Olympia – The Consumer Services Division of the Washington State Department of Financial Institutions (DFI) has reached a settlement with Ocwen Loan Servicing, LLC (OLS) to end its practice of using offshore unlicensed affiliate companies to perform residential mortgage loan servicing activities for Washington loans. OLS is a company currently licensed with DFI as a Consumer Loan Company that is authorized to service residential mortgage loans made to Washington residents. However, OLS, utilized unlicensed affiliate companies in the Philippines and India to perform activities considered residential mortgage loan servicing under Washington law.
Washington’s Consumer Loan Act specifically requires that companies servicing residential mortgage loans be licensed as Consumer Loan Companies. Under the Consent Order entered to resolve the issue, the DFI found that Ocwen Financial Solutions Private Limited (OFSPL), operating out of a location in India, and Ocwen Business Solutions, Inc. (OBS), operating out of a location in the Philippines, have conducted “servicing” activities on Washington residential mortgage loans. The DFI found that OFSPL engaged in such unlicensed servicing activities dating back to Aug. 1, 2010, and OBS’s unlicensed activity was at least between June 2013 and August 2015.
Under the settlement, OLS agreed to pay a $900,000 fine and agreed to only service Washington residential mortgage loans through licensed entities going forward.
“Ocwen cooperated in our investigation and quickly made changes to its operations to address our concerns around unlicensed activity,” DFI’s Director of Consumer Services, Charles Clark, noted.
For licensed loan servicers, the DFI conducts regular examinations to make sure such companies are operating in compliance with state and federal law.
“Our licensing requirement to engage in servicing activities is a significant protection for borrowers trying to pay off their homes,” DFI Director Scott Jarvis added. “It is critical that Washington residents' mortgage payments are properly handled and that loan modifications and foreclosures are in compliance with the law, and licensure allows us to closely monitor these activities.”