Industry News

New England mortgage co. settles kickback investigation

East-West Mortgage agrees to pay $150,000

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The Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. today announced a $150,000 settlement with one of the largest mortgage companies in New England for violations of the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act, known as RESPA. HUD and FDIC found that 1-800-East-West Mortgage solicited and received tickets from certain settlement service providers to Boston Red Sox and New England Patriots events, as well as music concerts and restaurant gift certificates, in exchange for the referral of business. East-West agreed to pay $150,000 to the U.S. Treasury, to stop accepting kickbacks from settlement service providers, and to cooperate with the agencies' ongoing investigation of the closing attorneys, appraisers, title companies and other settlement service providers who provided kickbacks to East-West. RESPA was enacted in 1974 to provide consumers advance disclosures of settlement charges and to prohibit illegal kickbacks and excessive fees in ...