Industry NewsMortgage

Regulators crack down on mortgage rescue firms

Deceptive claims, advertising alleged

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Five companies accused of using deceptive practices to market mortgage modification and foreclosure rescue services have been hit with enforcement actions by the Federal Trade Commission, and warning letters have gone out to 71 others.The companies often use copycat names or look-alike Web sites in an attempt to appear to be a nonprofit company or government entity, make deceptive claims about their success rates, and charge up-front fees, the FTC said in a press release.The FTC announced it had filed complaints seeking restraining orders against three companies -- Federal Loan Modifications Law Center, Bailout.hud-gov.us, and Home Assure (doing business as Expert Foreclosure). The FTC has also obtained temporary restraining orders and frozen the assets of two other companies, Hope Now Modifications LLC, and New Hope Property LLC, doing business as New Hope Modifications.Another 71 companies are getting warning letters informing them that their ads may violate federal law. The Internet...