Las Vegas Sun

September 17, 2014

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Las Vegas company hit with fine for fraudulent home loan modification scheme

The state has levied a $10,000 fine against an unlicensed Las Vegas company for providing home loan modification services that were never delivered.

The state Mortgage Lending Division ordered the National Real Estate Association and its owner, Benjamin Donlon, to stop operating without a license. It directed the company to refund $4,500 to two consumers who hired the association but never got any relief.

The association had been operating as a nonprofit organization, which was exempt from state licensing, but the mortgage division said that status was revoked in May 2010.

The complaint, signed by Commissioner James Westrin, said the company at 3235 S. Eastern Ave. charged one consumer $2,500 for a home loan modification service but that he “never received a loan modification or any mortgage relief …”

In the second case, the homeowner paid $2,000 to get relief from his mortgage. The complaint, filed Tuesday, says Donlon advised the customer to stop making the mortgage payments until the loan negotiations were completed.

As a result of the advice, the homeowner defaulted on his mortgage loan, the state agency said.

Donlon has 20 days to seek a hearing to contest the order. He has 30 days to pay the fine and make the restitution. The division also imposed a $1,170 penalty to cover the cost of the investigation.

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