My father recently passed away and I am the executrix of his estate. He had both a mortgage and home equity line of credit with Sovereign bank. His property was up for sale and I was thrilled to learn I had a motivated buyer who wanted to close in early March.
We used a local settlement service to handle the closing. I provided the settlement officer with all the necessary documentation: short certificate and death certificate as well as account numbers. She faxed all this info to Sovereign several days before closing, requesting payoff amounts. When I arrived at closing I was told Sovereign had still not responded to her request.
She called from closing, explaining to customer service that we were waiting on the payoff amounts before we could proceed. The representative then claimed the documents had not been received, so the settlement officer faxed them for a second time. Shortly thereafter, the payoff for the mortgage came, but not the heloc.
I was forced to go to closing without the payoff amount, so that no proceeds could be issued from the sale. It has now been a week. I am generally patient, so I gave it time. Friday I called to find out if any progress had been made. I was told by customer service that nothing was being done in the way of a payoff statement because there was no documentation verifying me as executrix. I told the woman that I was there when the documents were faxed the 2nd time.
I was very abruptly put on hold. After what seemed like quite a while the woman returned and told me that it is my fault, because I need to take my documents to a branch and present them in person to a manager in order to request a payoff statement. If that were necessary why wasn't I told to do that a week ago? And why was I able to get the mortgage payoff by faxing the documents? Meanwhile I still haven't received proceeds of the sale and the heloc is accruing interest every day that the bank gives me the run-around about the payoff.
I have contacted the local branch manager and he promises to take care of the matter "promptly", but I must say, I am skeptical at this point. I have been very patient, as I feel that this is more a service I'm completing for my father, and so the money isn't really mine. But I can't help but think how angry I'd be if the situation were different and this were my husband and I selling our home. I'd hate to see someone else go through all this nonsense at a time when they really needed the money from their homesale. I feel these people are either woefully incompetent or purposely difficult. Either way, it's inexcusable.