Maryland Attorney General Brian E. Frosh announced April 16, in cooperation with the commissioner of financial regulation, a settlement agreement with Compulink Corporation, DBA Celink, resolving allegations that it charged homeowners illegal inspection fees.
Celink is a non-bank servicer of reverse mortgage loans and arranges for inspectors to visit properties in default on their mortgage loans, according to a press release.
Although Maryland law prohibits passing the cost of inspections onto homeowners, the Consumer Protection Division alleged that Celink continued to charge the inspection costs to homeowners until January 2017, according to Frosh’s press release. Celink has refunded or credited homeowners more than $43,900 in prohibited inspection fees.
“Celink’s property inspections serve the interests of the lenders, not the homeowners,” Frosh (D) said in the release. “Our settlement puts an end to the practice of charging homeowners the cost of inspections, and returns the money to homeowners that they were wrongfully charged.”
Under the terms of the settlement, Celink agrees to comply with Maryland law with respect to inspection fees, to refund inspection fees to the extent that they have not been refunded and to pay $50,000 in penalties and $5,000 in costs.
In addition to the settlement, the commissioner of financial regulation, which licenses Celink, received similar assurances from the company that it had updated its procedures and ceased charging these fees.
Consumers with questions about this settlement should contact the Consumer Protection Division at 410-528-8662 or toll-free at 888-743-0023.