CFPB takes lender to task over 'illegal kickback scheme'

by Adam Smith17 Jan 2014
The CFPB has taken action against a mortgage lender it has accused of an illegal kickback scheme.

The CFPB has ordered Missouri-based Fidelity Mortgage Corporation, along with its former owner and current president Mark Figert, to pay $81,076 for paying illegal kickbacks to a bank in exchange for referrals.

The Bureau has claimed that Fidelity entered into an agreement with a bank that saw kickbacks paid by Fidelity in exchange for referrals disguised as inflated lease payments for renting office space in the bank. The CFPB will require Fidelity and Figert to pay back all proceeds from business referred as a result of the alleged kickbacks, along with a $54,000 civil penalty.

“Kickbacks harm consumers by hampering fair market competition and by unnecessarily increasing the costs of getting a mortgage,” said CFPB Director Richard Cordray. “The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau will continue to take action against schemes that steer consumers to lenders through unscrupulous and illegal business practices.”