Two years ago, OneWest filed foreclosure papers on the Lakeland, Florida, home of Ossie Lofton, who had taken a reverse mortgage, a loan that supplies cash to elderly homeowners and doesn’t require monthly payments.
After confusion over insurance coverage, a OneWest subsidiary sent Lofton a bill for $423.30. She sent a check for $423. The bank sent another bill, for 30 cents. Lofton, 90, sent a check for 3 cents. In November 2014, the bank foreclosed.
In October, lawyers at the nonprofit Florida Rural Legal Services contested OneWest’s foreclosure and asked the Polk County Circuit Court for a jury trial.
This account has been widely repeated by other news outlets. Senator Jeff Merkley, repeating the anecdote on the Senate floor, says the woman lost her home:
What did OneWest do under Steve Mnuchin’s leadership? They foreclosed on Ossie for 27 cents.
... for that 27 cents, she lost her home.
as does Huffington Post:
Lofton paid a bill to a OneWest subsidiary that was short 30 cents in late 2014, according to Politico. When she was billed for the change, she mistakenly sent a check for 3 cents rather than 30. By November, the bank had taken her home.
However, this tweetstorm alleges that Politico's account of the incident is wrong or misleading. Among other things, he says that the bank filed a foreclosure action, but it was dismissed by the bank when the error came to light, they did not foreclose and the woman did not lose her house; and that the foreclosure action was not brought by OneWest in 2014, but in 2016 by CIT Group (which acquired OneWest before this suit took place in 2016; Mnuchin was the head of OneWest, but was only on the board of CIT Group).
I can't seem to find the court filings he refers to in the tweetstorm.
Is Politico's account of the incident correct? Is Senator Merkley's? If there are errors, what are they? What parts of the story are accurate?