I-Team: Banks' Settlement Money Won't Help Everybody
LAS VEGAS -- Major banks are still helping underwater Nevada homeowners, but that help is running out.
Nevada Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto said she will force lending banks to hold up their end of a deal giving mortgage help to Las Vegas area homeowners.
Nevada's largest home lender, Bank of America, said it will finish its legal obligation to help Nevada homeowners this coming spring.
Last year Cortez Masto took on five major lending banks for robosigning and home loan fraud.
Rather than go to court, Bank of America, Wells Fargo, Chase, Ally and Citibank agreed to settle.
Bank of America agreed to give Nevada homeowners $750 million in help, the majority of which came in short sales.
This means homeowners lost their houses while banks got checks from their insurance companies.
Despite the vast, and yet unknown, number of Nevadans still in need of assistance to stay in their homes, Bank of America announced that its calculations shows it has nearly completed its legal obligation to help.
"How I take that is, they need to tell their shareholders something," Cortez Masto said. "That was a statement crafted for their shareholders."
Bank of America claimed that even after next spring, they will still help eligible homeowners.
Reporter: "Do you believe them?"
"I hope that's true," Cortez Masto said. "I can tell you just in my past experience with Bank of America. Listen, the fact that I had to bring litigation against them, that answers your question."
Cortez Masto said she believes that although the settlement money won't get to everybody who needs it, new laws that banks have to follow will prevent future foreclosure abuses.
"We are still looking at the conduct they engage in when they're talking to our homeowners," she said. "If we have the ability to take additional action, based on the evidence and the facts before us from complaints from homeowners, we will do just that. It's not over for us."
But when it comes to financial assistance from banks, Nevadans might soon have to rely on something banks aren't known for: generosity.
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