Troubles mount for mortgage company slapped with FTC complaint

by Kelli Rogers08 Jul 2013
A home lending company settling a multi-million dollar FTC complaint could be facing further trouble as accusations against it mount.
Mortgage Investors, the home lending company owned by Florida business magnate Bill Edwards, is being sued by the federal government and faces a complaint from the state Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services that could result in further financial penalties.
The Federal Trade Commission announced its $7.5m settlement with Mortgage Investors last week, on the 10th anniversary of the federal Do Not Call registry, after filing a complaint accusing the company of calling 5.4 million numbers on the list to offer mortgage refinancing.
The company also suggested to consumers that they could get no-cost fixed-rate mortgages, even though it only offers adjustable rate mortgages, the FTC alleged in its complaint.
The settlement comes as Mortgage Investors prepares for a federal lawsuit claiming several banks charged hidden fees to veterans for loans backed by the U.S. Department of Veteran's Affairs.
Last year, six banks agreed to settle claims totaling $161.7m from a lawsuit claiming they charged hidden fees to veterans in violation of an agreement with the Department of Veteran's Affairs, which backs the loans.
Mortgage Investors and Wells Fargo sought to dismiss the case, filed by the federal government; but last November, a judge denied their motions, and attorneys are preparing to go to court.


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