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SunTrust Gets the All Clear from NMS Monitor

Since 2014, The SunTrust Bank has been monitored by the Office of Mortgage Settlement Oversight for its mortgage servicing standards. On Tuesday, Joseph A. Smith, Jr., Monitor of the National Mortgage Settlement (NMS), reported that the bank had passed the compliance metrics tested during the first quarter of 2018 and would no longer be required to get tested for its mortgage servicing compliance with the NMS.

However, the bank would continue to remain accountable to the Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection for its servicing standards. “This is my final report on SunTrust. SunTrust will continue to remain accountable to mortgage servicing-related rules issued and enforced by the CFPB,” Smith said in a statement.

On February 9, 2012, by the attorneys general of 49 states and the District of Columbia, the federal government, and five banks and mortgage servicers (Bank of America, Citi, JPMorgan Chase, the ResCap Parties, and Wells Fargo) when they reached an agreement on the National Mortgage Settlement (NMS) that created new servicing standards, provided for relief to distressed homeowners and provided funding for state and federal governments. The NMS was made formal and binding on April 5, 2012, when the United States District Court of the District of Columbia (Court) entered the consent judgments containing the Settlement terms.

Sun Trust entered into a consent agreement on the NMS in September 2014. Under this agreement with the Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection (CFPB) and the 49 states, SunTrust was required to provide $500 million in consumer relief and comply with the NMS servicing standards.

The NMS' report for SunTrust's performance in Q1 2018 indicated that the bank had performed positively on the 34 metrics laid out by the NMS. "These metrics determine whether SunTrust adhered to the 304 servicing standards, or rules, contained in the NMS," the report said.

The NMS defines a failed metric as a potential violation and gives the servicer a chance to fix the root causes of its failure.

This report is also Smith’s final report as Monitor under the NMS. “It’s been an honor and pleasure to work with the dedicated public servants from around the country who served on the NMS Monitoring Committee,” said Smith. “I believe that our work together and with the NMS servicer parties accomplished an important public good. I hope reports like this one have enhanced the public’s trust and confidence in government and the financial system,” Smith said in a statement.

About Author: Radhika Ojha

Radhika Ojha is an independent writer and copy-editor, and a reporter for DS News. She is a graduate of the University of Pune, India, where she received her B.A. in Commerce with a concentration in Accounting and Marketing and an M.A. in Mass Communication. Upon completion of her masters degree, Ojha worked at a national English daily publication in India (The Indian Express) where she was a staff writer in the cultural and arts features section. Ojha, also worked as Principal Correspondent at HT Media Ltd and at Honeywell as an executive in corporate communications. She and her husband currently reside in Houston, Texas.

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