A NYT article reporting on the fact that banks are proving much more willing to forgive debt on second mortgages than first mortgages highlighted the case of Danette Rivera, a 38-year-old single mother, who had $115,000 of second mortgage debt forgiven and is facing foreclosure by Bank of America over unpaid debt on a first mortgage. The piece told readers:
"The bank, citing customer privacy concerns, declined to comment."
It would have been helpful to remind readers that Bank of America has no privacy concerns in discussing its general policy on debt forgiveness. While the bank should rightly have refused to discuss the specifics of Ms. Rivera's case, it certainly could have discussed its normal practice in dealing with underwater homeowners in cases where they hold both the first and second mortgage. (It's not clear whether that was the case in this situation.)