Mealey's Mortgage Lending

  • October 23, 2020

    Judge Refuses To Phase Discovery In Wells Fargo Discriminatory Lending Suit

    SACRAMENTO, Calif. — A federal judge in California on Oct. 9 denied Wells Fargo & Co. and Wells Fargo Bank NA’s motion to phase discovery in a suit brought by the city of Sacramento accusing the lender of engaging in discriminatory lending practices, holding that limiting discovery to loans offered during the limitations period could not provide enough statistical data to support the city’s allegations of disparate impact (Sacramento v. Wells Fargo Bank & Co., No. 18-416, E.D. Calif., 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 188259).

  • October 23, 2020

    Chamber Of Commerce Says Rehearing Needed In Discriminatory Lending Suit

    SAN FRANCISCO — The U.S. Chamber of Commerce says in an amicus curiae brief filed in the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Oct. 19 in support of Wells Fargo & Co. and Wells Fargo Bank NA that the appeals court should rehear arguments as to whether the city of Oakland provided sufficient evidence of proximate causation on its claim that the lender’s allegedly discriminatory lending practices resulted in reduced property tax revenue (Oakland v. Wells Fargo & Co., et al., No. 19-15169, 9th Cir.).

  • October 23, 2020

    Judge Stays Foreclosure Suit Pending State Court’s Limitations Ruling

    CHICAGO — A federal judge in Illinois on Oct. 14 sua sponte stayed a man’s suit accusing his mortgage lender, loan servicer and a law firm of violating the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) when foreclosing on his home, holding that a state court judge presiding over a parallel state court foreclosure lawsuit brought by the defendants should first determine when the 10-year statute of limitations began to run (Carlos Escarza v. Bank of New York Mellon, et al., No. 20-2341, N.D. Ill., 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 189270).

  • October 23, 2020

    9th Circuit:  Loan Servicer’s Access Of Credit Reports Did Not Violate Statute

    SAN FRANCISCO — The Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Oct. 20 affirmed a federal judge in Nevada’s ruling that Ocwen Loan Servicing LLC did not violate the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) when accessing credit reports of borrowers whose mortgage loans were discharged in bankruptcy proceedings, finding that the loan servicer obtained the information to determine whether the borrowers were eligible for loss mitigation (Christopher Marino, et al. v. Ocwen Loan Servicing LLC, No. 19-15530, 9th Cir., 2020 U.S. App. LEXIS 33039).

  • October 22, 2020

    Panel Upholds Judgment Against Lender Over Purchase Of Home Riddled With Defects

    SACRAMENTO, Calif. — A California appeals panel on Oct. 20 affirmed a ruling entering judgment against a lender accusing a borrower of fraudulently inducing it to pay the full amount in a foreclosure sale for a home that was later deemed uninhabitable as a result of construction defects, finding that the fraud exception to the full credit rule was inapplicable because the borrower did not set the price for the home or represent the value of the property (LoanDepot.Com LLC v. Elizabeth W. Coots, et al., NO. C087378, Calif. App., 3rd Dist., 2020 Cal. App. Unpub. LEXIS 6847).

  • October 19, 2020

    Judge Approves $18.5M Settlement Over Wells Fargo’s Loan Modification Denials

    SAN FRANCISCO — A federal judge in California on Oct. 12 entered final approval of an $18.5 million settlement for a nationwide class of borrowers who allege that they were denied loan modifications under the Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP) by Wells Fargo Bank NA as a result of an algorithmic error in its software glitch in the lender’s software, finding that the terms of the settlement were fair and reasonable (Alicia Hernandez, et al. v. Wells Fargo Bank NA, et al., No. 18-7354, N.D. Calif., 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 188669).

  • October 19, 2020

    Judge Dismisses Amended UCL, Other Claims With Prejudice In Billing Practice Dispute

    OAKLAND, Calif. — A federal judge in California on Oct. 9 dismissed with prejudice plaintiffs’ amended claims for violation for California’s unfair competition law (UCL), fraud and negligent misrepresentation in their lawsuit challenging the defendant’s billing practices involving loans for foreclosure sales (Najarian Holdings LLC, et al. v. CoreVest American Finance Lender LLC, No. 20-00799, N.D. Calif., 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 188667).

  • October 16, 2020

    Judge Refuses To Enjoin Trustee’s Sale, Tosses Regulation X, UCL Suit Against Lender

    SANTA ANA, Calif. — A federal judge in California on Oct. 13 denied a borrower’s ex parte application for a temporary restraining order to enjoin a trustee's sale of his Midway City, Calif., home in his lawsuit alleging that the lender committed unlawful conduct concerning a mortgage loan secured by the property, dismissing his Regulation X claim with prejudice and his California unfair competition law (UCL) claim without prejudice (John Fouse v. Core Lending, Inc., No. 20-1369, C.D. Calif., 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 189597).

  • October 13, 2020

    Wells Fargo Asks 9th Circuit To Rehear Ruling In Discriminatory Lending Case

    SAN FRANCISCO — Wells Fargo & Co. and Wells Fargo Bank N.A. petitioned the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Oct. 9 seeking a rehearing of its argument that a federal judge in California erred when finding that the city of Oakland sufficiently alleged proximate causation in a lawsuit claiming that the lender’s discriminatory lending practices caused it to sustain damages in the form of reduced property tax revenue as a result of foreclosures, arguing that the ruling conflicts with the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Bank of America Corp. v. Miami (Oakland v. Wells Fargo & Co., et al., No. 19-15169, 9th Cir.).

  • October 12, 2020

    Judicial Foreclosure Judgment Against Couple Upheld By 5th Circuit

    NEW ORLEANS — A Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on Oct. 9 affirmed the ruling of a federal judge in Texas finding that a lender and loan servicer could judicially foreclose on a couple’s home, finding that the financial institutions had standing to assert their counterclaims (John Priester Jr., et al. v. Deutsche Bank National Trust Co., et al., No. 19-40158, 5th Cir., 2020 U.S. App. LEXIS 32060).

  • October 12, 2020

    Class Action Over Loan Servicer’s Duty To Pay Taxes Revived By 4th Circuit

    RICHMOND, Va. — A Fourth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on Oct. 2 revived a man’s putative class action lawsuit accusing his loan servicer of violating the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA) by failing to make a property tax payment from his escrow account, finding that the loan servicer was required to make the payment on the due date even though it was before the plaintiff made his first payment on the mortgage after the servicer was assigned duties to the loan (Rodney Harrell v. Freedom Mortgage Corp., No. 19-1379, 4th Cir., 2020 U.S. App. LEXIS 31414).

  • October 11, 2020

    City: High Court Should Toss 11th Circuit’s Ruling In Discriminatory Lending Case

    WASHINGTON, D.C.  — The city of Miami Gardens, Fla., told the U.S. Supreme Court in a petition for a writ of certiorari filed Sept. 24 that it should review an 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruling that sua sponte raised the issue of standing under Article III of the U.S. Constitution in its discriminatory lending suit against Wells Fargo Bank NA because the decision conflicts with the opinion in Alabama Black Legislative Black Caucus v. Alabama, as well as the decisions of other circuit court of appeals (Miami Gardens v. Wells Fargo Bank NA, No. 20-405, U.S. Sup.).

  • October 10, 2020

    Dismissal Of Man’s Fair Credit Reporting Act Suit Upheld By 11th Circuit

    ATLANTA — An 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on Sept. 30 upheld a decision to dismiss a man’s complaint accusing the Federal National Mortgage Association (Fannie Mae) and JP Morgan Chase N.A. of violating the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) for submitting misinformation to credit reporting agencies about the delinquency of his mortgage loan, holding that a judge in federal court in Florida did not err by not allowing the man sua sponte to amend his lawsuit to contend that an exception within the statute stated that his claims were not preempted (Joseph Fischer v. Federal National Mortgage Association, et al., No. 20-11143, 11th Cir., 2020 U.S. App. LEXIS 31077).

  • October 07, 2020

    Judge Certifies Nationwide Class Over Loan Servicer's Alleged Kickback Scheme

    BALTIMORE — A federal judge in Maryland on Oct. 2 certified a nationwide class for borrowers who claim that a loan servicer for federally backed loans violated the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA) by engaging in a kickback scheme with a title services company that resulted in class members paying more for services, finding that the plaintiffs sufficiently alleged that they had standing under Article III of the U.S. Constitution and that the proposed class satisfied the requirements of Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 23 (Jill Bezek et al. v. First Mariner Bank, No. 17-2902, D. Md., 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 183174).

  • October 05, 2020

    5th Circuit Sustains Finding That Foreclosure Suit Is Barred By Res Judicata

    NEW ORLEANS — A Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on Sept. 30 affirmed the dismissal of a man's suit seeking to block the foreclosure of his home, agreeing with a federal judge in Texas that the action was barred by the doctrine of res judicata (Rodney Underwood v. Ocwen Loan Servicing LLC, No. 20-20227, 5th Cir., 2020 U.S. App. LEXIS 31054).

  • October 02, 2020

    Split 9th Circuit Finds Class' Claims Over Escrow Interest Payments Preempted

    SAN FRANCISCO — A 2-1 panel of the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Sept. 22 reversed a federal judge in California's ruling denying dismissal of a class action lawsuit accusing JP Morgan Chase Bank NA (Chase) of violating California law after finding that the plaintiffs' claims are preempted by the Home Owners Loan Act of 1933 (HOLA) (Susan McShannock, et al. v. JP Morgan Chase Bank NA, No. 19-15899, 9th Cir., 2020 U.S. App. LEXIS 30234).

  • September 30, 2020

    Man Lacks Standing To Bring Suit Over Convenience Fees, Judge Rules

    TAMPA, Fla. — A federal judge in Florida on Sept. 25 dismissed without prejudice a man's lawsuit accusing Ocwen Loan Servicing LLC of violating the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) and Florida Consumer Collection Practices Act (FCCPA) when charging convenience fees for making monthly mortgage payments over the phone or online, holding that the man lacked standing because he did not owe a debt to Ocwen when he made the payments (Winston Bowen-Hay v. Ocwen Loan Servicing LLC, No. 20-170, M.D. Fla., 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 176608).

  • September 28, 2020

    3rd Circuit:  Man Who Failed To Read Loan Contract Cannot Raise Equitable Tolling

    PHILADELPHIA — A Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Sept. 24 affirmed the dismissal of a borrower's class action lawsuit accusing his mortgage lender of violating the Truth in Lending Act (TILA) as untimely, holding that he could not raise the doctrine of equitable tolling because he did not read the loan contract and failed to sufficiently allege that the lender misled him (Paul Aversano v. Santander Bank N.A., No. 19-2868, 3rd Cir., 2020 U.S. App. LEXIS 30479).

  • September 26, 2020

    Breach Of Contract Claim Cut From Texas Class Action Over Convenience Fees

    CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — A federal judge in Texas on Sept. 10 granted in part a loan servicer's motion to dismiss a class action brought on behalf of Texas mortgage holders who complain that a convenience fee the servicer charges for payments made over the phone and online violates the Texas Debt Collection Practices Act (TDCPA), finding that the plaintiffs sufficiently state a claim for violating the act but that the charging of the fee did not breach the deed of trust (Sandi Barnett, et al. v. Caliber Home Loans Inc., No. 19-309, S.D. Texas, 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 168171).

  • September 26, 2020

    Woman's State Law Claims Over Loan Servicer's Fees Survive Dismissal

    MIAMI — A federal judge in Florida on Aug. 28 denied a loan servicer's motion to dismiss claims in a woman's class action lawsuit accusing it of violating the Florida Consumer Collection Practices Act (FCCPA) and Florida Deceptive and Unfair Trade Practices Act (FDUTPA), finding that statutes apply to the loan servicer's charging of convenience fees for making monthly payments over the phone and online (Donna Alvarez v. LoanCare LLC, No. 20-21837, S.D. Fla., 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 169692).