White-collar crimes refer to various criminal behaviors typically committed by business professionals. One widespread example of a white-collar crime is mortgage fraud, which is any misstatement of information used by a lender when funding a property. Mortgage fraud is becoming increasingly prevalent in Texas and across the United States. It is essential to understand how mortgage fraud is committed, its penalties, and how to prevent prosecution in the event that you are accused.
Ways Mortgage Fraud is Committed
Individuals can commit mortgage fraud in a variety of ways. A homebuyer, seller, real estate agent, or lender can misrepresent information at any stage of the process of obtaining a mortgage. In the most common type of mortgage fraud, an entity involved in the mortgage process may choose to omit financial information, misrepresent costs, or falsify a buyer's ability to apply for a mortgage. Prosecutors can find fraudulent statements in:
- The application for a mortgage loan
- The property title
- Tax or credit forms
- Income confirmation
- Opinions on the value of the property
Individuals may hide information or misrepresent financial statements to obtain a property they otherwise could not have afforded. This is not uncommon for homebuyers who inflate their income statements to get a home loan, but this behavior can occur for many different reasons....