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Mortgage Relief Law Center / Fraud and lies

1 United States Review updated:

I was a witness to how this company works. If I was a consumer, I would not use their services. First of all, they are set-up illegally. The law firm is supposed to be just that, a law firm set-up to help consumers.

Unfortunately, what they do is basically have the sales representatives work for the law firm. They take all of the inbound calls. After taking your information your file is forwarded to a Clerk, who processes your payment and then sends your file to a 3rd PARTY!!!. They DONT actually handle the loan modification itself for you. They use another company.

This company is actually the LANDLORD to this attorney. As part of his leasing arrangement, he agreed to give client files to this LANDLORD to process (which means to call the clients and to call the lenders). This is against the LAW. It is UNETHICAL. You have this third party who you dont know anything about handling your CONFIDENTIAL information. They said this LANDLORD does a terrible job, but they continue to use her because of the agreement that allows them to save money. She is also supposed to forward the attorney bankruptcy cases.

In one week's time, I witnessed 2 foreclosures happen as a result of negligence (lack of work by the 3rd party/processor).

All of the Principals of this company use their initials, versus their full name. That is a hint, that they are hiding something. They have a good time in this office. Trust me, all of the money they collect from consumers, they are able to bring their pets into the office and drink beer during working hours.

Listen to me, if you are a homeowner you CAN get a loan modification on your own. Call your bank and do it yourself! If you are able to respond to this... I can get you the FREE help you need. I have so much empathy and compassion for anyone who is losing their home.

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  • Br
      21st of Apr, 2009
    0 Votes

    Regarding this post, some of the comments are true, and some of them are false. I will address them in turn below.


    I have personally contacted the state bar on several occasions to confirm that we comply will all state bar regulations. We are a law firm set up in the State of California as A Professional Corporation; hence, the APC in the company name.


    The comment is correct. We do have sales representatives, or case managers, that take inbound calls. It is more efficient for me to spend my time working on the actual cases and negotiations with the lenders. If I took every inbound call, I would not have the time to actually work on our client’s cases.


    Once our senior case manager takes a potential clients information or specific scenario, they run it by me for approval. If I feel like we can help them, the further discuss options with the client. If the client desires to proceed, they collect standard information that we will require to process their file. Once they receive that information, I review the file again to make sure all the information we received falls in line with what was discussed over the phone. Before we run the client’s payment, I want to again make sure we can help them. If after reviewing the client documentation, I feel we can still help the client, the file is transferred to our clerk for payment processing.


    Again, I cannot do everything. I have administrative assistants who help me with tasks such as payroll and payment processing. This is authorized and allowed by the State Bar.


    This aspect of the post is most upsetting to me. We process and manage all of our cases in house; actually under the same roof. If anyone would like to see and confirm this, they can visit or I’ll even take photos. My underwriters, processors, and processing assistants are all W2 assistants and work for the company.

    By keeping the entire process in house, I can manage the file to assure it is being handled diligently. Any client who has ever contacted me regarding their file knows that I am in constant supervision through every phase of the process.


    I came across our current business location when I looked to hire the owner of the building as an underwriter. She has over 20 years experience in the business and knows what lenders look for in loan modification applications. Our building has over 5, 000 square feet and holds a prime location in Irvine, California. The lease agreement I have with her is completely separate to her employment agreement with my company.


    This company has unbelievable employees. Anybody here would do whatever it takes to save a home. On a few occasions, we were contacted the day before a foreclosure sale and our employees came to work at 4:00 in the morning to contact the lender’s east coast office and we were able to stop the sales. All of our current employees are more than willing to work 16 hour days, even weekends, if needed.


    All of our employees refer their friends and family to our office. We do great work and they all entrust their friends and family to our firm. This is a compliment.


    As mentioned above, we were contacted by one client the day prior to a foreclosure sale, but we were able to stop the sale and save the house.

    If we really had a problem handling our cases, our clients would be directing posts to [redacted], not a disgruntled ex-processor. We have approximately 600-800 clients at any given time so there is plenty of opportunity. I take it personally that each and every one of our clients is satisfied with our service.


    I have always used my full name. Not because of the inappropriate connotation my first and middle initial would have, but because I am not trying to hide anything. Yes, we do have some employees who choose to go by nicknames or initials but that is because they prefer it. We respect that.


    We order in lunch for our employees, we always keep Gatorade, soda, and snacks on hand. And not the type where you have to pay the vending machine; it is all free. We are in a very stressful industry so we always try to make sure our office is as comforting as possible. Also because we are so busy that several employees don’t have the time to go out for an hour lunch. So we accommodate them.


    Our staff does include a 7 year old poodle named “Sam”. He is as much a part of our office as any other employee. He is harmless and often lightens the mood. We support that.


    I have not seen anyone drinking beer in our office during working hours. If employees want to go have a beer with lunch, I cannot stop them. There are some employees who enjoy the occasional beer after hours; even I do. After writing this 3 page response I may even need one (just to keep me sane). This is an extremely stressful business. People put their homes in our hands like they put their lives in a doctor’s hands. With that trust comes great responsibility on our part. Lenders do not make our job any easier. They are often vicious and unmerciful. We have to fight for every case. I lose sleep on a daily basis because of this. So I don’t blame my employee’s if they want to have a beer after hours.


    It is also possible to represent yourself in court, buy and sell real estate on your own, and if you’re brave, you could even perform medical operations on yourself. It would be risky for a borrower to try this on their own because their home is at stake. When it comes down to it, the lenders are not working for a borrower’s best interests. They don’t want to help you save your home, they want to get as much money out of you as they can before they take your home. They are debt collectors and they only work for their bottom line.

    In order to qualify for a loan modification, you have to meet their qualification guidelines. They won’t tell you what these guidelines are but we know them. So anyone can apply on their own, but if they don’t meet those internal guidelines, they will get denied. Once a borrower has been declined for a loan modification, it is very difficult to reverse this and get them approved. The lender already recorded all their phone conversations and kept all their documentation on file. We would have to go back to the lender and try to convince them that what the borrower said before wasn’t the case. This doesn’t always work.

    So to all my current and prospective clients, I am always available to speak. If anyone’s interested, we have several references from actual clients and hundreds of loan modification agreements we’ve helped our clients achieve. If anyone wants further clarification on any of these issues, they can contact me through our office. I won’t put my direct number on this post, but my current client’s all have it and my prospective clients can ask their case managers for it.

    Very truly yours,

    Brian J. Colombana, Esq.

  • Sa
      21st of Apr, 2009
    0 Votes

    OMG ! This complaint is strangely familiar (word for word) to the one that is posted on [redacted].com. But anyways, I received a phone from a case manager from this company who said that they were responding to my request for more information about a loan modification. I lost my job late November and have not been able to afford my mortgage payments. I just found out that my mortgage company, that they are intending to foreclose my home if I don't make a payment. With the job market today, I still am unable to find a job and make my payments. So, when I received a call, I was excited to hear more information. My case manager went over the entire procedure on what will be done with the modification. I told him I needed to think about it and of course do all my research, especially with all the news surrounding the nature of this company. I found this site as well as the /link removed/ I immediately contacted my case manager and questioned him on all the comments. I was transferred to his supervisor, who explained what was the situation. I asked if they had any clients that I could speak too or if I can see any modifcations that have been completed that I could see. I mean the retainer fee is steep and I can't even afford my payments. They understood my hestiation and offered a payment plan and even showed me finished cases. I already made a call to my case manager and I have a scheduled payment to come out this Friday. I am excited to see the end results because I saw what they are capable of.

  • Ab
      23rd of Oct, 2009
    +2 Votes

    They also have an office in San Jose located at 1737 N. First St., Suite #200, San Jose Ca 95112 targeting the Vietnamese community in Northen California. Their ad for a longtim has a "99% success rate, no one else has". The ads are in Mo Magazine in San Jose and San Francisco.

    The phone numbers listed for that office is (415) 748-2907 and (510) 978-8813.

    As an attorney, Brian Colombana, knows that he can not guarantee a "99% success rate" or share attorney fees with non-attorneys. If you have a complaint about the Mortgage Relief Law Center, contact the State Bar.

  • Kr
      23rd of Oct, 2009
    +3 Votes

    Firms I Would Trust to Handle My Own Loan Modification…

    I started writing about the mortgage meltdown and foreclosure crisis well over a year ago, and it’s been quite the education, let me tell you. In all my years, I have never seen anything communicated or handled as badly by our government or our media. I’m sorry, but that’s the truth.

    Assuming that you’re a homeowner seeking a loan modification, chances are you’ve already tried to get your mortgage modified on your own. If you haven’t tried yourself to get your lender or servicer to agree to a modification, you may want to give it a shot. You certainly can contact your servicer or lender directly… as you’ve not doubt heard from everyone from the President of the United States on down to your local newspaper.

    Is it a good idea to try to get a loan modification on your own… I don’t think it is, no. In fact, having interviewed many hundreds of homeowners who have been through the process with and without assistance, I think in the vast majority of cases it’s probably dangerous… or impossible.

    The fact is that lenders and servicers have been shown to be willing to disregard the rules of the President’s program on hundreds upon hundreds of occasions. They have proven themselves to be untrustworthy, unreliable and uncaring. Banks and servicers have attorneys and mortgage experts, and in my opinion homeowners who decide to face that situation on their own, do so at their own risk… and peril.

    I don’t really know why so many in our government seem to believe that homeowners can get a loan modification from a lender or servicer on their own. They’ve clearly been told that’s the case, and just as clearly have never tried it or been close to anyone who has.

    It bothers me a great deal that so many people are willing to present themselves as knowledgeable authorities conveying information on such an important subject without having actually studied the subject matter, or experienced the process. When you consider that roughly 3.6 million people are projected to lose their homes in this year alone, it’s shocking really.

    So, after receiving hundreds of calls and emails from homeowners who feel lost in this mess, I thought I’d publish my own listing of firms that I might hire to handle my own loan modification.

    TO BE CLEAR… If a firm is listed here, it’s NOT because they paid to be listed. There is no amount of money that a firm can pay to be listed here. Period.

    I decided to list the firms I trust here so that homeowners would know who I would think they can call for help without worrying about being taken advantage of, or deceived. I’ve gotten to know these firms pretty well. I’ve been to their offices, spent hours talking with the firm’s owners, checked them out with regulatory agencies, and asked others in the community about their reputation.

    The bottom-line is… all of the firms listed here have my complete confidence. Each one is different and special in their own way, each has its own personality. But they all appear to be very good at what they do. They ALL get mortgages modified. They all have substantial investments in people, offices and equipment. I think they represent the best in the industry, no question about it.

    In my mind a scam is a company that takes your money and fails to deliver any value in return. None of these firms are “scams”. That, however, doesn’t mean that by using these or any other firm, you’ll get a loan modification, or get what you’re looking for in a loan modification from your lender or servicer. No matter how good a firm is… at the end of the day, it’s the lender’s or servicer’s decision to make and getting a loan modification is nowhere near as easy or as beneficial as President Obama made it sound.

    (NOTE: The California State Bar has published a list of attorneys that they say are being investigated, although they didn’t specify why they were investigating other than that they may have issues labeled misconduct. They also noted that those on the list could be exonerated, meaning that they may not be guilty of anything at all. You can find a link to the Bar’s press release and my article describing the release under Latest Articles on the Mandelman Matters home page… look for The California Bar’s Scarlet Lawyer List.)


    United Law Group Inc.
    McFarlin & Geurts LLP
    Feldman Law Center
    Parman Law Group
    Shah Peerally Law Group
    CDA Law Center
    Mortgage Relief Law Center
    Litchney Law
    Mortgage Restructuring Solutions
    Traut Law Group


    Real Estate Consulting Services




    I get calls and emails from homeowners all over the country every week. And, as all of my readers are aware, I do not make money from loan modifications, mortgages, or real estate. In fact, I have never even been in the loan modification, mortgage, or real estate industries. I am a neutral, objective and un-biased party who has been writing to fight for homeowners for over a year now, and I’ll continue to do so until they are treated fairly and this crisis has ended, which the way things are going may be for the rest of my life.

    Before I list a firm here, I need to know what the firm’s owners are like as people. Why they went into the business and how they think about and treat homeowners. I need to know that they are people who are compassionate, tolerant and understanding.

    My goal is to be able to tell my readers that they can trust these firms in all cases… that they are all in business to do their best to help homeowners remain in their homes under terms they can afford… that they are honest.

    An overview of steps I go through before placing a firm on my list:

    1. I personally interview each firm’s owner, managing partner and/or senior manager over the phone at least once, which takes 30-45 minutes, and often times much longer.

    2. I check online and with regulatory agencies in an attempt to ensure there are no pending actions or unresolved issues.

    3. I also talk with others in the industry, check the firm’s references, inquire with competing firms, whatever I can think of…

    4. I look at a firm’s internal practices, systems, reports & philosophy of doing business.

    5. I review what’s said online, but I don’t place too much stock in Rip-off or BBB.

    The result of this process, which takes about a week and sometimes two, doesn’t mean a “yes” or “no”. Whatever I find I bring up to the firm’s management directly to make sure the issue was addressed. I fully understand that almost every firm is capable of having some number of homeowners that have complained. Heck, every company that serves the public will have complaints.

    If everything looks good, we also visit the firm and spend at least half a day seeing their operation function first hand. I’ve found that each firm has their own unique personality and specialized expertise. Some are particularly systems strong, others are more service focused.

    The tragedy of someone losing their home to foreclosure as a result of what the banks and investment banks have done to our financial markets, with the help of our politicians and regulators is something I will never let go of or be okay with. I believe that history will show this to be the greatest tragedy in our nation’s history.

    Before you decide to hire a firm to help you obtain a loan modification, whether it’s one listed here or another you’ve found on your own, you can feel free to contact me to compare notes if you’d like.

    I can be reached anytime via email at:

    It’s not that I consider myself some sort of guru on this subject… I don’t and I’m not. It’s just that after writing over 130 articles on the subject, and related subjects, I’ve had the opportunity to do an extensive amount of research, speak with various regulatory agencies, meet with literally hundreds of homeowners, and get to know dozens of attorneys and mortgage experts involved in loan modifications.

    And, although I’m far from perfect, I figure that I’ve done a whole lot more in the way of due diligence than any homeowner could possibly do, so I figure sharing what I’ve learned is better than not.

  • Rf
      1st of Nov, 2009
    0 Votes

    Mortgage Relief Law Center
    (Law Offices of Brian
    Colombana) d/b/a Housing
    Law Center (Law Offices of
    Brian Colombana)

    Brian J. Colombana is a a SCAMMER and A CROOK. This company will take your money and do nothing. They will not do what they say but only take your money... Their BBB rating has fallen from B to F . DO NOT HIRED THIS LAW FIRM!!!

  • Br
      1st of Nov, 2009
    0 Votes

    It's hard to respond to an anonymous complaint lacking any specificity whatsoever. We have never taken anyone's money and done nothing. We actually used to have an A with the BBB before falling to an F. The BBB dropped our rating after we received complaints from less than 1% of our clientele. I question why that would warrant a rating of F. I do know that a top executive at the BBB also acts on the Board of Directors for a non-profit that competes for loan modification business. So that may have something to do with it.

  • Mr
      2nd of Nov, 2009
    +1 Votes

    I agree to all the complaint posted against this Law Firm Mortgage Relief Law Center (Brian J. Colombana) ... This LAW FIRM is a scammer... they are not true to their Attorney -Client Contact.
    Basically, the Clerks or Processors are the one who is advising clients instead of a lawyer or Brian Colombona himself. He is not available to speak with and only avail himself to email at the last minute... LACK OF CUSTOMER CARE and Brian clearly ignore his FIDUCIARY duties as a lawyer. He is a LIAR and not a true lawyer...

    They have no established process as posted on their website... Negotiator to Negotiator- All BOGUS... they actually call the same 1-800 numbers that customer uses to call the bank for loan modifications.

    They do not review your file as stated on their website. 48 hours qualification process...basically they sit on the file ... list can go and on and on... FALSE PROMISES...
    Clearly this firm does not honor their fiduciary duty...

  • Br
      2nd of Nov, 2009
    0 Votes

    My processor's never give legal advice but may advise clients on logistical matters. Legal advice is reserved for me and yes, I do prefer to work by email. I have found it is much more efficient and I am better able to organize my correspondence. This helps assure that everyone who contacts me is responded to.

    Our 48 hour qualification process is something we do internally to make sure that we don't take on a file that clearly won't qualify. This helps to reduce disappointment later on but I guess we can't please everybody.

  • No
      3rd of Nov, 2009
    +2 Votes

    Why I am not surprise the number of complaints of this firm is growing. This law firm is absolutely not keeping it's promises.
    They do not take initiative on making phone calls keeping you posted. As a client, I the client have to do all the phone calls for all the follow ups and questions if things are done as stated on their contract.

    My experience about this firm is similar to other clients who posted the complaint - Lack of pro-activeness and customer care, attorney is not available through phone calls. even he claims that he is " always available to speak " as he defends himself on the first complaint. They make a lot of promises through their website but come up short on executions of deliverables...


  • Jl
      4th of Nov, 2009
    +2 Votes

    They started my modification in April and still have not had a resolution. Now the reps handling my file do not want to return my phone messages and or my e-mails. My home is now into foreclosure. If I had to do it all over again I would not have paid the "retainer fee" and tried to work with the bank myself. That's what I am doing now anyway. Be carefull! I am filing complaints with the Attorney General's Office and the BBB.

  • Br
      5th of Nov, 2009
    -1 Votes

    I find it amazing how everyone just wants to blame someone and it always ends up being the loan modification attorney that's trying to help the homeowner out of a mess that was created entirely out of the relationship between the bank and themself. The banks aren't blamed. Our client signed up with us in April, we submitted a package to the bank (probably within 14 -21 days), we got the run around, then the occasional "we lost your package", then after 120 days, we get a negotiator, then they take another 60 days to review but only after we send them even more information. Somehow, the slow process has become our fault, not the lender at all. In April, we found that the process was taking about 60-90 days because we were getting modifications on files that were submitted 60-90 days earlier. However, the Making Home Affordable program just came out so files submitted in April and May ended up taking much longer because of the enormous number of submissions. We obviously didn't know it would take longer until it did. It's not our fault. We do what we can but much of the length is dependent entirely on the lender.

  • Mo
      5th of Nov, 2009
    +1 Votes

    J.L., we signed up in mid April too and our files did not get to the bank until mid JUNE. So claims that they process within 14-21 days could be unlikely. BTW, we even gave their agent all our files on the day we signed up so really there was no excuse to just turn in our package almost two months after we've given them the docs. You should also check out the FTC's website as well as the California State Bar about filing complaints against this company and attorney.

  • Br
      5th of Nov, 2009
    -3 Votes

    If your file did not get to the bank until mid June, it could be for several reasons. The most common is we need more updated information from our client. We have also found that when we submit the file and when the bank receives it can also be different. For instance, several banks have their incoming fax numbers directed to other countries such as India. From there the incoming packages are scanned into their systems. We may submit a package and then call the bank to find out they need 2 to 3 weeks to see it in their system; often for the above reasons. Bottom line, we don't just hang out and sit on files for weeks, there must have been some reason why it didn't appear in the banks system for 2 months. But without identifying information, I cannot investigate the complaint.

  • Jl
      6th of Nov, 2009
    +2 Votes

    Brian, it seems like you have an excuse for just about everything. What is your excuse for the reps that are working for you on my modification loan not calling me back or answering my e-mails? I'm your customer who paid a lot of money for the service and I am getting no calls back at all. They are completely ignoring me. I'm not an attorney but as a customer I can tell you that it is very poor customer service. Why aren't the reps calling me and telling me what you tell everyone that puts a complaint on here? I think if your reps would call back and keep us more informed this site might not even exist and your BBB rating would not be an F. You need to re-evaluate your reps and how they are handling these modifications. A little customer service goes a long way, especially in these tough economic times.

  • Br
      6th of Nov, 2009
    -2 Votes

    Jose, I'll paste the information from our computer system that you can check at any time for status. We are not ignoring you. It's just that our first priority is getting you a modification from your lender. This often leads customer service by the wayside. I'd rather get all my clients modifications and take complaints over customer service than neglect my work with the lenders and communicate often with the clients. Which would you want? We've spoken with your wife several times as well. If you need anything, send me an email: I'll even email you all the notes from your file. Your lender has everything they need from us. We are just waiting on them so even if you called us for status, I would have nothing to tell you but wait longer. Sorry for the confusion.

  • Ho
      6th of Nov, 2009
    +3 Votes


  • Mo
      9th of Nov, 2009
    +1 Votes

    Perhaps if anyone else is suing this firm, attorney and their agents, we can all band together. Here's to hoping that Colombana is one of the 700+ attorneys under investigation by CA State Bar for their "loan modification" practices.

  • Br
      9th of Nov, 2009
    -1 Votes

    No one is suing my firm. If anyone wishes to do so, I address these disputes in my fee agreement. I find it amazing that everyone always wants to blame somebody. "More Aware" wishes to remain anonymous so it is difficult for me to qualify their situation. However, often times it goes like this. Someone buys a house they cannot afford or takes cash out they cannot afford to repay. They do so from a mortgage broker that failed to fully discuss the loan they were putting their client into. The lender engaged in some form of predatory lending and completely disregarded the borrowers ability to repay the loan. The economy takes a nasty turn while the payments begin adjusting or recasting to levels that are no longer affordable. These borrowers retain my office to get them out of a situation that was caused by a combination of their own negligence as well as the reckless disregard of the lenders, loan officers, mortgage brokers, who all profited handsomely by putting the borrowers into this situation. Now our office is pitted against a lender who is overwhelmed by an enormous influx of loan modification applications and is sometimes, unwilling to modify a loan regardless of how qualified they are under new federal programs. Our office has submitted some loan modification packages 5 or 6 times because the lender claims to have "lost" the previous packages. But when the lender refuses to respond to our demands for documents, or requests for modification, and instead proceeds with foreclosure, everything becomes our fault. Even after 9 months on some cases, we continue to push for a modification for our clients. However, the final decision rests with each and every borrower's lender. We cannot "force" the lender to give out a modification. So if it is blame everyone is looking for, sure blame us. Or perhaps look at the circumstances that led to this situation.

    By the way, we no longer take on new cases and are simply trying to finish the cases we currently have. Every file at our office has been completely submitted and followed up on. So if a lender says they do not have the package, or they are missing documents, or they haven't heard from our office, they are lying. They are probably lying to you because they have dropped the ball, lost your package, or are afraid to tell you that they still haven't had a chance to review the package you sent them 4 months ago. They'd rather just blame us.

  • Mo
      9th of Nov, 2009
    +1 Votes

    Yet...You expect your clients to abide by your fee agreement when you yourself don't? A bit of a double standard there. Perhaps you should focus more on what you're suppose to do for your clients as suppose to instantaneously answering to any complaints posted against you online. Your response to these online complaints are certainly quicker than any response I got from you. Get off your high horse about people spending over their means, you afterall had no problem taking your clients' monies and in some cases did just what every client on this board posts about - doing nothing.

    At least since you are no longer getting new cases, we can claim a small victory in making sure no one else gets swindled by you and your agents! Maybe in a few months, your name will be released as one of those attorneys disbarred or put on probation by the State Bar. Your victims would welcome that news.

  • Br
      10th of Nov, 2009
    0 Votes

    As you continue to remain anonymous, your statements really mean nothing. You could be one of my competitors, or a disgruntled ex-employee.

    I have abided by my fee agreement. I've gone far beyond what is required by me in my fee agreement.

    The reason I respond to these so quickly is because they come to my email. I respond to nearly all emails I receive within 24 business hours. By the way, less than one percent of my clients have complained about my services so it is rather easy for me to respond to the complaints.

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