The home buying process is complicated and expensive enough without mortgage servicers and real estate brokers tacking on illegal and costly fees. To that end, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has ordered Prospect Mortgage and three other companies to pay more than $5 million to settle allegations they participated in an illegal kickback scheme. [More]
When a nursing home receives Medicare funds, it’s supposed to use that money for patient care, and it’s actually a felony offense under the Medicare and Medicaid Patient Protection Act to use that money to pay kickbacks to physicians for referring patients. In a record settlement for this sort of case, a the operator of a network of Florida nursing homes will pay $17 million to close the books on allegations it ran this sort of kickback scheme for seven years. [More]
Federal law prohibits giving or receiving kickbacks in exchange for a referral of business related to a real-estate-settlement service, but for four years a now-defunct title company in Maryland provide cash, marketing materials and consumer information in exchange for referrals. And now the banks have agreed to pay more than $35 million — including $11.1 million in redress to affected consumers — for their sins. [More]
The CFPB has ordered a Missouri mortgage lender to pay over $81,000 related to an illegal kickback scheme.
Two Pennsylvania judges were sued in federal court this past week for allegedly taking $2.6 million in kickbacks from private juvenile detention facilities. In exchange, they sentenced hundreds of youths to the centers over the past 5 years. One of the judges, Mark Ciavarella, sent 1 out of 4 defendants to the centers, compared to a statewide rate of 1 in 10.
Another electronics store was taken for millions by an invoice-fixing scheme: a buyer for Best Buy and a vendor have been charged with overcharging Best Buy $31 million over four years.
Don’t doubt the power of the unidentified tipster: Home Depot recently sacked four corrupt purchasing managers accused by a whistleblower of taking bribes. In exchange for the payoffs, the managers arranged for Home Depot to stock tiles and other flooring products from Asia. From the AP:
Eight universities agreed to stop accepting kickbacks from Citibank for private loan referrals, and five agreed to refund a total of $3.27 mil to thousands of students, following an investigation by NY Attorney General Andrew Cuomo (pictured).