Real Estate Fraud
The San Diego County District Attorney’s Office is dedicated to the investigation and prosecution of real estate related crimes. If you suspect you are a victim of Real Estate Fraud, or have knowledge of such activity, please report this information to the District Attorney’s Office. Through our collective efforts, we can protect individuals from fraudulent activity and provide a safe real estate market.
How to Report Suspected Real Estate Fraud
The San Diego County District Attorney's Office (SDCDA) Real Estate Fraud Unit will review for investigation real estate fraud related cases occurring in San Diego County. Examples of the types of cases which will be considered for investigation are as follows: submission of forged loan applications; fraudulent transfers of title of real property; recordation of fraudulent real estate documents; home equity sale contract fraud; and mortgage foreclosure consultant fraud.
The following is how to submit a complaint:
Read thoroughly the Guidelines for Completing the Real Estate Complaint Form provided below available in English and Spanish. Guidelines to submitting a Real Estate Complaint - (Click here for Spanish)
If you prefer to receive a hard copy of the Complaint Form and Guidelines, you can call the District Attorney’s Office Real Estate Packet Request Line at 619-531-3552. Leave your name and address and state that you are requesting that a complaint form be mailed to you.
You can also send an email to RealEstateFraudComplaints@sdcda.org, and the Complaint Form and Guidelines will be emailed back to you as attachments.
Complete a summary/ narrative of the details of your complaint and attach it to the Real Estate Complaint Form (please see the Guidelines for Completing the Real Estate Complaint Form for direction on what to include in your summary.)
Attach any documents that you believe are important and can assist us in making a decision on how to proceed with your case.
Send in your complaint, summary/ narrative, and attachments. This can be done in the following ways:
Office of the District Attorney
Real Estate Fraud Section
P.O. BOX 121011
San Diego, CA 92112-1011
Or email them as attachments to the following email address:
The mailing address and email address are also provided in the Guidelines for Completing the Real Estate Complaint Form.
What we do once we receive your complaint.
You will receive confirmation either by letter or email that we received your complaint and providing you with a case number assigned to your complaint.
We will review all the information and supporting documentation that is included. We will contact you to let you know our decision or ask additional follow-up questions if needed.
If we decide to file criminal charges, a Deputy District Attorney from the Economic Crimes Division will be assigned to prosecute the case.
If the complaint does not meet our criteria to open a case, we will do our best to refer you to an agency that will assist you with the type of matter involved.
Many real estate disputes are not appropriate for criminal charges, but can be pursued through private civil legal action. This office is not legally permitted to represent individuals in civil matters, help cancel any debt due on a contract that was signed, resolve or mediate individual contractual complaints, or obtain any other personal relief. It is generally a good idea to consult with a private civil attorney to explore civil legal remedies that might be available.
If you need a civil lawyer to assist you in determining what, if any, civil remedies you may have, you may visit the following State of California website, which lists certified lawyer referral services at www.calbar.ca.gov/public/need-Legal-Help/lawyer-Referral-Service, or the San Diego County Bar Association’s website, which also contains lawyer referral information at https://www.sdcba.org.
An additional excellent resource for you to get started on receiving non-criminal assistance is the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) website: www.hud.gov/states/california/homeownership/hsgcounseling . HUD is the Federal agency responsible for national policy and programs dealing with America's housing needs and enforce fair housing laws. This website has a search function to look up all the HUD approved housing counseling and foreclosure avoidance counseling agencies in your area.