The mortgage industry deals with high-dollar investments in massive quantities. There is a lot of room for error, but there are many different instances in which something will go amiss that is viewed as more than just a mistake during the process.
Some people who are being accused of mortgage fraud might not have ever heard the term before. For those individuals, this is a very scary time because they have to figure out how to address criminal charges with which they aren’t familiar. Here are some important points to know about this type of crime.
Types of mortgage fraud
There are two types of mortgage fraud that can occur. One of these is on the lender side and the other is on the borrower side. While these might seem like they are very different, the results can be the same.
On the borrowing side, the fraud usually comes from lying on the application. Even small omissions or additions can lead to issues. You can’t misstate your income or assets. You can’t omit debts that you owe. On top of those, you should make sure that your name, Social Security number, and all other identifying information are accurate on the forms.
Lenders can get into legal trouble if they lie for clients on the application. This is also possible if they create nonexistent people to use for fake applications or accept an application knowing that there is false information on it. Another possibility is having an appraiser provide a fraudulent estimate for the value of the property that is up for sale.
There are cases in which a lender and borrower work together to commit mortgage fraud. This could be something as simple as the loan being written for a primary residence when the lender and borrower both know the loan is for a rental property.
Challenges of defense options
One of the more common defenses in these cases is to claim that the error was simply a mistake and not a ploy to defraud anyone. This can be difficult to prove, partially because mortgage fraud cases are often backed by a lot of paperwork that becomes evidence. It takes a lot of work to prepare defenses in these cases, so don’t waste time when getting to work on your defense.