Mealey's Mortgage Lending

  • September 21, 2023

    Federal Judge Grants Summary Judgment, Affirming Bank’s Authority To Foreclose

    BOSTON — A federal judge in Massachusetts granted a motion for summary judgment filed by two banks and a loan servicing company because one of the banks offered evidence showing that, contrary to a borrower’s complaint, it had the authority to foreclose on his property.

  • September 21, 2023

    Illinois Panel Affirms Dismissal Of Suit Claiming Reverse Mortgage Fraud

    CHICAGO — An Illinois appeals court affirmed a lower court’s ruling to dismiss a complaint filed by three borrowers who allege that a lender fraudulently took their homes in a reverse mortgage scheme because the claims are barred by the state’s statute of limitations.

  • September 21, 2023

    Hispanic Workers’ Claims Of Bias Against Wells Fargo Stayed In Federal Court

    SAN ANTONIO — A federal judge in Texas compelled arbitration individually staying claims for 16 of 17 plaintiffs who filed an amended class action against Wells Fargo Bank N.A. alleging that the bank forces its employees to offer predatory mortgage lending options to Spanish-speaking customers and excludes members of a bilingual team from opportunities within the company.

  • September 20, 2023

    Mortgage Servicer Removes Class Complaint Claiming Inaccurate Credit Reporting

    CHICAGO — A mortgage servicer has removed to a federal court in Illinois a borrower’s putative class complaint alleging that it supplied incorrect payment history information to consumer credit reporting agencies (CRAs), asserting federal question jurisdiction and standing under Article III of the U.S. Constitution.

  • September 20, 2023

    Federal Judge Approves Class Settlement In Pay-To-Pay Mortgage Fees Case

    WHEELING, W.Va. — A federal judge in West Virginia granted a motion seeking final approval of a $910,000 settlement in a class action alleging that a bank illegally charged hundreds of borrowers convenience fees to pay their monthly mortgage payments online or by telephone in violation of the West Virginia Consumer Credit and Protection Act (WVCCPA).

  • September 20, 2023

    Lender Waives Right To Respond To Cert Petition In FCA Suit Over Mortgage Fraud

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — A mortgage lender on Sept. 19 waived its right to respond to a relator’s petition for a writ of certiorari with the U.S. Supreme Court, seeking review and reversal of the Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals’ decision upholding a lower court’s grant of summary judgment for the lender in the relator’s False Claims Act (FCA) suit alleging that the lender made false representations to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

  • September 19, 2023

    Borrowers Allege In Class Action That Lender Wrongfully Denied, Shorted COVID-19 Aid

    PHILADELPHIA — Borrowers filed a class action complaint in federal court in Pennsylvania alleging that their lender violated state and federal statutes when it denied some borrowers COVID-19 aid and approved only a portion of the aid for others claiming to be eligible for more funding.

  • September 18, 2023

    Government Urges High Court To Uphold ‘Bedrock Principle’ Of Chevron Deference

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. secretary of Commerce, two National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) officials and the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) (collectively, the government) urge the U.S. Supreme Court in a Sept. 15 brief to not overrule the doctrine of Chevron deference in a challenge to fishery regulations that were upheld by the District of Columbia Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals, writing that doing so could “cause disruption” to complex federal regulatory schemes.

  • September 18, 2023

    Class Certified In Suit Alleging Illegal Kickbacks And Scheme To Defraud Borrowers

    BALTIMORE — A federal judge in Maryland certified a class of borrowers and two subclasses of borrowers, finding that a lender’s argument that some of the class did not endure financial losses failed to “undermine the predominance of common legal and factual issues” in the case alleging that the lender engaged in both an illegal kickback agreement with its title and settlement company and a related plan to defraud borrowers on more than 750 loans into paying made-up charges for title and settlement services.

  • September 14, 2023

    Bank’s Motion To Dismiss Rejected In Part; Claims Handling Violations Alleged

    DAYTON, Ohio — A federal judge in Ohio set a settlement conference after denying part of a bank’s motion to dismiss and ruling that two borrowers adequately stated their claim that the bank violated the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA) by failing to sufficiently address one out of three alleged errors in loan modification paperwork.

  • September 14, 2023

    Most Counts Stand, 1 Dismissed In RESPA Case Alleging Mortgage Servicer Erred

    BALTIMORE — A federal magistrate judge in Maryland dismissed a claim alleging that a mortgage servicer violated the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA) by failing to offer all applicable loss mitigation options, ruling that the mortgage servicer had the discretion to choose which loan modification option it offered, but the judge allowed the remaining RESPA and state law claims to stand, ruling that the borrowers sufficiently stated their claims that the servicer failed to adequately respond to their letter reporting errors and seeking payment history information.

  • September 12, 2023

    Florida Panel Finds Trial Court ‘Exceeded Its Authority’ In Foreclosure Case

    WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — A Florida appeals panel affirmed a trial court’s ruling that denied a bank’s attempt to foreclose on a home but reversed the portion of the trial court’s ruling that established terms of the mortgage repayment because the trial court exceeded its authority in creating a resolution for the past-due payments.

  • September 12, 2023

    Federal Judge Rejects Bank’s Motion To Dismiss RESPA Case Alleging Vicarious Liability

    COEUR D’ALENE, Idaho — A federal judge in Idaho denied a bank’s motion to dismiss a complaint alleging violations of the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA) and ruled that as the master servicer of a homeowner’s loan, the bank can plausibly be held liable for the actions of its subservicer.

  • September 08, 2023

    Massachusetts Appeals Court OKs Home Foreclosure, Says Bank Effort ‘Reasonable’

    BOSTON — The Massachusetts Appeals Court affirmed a housing court’s judgment allowing a home foreclosure by Wells Fargo Bank N.A. to stand on the ground that the bank made “reasonable efforts” to contact the homeowner in keeping with regulatory requirements of loans guaranteed by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA).

  • September 07, 2023

    Solicitor General Asks High Court Not To Hear National Bank Act Preemption Cases

    WASHINGTON D.C. — The U.S. solicitor general urged the Supreme Court in an amicus curiae brief to deny petitions for writs of certiorari on the grounds that lower courts failed to apply the proper assessment of the degree to which the National Bank Act (NBA) preempts state laws in two unrelated appeals regarding whether lenders are required to pay interest on mortgage escrow accounts.

  • August 29, 2023

    Judge:  Borrower Can Amend Suit Against Bank For Notice Of Default During COVID

    SAN FRANCISCO — A California federal judge on Aug. 28 refused to dismiss a borrower’s claim for violation of California’s unfair competition law (UCL) against her bank for causing a notice of default on her loan while her application for loan assistance filed during the coronavirus pandemic was pending, dismissed her claim for violation of Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA) regulations and granted her leave to amend.

  • August 25, 2023

    Wells Fargo Asks Federal Court To Toss Case Alleging Profits Off Rate Lock Fees

    SAN FRANCISCO — Wells Fargo moved to dismiss a proposed class complaint filed in a California federal court alleging that the bank wrongly charged borrowers rate lock extension fees and admitted its misconduct by voluntarily refunding its customers but profited “in the billions of dollars” through investments of the money collected through the fees.

  • August 24, 2023

    Lender To 7th Circuit:  ECOA Discrimination Protection Not For Prospective Borrowers

    CHICAGO — A lending and consulting company and its owner argue that discrimination protection of the Equal Credit Opportunity Act (ECOA) does not extend to prospective borrowers in urging the Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals to affirm a lower court’s dismissal of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s complaint against them.

  • August 24, 2023

    Appraisal Bias Case Against Lender, Appraiser And Appraiser Counterclaims Continue

    BALTIMORE — A federal judge in Maryland declined to dismiss Black homeowners’ claims alleging that a mortgage lender and property appraiser violated several provisions of the Fair Housing Act (FHA) and the Equal Credit Opportunity Act (ECOA) by undervaluing their home based on their race and by denying a mortgage refinancing application based on that appraisal, but the judge also declined to dismiss the appraiser’s defamation and false light invasion of privacy counterclaims against the homeowners.

  • August 24, 2023

    Homeowner Alleges In Class Action Suit That Lender Unjustly Denied COVID-19 Aid

    ALLENTOWN, Pa. — A homeowner filed a class action in Pennsylvania federal court alleging violations of federal statutes and the Pennsylvania Unfair Trade Practices and Consumer Protection Law (UTPCPL) when a lender denied him a COVID-19 loss mitigation option on the ground that it would not have reduced the principal and interest portions of his Federal Housing Administration (FHA) mortgage.

  • August 24, 2023

    Homeowner Opposes Bank Of America’s Motion To Dismiss Pay-To-Pay Class Action Suit

    CHARLESTON, W.Va. — A homeowner who filed a federal class action suit against Bank of America N.A. (BANA) after the company began charging her a fee to pay her mortgage over the phone responded to a motion to dismiss with allegations that the bank violated West Virginia state and federal laws in charging fees not permitted by mortgage agreements or statutes.

  • August 24, 2023

    7th Circuit: Omission Of Credit Report Material Info Actionable Under FCRA

    CHICAGO — The Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals disagreed with a lower court’s ruling that credit reporting agency Experian Information Solutions Inc. was immune from liability in reporting a borrower’s mortgage as delinquent, maintaining that Experian’s omission of a related payment agreement between the lender and borrower is actionable under the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA).

  • August 24, 2023

    Federal Judge In California Dismisses Foreclosure Suit Citing Statute Of Limitations

    CONCORD, Calif. — A federal judge in California dismissed a homeowners’ lawsuit but allowed them to amend their complaint that alleged that a mortgage loan servicer violated several state and federal statutes when it foreclosed on the homeowners’ property.

  • August 24, 2023

    7th Circuit:  County Cannot Recover Under FHA For Banks’ Predatory Lending

    CHICAGO — The Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled that a county in Illinois that says it was injured by a bank’s predatory loan practices because of vacant homes, diminished home values and lost tax revenue is not entitled to relief under the Fair Housing Act (FHA) because the county “did not suffer ‘first-tier injuries’.”

  • August 24, 2023

    Class Certified In Suit Alleging Borrowers Were Illegally Charged For Inspections

    GREENBELT, Md. — A federal judge in Maryland granted class certification to a homeowner, finding that she adequately made her case to represent at least 100 borrowers in a suit alleging that a mortgage servicer violated several state laws when it charged inspection fees to delinquent borrowers even after signing a memorandum of understanding in another case to prevent such fees.

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