LaPorte, Ind. - Consumers in a financial pinch trying to keep up on their mortgage payments should not fall prey to unsolicited mortgage rescue offers, according to Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller.
A LaPorte County man fell victim to a foreclosure rescue scam before he realized no work had been done to lower his interest rate and his $1,790 up front payment was gone. Zoeller filed a lawsuit today in LaPorte against California-based Quick Loan Audit and Steven Tirella, an officer of the company, seeking an injunction, restitution and civil penalties.
"By the time a homeowner realizes he or she has been scammed it's often too late to find legitimate and effective assistance to help keep their home," Zoeller said. "If you are approached by any unsolicited mortgage rescue offer it's best to hang-up the phone or toss the message in the trash."
Quick Loan Audit is accused of violating Indiana's consumer protection laws by not registering a $25,000 surety bond with the Attorney General's Office. The lawsuit alleges Quick Loan Audit violated the Credit Services Organization Act, the Mortgage Rescue Protection Act, the Home Loan Practices Act and Deceptive Consumer Sales Act.
In 2011, the Attorney General's Office took action against 59 foreclosure rescue consultants.
Zoeller said homeowners at risk of foreclosure need not pay a large fee to a for-profit company, when advice on avoiding foreclosure is available for free from the Indiana Foreclosure Prevention Network at 1.877.GET.HOPE. Those who believe they have been a victim of a foreclosure consultant scam can file a complaint with the Attorney General's Office by visiting www.indianaconsumer.com or by calling 1.800.382.5516.
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