As many of my readers are aware I have been making a full court press on the Southeastern Asset Services (SEAS) allegations perking throughout the Contractor Community. A simple search through LinkedIn shows that allegations of failure to pay and lack of communications rank at the top of the list of Contractors against SEAS. Preservation Talk, Contractor Talk, Facebook and half a dozen others all have similar threads. For the record, I have never worked for SEAS.
The day before yesterday, we received the below internal communication from Altisource allegedly to SEAS,
I just spoke with [xxxx] & [xxx] advised that he is owed $[xxxx] (in back charges) by your company. Now though I’m not sure what back charges are between you & your Subs, I will ask that you bring this issue to closure with him ASAP.
We reached out to the author of this email and included, in part, some of our concerns over SEAS [parts of this have been redacted],
I am doing a rather large Article on SEAS over the next week or so which is going to document a pattern and practice of failure to pay Contractors tens of thousands of dollars over the past several years.
Robert and his merry band of misfits have been unwise enough (or kind enough in my case as I am a media outlet) to state the following in LinkedIn with respect to Contractors whom feel they are owed money for performing services upon Work Orders generated by and through your Firm [Altisource] amongst others,
“If you were as good of a contractor as you all claim to be then you wouldn’t have time to search around the internet talking badly about a company being late with one or two payments, as you would all be busy in the field working.”
This is the post in a Group that I own, but you will really want to drill down here:
The entirety of my email to the individual is not really material. What is material is that Robert Bridges, Associate General Counsel for Altisource Luxembourg, did reach out. He left a message on my phone; before anyone raises hell as to why I didn’t answer, I still cut grass and scrub toilets! I am a one man show folks. Anyway, Mr. Bridges was very cordial and I am hopeful that my call in to him will be fielded between now and Monday. While I will not relate the entirety of the conversation, I will say that I am cautiously optimistic that Altisource will actively engage SEAS to determine whether or not their are issues pertaining to their and Contractor’s interests with specificity to the Accounts SEAS holds on Altisource’s behalf.
Here’s the deal: First, there is a unique lynchpin to this Article. Brandon Pribble, Sr., of Virginia, originally contacted us concerning what he considered to be unfair back billing. SEAS was unresponsive so Pribble took action; Pribble did what most Contractors do not he contacted Foreclosurepedia. Altisource engaged his situation and were stonewalled by SEAS as evidenced by both the lack of explanation by SEAS to Altisource or Pribble and/or lack of payment.
What Altisource was not aware of, at least I believe, is that there has been a recalcitrant position taken towards Contractors by SEAS. At minimum, SEAS has been working the clock with respect to paying Contractors. Should a transparent and full audit take place, I honestly believe that the worst case scenario will prove to be the end of SEAS as we know it today.
What many people fail to understand is that when people use electronic means to cross state lines to further an artifice it may become a federal issue. What is SEAS position? Well, I don’t know. This is all that has been generated to date,
On 08/05/13 8:52 PM, Paul Williams wrote:
This is FYI and a courtesy as it will appear in here when I am done. I am investigating a Complaint registered against SEAS by a Brandon Pribble. Your owner is aware of it I believe. Regardless, he states that your firm back billed him $500 upon a separate property upon which he performed services for failing to complete a bid after SEAS deactivated him. This is one of 14 I am currently looking into and simply chose his first as he is in Virginia and I am in Tennessee. The Appalachians bind people closely as mountain folk are that way.
I am neither judge nor jury; my readership fulfill that role quite well. If your firm wishes to opine they are more than welcome to submit a written statement to Foreclosurepedia.
I am reaching out to you today in regards to the article you are writing. I had a conversation with the CEO of SEAS, Robert Kapeluch, and he or a SEAS representative would like to arrange a face to face meeting with you. Please let me know if you are interested. We look forward to hearing from you soon.
Now, I had stated a written statement would suffice. Rarely do I have people want to cross multiple state lines to meet me. I accordingly asked whether or not that meeting would be armed or unarmed. Many may find that to be offensive. After you have pulled several Tours overseas and live in rural Tennessee; when you are investigating a Story which could possibly lead to the end of a Company, you never take anything for granted.
So, where does it all go? First, I believe that Altisource does not want any issues with their properties nor do they want to be involved with any type of Labor Grievance. Altisource has a sterling record and most of the Contractors I spoke with working directly for them had nothing bad to say with respect to Altisource. I believe that Counselor / Barrister Bridges is honest when he stated he would keep Foreclosurepedia up-to-date on “…the matter.” Does this mean that Pribble and the other anonymous Contractors will be receiving any Payments for services rendered? I do not know. I do not physically possess SEAS’ books nor have I debriefed any of SEAS’ staff. Perhaps I will be privy to the postmortem and perhaps not.
At the end of the day two things stand out: First, Altisource is only one of multiple SEAS Clients whom may ultimately have to cross this bridge. That is a Story unto itself. The larger Story, though, is that SEAS is yet another National Association of Mortgage Field Services (NAMFS) Member whom is attempting to weather a storm of scrutiny. My question is this: At what point in time will Membership in NAMFS become more of a liability than benefit? I truly believe that NAMFS is capable of waking up from its Conference Induced slumber and shaking off the problematic issues under Section 3.6 like a bad case of fleas. Foreclosurepedia requested that a Grievance Committee be established to address these issues. To date? Silence.