'We Will Find You and We Will Punish You'
There was tough talk out of Washington yesterday aimed at loan-modification scammers. Attorney General Eric Holder had this message for people and companies ripping off homeowners on the verge of foreclosure: "If you prey on vulnerable homeowners with fraudulent mortgage schemes, or discriminate against borrowers, we will find you and we will punish you."
He also addressed fairness in loan modifications being made by legitimate lenders. Holder said the Justice Department is "hearing increasing concerns that not all distressed borrowers are receiving the same opportunities for loan modifications. We are also hearing that the terms and fees for such modifications are not being made available on a non-discriminatory basis."
He was joined by seemingly everyone in Washington who wasn't touring Europe with President Obama, including the heads of Treasury, HUD and the Federal Trade Commission, plus the Illinois attorney general, in announcing plans to coordinate efforts and crack down on loan-modification scammers.
From Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan: "The 24 lawsuits I have filed prove foreclosure rescue operators don't help. They don't call your lender, they don't modify your loan, and they don't represent you in court if you're in foreclosure. All they do is take your money."
For real help, free of charge, look for reputable mortgage counselors through the government's Making Home Affordable Web site. Or call the Homeowner's HOPE Hotline at 888-995-4673.
If you have experience with people pitching questionable loan-mods, write a quick comment below and share your experience with the rest of us!
April 7, 2009; 6:00 AM ET
Categories: Foreclosure | Tags: discrimination, foreclosure, foreclosure prevention, loan modifications, mortgage, mortgage fraud, scam
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