Texas Law Firm, Murray LLP, Agrees to End its Controversial Services to 5,222 West Virginia Families Who Lost Homes Through Wrongful Foreclosures

AG McGraw’s Suit Against Murray’s www.bringaclaim.com Settled

CHARLESTON – November 29, 2012 – (RealEstateRama) — Attorney General Darrell McGraw announced today that Murray LLP, a Texas law firm, agreed to permanently discontinue offering a service to West Virginia foreclosure victims that a lawsuit filed by McGraw’s office characterized as unscrupulous and deceptive. The agreement with Murray is reflected in a final order recently entered on November 1, 2012 in the Circuit Court of Jefferson County that settles the suit filed against Murray.

The suit alleged that Murray, through its website, www.bringaclaim.com, sought to charge consumers a fee of 20% to assist them in processing a claim for benefits they were already guaranteed to receive under the National Mortgage Settlement (“NMS”), reached earlier this year by the federal government and 49 state attorneys general with the nation’s five largest mortgage loan servicers.

The only requirement to receive the NMS payment, estimated to be $1,500 to $2,000, is completion of a simple one-page form that was mailed directly to all eligible persons. Attorney General McGraw’s suit alleged that Murray attempted to wrongfully profit from this process by leading consumers to believe that its services were necessary to obtain the money when, in fact, the claims process was intended to be simple and free.

In the final order entered by the court, Murray agreed that it would not represent or collect payments from West Virginia consumers in relation to the NMS claims process or any other non- litigation foreclosure services. Murray also agreed to place a notice on its website, www.bringaclaim.com, advising that its services are not available in West Virginia.

Attorney General McGraw stated, “I am pleased that we promptly achieved our objective, which was to prohibit Murray from charging West Virginia consumers who lost their homes to foreclosure a fee for a benefit that was intended to be free. Any consumers who have questions or need assistance about how to file their claim under the NMS are encouraged to call my office, where they will be assisted without charge.”

In addition to the direct payments to consumers who lost homes to foreclosure, the NMS agreement also required the banks to establish new mortgage servicing standards that promise more protection for consumers. Although the new servicing standards are only binding on the five banks who signed the NMS, Bank of America, Citi, GMAC/Ally, JP Morgan and Wells Fargo, it is expected that the standards will serve as a model that will likely be adopted by the entire industry.

To view the complaint filed against Murray, click here:
http://www.wvago.gov/pdf/11272012_Complaintforwebsite.pdf ;

To view the Agreed Final Order, click here:
http://www.wvago.gov/pdf/11272012_AgreedOrderforWebsite.pdf

To report a scam or consumer fraud or to file a complaint, West Virginians can reach the Attorney General’s Office by calling the Consumer Protection Hotline at 1-800-368-8808 or visiting wvago.gov online. For regular consumer news updates, follow “AGWestV” on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube.

Contact:
Norman Googel
Phone: (800) 368-8808

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