The Honorable Eric Holder
Attorney General of the United States
U.S. Department of Justice
950 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20530-0001
July 8, 2014
Dear Attorney General Holder:
We, the undersigned, representing hundreds of thousands of homeowners from across the country, are writing today to request your support in ensuring that the terms of negotiated settlements with America’s largest banks are followed.
During the past year since the $13 billion JPMorgan Chase settlement was announced, struggling homeowners have waited for relief. In fact tens of thousands of Americans signed a petition to the CEO of JP Morgan Chase bank, a copy of which was also delivered to your office, calling on the bank to temporarily suspend foreclosures while new, homeowner-friendly policies can be put into place.
However, relief from the Chase Settlement has yet to arrive. The bank has not announced any new relief programs. Nor has there been a noticeable increase in new modifications. Instead, Chase and their competitors are often transferring servicing rights to newer mortgage companies not covered by recent or future settlements.
As you know, the foreclosure crisis is far from over. Families in all areas of our country continue to struggle and many are at constant risk of losing their homes. We have brought several of their stories to you and your staff and will continue to do so.
As your department continues to negotiate with major banks such as Bank of America, we urge you to ensure that the consumers who have been the victims of predatory lending practices see the relief that is intended and has been promised. We also ask that your office does better advocating for consumers in future settlements.
We’re ready and willing to work with you in this very urgent matter.
We are requesting the following information on your most recent and pending settlements with the largest financial institutions:
1) An accounting of the JPMorgan Chase settlement monies disbursed including:
- How many homeowners received aid and average amount of aid
- How much money has been spent on principal reduction
- How much money has been disbursed to homeowners with mortgages under $500,000
- How much money has been disbursed to homeowners with mortgages under $250,000
- What other categories and amounts of aid have been disbursed
- Any ongoing audits and independent reviews of the settlement disbursements
- Plans for spending down the rest of the money
- Plans for homeowners' representatives to provide input and oversight to the process
2) Plans for the Bank of America and other pending settlements to provide meaningful relief including plans for categories “a” through “h” above.
The undersigned groups would also appreciate a meeting to ask follow-up questions on your process. We can meet at your convenience. You may contact us via Kevin Whelan, National Campaign Director, Home Defenders League, 911 W. Broadway Ave., Minneapolis, MN 55411; (888) 441-5527; firstname.lastname@example.org.
Kevin Whelan, National Campaign Director
Home Defenders League
Alliance of Californians for Community Empowerment
New Jersey Communities United
Occupy Homes Atlanta
Occupy Homes Minnesota