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Consumers receive restitution in mortgage services scheme
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Five hundred consumers who overpaid for mortgage services will get restitution under a settlement reached with the state of Connecticut.

A law firm, a mortgage company and a real estate broker have agreed to pay 700 thousand dollars in restitution and fines to settle allegations they engaged in an illegal kickbacks scheme. The money comes from Reiner, Reiner and Bendett of Farmington, Absolute Mortgage Solutions of East Hartford, and Access America of Wethersfield. Reiner is accused of concealing kickbacks which it paid in return for receiving title insurance business from Absolute and Access. Reiner is also alleged to have overcharged consumers in order to cover the cost of the inducements.

Attorney General Richard Blumenthal: "This settlement should send a very serious and significant message to the real estate industry. We will not tolerate improper or illegal practices, particularly at a time when the real estate industry is so challenged."

Each of the 500 consumers will receive around 200 dollars in the New Year to compensate for overcharging. 425 thousand dollars from the settlement will to the state’s general fund, and some cash will pay for consumer education programs.