MN Firm Accused of Scamming 200 Homeowners
The Minnesota Department of Commerce on Thursday said that it has charged an Eden Prairie-based company and its owners with defrauding roughly 200 homeowners of about $362,000.
Modify My Loan US, LLC, (MML) is the latest firm to be accused of defrauding Minnesota homeowners through a mortgage modification scam. Several other companies have recently been accused of similar scams; for example, the Commerce Department in March charged a Michigan company for allegedly defrauding 118 Minnesota homeowners of nearly $290,000.
According to the charges against MML, the company began operations in Minnesota without a license, used false advertising, didn't disclose its poor financial condition to customers, charged fees for services that weren't actually provided, and failed to make promised refunds.
The company is accused of charging advance fees of between $2,000 and $2,950 for loan modification services despite the fact that the company's contracts didn't denote that those fees would be charged.
One homeowner allegedly paid an upfront fee of $2,750 and was then given a version of her initial contract in which a previously promised refund had been removed, the Commerce Department said. And although loan modification services weren't performed, she didn't get her money back.
A pre-hearing conference on the case will be held in October. The phone number listed on MML's Web site was not in service on Thursday morning.
“Companies and individuals like these think they can line their pockets with hard-earned money from consumers struggling to stay afloat,” Commerce Commissioner Mike Rothman said in a statement. “Not on my watch. We're going to put a stop to it.”