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Met Mortgage starts mailing out $38 million payback

Tue., Sept. 12, 2006, 12:10 p.m.

At last.

After 31 months, 12,500 court filings and a full-scale federal accounting fraud investigation, Metropolitan Mortgage & Securities Co. is mailing checks today to the thousands of people burned by Spokane’s worst corporate financial failure.

The initial payback is a bit higher than first estimated. Metropolitan noteholders are collecting about 9 cents on the dollar. Investors in Metropolitan sister company Summit Securities Inc. will receive about 6 cents on the dollar.

Maggie Lyons, who oversees the trusts set up to repay investors, said the disbursement is about 2 cents higher than first thought and is the first of what she expects to be several over the next few years.

“We’re just happy to be able to mail these checks,” she said Monday.

She anticipates another round of checks will be mailed next year as money from legal settlements and business deals is collected.

Each mass mailing is a $20,000 undertaking by the time the company writes checks, wires money, makes photocopies and pays postage.

Metropolitan Mortgage & Securities Co. is sending out 7,139 checks worth a total of $38 million to its creditors. Summit Securities is issuing 2,661 checks worth $9 million. Many checks will be sent to brokerages that manage investments for creditors. People should receive statements from their brokers detailing the deposits. The companies’ bankruptcy rendered their preferred stock worthless.

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