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BofA halts foreclosure sales in 50 states

Bank of America Corp., the nation’s largest bank, said Friday it would stop sales of foreclosed homes in all 50 states as it reviews potential flaws in foreclosure documents.

A week earlier, the company had said it would only stop such sales in the 23 states where foreclosures must be approved by a judge. Missouri was not one of the 23 states where banks had suspended foreclosures; Illinois and Kansas were.

The move comes amid evidence that mortgage company employees or their lawyers signed documents in foreclosure cases without verifying the information in them.

“We will stop foreclosure sales until our assessment has been satisfactorily completed,” company spokesman Dan Frahm said in a statement. “Our ongoing assessment shows the basis for our past foreclosure decisions is accurate.”

Also Friday, PNC Financial Services Group Inc. said it is halting most foreclosures and evictions in 23 states for a month so it can review whether documents it submitted to courts complied with state laws. An official at the Pittsburgh-based bank confirmed the decision on Friday, which was reported earlier by the New York Times.

In addition to PNC and Bank of America, Ally Financial’s GMAC Mortgage unit and JPMorgan Chase & Co. have announced similar moves in the past two weeks.