Pittsburgh Legal Back Talk

Legal topics of interest to lawyers and consumers with a Pittsburgh and Western Pennsylvania focus.

1375 Posts and Counting

Use “Clearboard”, not Plywood to Board Up a Vacant House.

There is a growing trend among mortgage loan servicers who own vacant residential real estate through foreclosure to use a relatively new product called “Clearboard.”

Confession of Judgment and Political Advertising

No. 1,289 The TV advertising on both sides of the Pennsylvania Senatorial race has been an abomination of untruth, half truth and true but irrelevant statements.  So perhaps one more wrong allegation doesn’t matter very much. In fact, some of the claims are so outrageous, that even a child could see through them. Nevertheless,  the […]

From the Archives: Philadelphia’s Mortgage Foreclosure Diversion Program — July 2008.

No. 1,200 In order to celebrate Post No. 1,200, I am reprinting one of the first posts I wrote in this blog, dated July 21, 2008. At the time, the effects of the mortgage bubble collapse were being felt, including in Pittsburgh.  Hundreds of mortgage foreclosure actions were being filed followed by default judgments in […]

Are Loan Servicers Doing a Better Job? One Study of Complaints Suggests That They Are.

A post in DS News, a lender’s publication, states that a study by Black Knight Financial SCFPBervices, using data from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s Complaint Database, suggests that an analysis of the data shows that the industry has made “incredible strides.”

Mortgage Foreclosure: Vukman Update

No. 1,151 BENEFICIAL CONSUMER DISCOUNT COMPANY d/b/a BENEFICIAL MORTGAGE COMPANY OF PENNSYLVANIA v. PAMELA A. VUKMAN, NO. 355 WDA 2014 Another chapter in the continuing saga of Pamela Vukman and Beneficial Consumer Discount Company appeared in the decisions of the Superior Court on April 6, 2015. The prior Vukman decision in the Superior Court was […]

How to Cure Title When a Notice of Sheriff Sale was not Given to a Junior Lienholder.

When notice was omitted to a junior lien holder, the most common means to fix the title defect was to conduct a new sale. Most of the time, however, the junior holder had no interest in purchasing the property.

Mortgage Foreclosure: Superior Court Applies Vukman and Act 70

The Constitutional provision at issue is:

Ҥ 17. Ex post facto laws; impairment of contracts.

No ex post facto law, nor any law impairing the obligation of contracts, or making irrevocable any grant of special privileges or immunities, shall be passed.

Pennsylvania Constitution Article 1, § 17.”

Supreme Court overturns Superior Court in Beneficial v Vukman, holding that a defect in an Act 91 Notice is procedural, not jurisdictional.

In the opinion of the Court, Justice Eakin stated: “Because we determine defective Act 91 notice does not implicate the jurisdiction of the court, the other issues raised need not be addressed and we remand to the trial court without considering them.”


No. 900 In June, Act 70 of 2012 funded the Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency’s (PHFA) Homeowner’s Emergency Mortgage Assistance Program (HEMAP), which had been shut down for a year.  The mailing of Act 91 Notices by lenders to delinquent borrowers had been discontinued, since PHFA was not financially able to accept any new HEMAP applications. This […]

Fifth Third Bank and RESPA

The Post Gazette ran a story today (Saturday, April 7) on a new suit in the U. S. District Court that alleges violations of the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA). In essence, the plaintiffs allege that a subsidiary Fifth Third had a reinsurance contract with the company that provided mortgage insurance in two residential loans. The plaintiffs allege that, without disclosure, Fifth Third gave something of value (the reinsurance contract) to the mortgage insurer in exchange for the selection of the mortgage insurer in that transaction.

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CLIFF TUTTLE has been a Pennsylvania lawyer for over 40 years and (inter alia) is a real estate litigator and legal writer. The posts in this blog are intended to provide general information about legal topics of interest to lawyers and consumers with a Pittsburgh and Western Pennsylvania focus. However, this information does not constitute legal advice and there is no lawyer-client relationship created when you read this blog. You are encouraged to leave comments but be aware that posted comments can be read by others. If you wish to contact me in privacy, please use the Contact Form located immediately below this message. I will reply promptly and in strict confidence.


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