Illinois AG Continues on Reverse Mortgage Protection Campaign

Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan met with local senior organizations last week in an event to target financial fraud of elderly victims. Among the complains AG Madigan says her office receives are a growing number of reverse mortgages, local news outlets reported following the event.

“Madigan says her office is getting more and more consumer complaints about reverse mortgages,” Chicago’s local ABC news reported Thursday.

“We’re very concerned and we will continue to bring lawsuits, we will continue to mediate complaints and we will continue I think most importantly educate seniors on that issue,” Madigan reportedly said.

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A report from Madigan’s office released in January compiles all consumer complaints received over the course of the year with “Consumer Debt,” including mortgage lending, ranking the number one category with 5,878 complaints. Last year, Madigan’s office filed lawsuits against two reverse mortgage lenders for deceptive marketing practices.

Also present at the event was the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s Skip Humphrey, who leads the bureau’s Office of Older Americans. Humphrey reported that the agency is doing a review of reverse mortgages currently at the request of Congress, the findings of which will be shared with law enforcement agencies nationwide. CFPB representatives have confirmed to RMD that the study is under way and will be completed by a July 21 deadline.

Read the ABC News report.

Written by Elizabeth Ecker

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  • >>”Madigan says her office is getting more and more consumer complaints about reverse mortgages,”

    It’d be nice if she would be more specific – what are the consumers complaining about?

    • Raymond,

      This should be our battle cry.  It is these nonspecific alleged complaints which hurt our image the most.
      Our detractors are right when they say that government agencies are reporting that complaints are growing.  The trouble is are they legitimate complaints against the products (or the industry) or just complaints generally.

      For example, to say that a borrower would have never have gotten a reverse mortgage if she/he had known the housing market would be in this much trouble is not a complaint about reverse mortgages but about the housing market and its impact to the value of her/his home equity.  I have never had a reverse mortgage and I have that same complaint.

      One wonders what the motive of the AG is.  If there are real identifiable problems related to reverse mortgages, we all would like to know what they are.

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