Indiana’s attorney general is providing relief to dozens of victims of real estate and foreclosure-relief scams. Greg Zoeller says payments will come from the Consumer Protection Assistance Fund.
The office says 29 Hoosiers were affected.
Zoeller’s office says the payments total over $70,000, with each victim receiving an amount equal to their loss up to the statutory cap of $3,000. The victims are from Elkhart, Hancock, Lake, LaPorte, Marion, Monroe, Scott and St. Joseph counties.
"When lawsuits against scam artists end in default judgment, it is very difficult to recover victims’ losses," said Zoeller. "The CPAF helps direct money my office does receive for violations of Indiana’s consumer protection laws, to assist victims who’ve been left in the lurch. Real estate and foreclosure scams can be particularly devastating because they often involve large amounts of money, and the victims tend to already be in a tough financial spot."
Zoeller says more than half of the recipients are victims of a real estate scheme by TMJ Foundations Inc. in the Indianapolis-area. The company sold properties it did not own, which left the victims out thousands of dollars. Others were victims of foreclosure-relief fraud and Zoeller says anyone who is facing foreclosure should seek free legal help from Indiana Legal Services.
The CPAF fund was created by the Indiana General Assembly in 2011. Since then, Zoeller’s office has paid out nearly $1.4 million to fraud victims.