ClearPath Lending ran a VA loan scam and the CFPB charged them a penalty of $625,000. They were scamming military service members and veterans for years. ClearPath’s leadership has been facing lawsuits well before...
In my ClearPath Lending review, I have exposed their malicious activities as much as I could.
CFPB Takes Action Against ClearPath Lending
CFPB (Consumer Financial Protection Bureau) issued a content order on September 14, 2020, against ClearPath Lending, Inc.
Because CFPB found that ClearPath Lending was sending false, misleading, and inaccurate statements about their VA-guaranteed mortgages to military service members and veterans.
This was a violation of the following regulations:
Consumer Financial Protection Act’s prohibition against deceptive practices (CFPA)
Mortgage Acts and Practices – Advertising Rule (MAP Rule)
They found that ClearPath Lending sent various advertisements for VA-assured mortgages that misrepresented the credit terms of the marketed mortgage. Moreover, they didn’t include the disclosures Regulation Z requires.
Due to these serious crimes, CFPB issued a consent order against ClearPath to pay a $625,000 civil money penalty. Along with this penalty, CFPB imposed additional requirements so ClearPath wouldn’t perform these violations in the future.
VA loan scams are highly dangerous. They target military service members and veterans, who risk their lives to protect our country.
ClearPath claimed to offer specific credit terms in their advertisements when they didn’t offer them at all.
The Bureau found many instances where ClearPath had lied about its actual credit terms applicable to their offered mortgages. For example, one of their advertisements between November and December 2017 promoted a variable-rate mortgage that had a fixed interest of 2.25% for the first 3 years with an APR of 3.17%.
However, the APR was incorrect. When you’d calculate the APR while taking Regulation Z, a reasonably current index, and the necessary discount points into consideration, the APR was 3.516% minimum.
So, ClearPath Lending was misrepresenting its offered APR in its advertisements.
Lying about Lender Fees
In another case, their advertisements in July 2017 said “NO Lender Fees” in bold inside a box with the title “Closing Costs”. They mentioned an APR of 3.17% in these advertisements.
However, a customer couldn’t get a loan from ClearPath with the APR of 3.17% if they hadn’t paid two discount points at closing. Hence, the “NO Lender Fees” statement was a lie.
Lying about ClearPath Lending Rates
Similarly, some of ClearPath’s advertisements mislead customers about their fixed rates and payments. They lied about offering fixed rates because they only offered variable-rate with the advertised mortgage.
The advertisements ClearPath sent to customers during January 2018 stated “30 year loan / 3 year fixed” along with the advertised payment. They didn’t use the terms “Variable-rate mortgage” or “Adjustable-rate mortgage” before the “fixed” term in the advertisements.
Instead, they stated their adjustable-rate mortgage in fine print, behind the page of the offer. This was a highly shady method of misleading customers into thinking they offered fixed rate mortgages when they clearly don’t.
Another one of their advertisements mentioned “30 year fixed” beneath a box saying “Payment for Next 12 Months”. But the payment was not the same for 30 years.
ClearPath knew what they were doing with such advertisements. They wanted to mislead customers into getting a VA loan from them by advertising false conditions and offers.
These people mentioned fake ClearPath Lending rates and focused on lying to consumers through their advertisements.
In many of their ads, ClearPath made it seem like they were affiliated with the VA. Their ads were in the form of notification letters and informed them about their eligibility for specific VA loan benefits.
The ads mentioned “yet to take advantage of programs sponsored by The Department of Veterans Affairs”. This is when they have no connections with The Department of Veterans Affairs.
You can understand how someone might think they were receiving a letter from an organization linked with the VA.
Another prominent issue among their ads was they didn’t share sufficient details. They only mentioned payment amounts, period of repayment, or the simple annual rate of interest, which isn’t enough.
Regulation Z requires mortgage lenders to provide a lot more information in their advertisements.
There are many other violations of Regulation Z in ClearPath’s advertisements such as unavailable credit terms and mentioning interest rates other than the APR.
CFPB’s investigation found a lot of deceptive and manipulative statements in their advertisements. The Bureau’s investigation lasted for several years and they have issued the consent order in the last quarter of 2020.
When you’d look at their history, you’d realise that performing a VA loan scam wasn’t something special for them.
One of their senior executives Said Djahanbin aka Sean Dourdian aka Said Jahanbin aka Sean Dorodian was found guilty of giving false statement to a financial institution, aiding and abetting and causing an act to be done in violation of 18 USC § 1014 and 18 USC § 2.
Section 1014 of Title 18, United States Code is about making false statements or willfully overvaluing a security or property to influence the actions of the enumerated organizations.
On the other hand, Section 2 of Title 18, United States Code provides:
Whoever commits an offense against the United States or abets, aids, commands, procures, or counsels its commission is punishable as a principal.
Whoever willfully causes an act to be done which if directly performed by him (or someone else) would be an offence against the United States, is punishable as a principal.
You can understand the seriousness of Sean’s crimes now. This man had made false statements and had committed an offense against the US.
The court had ordered Sean Dourodian to pay a total restitution of $438,000 along with his co-defendant John Doe.
ClearPath Lending has tried its best to hide its affiliation with Sean Doroudian. However, you can still see his connection with the company in some places on the internet.
According to the legal document, the court had also committed him to the custody of the Bureau of Prisons. The court had ordered a supervised release for 3 years under the terms and conditions of the US probation office.
The victims in the case were Washington Mutual Bank and Indymac Bank, FSB.
Sean’s lawyers succeeded in waiving all the fines. The court had waived all the fines because Sean wasn’t able to pay them with the restitution. The filing date for this case’s judgement is January 28, 2016.
It’s obvious why ClearPath Lending has hidden its connections with Sean Dourdorian. When the CEO of your company has to spend 3 years under probation and pay nearly half a million dollars, it doesn’t look for you.
If you didn’t know anything about Sean Dourdorian, you wouldn’t find out any information about him now. The guy has vanished from the internet. ClearPath Lending doesn’t want anyone to learn about him.
This is not the first time they have done something like this.
Chances are, you stumbled across this article because you were looking for ClearPath Lending reviews. This company has ensured that you only find praises about them by getting affiliations with various review platforms.
Wealthy organizations have many ethical and unethical methods to promote themselves. And as we have seen already with the CFPB’s consent order, ClearPath relies more on the unethical methods to promote its products.
For example, here’s the title of a recent article I found on a website:
Notice the “Sponsored Content” tag? It means ClearPath paid the website to write and post that article on them.
ClearPath Lending is trying to appear like a veteran-friendly company by posting such propaganda.
They don’t want you to find out about CFPB’s investigation into their misleading advertisements. Clearly, if you read about their VA loan scams, you’d stay miles away from them.
Be ready to find a lot of such nonsensical propaganda when searching for things about this firm.
Always look for disclaimers about the website’s or author’s affiliation with the company they are talking about.
I must disclose here, I’m not affiliated with ClearPath Lending nor am I affiliated with anyone related to that company. The reason I’m writing this ClearPath Lending review here is only because I want people to know about this VA loan scam and the malicious history of this lender.
ClearPath Lending Scholarship: Another Attempt to Appear Honest
Recently, many companies have started posting scholarships to appear honest in the eyes of their customers.
Scammers like ClearPath and River Cohen use scholarships to seem like good people. First, they steal money from others and then give a fraction of it as scholarships. Do you think it’s fine?
You can get the ClearPath Lending scholarship by winning their essay contest. The title of the essay contest is “Do you think owning a home is important? Why or why not?”
High school seniors who have been accepted into a US college and undergraduate or graduate students currently enrolled in a US college or university can participate in the contest for the ClearPath Lending scholarship.
The scholarship amount is $1,000. It is an impressive amount, but remember that this company misled military service members and veterans for 4-5 years. I can’t imagine how much money they would have made by scamming our army personnel and veterans.
Their aim with the ClearPath Lending scholarship is not to give back to society. They only want to hide any mentions of their VA loan scam from the internet by burying it with such information.
When people read about this scholarship without reading about their scam, they would think ClearPath Lending is an honest and flawless organization.
It’s their way of misleading people’s opinion on them.
ClearPath Lending Reviews on Consumer Affairs: The Truth
My ClearPath Lending review would be incomplete if I didn’t mention their affiliation with ConsumerAffairs.com.
Just like their Glassdoor rating, ClearPath’s rating on ConsumerAffairs is a near-perfect 4.5 out of 5 stars.
However, their rating on this platform becomes suspicious when you see the small print above their name:
As you can see, ClearPath is an Authorized Partner of ConsumerAffairs. This means they are a paid member of this review website.
Review websites that offer paid memberships to businesses are unreliable. Because in most cases, their paid membership allows the business to remove all the negative complaints posted on their page.
ConsumerAffairs has been in controversy because of its paid membership program. 80% of their paid program members have a 3.5+ star rating. So you can guess why they have a near-perfect rating there.
Let me state that I’m not saying all the positive ClearPath Lending reviews are fake. I’m just saying you can’t trust their rating on these review platforms because it’s too easy to manipulate it.
Moreover, having a paid membership makes it much easier for them to manipulate their rating.
Various online scams use this tactic to promote themselves. It’s pretty common to post fake positive reviews on the internet, and you must stay vigilant to spot them.
ClearPath Lending Reviews on Glassdoor
The Sean Dourodian lawsuit says a lot about the leadership of ClearPath. These are the same people who scammed veterans for years and ended up paying over $500,000 for their deeds.
I found a ton of complaints on their Glassdoor page which are worth sharing. They show that the problem with this firm is not with its employees but its leadership.
The ClearPath Lending loan officers are probably not at fault. It’s the people running the company who are corrupt as you’ll see in these reviews:
“Pathetic Company to Work for”
This reviewer points out that the management at ClearPath doesn’t motivate its staff. In fact, they make their work conditions so bad that they could cry during their work hours. Employee exploitation is a huge flaw of such crooked capitalist organizations.
According to this review, you must be a part of an inner circle at this company if you want to succeed here. The upper management discriminates against employees and gives preference to particular people.
The person complains that they were let go with four other loan officers. In the “Advice to Management” section, they say the company should stop letting their processors commit fraud to complete loans. Also, they point out that the onboarding process is terrible here.
This complaint points out that nepotism is rampant in this organization. The reviewer says that ClearPath Lending’s management is inexperienced and doesn’t know how to handle employees. They lay off employees very quickly.
According to this ClearPath Lending review, the management treats its employees like machines. They micromanage the staff and ruin their work/life balance.
In this review, the person points out that the management at this firm is highly abusive. They complain that another employee can steal the rewards of your hard work here for making a simple mistake.
The leadership here punishes its staff by providing a very harsh work environment. It also says that they make their employees write fake positive reviews to improve their Glassdoor ratings. In fact, their boss waited at their desk until they wrote the fake review.
I have also shared my suspicions about their Glassdoor rating in the next section of my ClearPath Lending review.
Here are some additional ClearPath Lending reviews I found on Glassdoor that you’d find interesting. These reviews show that this company doesn’t know how to treat its employees well:
Why their Glassdoor rating is unreliable
I talked about how ClearPath tries to manipulate people’s opinions with its paid articles and misleading direct-mail ads.
However, they don’t stop there.
They go further and even use paid reviews to enhance their reputation. It is, in my opinion, one of the worst things a company can do because it hides the truth from customers.
If you’d go to the Glassdoor page of ClearPath, you’d find a stellar rating of 4.9 stars. But that’s just as misleading as their direct-mail ads were.
The reason why they have such a perfect rating is because they have filled their Glassdoor page with fake positive reviews.
Getting fake positive reviews on Glassdoor is very easy. This is what you get when you google “buy Glassdoor reviews”:
Yes, it’s that easy to manipulate your Glassdoor rating
If a company can send deceptive ads to veterans for years, can’t it buy some positive reviews?
We have already seen how this company uses “Sponsored Content” to bury any negative news or articles about it. Certainly, they can shell out a few bucks to enhance their rating.
This way, when you’d google ClearPath Lending reviews, you’d find a near-perfect rating, instead of the complaints I shared above.
ClearPath Lending BBB: Hiding Complaints:
Many people look for ClearPath Lending BBB reviews on the internet. Because many of them trust BBB and believe it’s an honest review platform.
However, the BBB has been the subject of much debate due to its accreditation program. CNN Money found that companies under government agencies’ scrutiny had A+ ratings for no reason.
They found that companies pay upwards of $10,000 per year to get and maintain their BBB accreditation. It doesn’t matter whether they are a scam or not. As long as you pay the annual fees, you’d have a BBB accreditation.
This is similar to the business model ConsumerAffairs has.
It’s obvious something is going on between ClearPath and BBB because you can’t read any ClearPath Lending BBB reviews on their page:
BBB doesn’t explain what’s the reason behind “updating the profile”. You can submit a ClearPath Lending review there, but it wouldn’t show.
There’s no way to see if ClearPath has an accreditation with BBB or not either. Because this notification hides all the information about ClearPath’s BBB page.
It simply shows how deep ClearPath’s scams run. These people can stoop to the lowest levels to mislead consumers. This is what bothers me the most.
ClearPath Lending Reviews They Don’t Want You to See
I found several user complaints on ClearPath Lending when I dug a little deeper. These reviews would give you a better perspective on this company’s operations:
“I Would Never Trust Them”
This complaint is about ClearPath Lending loan officers. According to the reviewer, they lost their payment because their loan officer gave them wrong advice. He told them that they can pay their June’s payment in May and they followed his advice.
However, because of this ClearPath denied their loan. This person lost the payment they had made.
It’s a review from 2016. This person points out that ClearPath Lending illegally advertises its products by claiming to be affiliated with organisations they have no connection with.
Now CFPB has taken action against ClearPath for doing a whole lot many illegal activities apart from showing misleading affiliation.
Leadership has been Convicted
In this review, the person has shared details about the Sean Dourodian lawsuit I mentioned earlier in my ClearPath review. The reason why I shared this particular review is because of the response it received:
Yes, ClearPath Lending filed a lawsuit against this anonymous commenter for sharing publicly available information. This is the sad reality of the world we live in.
Big corporations always have a team of lawyers at the ready so they can take down anyone who poses a threat to them. This is especially true for people who expose their wrongdoings. It’s why I chose to share my review here on Gripeo.
I didn’t want to face legal trouble for exposing a VA loan scam. Unlike ClearPath Lending, I’m not running a large corporation, nor do I have millions of dollars lying around so I can pay legal fees.
Anonymity is the only protection I have at the moment. Then again, it pains me to see such companies getting away with scamming our veterans just because they have a lot of purchasing power.
My ClearPath review is a small effort to combat their wrongdoings.
ClearPath Lending is a scam in its purest sense. The company literally ran misleading advertising campaigns and scammed military personnel and veterans. The CFPB charged them more than half a million dollars for running such a vicious scam for years.
Their leadership exploits its employees, and the authenticity of their positive reviews is in question. They have tried many methods to bury the signs of their crimes, such as releasing the ClearPath Lending scholarship and releasing paid articles.
If you know someone who might be interested in a ClearPath Lending VA loan, you should share this review with them. They should know the truth about this company.
And if you want to help fight against such corporations, I recommend sharing this article with your friends and family. Awareness is strength. The more people know about this scam, the sooner the scam will end.