Consumer Fraud Act (NJCFA)

Posted by kevin on March 11, 2010 under Foreclosure Blog | Comments are off for this article

The New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act ( NJCFA ) is another powerful borrower tool in fighting predatory lending.  The statute was enacted in the 1960’s and then amended to specifically cover real estate transactions.  The statute has been around long enough to develop a substantial history of case law.  And the case law, across the board, has been very favorable to consumers.

NJCFA prohibits unconscionable commercial practices, deception, misrepresentation, and the knowing concealment of a material fact.  It does not matter whether the consumer is mislead.  The onus is on the seller, or in this case, the lender.  The cases say that the statute is to be liberally construed to protect the consumer- and that means YOU!

How do you show an unconscionable commercial practice?  How bout violations of TILA, HOEPA, NJHOSA?  That s a good starting point. Putting down the wrong income.  Baiting a switching (at closing the fixed rate loan becomes an adjustable).  False advertising.

As a consumer, you have a right to sue under the NJCFA.  If you can prove an ascertainable loss, you are entitled to damages.  The Court can increase the damages by three or what is known as treble damages.  Even if you can t prove an ascertainable loss, you are entitled to have your attorney s fees and costs paid by the offending party.

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