"We Goofed!" Says Bank After Billing Homeowner Nearly $500K On Mortgage Earlier Wiped Out By Judge For "Repugnant, Shocking, Etc." Lender Conduct
- Nevermind. A California mortgage company admitted Friday it goofed when it sent an East Patchogue couple a letter demanding nearly a half-million dollars - even after a Riverhead judge said the couple did not owe the company a penny following a foreclosure dispute. A spokeswoman for OneWest Bank, the corporate parent of IndyMac Mortgage
Services,(1)said the letter was prepared before the judge's ruling. "That particular letter was sent incorrectly," she said.
- Gregory Horoski and his wife, Diana Yano-Horoski, had their mortgage canceled last month by state Supreme Court Justice Jeffrey Spinner following a dispute with IndyMac. The company has appealed the ruling. The judge excoriated the Pasadena , Calif .-based company's "harsh, repugnant, shocking and repulsive" tactics in proceedings where the Horoskis attempted to work out a loan modification.
- Earlier this month, two weeks after Spinner's ruling, IndyMac sent the Horoskis a letter that claimed the couple still owed $474,936.78. Spinner ordered the parties back to court to explore the bank's letter "at length." But before a scheduled hearing could be held Friday, the bank owned up to its mistake. "It was sent in error, and we let the family know," the OneWest spokeswoman told Newsday. Richard Horoski declined to comment
(1) Reportedly, it's been a year since OneWest, through a group of investors including billionaire George Soros and computer company founder Michael Dell, agreed to buy IndyMac for what would be nearly $14 billion. Last week, OneWest announced that it bought First Federal Bank of California and its $6.1 billion in assets in a deal brokered by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation. See Pasadena Star News: OneWest rises from IndyMac's ashes.
(2) Possibly in an attempt to minimize the damage of the bad publicity brought by cases like this one and the one involving their reported attempt to boot an elderly widow despite being court-ordered not to (see IndyMac Intent On Foreclosing On 89-Year Old Widow, Despite Two Court Orders Telling Them To Stop), One West Bank has reportedly announced that it will temporarily suspend all foreclosure sales and evictions for the holidays (until January 4, 2010) of all single family residential loans it services through its IndyMac Mortgages Services division. The Bank will reportedly implement the moratorium for First Federal Bank of California borrowers as well. See OneWest Bank Announces Moratorium on Foreclosure Sales and Evictions to Assist Borrowers During the Holidays.