Friday, February 8, 2013

Bank fraud

"Pino fell behind on his mortgage in 2008. His law firm, Royal Palm Beach-based Ice Legal, said the foreclosure documents used by the Bank of New York Mellon did not appear legitimate. Ice contended the lender voluntarily dismissed the case to avoid punishment by the trial court.

The bank later refiled the foreclosure with the proper paperwork but eventually reached a confidential settlement with Pino.

Still, Ice had hoped the state's top court would issue a landmark ruling empowering lower courts to deny voluntary dismissals and issue sanctions instead. Bankers had argued that sanctions would discourage lenders from pursuing legitimate foreclosures or issuing new mortgages.

"If fraud is your litigation tactic, the supreme court is basically saying you can go ahead and do that," said Amanda Lundergan, a lawyer for Ice Legal.

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