LOS ANGELES (CBS) — Does the latest twist in the national “Occupy” movement pose a threat to one of the largest banks in the U.S.?

In an email, Bank of America warned its field agents to be prepared for protests as at least two Southland families announced plans on Tuesday to actively “reclaim” homes that were lost to foreclosure.

A copy of an internal memorandum addressed to “all BAC Field Services suppliers” dated December 5 appears to warn agents not to engage with protesters and to ensure that any BAC-owned vacant properties are secured.

The memo refers to a new national campaign called “Occupy Our Homes” — a spin-off of the “Occupy Wall Street” movement — as a “potential nationwide protest that could impact our industry”.

In addition to Los Angeles, as many as 20 cities are schedule to host an “Occupy Our Homes” event across the state and nation including Oakland, San Francisco, San Diego, Atlanta, Chicago, Minneapolis, Cleveland, Denver, Detroit, St. Louis and Seattle.

A Riverside man identified only as “Art” and his family along with a cancer survivor and her South Gate family are expected to announce plans to “reclaim” their former home, which was repossessed when the resident went delinquent on his mortgage.

“Art” lost his house six months ago in a foreclosure and now intends to engage in a protest that may involve camping out on the property, according to supporters.

Sponsors of the campaign include Occupy Wall Street, ReFund California, The New Bottom Line, the Alliance for Californians for Community Empowerment, Take Back the Land, SOUL and New York Communities for Change.

According to organizers, Art purchased the property in 2003 but fell behind on his mortgage payments in 2009 after business at the Orange County factory in which he’s employed as a supervisor plummeted.

He applied for a loan modification to pare down his monthly principal and interest costs, but supporters allege Chase bank refused to accept the proposed terms and initiated foreclosure proceedings, resulting in the man and his family vacating the home and relocating to Orange County.

The house remains vacant.

In an written statement, Bank of America said the precautionary email is nothing more than “standard operating procedure” for all third party contractors.

“It is the bank’s policy to protect and secure our properties for the investors who own them,” the statement read. “Bank of America is committed to helping our customers with home retention solutions and other foreclosure avoidance program. Foreclosure is always our last resort.”

(©2011 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)

Comments (20)
  1. Debra R Steinman says:

    Anyone who ‘breaks the law’ belongs in Jail, and that includes the Occupy movement!

    1. REALLY? says:

      Exactly Debra! If you got into paying a mortgage for a home and lost your job it is YOUR tough position, not anyone elses and not the bank’s. If you took on a loan that is too much for you to handle or depended on you being employed 24/7 without a plan as to what you would to if you became unemployed it is YOUR problem. YOU should have thought about what you were getting into. I’m tired of all these cry babies.

    2. charlie says:

      But does it include the big banks?
      Why do they get a bail out and we don’t


      1. Ray says:

        Then your beef should be with the Government NOT the Banks most banks did not need the money the government made them take the money and most os the money has been paid back.

    3. Johnny Popp says:

      I sure am Glad to see that You’re doing so well Debra!
      Happy for You that You have a Job that You Like, Pays Sooo well that You don’t feel the Crunch at the Super Market or Gas Station and that You are Sooo Filthy Rich that You don’t Have to concern Yourself with how you’ll cope with Retirement!

      1. Astonished says:

        Who the heck gets to retire! Thanks to the economy, I may be working until I die just to pay off my bills.

      2. Ray says:

        Johnny I don’t know your problem but I have been looking for work for two years I’m 62 now and quit looking for the government is the problem they have made it impossible for business to make a profit so they move to other states or even other countries and then they blame the companies the democrats only know two things raise taxes and blame business for leaving the country. The Democrats are the problem ask yourself one thing are you better off than you were 3 years ago and if your answer no then you need to do something about it.

      3. Sylvia says:

        fgrofxceoirl on December 11, 2010 Did I hear him correctly? He 2.5 hours of cardio a day? That sounds like a lot.

  2. UnderarmourModel5221 says:

    The banks should be held accountable …..auto signer … shipping your confidential paper work to a small hut in the philipines. i agree that violators belong in jail. The banks should be locked up to 23 and 1 max

    1. Ray says:

      The banks did not twist your arm to sign a contract you promised to repay a loan now either pay or get out. hat happens when you get married you sign a contract then you get divorced she gets the house you get the shaft.

  3. Sage Advice says:

    So afterall, they really ARE just a bunch of freeloading squatters. proving themselves to be losers, one wasted day and millions of wasted tax-dollars, at a time.

  4. Jim says:

    Those who think our economy and the world economy is in a recovery…Wake Up! There are still hundred thousand or more homes going thru shortsale or foreclosure processing. It is going to be a long…while before we see recovery.

    1. Astonished says:

      Does it really do the bank any good to have property that garners no income, as opposed to allowing someone to modify their loan so that can continue paying it off?

      I know, stupid question, the banks just write these properties off as bad investments on their business taxes.

      1. t says:

        and when its another write off- in the very end result ….guess who pays for it ? US !

  5. Tyler says:

    Its a sad situation what is going on with the banks. People should do everything they can to avoid foreclosure. Loan modification, Short Sale etc… their are options to foreclosure. If you are facing foreclosure you should visit http://Ezforeclosurehelp.com There is a lot of free information and they helped me short sell my home.

  6. Ossie says:

    How much interest did the bank make on the first several years of the loan? The mortgage payments during the first several years of a mortgage get applied mostly towad interest. Refinancing that loan to a lower rate would give the bank several more years of primarily interest payments, which would, at some point, equal the lesser percentage of interest paid on the old mortgage payment on the higher principal. Dumping the foreclosed upon homes upon the market simply lowers the overall property values and incurs higher employee expenses to maintain and sell the REO. The new buyer of the foreclosed home will pay a lower price for the home at the currently available, lower interest rate, meaning less interest income for the bank, so why not modify the origianl mortgage-holder’s loan and at least reduce the rate of property value declines.

    Is HMDA tracking whom gets foreclosed upon, and whom gets government assistance to keep their homes? They tracked who got the loans in the first place, didn’t they?

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    2. Cookie says:

      Ackerman and Zionists in Congress got kkbackcis for giving Madoff a country club prison sentence.

  7. Sam says:

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