspaper or TV station with the hope of making this more public.

It's really one debacle on top of another. How insulting to foreclosed homeowners. Sigh.

Could I ask you to let me know of any progress?

Sincerely, Kate

National Mortgage Settlement Checks
by: Marge from Marietta, GA

Hi Kate, Checks were being mailed out daily June 10th through the 17th. I haven't received my check and I have checked with Rust who says I am eligible and should receive one.

Why would it be taking so long to receive one? Mail from Fairbanks, MN to other states shouldn't take over 8 days. Yet 8 days after the last mailings were done and I still haven't received this check.

Hi Marge, Kate here.

I agree! What is the hold up? I would not wait around any longer hoping it will come.

Even if the delay of your check is not due to divorce or separation, the advice I gave Brian W. from Rogers, AK (see below) is applicable.

Good luck, Kate

Where is my settlement check?
by: Brian W. from Rogers, AR

My wife lives 30 miles away. She got her check 2 weeks ago, I have not received my check and I want to know why.

Hi Brian, Kate here.

One of Rust's major excuses for holding up the mailing of checks was to figure out how to reach married homeowners who divorced or separated after the foreclosure. Marvelous job they did. (Yes, that's sarcasm.)

Here are some choices for trying to figure out where your check is. If you come up with more sources, I'd appreciate if you'd post them here.

The Office of Mortgage Settlement Oversight says:
Regardless of which state you live in, The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau may be able to assist you with your complaint by visiting consumerfinance.gov or calling 855-411-2372.
Calling Rust will probably do as much good as not calling. But I'd call anyway. Their phone number is 866-430-8358.

Most importantly, write your elected officials (aka public servants!) to tell your story and ask for help.

Best wishes hunting down your check, Kate

Example of breakdown per house
by: Rick in jackson mi.

I have read that out of $21,480 per foreclosed house, a homeowner gets $1480 and Rust pockets the remainder. That's approximately 95%! That's stealing, same as what the mortgage companies did. What's wrong with this picture? Is our government going to allow this to happen?

P.S. No check yet, must be the mail.

National Mortgage Settlement Checks: Did anyone get theirs yet?
by: Anonymous

June 29 here in San Antonio, Texas and still no check?

Where are the checks
by: Anonymous
June 27th still no check! Did anyone receive their check?

No Check Yet
by: Anonymous
No check yet as of June 24, 2013.

No Check Yet
by: Anonymous
Today is the 18th of June. I didn't get my National Mortgage Settlement check yet? Did any one else?

How Do I Find Out?
by: Shirley from Houston, Texas
Is there anyway to find out if my check has been mailed out yet?

Hi, Kate here...

RUST Consulting, the settlement administrator denies the ability to inform foreclosed homeowners of mail dates for the checks. Would I let that stop me from calling them? Absolutely not! Call RUST at 866-430-8358 and then post back here with results, please.

Best wishes, Kate

by: Anonymous

I have a question. Why hasn't anyone through this whole issue said if the people (regular law abiding citizens) who lost their homes since 2008 would get at least a little bit more.

Good grief, I thought the reasoning behind this National Disaster was partly because of the Ro Bo signing, as they call it, because some people truly lost their homes behind the Ro Bo signing.

Correct me if I am wrong, it did say something like even if you were serviced by one of those companies you are still entitled to some type of funds.

So with that being said, the grammy goes to which bank... The one that gave us the least? Or maybe gave us all the same? Or maybe neither?

They feel we all suffered the same amount of pain therefore we (regular people) had no real future because of our past. Isn't that enough pain in it self, I would think. But maybe, just maybe to them N. O. T.

This week we all will see what we all have been waiting on. Check TYME. I hope the wait was not ALL in vain.

I know they can't please all but by all means try to please some. Some people have been without their real homes since 2008. That's about five years. SHOULDN'T THAT SAY ENOUGH!

A picture is worth more than words. Picture that there aren't any words to say.

National Mortgage Settlement Foreclosure Review
by: Brandee W from Dallas, Texas

I have a question regarding the Foreclose Review payout. Yesterday I was told they sent a check to my ex-husbands address on April 26, 2013. My ex-husband has not contacted me regarding this and I suspect he signed my name and cashed the check.

Can anything be done regarding this? This is fraud in my opinion. I was awarded the home in the divorce and he moved out in 2008 and the house foreclosed in June of 2010.

I submitted the claim I received in the mail and advised we were divorced as the claim states to advise. How this was missed, who knows, but this is not right.

Hi Brandee, Kate here...

Horrific, especially considering that your scenario is one of the major reasons payment to borrowers has been held up while Rust sorted through this issue.

Get a hold of Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott immediately. Having copies of the claim sent to Rust and divorce decree will be helpful.

There is an online consumer complaint form at oag.state.tx.us/consumer/complain.shtml. But I recommend you go at this with a vengeance. Email. Text. Call. Snail Mail. Registered Mail.

Put on your best pit bull face and go for it! Don't back down!

Best wishes, Kate

Payments to borrowers to begin June 10, 2013
by: Ask Kate

Breaking news! Per RUST, this news on their website: National Mortgage Settlement payments will be sent between June 10 and June 17, 2013. The amount is approximately $1480.

Just to say they did a little something
by: Foreclosure Victim

How in the world do they think that 2000 dollars is enough for the wrong doing of the banks? Justice found them guilty of this crime and we are suppose to appreciate them giving us a little something for their actions?

This was our lives, our homes that they stepped on, wiped their feet on and kept it movin.

I'm not sure but the last I checked, we are America. Justice is what I thought set us apart from other countries and nations, we are suppose to be for freedom and justice not fraud and crooks.

They made jails for those types of people I thought, who do not follow the laws of America. When did crime have a face or name on it.

I guess money talks loud when you have enough of it WOW! and...robbers had to go to jail for stealing really! Crime is Crime oh yeah it's not them. They sleep good at night.

I wish to GOD that who ever is in control of dividing what they feel is good enough to shut us up, could feel for one moment what it's like to lose a home not because you didn't want to pay for it but because LIFE happened to some of us.

We had no control as to what came our way, causing us to have to face the unforeseen moment of losing our home. Please America I hope we unite and revisit the reason we are Americans.

Kate here...

There is nothing I can add except please send your letter to Washington DC. If nothing comes of it, at least you spoke on behalf of the foreclosed.

I want you to know I could never come close to describing the horror of foreclosure as you just did.

Sincerely, Kate

by: Anonymous

In 2008, I submitted info regarding loss of employment and illness for both my husband and myself, asking for a loan modification. Info included medical documentation on both of us.

They said if we did a temporary modification, they would consider permanent modification. But the catch? They upped the mortgage for 3 months yet at the end of 3 months, they said we were not approved.

They foreclosed on the property so we moved out. Shortly after moving, my husband passed. We both spent a lot of time in the hospital in intensive care. The minimum amount being paid is not sufficient for the loss of our home.

Kate here...

I feel sick when I read how the banks have treated homeowners. Similar to a professor who flunks the entire class and brags about it. Did it ever occur to lenders to assume any responsibility for the foreclosures?


Get free like Iceland!!
by: Science

During the mortgage crisis, many Americans including myself were illegally getting screwed over by banks and getting kick out of our homes. The only reason this happened is because WE ALLOWED IT!!!

Now we're going to allow a payment of $800.00 to compensate a loss to a big part of our lives. OUR HOMES.

Look up ICELAND DEBT FORGIVENESS April 2012. (Don't take my word for it. Goggle it.) The people of Iceland challenged and threatened the lives of the politicians and bankers. They got Debt Forgiveness and are still in their homes. They Set their government straight and threw the bankers in jail.

What are we going to do, Americans, beside cry over our settlement of $800? We are push overs and allow the predatory lending!

Hi Science, Kate here...

Now we're talking! I have maintained for years had big-box banks not dug in their heels and dumped the responsibility of a national crisis on homeowners, the very group that kept our economy afloat for years and I might add, made Wall Street and bankers very wealthy, years of damage could have been avoided.

I won't go so far to say the financial crisis and lack of attention to homeowners is not political. But it's not a matter of party, liberal vs conservative.

Write the Senate. Write the House of Representatives. Write President Barack Obama. Tell Washington DC you want homeowners to be able to reduce their monthly payments in exchange for partial appreciation on their homes, because in a nut-shell, that's how Iceland did it.

Or do you have another idea? There are no bad ideas, except to sit on your hands and do nothing.

Take action. Write!

Best wishes, Kate

What a Joke!
by: Anonymous

I can see now who runs this country! The BANKS! They can get away with everything and anything and little is ever done. If I ever did that, I would go to jail forever...

National Mortgage Settlement
by: Yetunde from Upper Marlboro, MD

Hi Kate, Thank you for this very informative site.

I lost my home in 2010 to foreclosure and had to file bankruptcy in a desperate effort to avoid foreclosure and obtain a loan modification with Wells Fargo!

I just heard about the National Settlement case and did not receive (or at least I don't think I did) a letter to file a claim. In fact, I wouldn't have known that the letter from Rust Consulting was genuine had it not been for a colleague of mine who mentioned the case to me.

I was expecting either the banks or the federal government to issue these payments, not some obscure, private entity.

Is there any way to make my claim known to the National Foreclosure Settlement folks? Also how can I contest the payment made by the Independent Foreclosure Review as I was awarded (a pittance compared to the loss of my home!) LESS than I should have been, according to the OCC payment document.

Lastly, do these settlements have any impact on the review and modification of the victims' bankruptcy or credit rating status?

Thank you very much. Sincerely, Yetunde

Hi Yetunde, Kate here... Thank you for the kind words.

RUST Consulting states on their website:
'The deadline to submit a claim form has now passed.'
Would I let that stop me from trying? Definitely NOT! Call RUST at 866-430-8358, Maryland Attorney General's Office at 410-576-6300, and the Maryland HOPE Hotline at 877-462-7555 to see who else to contact.

I do not know if receiving a settlement could affect a bankruptcy. Recipients will be required to pay taxes on the sum received and the income could affect public assistance eligibility. But I doubt accepting the funds could damage a credit rating. Try calling the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau at 855-411-2372 for more information.

Want to appeal the IFR settlement? You'll love this. (Not)
'The results of the Independent Foreclosure Review are considered final and there is no process for appeal of either the findings or the amounts of remediation offered.'
Contact your state's Attorney General anyway!

Now may I ask you something? Will you please get back to me with your progress? This will help others in similar situations.

Best wishes, Kate

Foreclosed in 2008 and Smells Fishy
by: Delaware US

Michelle, I agree I too had this very thing happen (Wells Fargo) to me. Someone came, said to me and my husband if we clean the house, sign this paper, give him the keys. He would give us cash for the keys, which by the way was much to nothing, anyway.

I too thought to myself this does not sound right but he said that he wanted to make things easier for us and if we did this than it would be better for us this way.

Now that we know this was not right but when you think that after all the information we sent in week after week, doing all they ask us to, thought we had no other choice, and that they had to be right in what they said and did.

Leaving us homeless, still suffering from this robo signing as they said...

Signed, Saddened.

I hope we see the change before the next decade.

Update from Rust Consulting May 28, 2013
by: Rick Mills

June 1 2013: To hold things up, Rust consulting sent me a postcard, asking for me to fill out a new change of address card and said it would need to be post dated be for 12-31-2013 in order to get a check from the National Mortgage Settlement case.

I have gotten my first check from Rust for the Independent Foreclosure Settlement of $600 at this address. Why do they need an update from me?

Oh well. I will fill it out, and mail!!!

Just by the wording, does this mean checks will be sent out in year 2014? I thank it does!

I would like to hear if others got this post card. Let us all know on here.

PS Thanks Kate. The posts help more than you know. Rick M.

Hi Rick, Kate here...

Oh no! Don't tell me there is another delay! Your letter is the first I've heard of this. I am wondering the same as you: Are others getting this request?

The website still has the expected date of mid-2013 for checks to be mailed. They also say some foreclosed borrowers who submitted claims have been re-contacted for additional information. So send back their request ASAP. Don't ignore it.

I wish there was more that I could do, Rick. But I appreciate your words of encouragement and pledge to continue offering as much insight as possible!

Please keep in touch, Kate

Foreclosed in 2008 and Smells Fishy
by: Michelle from Manteca, CA USA

I'm a claimant in the National Mortgage Settlement agreement. I'm waiting for the release of my check.

I was forced out of my home in April 2008. I didn't release the deed to Wells Fargo, just a simple form getting out the the house and cash for keys.

How can that be, not signing the Deed to the property? Then I don't know what happened to my property. No further documents were mailed to me?

Common sense makes me think this was fishy. I had put $50,000 down and $2,500 a month for two and a half years. Can you explain my situation? And if my sense is correct?

Thank You, Michelle

Hi Michelle, Kate here...

Individual states have different laws governing foreclosure proceedings, of course not that they followed them!

Truthfully, I don't know if Wells Fargo followed Cash for Keys procedures responsibly or legally. But I do know that by accepting the pending check, you are not giving up your legal options to pursue them for wrong doings in addition to the robo-signing and mortgage servicing addressed in the National Mortgage Settlement.

I think you can assume if you feel the process was fishy (and who wouldn't), other homeowners also do. So you could watch for Cash for Keys class action suits to join in the future.

It might be a good idea to send your letter also to California's Attorney General Kamala D. Harris to get your complaint on the record. The website is found at oag.ca.gov where you can also review the California Homeowner Bill of Rights, effective January 1, 2013.

Good luck, Kate

what the heck
by: lynda

1.5 billion dollars divided by even the full 2 million applicant is not 840 OR 2000 dollars. It's a lot more than that. How are they figuring this thing?

Hi Lynda, Kate here...

According to the Hastings Law Journal by Julia Mas-Guindal, 1.5 billion is to be divided between 750,000 eligible foreclosed homeowners which equals (roughly ) $1500 to $2000 per household.

But RUST is crying the blues: It's soooooo hard to know how to split this up and what if a couple has divorced, etc.

Message from me to RUST: Want to talk H-A-R-D? Try this on for size! Homes, after going through an illegal foreclosure process, are seized leaving families with no where to live.


National Mortgage Settlement
by: Anonymous

I think they are working hard trying to figure out how to screw us again. No amount they give will compensate our loss. You think you can put your faith in an established company but they are all thieves.

Prison might teach them.

Big Box Lenders Claim They've Fullfilled Terms of Settlement
by: Ask Kate

Hi, Kate here...

May 22, 2013: Just released today by the Los Angeles Times, Bank of America and JPMorgan Chase are claiming that they've fulfilled their mortgage settlement terms.

Wells Fargo says they are 90% finished settling claims.

What is Joseph J. Smith Jr., the national monitor for the settlement found to be saying?
'Based on my conversations with consumer professionals, elected officials and distressed borrowers, I know there are areas in which the banks still have work to do.'
Ya think?

What do YOU say?


Eligible Payment
by: Anonymous

As stated. You may be eligible to receive a payment of at least $840.00 as part of the National Mortgage Settlement. The payment is based on 100% of all eligible borrowers submitting claim forms.

So if there are only 50% who submitted a claim, using the math how much would one approximately receive?

Will all eligible borrowers receive the same amount? Unlike the Independent Foreclosure Reserve the payment amount varies according to the category.

Hi, Kate here...

Assuming the 1.5 billion would be sufficient to give each qualified foreclosed homeowners an $840 payment and only half respond, then the math would tell us the payments would increase to $1680.

But details are scarce as I assume banks are scurrying to pay as little as possible. I hope they prove me wrong.

Best wishes, Kate

Mortgage Settlement
by: Anonymous

The only words I can say about this entire mess is that we are a victim of the unlawful processing of foreclosure proceedings by the banks.

We got into this foreclosure process due to several Traumatic events taking place.I had to use my FMLA (Family and Medical Leave Act) without pay to stay with my boys.

We lost our home in 2008, two children in ICU, husband was in an accident, not his fault. As if this wasn't enough, he had to choose between his job or being there with the children in ICU.

Can you believe that a job would make a parent choose between working or being at the hospital with two children in ICU "really".

We lost everything cars, jobs, our home, even hope. Once this happened, our credit went way, way downhill. We moved several times trying to find a fit, with very little to no income. We went from a stick built to a mobile home that's way too small yet we are grateful.

The only hope of our head up above the water is the national settlement we are to receive before we continue to drown in debt, hospital bills, and other bills, barely seeing our way clear.

This settlement would help us so GREATLY, depending on the amount we are entitled to. One can only pray they make the right decision and give once-homeowners a chance to become homeowners again. Time will tell basically is where it all stands now.

Signed, Hopeful

Hopeful, Kate here...

Thank you for telling your story. This isn't a story of your past. It is today's story, one you are living every minute. So I know how hard it can be to give out details in public.

Whatever you receive could never equal your loss. But I hope whatever the amount is, that it comes in a timely manner and is a help to you and your family.

Best wishes and thank you again, Kate

Where's the Settlement Money Going?
by: Rick from Jackson, MI

Kate, do you think Russ Consulting is getting most of the money just for sending out the checks? We need to do the math or get the amount Russ is getting out of this. That's why checks are so small. Rick

Hi Rick, Kate here...

Being the largest multi-state settlement since the 1998 Tobacco Settlement, one can only imagine how much Rust is being paid to administrate.

There aren't many meaningful updates (as of May 13, 2013). The last progress report linked to from their website is November 2012. I can't help but wonder if the lack in recent disclosure and communication is because the banks are still fighting the pay-outs.

Thanks for bringing up this point, Kate

Attorney General Office Comment
by: Ms D

Kate, I tried contacting Indiana's attorney general and am still waiting on a return call, which Monday I will take your advice and call several times a day and contact every office you have suggested.

The second person I spoke to in that office, which I assume was a clerk, told me that it is her understanding that the payout for the National Mortgage Settlement was to be the total amount allotted divided equally between all that submitted claims.

I talked to an attorney yesterday and even though this is not his area of expertise, he says there has to be in place a gray margin for error. If not, there will be lawsuits everywhere from people like us that they say did not turn in a claim, which we did. In today's world of computer technology, there HAS to be a way for them to cross match.

But I just keep getting told by Rust that the Independent side knows nothing about the National Mortgage settlement and they say the same about the other. This in itself, to me, throws up a big red flag of inappropriate conflict of interest.

Hi Ms D, Kate here...

Thanks for the update. Good luck today beginning your squeaky wheel campaign. (See Ms D's comment below.)

That was an interesting view from the attorney. He makes a good point.

Please keep in touch, Kate

Rust Consulting Nat'l Mtg Settlement Snow Job
by: Anonymous

The checks are not going in the mail mid May 2013 and the call center employees are trained to read from a script. Nothing more! What good is a call center if they read a script!

Update to National Mortgage Settlement Payment Date
by: Cecilia from Ohio

When you get a moment, please check the National Mortgage Settlement website. As of May 8, 2013, it is reporting that payments will be mailed mid 2013, instead of mid-to-late May 2013.

What does this mean exactly? Are we still talking May? Or is it June, July, etc.? I contacted Rust Consulting and the representative wasn't even aware of the update. The representative was not of good assistance.

Hi Cecilia, Kate here...

Great catch. I would like to be a fly on the wall when these dates are being changed. I can only guess what it means.

Are the banks doing their best to wiggle out of the agreement? Is Rust understaffed? Whatever the reason, the delay is insulting to foreclosed homeowners.

So, it looks like no one will see a National Mortgage Settlement payment before June or July, as it stands today, May 10, 2013.

I guess that's the final word folks... until the next delay.

Thanks again, Cecilia. I will update this page now.

Best wishes, Kate

How to Get Help When Rust Loses Track of Your Claim
by: Ms D

We are in Indiana and have received a check from Rust for the Independent Foreclosure Review. We are in process of moving and called the department of Rust handling the National Mortgage Settlement to give them new address.

They tell me on that side that they did not receive a claim from us so there will be no check. They referred me to the Attorney General's office whom I called and was told basically we were out of luck that the deadline had passed.

So, what will they do in situations like this? Doesn't seem fair they are the same company and I can't believe their computer hardware would not some how cross.

I am waiting on a call from another person from AT General's office but I bet we will be told the same again. Any suggestions?

Thank you for any input!!!!!

Hi Ms D, Kate here...

So here are choices that are provided to you under the settlement!

1. Call the Settlement Administrator at 866-430-8358. (Similar to the hen calling a fox to report stolen eggs, don't you think?)

2. Write your state's Attorney General.

Now don't you feel better? NOT!

Short of hiring an attorney, you can try making yourself a nuisance at your state's Attorney General office until someone finally pays attention to your claim.

Put your complaint in writing and not only send it by registered mail to the AG, email copies to your politicians by going to How to Contact Washington DC and More.

Best wishes, Kate

National Mortgage Settlement Payment Confusion
by: Charlotte from PA

Hi Kate! I lost my home in 2008 due to a foreclosure. I received the post card and submitted my claim on the NationalMortgageSettlement.com (NMS) website where it stated I could email the claim or mail in the form. I chose to email.

I have called the 866-430-8353 number and they say they have no record. They asked me if I was sure it wasn't the NMS and not the Independent Foreclosure Review (IFR).

But that phone number (866-430-8353) is for the NMS and the lady said I was talking to IFR. I AM CONFUSED!

I had received the second postcard but cannot find it and I cannot retrieve the copy of receipt of the email confirmation of the claim form.

UGH! I don't understand why I am not on the list?

Hi Charlotte, Kate here...

Look right below at the next comment where I give phone numbers for reaching Rust according to the specific agreement, either the National Mortgage Settlement or the Independent Foreclosure Review.

Note that you'd inadvertently referred to the IFR as the Independent Settlement Review. (I corrected it.) Although Rust should not expect you to be an expert, perhaps they were confused by that.

You should also know that you may be eligible for payments under both settlements. So try calling again and see if you can get better results.

Good luck and thanks for asking, Kate

Dates for National Mortgage Settlement and Independent Foreclosure Review Checks
by: Anonymous

I read on here someone said checks were going out early to mid-May, I read mid to late May. Which is it? I'm hoping soon. We were part of GMAC in 2009 and I am nervous they didn't even get our claim because online wouldn't work. This money would help so much.

Hi, Kate here...

As of the May 10th update, the National Mortgage Settlement (NMS ) checks are expected to be mailed mid 2013. If you'd like to call the settlement administrator, Rust Consulting can be reached at 866-430-8358.

As of the May 3rd update, the Independent Foreclosure Review (IFR) payments began April 12th and will continue to be sent throughout July 2013. Call Rust at 888-952-9105 for this agreement.

I'm glad to hear the money will be of help to you.

Sincerely, Kate

Just Wrong!
by: Anonymous

What a slap in the face! I originally applied for a loan modification after a broken ankle and then being layed off for 11 months.

Citi bank called and said my modification was approved. Great! Was told to make 3 monthly reduced payments and I was in. Great!

I asked the question: what do I do if my loan isn't modified after 3 successful payments?

Answer: continue to pay the reduced amount and you will be fine, this is a guarantee to re-modify your loan.

Once again, Great! Well, not so great. After paying my reduced trial payment for 2 and 1/2 years and sending and resending additional tax, bank, paystub, etc. over and over, I was ultimately foreclosed on!

The last phone call I had with a one of the head modification reps one day before they were selling my house at auction, took some financial info over the phone to see if there was any hope left. I was told that I no longer qualify because I make too much money. WHAT?

I stated I qualified at the time and have been paying for 2 and 1/2 years and now I don't qualify?

Answer: Yes.

Well, lost my home plus $20,000 in a bogus trial payment modification that I was told was guaranteed to help me.

The Independent Foreclosure Review payment to me was $500. What a insult!

And the insult that they changed the locks on my home before I could even retrieve my kitchen table.

Thanks Citi and to the Government for helping! You're doing your job oh so well!

Hi, Kate here...

This leaves me feeling sick. Spread the word. Write, PLEASE WRITE, your politicians. Hold their feet to the fire.

Follow my link above to make your job easier.

Best wishes for a better tomorrow for struggling homeowners, Kate

National Mortgage Settlement updated its website information.
by: Anonymous

Finally, updated info for the National Mortgage Settlement which is completely different from the Independent Foreclosure Review. On the website, it states that checks are going to go out mid 2013. You can look on the National Mortgage Settlement website to see the update.

Hi, Kate here... Yes, I saw that too! Thank you for drawing attention to it.

Best wishes, Kate

Goldman Sachs
by: Anonymous

Hello, I've been trying to find out why my loan servicing through Goldman Sachs wasn't in the National Mortgage Settlement? I have called several phones numbers and no one seem to know why. The servicing was Litton Loan. So do you happen to know why? Thank you so much for your help on this matter!

Hi, Kate here...

Great question. Goldman Sachs is one of 13 mortgage servicers included in the Independent Foreclosure Review agreement reached in conjunction with the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and the Federal Reserve Board.

Aurora, Bank of America, Citibank, HSBC, JPMorgan Chase, MetLife Bank, Morgan Stanley, PNC, Sovereign, SunTrust, U.S. Bank, and Wells Fargo are also included in this payment agreement of $3.6 billion. Payments range from $300 to $125,000. Hmmm, how many do you suppose are getting $125,000?

Although checks are being sent right now, information about payments to eligible borrowers who were serviced by Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs will be published by the Federal Reserve Board soon.

Only the 5 largest mortgage servicers were included in the National Mortgage Settlement. They are Ally-GMAC, Bank of America, Citi, JPMorgan Chase, and Wells Fargo.

I realize this is not a direct answer to your question as to why. But it's the best answer I have.

Thanks for asking, Kate

Wait! I was told $840 MINIMUM!
by: Shari

I have the original claim form and it states I would get no less than $840.00. Well, I just received a $300.00 check! Why?

Where is the other $540? Not only that, but it said more could be paid if less than 100 percent claimed. How do I know how many claimed? From the looks of this $300.00 check, it was over 100 percent claimed.

This sounds like I was lied to again by big banks and big government! What do I do? Call who issues the check? My state attorney's office? I want what I was told I was getting, $840 minimum!
This is an outrage!!!

Hi Shari, Kate here...

Is this check coming out of the National Mortgage Settlement (NMS) or the Independent Foreclosure Review (IFR)? Foreclosed homeowners could be getting a check from both settlements.

The National Mortgage Settlement website says they anticipate a minimum of $840 payment to each eligible claimant. Don't get me started on anticipate! They are trying to tell us they don't know?

It is now disclosed that Rust Consulting is Settlement Administrator for both. They can be reached at 888-952-9105 for the IFR and 866-430-8358 for the NMS.

Start your investigation and complaint by calling them first. If you are not satisfied, send a complaint to your attorney general and then proceed to the political representatives I outline in the comment section here. (Scroll to the bottom of that page after following the link.)

Go get 'em, Kate

Why are the National Payments held up ? I think I know !
by: Debra

When calling National Mortgage Settlement with a problem over filing, the Robotic Response was too familiar, much like Wells Fargo ! It dawned on me ... get ready ! RUST is handling the National Mortgage too !YES , both the Independent and National are being distributed by RUST ! Only difference is the phone number !!!!

Hi Debra, Kate here...

When you emailed me about this the other day, I wasn't positive that you had your facts straight. But you sure did!

Buckle up, everybody! We may in for a wild ride before this is over.

Thanks again Debra for emailing me, Kate

Now I find out I have only been filed with Independent.
by: Debra

Hi Kate, I lost my home and was evicted by Wells Fargo. While relocating, I assumed the Foreclosure applications I was sent was for both the Independent and the National as I received paperwork at close times.

Now I find out I have only been filed with Independent. Is it too late for me for National? I am just SICK! over this. Please respond with good news. Thank you, Debra

Hi Debra, Kate here...

I suggest contacting your state's Attorney General (go to your state's .gov website to find contact information) to see if anything can still be done.

Or call call 800-569-4287 to discuss this with a HUD-approved housing counselor.

Lastly, try calling the National Mortgage Settlement Administrator at 866-430-8358.

I don't know how much headway you'll make but try it. Make a fuss. See what happens. Good luck!

Best wishes, Kate

It's a Joke!

Today, I received my long awaited check from the mortgage settlement. $500 and I still have to claim it in my taxes next year. Thank you Citibank.

I would have been happier if Citigroup would have told me that my house was auction of two days after they took my house payment and telling me it was a mistake, not leave my house, that Citigroup would reverse that auction. I didn't get money for my keys.

All that for $500.00. It's a joke.

Hi R., Kate here...

Thank you for taking the time to tell your experience. The more comments that are posted here, the more I have to send to Washington DC.

Best wishes for your future, Kate

Loss Home
by: Anonymous

I loss my home illegally, I filed for a loan modification and kept my end of the bargain yet at the end of the loan modification, I was told I had to pay my loan to current with fees they wanted a payment of over 4000 within the week.

I couldn't pay it because I loss my job after 23 years.

I was so depressed I was close to suicide but if it wasn't for my brother helping me to get a place for me and my child, I would have been homeless.

I know people should pay their bills, but without a job, and trying to wait on unemployment benefits it's impossible.

Our government have really let us down. I am a tax payer, never missed a payment to our government but now when I needed help I could not get it.

Loss home

Hi, Kate here...

There are no words adequate to express how I feel. I hope you send your letter to Congress and to the media.

I'm thankful for the family members who have stepped in to help the homeowners who otherwise would be homeless today.

But that is no excuse for the government to pull a bag over its head and allow the banks to have complete reign over homeowners.


Keep the comments coming and I'll send this page to the White House. You have my word.

Thank you for taking the time to tell your story, Kate

by: Than Chen

We lost our homes and in a return for $300 that like insulting us.

Hi Than, Kate here...

It's truly a pathetic amount, a mere slap on the bank's wrist for illegal foreclosure of the family home. They even have the audacity to whine that the fine has lowered the value of their stock.

I hope you will protest in writing to your elected officials.

Sincerely, Kate

How is it decided who gets what?
by: Sandra K. in Catonsville, Maryland

I lost my job due to injury and was separated from my husband. I grew up in the house that I lost in foreclosure and can't even ride passed it anymore, too depressing and upsetting.

Citi Bank was my mortgage company and I could not get a loan modification. How will they determine what my payment will bet? The money does not replace what I've lost but it will be greatly appreciated.

Hi Sandra, Kate here...

I'm so sorry to hear of your childhood home lost to foreclosure.

I do not know how individual homeowner payments from the National Mortgage Settlement and Independent Foreclosure Review Payment Agreement are determined. If I find out, I'll certainly post the answer.

Best wishes for the largest payment possible, Kate

2010 FORECLOSURE My 2 Cents Worth Cause That's All It's Worth Now
by: Anonymous

I was foreclosed on by USBank in 2010 - my situation was bleak, going through a divorce, had 2 boys deployed to Afghanistan, diagnosed with breast cancer and was working a commissioned job selling credit card machines, which I had to quit for a regular paycheck.

USBank never ever offered me any kind of loan modification - or solutions to stay in my home when I fell behind on payments.

This all started to crumble at the end of 2009 and the home sold at auction in early 2011 for $25,000.00 when I owed $155,000.00 at foreclosure time.

My payments were $1200.00 per month and I was working 3 jobs and couldn't keep up and just let the house go out of sheer exhaustion.

I often wonder how many others were in my shoes and had no idea what to do or where to go to find answers. I am 1 of the 4.2 mm that is set to get a $300.00 check I'm sure.

It's really just too bad that there isn't more that can be done to punish these banks.

Hi, Kate here...

It's really heartbreaking to hear your story. No one is exempt, should they be reading and think it could never happen to them. As you say, when things begin to crumble...

Please tell your story to your elected politicians and let them know of your expectations regarding the banks. Remind them you are a voter and they are on your payroll.

For 4 easy ways to find and contact your senators and representatives, go to When Will Fannie Mae Allow True Mortgage Modifications and scroll down to the comment section.

Best wishes for your health, Kate

Still no checks from National Mortgage Settlement?
by: Anonymous

The company Rust Consulting is handling checks for the Independent Foreclosure Review. Only that's totally different from the National Mortgage Settlement with checks that are not going out yet give no updated information. Two different companies.

So what is really going on with the National Mortgage Settlement? Rust is going forward with checks but the National Mortgage Settlement is taking their time. Why?

Hi, Kate here...

Yes, 2 different settlements. Sorry I was not more clear. (I was chomping at the bit, wanting to deliver good news.) See comment below this one.

And yes, I also find it suspicious that the National Mortgage Settlement communication has slowed.

Best wishes, Kate

Issuing Checks for National Mortgage Settlement and Independent Foreclosure Review
by: Anonymous

When are the checks coming for the National Mortgage Settlement? There has been no more information on when the checks are actually going to be distributed.

Their website has not been updated since February 2013 and here it is April? Are they stalling for some reason? If you have any updated information on this I would appreciate an answer.

Hi, Kate here...

It's been one year since the National Mortgage Settlement was made formal and binding and still no checks have been issued. Are they stalling, you ask. I'm guessing it's more like copious amounts of red tape. But who knows!

However as of April 12, 2013, 4.2 million borrowers will begin receiving checks based on the Independent Foreclosure Review, following a payment agreement between the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) and the Federal Reserve Board (FRB) with 13 mortgage servicers.

The 13 mortgage servicers (and their affiliated mortgage companies) involved in the Independent Foreclosure Review Payment Agreement with the federal banking regulators are America's Servicing Co., Aurora Loan Services, BAC Home Loans Servicing, Bank of America, Beneficial, Chase, Citibank, CitiFinancial, CitiMortgage, Countrywide, EMC Mortgage Corporation, Goldman Sachs, HFC, HSBC, Litton Loan Servicing LP, Metlife Bank, Morgan Stanley, National City, PNC, Saxon Mortgage, Sovereign Bank, SunTrust Mortgage, U.S. Bank, Wachovia, Washington Mutual, Wells Fargo, and Wilshire Credit Corporation.

The Independent Foreclosure Review process continues for GMAC Mortgage, Financial Freedom, Everbank/EverHome Mortgage Company, and OneWest Bank/IndyMac Mortgage Services.

Goldman Sachs (Litton Loan Servicing LP) and Morgan Stanley (Saxon Mortgage Services, Inc.) have come to similar agreements for a grand total of $3.6 billion to be paid to more than 4 million borrowers.

An additional $5.7 billion for mortgage assistance will also come from the original 13 servicers.

Wondering if you are included or worrying that your contact information is outdated? Call the designated Paying Agent who is under the direction of the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and the Federal Reserve Board, Rust Consulting, Inc.

The phone number of Rust Consulting, Inc is 888-952-9105. Call them to verify that you are covered by the agreement and to update your contact information.

By the way, there is no required fee for receiving a payment under the agreement. If someone asks for money, that is a scam.

You should also beware of anyone who asks you to call a phone number different from Rust Consulting, Inc. at 888-952-9105 for these particular checks.

Best wishes, Kate

Canceled 2nd mortgage debt and how it will affect our credit?
by: Homeowner with 2nd Mortgage

We had a 2nd mortgage that was canceled on us in 2012. How do we go about repairing our credit and how long will this affect us?

Hi, Kate here...

2nd mortgage cancellations due to the National Mortgage Settlement (read... substantial financial penalties for blatant servicing violations!) are a relatively new development.

So the long-term affect on credit is difficult to pinpoint. But I'm guessing the most negative affect will be during the first two years, diminishing over the next five.

Homeowners with affected credit scores due to the National Mortgage Settlement pay-off can follow the steps I discuss at Fix Your Credit Score - Fix Your Life.

I'm pleased you benefited from the settlement by getting rid of your 2nd mortgage payment and balance! Way to go!

Best wishes, Kate

P.S. But I find it quite ironic that homeowners' credit scores plummet after banks are penalized and forced to pay off 2nd mortgages. Go figure!

FHA Short Refi
by: Mila from West Covina, CA

Hi Kate. Thank you for your fast reply to my first question regarding National Mortgage Settlement and FHA Short Refi. Your suggestion was for me to try a HARP 2 refi. I forgot to mention that my loan is not backed by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac so I'm not qualified.

Now, a mortgage company from Florida is telling me that they are doing FHA short Refi with Wells Fargo and the can do refi with an upfront fee of $350 upon submission to WF and $350 upon closing.

All other closing costs to be paid by WF. New loan not to exceed 97.5% of current value which means a principal reduction of at least 10% of existing loan balance. I am afraid this sounds too good to be true and the upfront fee smells like a scam. Your thoughts please.

Hi Mila, Kate here...

My best advice is to pay attention to your nose (as in the smell test) and proceed carefully, remembering the rule of in writing, in writing, in writing.

Before you give them any up-front money, insist on locking in your interest rate after getting a written Good Faith Estimate (if the mortgage rate is agreeable to you).

You could also call Wells Fargo to ask if they are currently accepting FHA Short Refinance applications from this broker.

Best wishes, Kate

P.S. Try doing a search for the mortgage company who is offering the FHA Short Refinance to see what other homeowners have to say about their customer service.

Click here to add your own comment.

You can also ask Kate about your mortgage at The Ultimate In Mortgage News.

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