Society

Bank Contractors Charged With Illegally Breaking In To Occupied, Foreclosed Homes

| by Khier Casino

Nikki Bailey, a former teacher returning to her home in Logan, W.Va., after she paid a visit to her friend at the hospital on Aug. 6, 2013, found evidence that burglars had broke in – or at least that’s what she thought.

When Bailey walked in, she was told by a couple of repo men that her home was up for foreclosure and everything from the furniture to her belongings were dragged off to a garbage dump.

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“Everything was gone,” Bailey told WSAZ, an area news channel. “Living room furniture, my Marshall diploma, my high school diploma, my pictures -- my history. I was teacher of the year. All of that stuff is gone -- certificates from that. It's all gone.”

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Her home was paid for since 1988, Bailey told Huffington Post’s Logan Banner. So why had they changed the locks and got rid of every single possession in the house? It turns out the repo men were told to go to the wrong address by an unnamed bank company, which misled them in hauling off Bailey’s things out of her home.

According to foreclosure experts, going into other people’s home is illegal if the representatives had not reclaimed it through a foreclosure sale, especially if the home shows signs that it’s being occupied.

The company that has been sued the most is Safeguard Properties LLC, America’s biggest private mortgage field services provider. In a filed lawsuit, state attorney general Lisa Madigan accused Safeguard of using illegal ways of forcing residents out of their homes that being foreclosed on, even though there is legal evidence to prove that people are still living there.

“Safeguard's practice of continually sending its subcontractors to occupied properties, locking legal occupants out of their homes and wrongfully securing occupied homes is deceptive, injurious and oppressive to Illinois consumers," stated in the suit. "Such practices, in some instances, leave the resident-victims homeless. Moreover, these practices often leave the resident-victims missing vital possessions, without running water, and in a continuous state of discomfort and insecurity."