CHICAGO (Legal Newsline) – Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan filed a lawsuit on Thursday against a California man who allegedly used deceptive sales tactics in selling home deeds to Illinois consumers.
Neil Camenker of Camarillo, Calif., allegedly violated Illinois law by soliciting consumers to purchase the deeds to their homes for $87 through direct mailings.
The solicitations, sent through Camenker’s Los Angeles-based business, State Record Retrieval Board, allegedly contained inaccurate information about the homeowner’s property and did not inform consumers that their deeds could be purchased for a small fee from the county recorder’s office. These alleged actions were violations of the Illinois Consumer Fraud and Deceptive Business Practices Act.
“Illinois consumers should know they can obtain a copy of their property deed for a nominal cost from their local county recorder’s office,” Madigan said. “Consumers should disregard solicitations seeking large sums of money for copies of their deeds and instead report the incident to local authorities and my office.”
Madigan’s lawsuit seeks to prohibit Camenker from selling record services in Illinois and to void pending contracts with Illinois residents. The lawsuit also ask for restitution for affected consumers.
Additionally, Madigan’s lawsuit seeks to impose a civil penalty on Camenker of $50,000, additional penalties of $50,000 for each violation found to be committed with the intent to defraud and $10,000 for each violation found to be committed against a person 65 years of age or older.