Thursday, October 9, 2014

AG Sues Firm for Its Role in Mortgage Rescue Scheme

New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman has sued a Brooklyn law firm and its partner for allegedly participating in a fraudulent mortgage rescue scheme. The suit was filed Wednesday against Gennady Litvin and two firms where he is a principal partner, Litvin Law Firm in Brooklyn and Litvin, Torrens & Associates in Miami.

Schneiderman v. Litvin Law Firm, 452308/2014, filed in Manhattan Supreme Court (See Petition), alleged the two firms, directly and through third-party marketers, deceptively induced homeowners to pay a $595 or $750 monthly fee by representing the firm would provide a comprehensive legal plan so homeowners could avoid foreclosure or obtain a mortgage modification.

The vulnerable homeowners paid thousands of dollars for services they could have obtained free from qualified non-profit counselors or legal services attorneys, "only to find [the firms] routinely failed to prevent foreclosure or obtain a loan modification as promised," the suit claims. It said many homeowners never spoke to an attorney in their state.

Connecticut, Georgia, and North Carolina have issued cease and desist orders to Litvin Law Firm and Litvin, demanding they stop soliciting for services in those states. The firm and Litvin are banned from doing business in Rhode Island. The Maryland Attorney General's office has charged them with engaging in unfair and deceptive trade practices, according to the suit.

The New York suit, signed by assistant attorney general Mary Alestra, seeks to halt the firm's practices, provide restitution to consumers, and seeks penalties and costs.

Litvin said in a statement yesterday, "We deny all the allegations and will vigorously contest them in court."

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