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United States ex rel. Fisher v. Homeward Residential, Inc.

United States District Court for the Eastern District of Texas, Sherman Division

March 15, 2016, Decided; March 15, 2016, Filed

CASE NO. 4:12-CV-461

Opinion

MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER

Pending before the Court is Defendants Homeward Residential, Inc. and Ocwen Financial Corporation's Motion to Compel Production of Documents and Information (Dkt. #197). After reviewing the relevant pleadings, the Court finds that the motion should be granted in part and denied in part.

BACKGROUND

On July 25, 2012, Relator Michael J. Fisher ("Fisher" or "Relator") filed his original complaint under seal (Dkt. #1). In his original complaint, Fisher alleged that Homeward Residential, Inc. ("Homeward") did not provide disclosures required by the Truth in Lending Act ("TILA") and Regulation Z with any of its Home Affordable Modification Program ("HAMP") or non-HAMP modifications (Dkt. #1).

On June 4, 2014, the Court ordered that the complaint be unsealed and served upon Defendant, after the United States declined to intervene (Dkt. #27). On October 16, 2014, Relators filed Qui Tam Relators' First Amended Complaint (Dkt. #39). The First Amended Complaint incorporated new allegations including: (1) Federal Housing Administration ("FHA") violations, (2) Dodd-Frank Act violations, (3) Real Estate Settlement [*3]  Procedures Act ("RESPA") violations, and (4) Texas, New York, and Massachusetts state law violations (Dkt. #39). It also added a new relator, Brian Bullock ("Bullock" or "Relator") (Dkt. #39).

On March 3, 2015, Relators filed their second amended complaint (Dkt. #101). The second amended complaint added a new defendant, Ocwen Financial Corporation ("Ocwen Financial") (Dkt. #101).

On November 2, 2015, Defendants filed their Motion to Compel Production of Documents and Information (Dkt. #197). On November 16, 2015, Relators filed their response (Dkt. #201). On November 25, 2015, Defendants filed their reply (Dkt. #208; Dkt. #209). On December 3, 2015, Relators filed their sur-reply (Dkt. #212).

LEGAL STANDARD

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2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 32910 *

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA Ex rel. Michael J. Fisher, and Michael Fisher, Individually, and Brian Bullock, and Brian Bullock, Individually v. HOMEWARD RESIDENTIAL, INC., f/k/a American Home Mortgage Servicing, Inc., ET. AL.

Prior History: United States ex rel. Fisher v. Homeward Residential, Inc., 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 78635 (E.D. Tex., June 17, 2015)

CORE TERMS

documents, funder, work product doctrine, communications, anticipation of litigation, privilege log, waived, discoverable, disclosure, discovery, investors, numbers, parties, seal, work product, in camera, work-product, motivating, asserting, withheld, prepare