Consumer Protection Officials Warn About ‘Mass Joinder Lawsuit’
DENVER (CBS4) – A consumer alert is out that affects hundreds or possibly thousands of Denver metro area residents.
Some Coloradans may have received an official looking form in the mail with personal mortgage information inviting them to join a lawsuit against their mortgage company. The mailer calls this a “Mass Joinder Litigation Lawsuit.”
Kathy Dorris told CBS4 she received the invitation last week to join a lawsuit against her mortgage company Wells Fargo. It seemed plausible so she called the number on the mailer and it gave her the name of a law firm out of Los Angeles.
“I’ve wondered with everything that went on with us bailing out the banks and so forth. You know, ‘When are they going to be held accountable?’ was my thought,” she said.
“I asked him who was handling the litigation? And he gave me the name of Kramer & Kaslow out of Los Angeles County.”
Phillip Kramer has a series of YouTube videos online. One specifically talks about why he is going after the banks. In it he says “We are determined to make those people who caused the banking meltdown, we’re determined to make them pay for their greed and wrongful actions.”
When CBS4 called the number to get details on the suit it said the cost for the Wells Fargo case would be $5,000 up front and that it would be non-refundable.
Mason Finks, Director of Fraud Prevention with Colorado’s 18th Judicial District, told CBS4 that’s a major warning sign.
“In our consumer protection program we’re constantly saying no up front payments,” Finks said.
The law firm is listed on the Better Business Bureau’s website in Los Angeles with an F rating.
It’s not exactly clear how many people have received the mailings in Colorado. The website of Kramer & Kaslow shows the firm is based in Calabasas, Calif. CBS4 was unsuccessful in attempts to contact the office by phone.
Consumer advocates advise that if you received the letter in the mail you should just throw it away.
Personal mortgage information is available through public records, but aside from paying up front the suit apparently requires participants to also hand over copies of mortgage documents. Those contain a lot of private personal information, and residents don’t want them in the wrong hands.