N.C. AG earns TRO

Nick Rees Dec. 4, 2009, 3:48pm


RALEIGH, N.C. (Legal Newsline) - A judge has agreed with North Carolina Attorney General Roy Cooper's request to bar a Kannapolis foreclosure rescue operation from collecting any money from consumers for foreclosure or loan modifications.

Wake County Superior Court Judge Donald Stephens agreed to Cooper's request for the temporary ban against Geoffrey Lamb, doing business as The Lamb Group and US Consumer Solutions, from further offering foreclosure and loan modification services. Cooper is seeking to permanently shut down Lamb's foreclosure rescue business and win consumer refunds and civil penalties.

"Scammers entice struggling homeowners with false promises of lower mortgage payments, then do little or nothing to help them," Cooper said. "We've made it illegal to take money upfront for foreclosure or loan modification help, and we're cracking down on violators."

Lamb, Cooper alleged in his complaint, referred to his firm on its website as a "non-profit foreclosure relief organization" with a "success rate of 97 percent."

Cooper says Lamb's business charged homeowners an up-front fee of up to $1,500. It is illegal under North Carolina law to charge advance fees for foreclosure assistance or loan modifications. Lamb also told homeowners to end contact with their mortgage lenders, then did little to nothing to aid them in saving their homes it is alleged.

Cooper alleges that Lamb promised consumers a full refund if their lender did not offer to rework their loan. The complaint against Lamb alleges he then failed to get loans modified but refused to give them the stated refunds.

Six consumers filed complaints about Lamb with the Consumer Protection Division and nine consumers complained to the Better Business Bureau.

The case is part of the national crackdown on foreclosure rescue and loan modifications brought by 26 federal and state agencies.

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