For many Americans, purchasing and owning a home is one of the most important pursuits in life. In fact, even as the economy continues to recover, 56 percent of Americans own a home, and 25 percent aren’t currently homeowners but plan to become so in the next 10 years, according to an April 2013 Gallup article.
Although homeownership is a prized status for many, it does have obstacles, which may include illegal lender practices, unauthorized fees, unacceptable interest rates or other breaches of the law. If you are a homeowner in Chicago, it is important to understand the following common situations, as well as how a mortgage litigation attorney can help.
A wave of foreclosures swept the nation in 2007, with a CNN article reporting that 405,000 households lost their homes within that year alone. Foreclosure is still a fear of many American homeowners.
In some cases, the foreclosure action may go against legal practices, therefore becoming a “wrongful foreclosure.” A wrongful foreclosure can occur if the mortgage lender fails to communicate with the owner, doesn’t discuss alternatives to foreclosure, breaches a modification agreement or provides misleading notices on the action. A mortgage litigation attorney can identify these practices quickly and use them to your advantage.
Breach of Laws by Lenders
Mortgage lenders are integral in the home-buying process because they provide the funds necessary to complete the transaction. Because of their power in the process, some mortgage lenders choose to employ illegal or improper tactics that harm the homeowner.
Some of these tactics may include:
- over-escrowing accounts;
- assessing unauthorized fees or fines that were not discussed previously;
- adjusting interest rates on loans inappropriately or against applicable federal or state laws; and
- misleading potential home buyers into entering into a loan to help the mortgage lender see an eventual profit (this is commonly referred to as “predatory lending”).
Though this is not an exhaustive list, these tactics may be reason to initiate a lawsuit against the lender in order to protect your rights as a homeowner.
Unfortunately, some mortgage lenders discriminate against potential homebuyers when offering a loan. This action though is illegal under the federal Fair Housing Act.
The Act specifically protects consumers by prohibiting discrimination in real-estate transactions based on:
- national origin
- handicap or
- familial status.
Furthermore, the Equal Credit Opportunity Act protects consumers from the same discrimination in credit transactions.
A Mortgage Litigation Attorney Can Help
Of course, there are a variety of ways a mortgage lender may take advantage of a homebuyer when offering loans or other services. If you have been the victim of a wrongful foreclosure, discrimination or any other improper actions taken by a mortgage lender, contact the mortgage litigation attorneys at EV Has, LLC today. We can examine the specifics of your mortgage contract, determine if you have been the victim of illegal practices and begin filing a lawsuit to help protect your rights. Click Here to email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us at (312) 775-0980 today for a free evaluation.