For immediate release: Wednesday, July 13th, 2011
CONTACT: Curtis Hertel Jr., Ingham County Register of Deeds, Ph: 517-281-3574
Ingham County Register of Deeds Curtis Hertel, Jr. announces a series of town-hall meetings to discuss foreclosure fraud
Ingham County Register of Deeds Curtis Hertel Jr. has announced a series of town-hall meetings to be hosted throughout the county. The meetings will be staged at community centers and meeting halls in the various cities and townships of Ingham County, over the next three to four months.
“We know that our fight against foreclosure fraud has raised a lot of questions from our citizens recently,” said Hertel. “We want to be able to get out and answer some of those questions in person.”
Since taking office in 2009, Hertel has been actively seeking to raise awareness in Ingham County of the many different types of property fraud that have been increasing throughout Michigan. In September of that year, he launched the Property Fraud Alert system, a free service to Ingham County residents, to notify them when any property documents containing their names were recorded in the county.
In 2011, Hertel has launched a series of investigations into alleged foreclosure frauds that were perpetuated in Ingham County over the last decade. With the help of the Ingham County Commissioners, he has begun an aggressive campaign to obtain legal assistance for those who have been confirmed as victims. Hertel will be joined at many of the upcoming meetings by representatives from Legal Services of South Central Michigan, the non-profit firm he has enlisted to help advise citizens who have been directly affected by fraud.
“It’s been a pretty busy year in my office, with the different frauds that we have discovered,” continued Hertel. “Many people who were the subject of these illegal foreclosures, haven’t even realized it yet. Most have already been evicted from those homes. And I know that the headlines about these situations in the newspaper have probably created more questions than they have answered. I want to spend the next few months reaching out to people where they live, to answer some of those questions.”
“We all pay the price for mortgage foreclosure,” said Hertel. “Beyond those who lose their homes, other property owners in the vicinity suffer the loss of value on their residence. County residents feel the pinch when there are fewer resources to provide for services like public safety and health programs. Even if a homeowner is not currently facing a foreclosure situation, awareness of the problem in our community is extremely important.”
“Even if they feel that their home and their finances are in a safe position, there will be some great information at these meetings for our residents,” said Hertel. “These are a lot of scams and dangerous people out there who know how to go after the equity you have in your home. The best thing that we can do to keep our property ownership stable in Ingham County is to educate and inform our citizens.”
The first meeting on the schedule is planned for Tuesday, July 19th, at 5:30pm. It will take place at the Cristo Rey Community Center, at 1717 N. High Street, in Lansing. Future meetings are already scheduled in East Lansing, Mason, Leslie, Williamston, Okemos, Webberville, and other areas of Lansing.