NEWARK, N.J. (Legal Newsline) - Notices of violation have been sent by the Division of Consumer Affairs to nine New Jersey-based companies for allegedly offering loan modification services to consumers without being licensed.
The nine companies were cited for violations of the state's Consumer Fraud Act by allegedly engaging in unconscionable commercial practices, including offering to negotiate mortgage modifications without carrying a Department of Banking and Insurance license as a debt adjuster.
"Homeowners looking for mortgage help instead are becoming victims of fraud, and risk ending up in a worse situation," state Attorney General Anne Milgram said.
"We want these nine unlicensed debt-adjuster companies to reimburse consumers for fees paid and to comply with our laws."
Each of the nine companies has been assessed a $5,000 civil penalty as well as consumer restitution. Companies receiving the notices of violation are Affordable Finance, LLC, of Colts Neck, for consumer restitution of $1,695; Best Response Loan Modification, doing business as Best Response Loan Mod, of Parlin; EZ Financial Solutions, LLC, of Englishtown, for $1,000 in consumer restitution; Home Rescue Today.Com, LLC, doing business as Financial Solutions, of Bridgewater and Freehold, for $2,495 in consumer restitution; Legal Loan Modifications, Inc., of Cherry Hill, for $2,995 in consumer restitution; Premier Services & Consultants, LLC,of Mt. Laurel and Sicklerville, for $1,706.91 in consumer restitution; RJD Consulting, Inc., doing business as RJD Mortgage, of Neptune, for $2,495 in restitution; United Global Services, LLC, of Elizabeth and Rutherford, for $3,067 in consumer restitution; and Xtra-Financial, LLC, of Cherry Hill, for $3,786 in consumer restitution.
Each company has the option to not contest the charges within the Notice of Violation and to pay the civil penalty and restitution within 15 days. Each company is also given the opportunity to contest the charges and request an administrative hearing.
In addition to the notices, the Division of Consumer Affairs also filed suit against United Credit Adjusters, based in Lakewood, and obtained a court judgment permanently barring the company from performing credit counseling, credit repair or debt adjuster work in New Jersey.
The Notices of Violation come as part of the Office of the Attorney General and the Division of Consumer Affairs' on-going series of action meant to protect consumers during the current mortgage and home foreclosure crisis. To date, 11 civil lawsuits have been filed against 102 defendants alleged to have committed mortgage or foreclosure fraud against consumers.