Los Angeles, CA (PRWEB) October 8, 2010
New studies show the foreclosure crisis has hit minority communities the hardest, and predatory lending aimed at racially segregated minority neighborhoods led to the mass foreclosures that fueled the U.S. housing crisis.
In response to the needs of their culturally diverse clientele, and to further educate homeowners of their options to foreclosure, Reyes Law Group, APLC has launched a multi-media and multi-cultural campaign which includes the firm’s YouTube channel, Foreclosure Litigation Blog, Facebook page, a free monthly Legal Forum newsletter, and free Foreclosure Defense Events available with Tagalog, Spanish and Korean translations throughout southern California.
Although the data in the recent studies doesn’t break down for non African American and Hispanic groups, many other minority groups are affected by the foreclosure crisis, according to Norberto F. Reyes, III, president and CEO of Los Angeles-based Reyes Law Group, APLC.
“When you consider that the top three cities and counties in California with the highest percentage of foreclosures are also the top three cities and counties with the highest population of Asian and Filipino Americans, then you can easily assume that a disproportionate number of Asians and Filipinos have lost or will lose their homes to foreclosure because of predatory lenders and illegal foreclosure procedures,” said Reyes.
Reyes, who is of Filipino descent, launched his firm’s aggressive foreclosure litigation approach earlier this year challenging the banks’ and mortgage servicers’ alleged ownership of a homeowner’s mortgage, and the bank’s alleged rights to foreclose on the property.
The study in American Sociological Review is just one of several findings coming to light in the recent nationwide scrutiny and admitted fraudulent practices of the mortgage, banking and foreclosure industries.
“The tide is finally turning in favor of homeowners facing or in the process of foreclosure. It’s all crashing down on the entire servicing industry which participated in filing fraudulent documents in order to steal real homes belonging to real people, including Asian and Filipino Americans,” Reyes added.
- Stockton, which once had the largest population of Filipino Americans in the U.S., reportedly has the highest foreclosure rate in the country;
- Vallejo, which has the highest number of Filipino elected officials in California, also has the highest foreclosure rate in the San Francisco Bay Area;
- Daly City, which boasts of a 35% Filipino population, has the highest foreclosure rate in San Mateo County;
- Las Vegas, which has the fastest growing Filipino community in the US, continues to have one of the highest rates of foreclosures in the country.
On Monday, October 4, 2010 Texas became the latest state to halt foreclosures and sales of foreclosed property. The announcement by Texas’ Attorney General follows the earth-shaking industry move last Friday, October 1 by Bank of America, the country's largest home loan servicer with more than $2 trillion in home loans, to delay court proceedings in 23 states, including Florida.
Bank of America, along with Ally Financial Inc. and JPMorgan Chase, have conceded that their foreclosure procedures might have been improperly handled by “robo-signers,” or employees who signed tens of thousands of foreclosure documents without properly reviewing or verifying them.
“By not meeting their OWN guidelines, the banks are exposing more proof of massive intentional and pernicious fraud,” explained Reyes. “The good news for homeowners is that through litigation, homeowners have a persuasive and viable argument to stop foreclosures indefinitely, allowing attorneys to litigate the meat of the issue, which is whether these banks really have any enforceable security interest (mortgage) in the home.”
Multi-language, multi-cultural staff educates minority homeowners
In response to the needs of their culturally diverse clientele, Reyes Law Group, APLC provides aggressive and experienced legal representation in Tagalog, Spanish and Korean, in addition to English.
To further educate homeowners of their options to foreclosure, Reyes Law Group, APLC has launched a multi-media campaign which includes the firm’s YouTube channel, Foreclosure Litigation Blog, Facebook page, a free monthly Legal Forum newsletter, and free Foreclosure Defense Events available with Tagalog, Spanish and Korean translations throughout southern California.
In the coming months, Reyes will also make regular appearances on local Filipino American television news programs discussing options for homeowners who are facing foreclosure or bankruptcy.
But, the firm’s staff offers more than just in-language assistance, according to Reyes. “We’re immigrants ourselves, so we know what it’s like to work hard for the American Dream, and how devastating it can be to lose the most important part of that dream: your home. We know how to succeed in the American judicial system. We won’t let homeowners fight the banks alone.”