District Attorney

Robert Cosley, Supervising Investigator

(530) 621-6472

In 2007, roughly 84,000 California homeowners lost their homes in foreclosure. Through the first three quarters of 2008 alone, that number increased to over 190,000. During that same period, lenders recorded nearly 330,000 notices of default on California home mortgages. Recording a notice of default is the first step of a nonjudicial foreclosure or trustee sale, the most common process in California, which typically takes four to six months or more. Notably, recent trends show that El Dorado County has seen an increase in the notices of default and trustee sales at a higher rate than Sacramento County and higher than the state average. (See attached DataQuick statistics.)

Rising foreclosure rates have led to a growing number of scam artists offering to "rescue" homeowners in financial distress. They use a wide variety of scams and target people of all ages in virtually every community across the country. Anyone can become a victim.

The El Dorado County District Attorney’s Office, in cooperation with the County Recorder-Clerk’s Office, will be mailing out warning notices to all homeowners who have received or are about to receive a notice of default. These warning notices will provide the homeowner with important information regarding foreclosure fraud, as well as contact information for the El Dorado County District Attorney’s Office Fraud Unit and to other relevant government agencies involved in the investigation and prosecution of real estate fraud. A few helpful tips and links have been provided below.

To further assist in the investigation and prosecution of real estate and mortgage fraud, the Board of Supervisors approved a request for an increase of fees for the (8) recorded real estate documents as provided within Government Code Section 27388 (See Resolution No. 015-2009 ). The fee will increase from Two Dollars and no/100 ($2.00) to Three Dollars and no/110 ($3.00) and will be effective April 13, 2009.

The El Dorado County District Attorney’s Office is dedicated to preventing fraudulent, deceptive, and unfair business practices, and is hopeful that homeowners facing foreclosure educate themselves on the potential scams and immediately report any suspicious activity by calling our Fraud Hotline at 1-866-629-0171. An engaged and vigilant community is an effective defense against these devastating crimes