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Biden Secures Reforms from National Mortgage Registry

Settlement terms increase transparency and accuracy of mortgage records

capegazette.villagesoup.comJuly 18, 2012

Delaware Attorney General Beau Biden has announced that the national shadow mortgage registry known as MERS, which was at the center of the housing crisis, has agreed to implement important reforms, including regular reports on the accuracy of its records, as part of a settlement of a lawsuit Biden’s office filed against it last year.

Biden filed the suit after hearing from homeowners throughout Delaware who were unable to have meaningful conversations about saving their home and who were unable to find out who owned their mortgage.

“MERS’ inaccurate and unreliable records raised serious questions about who owns what in America. The steps MERS will now take will help answer those questions,” Biden said.

Delaware is the first state to secure such concessions from MERSCORP Holdings Inc. and its subsidiary Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems Inc. Specifically, the terms Biden’s office secured help Delaware homeowners in the following ways: creating an easy way for homeowners to find out who owns their mortgages by maintaining an easily accessible database; reducing the chance of fraudulent foreclosures by requiring that assignments of mortgages be entered in the Recorder of Deeds Office;  increasing the transparency of the foreclosure process; improving the accuracy of MERS' records; and increasing oversight and training.

“Every homeowner should be able to find out who owns their mortgage, not just the company hired to collect payments,” Biden said. “The MERS system functioned to obscure this important information.”

MERS, which is incorporated in Delaware and based in northern Virginia, was formed in 1995 to facilitate the growing mortgage securitization industry. Large banks, such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo, the government-sponsored entities Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, and other participants in the mortgage-lending industry created MERS to speed up and reduce the cost of the securitization process by bypassing county Recorder of Deeds Offices throughout America.

With little to no oversight of MERS’ practices, MERS did not meaningfully audit its records and failed to enforce its own rules governing members’ conduct. MERS was thus a key player contributing to the lack of transparency in the foreclosure tidal wave that has affected tens of thousands of Delawareans, not to mention their neighbors who suffer when their property values decline as nearby houses are sold in foreclosure.

Back to July 2012 Archive

CFLA was founded by the Nation's Leading Foreclosure Defense Attorneys back in 2007 to serve the Foreclosure Defense Industry and fight pervasive Bank Fraud. Since opening our virtual doors, CFLA has rapidly expanded to become the premier online legal destination for small businesses and consumers. But as the company continues to grow, we're careful to hold true to our original vision. For us, putting the law within reach of millions of people is more than just a novel idea—it's the founding principle, just ask Andrew P. Lehman, J.D.. With convenient locations in Houston and Los Angeles, you can contact Our National Account Specialist and General Manager / Member Damion W. Emholtz at 888-758-2352 for a free Mortgage Fraud Analysis or to obtain samples of work product, including cutting edge Bloomberg Securitization Audits, Litigation Support, Quiet Title Packages, and for more information about our Nationally Accredited and U.S. Department of Education Approved "Mortgage Securitization Analyst Training Certification" Classes (3 days) 24 hours for approved CLE & MCLE Credit (Now Available Online).

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