Friday, July 03, 2015

Notorious Foreclosure Trash-Out Contractor Agrees To Cough Up $1 Million To Settle State AG Lawsuit Accusing It Of Illegally Breaking In & Locking Out Illinois Residents From Their Homes Before Foreclosures Were Finalized

From the Office of the Illinois Attorney General:
  • Attorney General Lisa Madigan [] announced a $1 million settlement with Safeguard Properties LLC over allegations the company illegally locked Illinois residents out of their homes before a foreclosure was finalized.

    Under Madigan’s settlement, Safeguard, a Delaware corporation based in Ohio, must pay $1 million, nearly all of which will be paid to Illinois residents who filed complaints over Safeguard’s practices. Safeguard must also follow 40 operating standards in conducting inspections and other services relating to Illinois properties set by Madigan’s office to ensure homeowners’ rights are protected.

    Safeguard is the largest company in the country hired by mortgage lenders to determine whether homeowners in default or facing foreclosure are living in their homes. If a property is deemed vacant, Safeguard is responsible for securing and maintaining the property to ensure it does not lose value after it is foreclosed. Madigan alleged in a 2013 lawsuit that Safeguard wrongly deemed homes vacant, instructing its contractors to shut off utilities, change the properties’ locks and illegally remove residents’ personal belongings even though they actively remained in their homes.

    “When I filed this lawsuit, Safeguard was illegally breaking and entering into homes, often removing residents’ belongings and locking people out,” Madigan said. “I am pleased that this settlement will provide some compensation for the nightmare they caused these homeowners and that it will ensure that Safeguard does not employ these brazen practices moving forward.”
For the rest of the Illinois AG press release, see Madigan Announces $1 Million Settlement With Safeguard Properties (Homeowners Illegally Locked Out of Homes to Receive Restitution).

Go here for earlier posts on the notorious trash-out contractor, Safeguard Properties.

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