March 23, 2016
The following is a true story.
Wells Fargo filed a foreclosure action in Pinellas County, Florida and allegedly effected service of the Complaint by “publication”. The homeowner resides out of the United States and has for 26 years, as was known to Wells Fargo at all times including from the time the loan was originated through World Savings (which WF claimed to have later merged with). However, Wells Fargo specifically instructed the process server, in writing, not to attempt service at the homeowner’s known address outside of the United States. Wells Fargo thereafter obtained a “default judgment”.
Jeff Barnes, Esq. was retained to attack the Final Judgment, and was successful in having it vacated due to lack of proper service. The Court itself stated at the hearing that the process server’s affidavit stated on it that WF had instructed the process server not to attempt service at the homeowner’s known address, which is a deliberate act in violation of Florida’s service of process statutes.
After Mr. Barnes had filed the Motion to Vacate the Final Judgment thus putting Wells Fargo and its counsel on notice thereof but before a hearing thereon could be scheduled, Wells Fargo sold the property to a third party. The Court ultimately granted the Motion to Vacate. However, WF refused to take any action to void the conveyance to the third party, thus depriving the homeowner of his rightful interest in the property as evidenced by the Court’s vacatur of the Final Judgment.
Wells Fargo’s counsel refused to take any action to remove the alleged new “owner”, and has failed to compensate the homeowner in any respect.
U.S. Bank as Trustee for a private securitization thereafter filed a “new” Complaint seeking to foreclose (again). The homeowner filed a Motion to Dismiss due to a conflict between the allegations of the Complaint and the exhibits attached thereto.
U.S. Bank then “filed” an Amended Complaint through the same law Firm which had represented WF in the prior phase of the action, but did not copy Mr. Barnes with the AMC (just as these same attorneys did not serve the original Complaint on the homeowner). The attorneys then sought a “default”, which they did copy to Mr. Barnes, who notified immediately the attorneys of their failure to copy him with the Amended Complaint. The AMC was eventually forwarded, and Mr. Barnes has, on behalf of the homeowner, filed an Answer and Affirmative Defenses to the AMC and a Counterclaim against U.S. Bank for conversion of the property. The Counterclaim contains a reservation to seek punitive damages against U.S. Bank.
The Amended Complaint claims that U.S. Bank came into an interest in the Note through an alleged “Allonge”. There is no evidence that the “Allonge” existed at the time the Note was executed and it could not have, as the Allonge is executed by Wells Fargo whereas the Note was in favor of World Savings. The homeowner has alleged that the Allonge was fabricated for purposes of the litigation pursuant to the Wells Fargo Home Mortgage Foreclosure Attorney Procedure Manual, which has been called the “Wells Fargo Fraud Manual” as it instructs WF’s foreclosure attorneys how and when to manufacture documents for purposes of foreclosure when such documents are otherwise missing. The Manual was previously circulated on the web and is readily available.
In an ironic twist, U.S. Bank has named, as a Defendant, the third party who WF sold the property to. It will be interesting to see how this alleged purchaser responds to being sued by the claimed successor of the very bank which sold him the property to begin with.
Jeff Barnes, Esq., www.ForeclosureDefenseNationwide.com