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NY to sue Wells Fargo, strike deal with Bank of America over mortgages: sources

The logo for Wells Fargo bank is pictured in downtown Los Angeles, California July 17, 2012. REUTERS/Fred Prouser
The logo for Wells Fargo bank is pictured in downtown Los Angeles, California July 17, 2012. REUTERS/Fred Prouser

By Karen Freifeld

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The New York Attorney General plans to sue Wells Fargo & Co on Wednesday over failures to comply with the terms of the $26 billion national mortgage settlement, according to a person familiar with matter.

At the same time, Bank of America Corp confirmed it had separately struck an agreement with New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman over similar types of alleged compliance problems.

Separately, a committee of 14 other states and federal authorities monitoring the settlement are expected to announce agreements with both Bank of America and Wells Fargo to address similar compliance concerns over loan modifications and other issues, people familiar with the matter told Reuters.

Those agreements seek to address complaints from borrowers that banks had not met the terms of the national settlement.

Vickee Adams, a spokeswoman for Wells Fargo, said the bank had not been served a copy of the lawsuit.

She added that the bank believed a "collaborative approach - not protracted litigation or continued threats - offers the best path toward continuing to improve services to borrowers."

Dan Frahm, a spokesman for Bank of America, said: "We're pleased to resolve without litigation the matters brought forward by the New York Attorney General related to loan modifications and other assistance mortgage servicers provide."

He added that the agreement would require the bank to bolster its interactions with the New York Attorney General and home owner advocates.

The two pending actions by Schneiderman come several months after he said he had evidence to suggest the banks had violated the terms of the settlement, which is designed to end mortgage services abuses.

Last year, the country's top banks agreed to provide $26 billion in fines and relief to struggling homeowners.

Schneiderman has claimed his office has documented hundreds of potential violations over the timely processing of mortgage modification applications.

(Reporting by Karen Freifeld; additional reporting to Peter Rudegeair in New York; Writing by Sarah N. Lynch in Washington; Editing by Stephen Coates)

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