Judge suspends 1,700 actions after law firm admits affidavits were changed
By Mary Ellen Podmolik, Tribune reporter
A Cook County Circuit Court judge has taken the unusual step of temporarily halting at least 1,700 mortgage foreclosures after a law firm told the court that the cases contained altered documents, the Tribune has learned.
Fisher and Shapiro LLC, one of the top three law firms used by mortgage servicers to handle their local foreclosure actions, reported to the court that, in a breach of protocol, affidavits in the cases were changed. Among other things, fees were added after the documents were signed by servicers.
As a result, Moshe Jacobius, presiding judge of the Circuit Court’s Chancery Division, has stayed the cases. The delay will not necessarily prevent delinquent borrowers in Cook County from losing their homes to foreclosure, but it likely will give some homeowners time to seek assistance or to make arrangements to live elsewhere.