DOB: Irene E. Smith - CD-CP

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IN THE MATTER OF:

IRENE E. SMITH
d/b/a DIRECT LOAN COUNSELING
AND d/b/a DIRECT LOAN ADVISORS
AND d/b/a CALIFORNIA'S REALTY

        ("Respondent")

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ORDER TO CEASE AND DESIST

AND

ORDER IMPOSING CIVIL PENALTY


I.  PRELIMINARY STATEMENT

WHEREAS, the Banking Commissioner (“Commissioner”) is charged with the administration of Sections 36a-671 to 36a-671e, inclusive, of the Connecticut General Statutes contained in Part II of Chapter 669 of the Connecticut General Statutes, “Debt Adjusters and Debt Negotiation”;
 
WHEREAS, the Commissioner, through the Consumer Credit Division (“Division”) of the Department of Banking (“Department”), conducted an investigation of the activities of Respondent, pursuant to the authority granted by Section 36a-17 of the Connecticut General Statutes, to determine if Respondent had violated, was violating or was about to violate the provisions of the Connecticut General Statutes within the jurisdiction of the Commissioner;
 
WHEREAS, on March 22, 2016, the Commissioner, acting pursuant to Sections 36a-52(b), 36a-50(c), 36a-671a(b), 36a-52(a) and 36a-50(a) of the Connecticut General Statutes, issued a Temporary Order to Cease and Desist, Order to Make Restitution (“Order to Make Restitution”), Notice of Intent to Issue Order to Cease and Desist, Notice of Intent to Impose Civil Penalty and Notice of Right to Hearing (collectively “Order and Notice”) against Respondent, which Order and Notice is incorporated herein by reference;
 
WHEREAS, on March 23, 2016, the Order and Notice was caused to be mailed by certified mail, return receipt requested, to Respondent (Certified Mail Nos. 70133020000042267759, 70133020000042267766, 70142120000036974107 and 70142120000036974213);
 
WHEREAS, the Order and Notice provided Respondent with the opportunity for a hearing, and stated that if a hearing was not requested by Respondent within 14 days of its receipt, or if Respondent failed to appear at any such hearing, the allegations would be deemed admitted, the Order to Make Restitution shall remain in effect and become permanent against Respondent and the Commissioner would issue an order that Respondent cease and desist from violating Section 36a-671(b) of the Connecticut General Statutes, and may order a civil penalty in an amount not to exceed One Hundred Thousand Dollars ($100,000) per violation be imposed upon Respondent;
 
WHEREAS, on April 5, 2016, the Order and Notice sent to Respondent by Certified Mail No. 70142120000036974107 was returned to the Department marked “Forward Time Exp – Rtn to Send”;
 
WHEREAS, on April 7, 2016, the Notice sent to Respondent by Certified Mail No. 70133020000042267759 was returned to the Department marked “Return to Sender – Insufficient Address – Unable to Forward”;
 
WHEREAS, on April 7, 2016, the Notice sent to Respondent by Certified Mail No. 70133020000042267766 was returned to the Department marked “Return to Sender – Not Deliverable as Addressed – Unable to Forward – Recipient Not Here”;
 
WHEREAS, on May 2, 2016, the Notice sent to Respondent by Certified Mail No. 70142120000036974213 was returned to the Department marked “Return to Sender – Not Deliverable as Addressed – Unable to Forward”;

WHEREAS, the Notice of Intent to Issue Order to Cease and Desist, Notice of Intent to Impose Civil Penalty and Order to Make Restitution issued against Respondent was “deemed received by the person on the earlier of the date of actual receipt, or seven days after mailing or sending”, pursuant to Sections 36a-52(a), 36a-50(a)(1) and 36a-50(c) of the Connecticut General Statutes;
 
WHEREAS, Respondent failed to request a hearing within the prescribed time period, present evidence, rebuttal evidence and argument on all issues of fact and law to be considered by the Commissioner;
 
WHEREAS, the Commissioner alleged in the Order and Notice, with respect to the activity described therein, that Respondent’s engaging in debt negotiation in this state without obtaining the required license constitutes violations of Section 36a-671(b) of the Connecticut General Statutes.  Such violations form the basis to issue an order to cease and desist pursuant to Sections 36a-671a(b) and 36a-52(a) of the Connecticut General Statutes, to issue an order to make restitution pursuant to Sections 36a-671a(b) and 36a-50(c) of the Connecticut General Statutes, and to impose a civil penalty pursuant to Sections 36a-671a(b) and 36a-50(a) of the Connecticut General Statutes;
 
WHEREAS, also in the Order and Notice, the Commissioner ordered, pursuant to Section 36a-50(c) of the Connecticut General Statutes, that not later than thirty (30) days from the date the Order to Make Restitution becomes permanent, Respondent shall repay $2,500 to an identified Connecticut debtor plus interest and repay to any other Connecticut debtor who entered into an agreement for debt negotiation services with Respondent on or after October 1, 2009, any fees paid plus interest, and provide evidence of such repayments to the Director of the Division; 
 
WHEREAS, Section 36a-52(a) of the Connecticut General Statutes provides, in pertinent part, that “[i]f the person does not request a hearing within the time specified in the notice or fails to appear at the hearing, the commissioner shall issue an order to cease and desist against the person.  No such order shall be issued except in accordance with the provisions of chapter 54”;
 
WHEREAS, Section 36a-50(a)(2) of the Connecticut General Statutes provides, in pertinent part, that “[i]f such person does not request a hearing within the time specified in the notice or fails to appear at the hearing, the commissioner may, as the facts require, order that a civil penalty not exceeding one hundred thousand dollars per violation be imposed upon such person”;
 
WHEREAS, Section 36a-50(a)(3) of the Connecticut General Statutes provides that “[e]ach action undertaken by the commissioner under this subsection shall be in accordance with the provisions of chapter 54”;
 
AND WHEREAS, Section 36a-1-31(a) of the Regulations of Connecticut State Agencies provides, in pertinent part, that “[w]hen a party fails to request a hearing within the time specified in the notice, the allegations against the party may be deemed admitted.  Without further proceedings or notice to the party, the commissioner shall issue a final decision in accordance with section 4-180 of the Connecticut General Statutes and section 36a-1-52 of the Regulations of Connecticut State Agencies”.


II.  FINDINGS OF FACT AND CONCLUSIONS OF LAW

1.
The Commissioner finds that the matters asserted, as set forth in paragraphs 1 through 8, inclusive, of Section II of the Order and Notice, shall constitute findings of fact within the meaning of Section 4-180(c) of the Connecticut General Statutes, and that the conclusions, as set forth in Section III of the Order and Notice, shall constitute conclusions of law within the meaning of Section 4-180(c) of the Connecticut General Statutes and Section 36a-1-52 of the Regulations of Connecticut State Agencies.
2.
The Commissioner finds that Respondent has engaged in acts or conduct which, pursuant to Sections 36a-671a(b) and 36a-52(a) of the Connecticut General Statutes, forms the basis to issue an order to cease and desist against Respondent, and, pursuant to Sections 36a-671a(b) and 36a-50(a) of the Connecticut General Statutes, forms the basis to impose a civil penalty upon Respondent.
3.
The Commissioner finds that the Order and Notice was given in compliance with Section 36a-52(a), subsections (a) and (c) of Section 36a-50 and Section 4-177 of the Connecticut General Statutes.
 

III.  ORDER

Having read the record, I HEREBY ORDER, pursuant to Sections 36a-671a(b), 36a-52(a) and 36a-50(a) of the Connecticut General Statutes that:

1.
Irene E. Smith d/b/a Direct Loan Counseling and d/b/a Direct Loan Advisors and d/b/a California’s Realty CEASE AND DESIST from violating Section 36a-671(b) of the Connecticut General Statutes;
2.
A CIVIL PENALTY of One Hundred Thousand Dollars ($100,000) be imposed upon Irene E. Smith d/b/a Direct Loan Counseling and d/b/a Direct Loan Advisors and d/b/a California’s Realty, to be remitted to the Department of Banking by cashier’s check, certified check or money order, made payable to “Treasurer, State of Connecticut”, no later than thirty (30) days from the date this Order is mailed;
3.  The ORDER TO MAKE RESTITUTION issued on March 22, 2016, remains in effect and became permanent against Irene E. Smith d/b/a Direct Loan Counseling and d/b/a Direct Loan Advisors and d/b/a California’s Realty on April 14, 2016; and
4.
This Order shall become effective when mailed.


Dated at Hartford, Connecticut
this 28th day of June 2016.             

 ________/s/_________
 Jorge L. Perez
 Banking Commissioner



This Order was sent by certified mail,
return receipt requested, to
Respondent on June 28, 2016.


Irene E. Smith d/b/a Direct Loan Counseling        Certified Mail No. 70142120000036974312
and d/b/a Direct Loan Advisors
and d/b/a California’s Realty
P.O. Box 277
Brea, California 92022

Irene E. Smith d/b/a Direct Loan Counseling         Certified Mail No. 70142120000036974329
and d/b/a Direct Loan Advisors
and d/b/a California’s Realty
11111 Santa Monica Boulevard, Suite 1700
Los Angeles, California 90025

Irene E. Smith d/b/a Direct Loan Counseling         Certified Mail No. 70123050000069999680
and d/b/a Direct Loan Advisors
and d/b/a California’s Realty
2043 Arbor Circle
Brea, California 92821-4401

Irene E. Smith d/b/a Direct Loan Counseling         Certified Mail No. 70123050000069999697
and d/b/a Direct Loan Advisors
and d/b/a California’s Realty
11312 Santa Monica #3
Los Angeles, California 90025

Irene E. Smith d/b/a Direct Loan Counseling         Certified Mail No. 70123050000069999703
and d/b/a Direct Loan Advisors
and d/b/a California’s Realty
28601 Los Alisos Boulevard, Apt. 1039
Mission Viejo, CA 92692-7908



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