Ohio AG suing foreclosure company after 37 complaints
CLEVELAND (Legal Newsline) - Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine announced a lawsuit on Tuesday against a northeast Ohio foreclosure company, its affiliates and its owner for alleged violations of Ohio consumer laws.
Diversified Real Estate Consultants LLC, a Florida-registered company operating in Ohio, offers mortgage assistance relief services to Ohio consumers. The company, however, allegedly never registered to do business in Ohio.
The company also allegedly charged and accepted fees of $500 to $3,495 from homeowners, promising them better interest rates or reduced monthly mortgage payments while representing a "100 percent money-back guarantee." Consumers allegedly received no help and no refunds.
"This company continually misled consumers," DeWine said. "It charged substantial upfront fees for services and results that it promised but never delivered. It also encouraged homeowners to default on their mortgage loans, falsely stating that defaulting on their loans would help them get a loan modification. Such statements are completely false and caused homeowners to risk losing their homes."
Consumers have filed a total of 37 complaints against DREC since 2009, with 18 unresolved complaints that represent consumer losses of over $36,000.
DeWine's lawsuit also names defendants DREAM Management USA and Precision Processing Solutions International LLC, which are Ohio companies that provided DREC with research, documentation processing and analysis services that were in direct connection with the company's mortgage relief assistance services. The lawsuit also names North Canton, Ohio, resident Daniel J. DePasquale, the owner and operator of DREC, PPSI, and DREAM.
The lawsuit alleges that the defendants violated Ohio's Debt Adjusters Act, the Consumer Sales Practices Act and the Telephone Solicitation Sales Act. DeWine is seeking injunctive relief, a declaratory judgment, civil penalties and full restitution for consumers.