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Servicer Settlement Yields Over $80k in Relief Per Borrower

Report cards issued on two separate settlements with residential loan servicers indicate that borrowers have received more than $50 billion in relief. The bigger of the two settlements has yielded an average of more than $80,000 in benefits per borrower.

A progress update in the national mortgage servicer settlement has been issued by Independent Settlement Monitor Joseph A. Smith of the Office of Mortgage Settlement Oversight.

According to the report, which was announced Tuesday by the Department of Housing and Urban Development, borrowers impacted by the mortgage servicer settlement have received an average of around $81,000 in benefits.

The figure is based on $50.63 billion in direct relief provided by the biggest U.S. servicers to more than 620,000 homeowners.

Nearly $30 billion of the relief came in the form of principal reduction on more than 310,000 mortgages, “the broadest and most robust principal reduction program in the nation’s history.”

“We have far surpassed expectations in our efforts to assist struggling Americans,” HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan said in the news release.

Donovan noted that servicers will continued to be closely monitored “to ensure they live up to their end of the deal.”

The servicer settlement — which was reached in February 2011 between 49 state attorneys general and Bank of America Corp, JPMorgan Chase & Co., Wells Fargo & Co., Citibank and Ally Financial — included a $25 billion penalty.

Bank of America Home Loans issued a statement indicating that it had completed and approved assistance to about 320,000 customers for $29.2 billion in aggregate relief across all settlement programs as of March 31. More than 46,000 more negative-equity borrowers with loans that are current have received offers for interest rate reductions.

“Bank of America believes it has made right party contact with the vast majority of eligible borrowers, and has completed sufficient consumer relief to date to exceed its settlement obligations, subject to review, crediting and certification by the monitor,” the Calabasas, Calif.-based company stated. “Even after certification that it has met its obligations, the bank will continue to exhaust attempts to contact any remaining qualifying borrowers and provide prescribed assistance to them.”

Another settlement reached in January between the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and 10 servicers resolved foreclosure review requirements in consent orders issued in April 2011. The settlement included $3.3 billion in direct borrower payments and $5.2 billion in other assistance.

The OCC reported Friday that more than 2.4 million checks from that settlement had been either cashed or deposited for nearly $2.2 billion as of May 16.

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