Foreclosure talks may drag on

The first face-to-face meeting between top bank executives and government officials over irregularities in foreclosure procedures may be followed by months of further negotiations, according to a report in the Los Angeles Times.

Attorney Generals of all 50 states and representatives of seven federal agencies are investigating these procedures, which are creating a backlog of foreclosures at many lending institutions. State and federal officials met in Washington, D.C., on March 30 with representatives of the five largest mortgage servicers -- Bank of America, Wells Fargo, JP Morgan, Chase & Co., CitiGroup and Ally Financial Inc. -- to discuss practices such as “robosigned” foreclosure documents, as well as guidelines for the industry going forward.

The two sides have exchanged draft proposals covering new guidelines for foreclosures and mortgage servicing. Banks are looking at a possible $25 billion settlement and might be required to allow homeowners to sell their houses for less than what is owed on their mortgages.

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