BOSTON - The Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems Inc. (MERS) on Feb. 24 announced that a Massachusetts appeals court has dismissed a borrower's claims related to a foreclosure, finding that the complaint contained only conclusory statements that were unsupported by the facts (Angelina M. Hall v. Nationstar Mortgage LLC, No. 15-P-282, Mass. App.).
PITTSBURGH - A Pennsylvania federal judge on Feb. 22 granted a lender's motion to dismiss state and federal law claims asserted against it, finding no evidence to show that it was attempting to foreclose on an underlying mortgage that it does not own (Mark DeHaven v. Planet Home Lending LLC, et al., No. 2:15-cv-380, W.D. Pa.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 21404).
TAMPA, Fla. - After finding that it lacked jurisdiction over claims asserted by a former property owner's claims related to a mortgage under the doctrine established in Rooker v. Fidelity Trust Co. (263 U.S. 413 ) and District of Columbia Court of Appeals v. Feldman (460 U.S. 462 ) and that the claims were barred by res judicata, a Florida federal judge on Feb. 23 granted a motion to dismiss the case (Albert Salmon v. Aurora Loan Services LLC, et al., No. 8:15-cv-2339, M.D. Fla.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 21854).
NEW ORLEANS - The Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Feb. 22 affirmed a district court's dismissal of a former property owner's claims related to the foreclosure of his house, finding that nonwaiver provisions applied to this claims (Timothy Martin v. Federal National Mortgage Association, No. 15-41104, 5th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 3082).
PHILADELPHIA - The Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Feb. 19 affirmed a district court's ruling that a proposed class's claims for violation of the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA) were time-barred, finding that the plaintiffs were not entitled to equitable tolling (Judith Cuningham, et al. v. M&T Bank Corp., et al., No. 15-1412, 3rd Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 2851).
SPOKANE, Wash. - A Washington federal judge on Feb. 17 granted a loan-servicing company's motion to dismiss claims against it for fraud in relation to mortgage refinancing agreements, finding that the claims were vague and time-barred (Eileen Frances Living Trust, et al. v. Bank of America, et al., No. 2:15-CV-227, E.D. Wash.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 19298).
HONOLULU - After finding that no federal jurisdiction existed, a Hawaii federal judge on Feb. 17 granted a bank's motion to remand a foreclosure-related case filed against a property owner to a state court (U.S. Bank National Association, as Trustee for Ameriquest Mortgage Securities Inc., Asset-Backed Pass-Through Certificates, Series 2001-2 v. Glenn Kiyohiko Mizukami, et al., No. 15-00523, D. Hawaii; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 18925).
NEWARK, N.J. - A New Jersey federal judge on Feb. 16 granted a lender's motion to dismiss a property owner's claim for violation of the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA), finding that certain claims for damages were not actionable under RESPA (Amelia Giordano v. MGC Mortgage Inc., No. 15-4399, D. N.J.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 18283).
ROCKFORD, Ill. - An Illinois federal judge on Feb. 16 denied a property company's motion to dismiss claims against it for violation of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), allowing property owners' claims that it violated the FDCPA by failing to disclose that it was attempting to collect debt to proceed (Andrew Schlaf, et al. v. Safeguard Properties LLC, No. 15-50113, N.D. Ill.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 18531).
TRENTON, N.J. - The New Jersey Supreme Court on Feb. 11 affirmed a lower court's ruling that a directors and officers liability insurer was not required to demonstrate that it suffered prejudice before denying coverage based on the insured's failure to give timely notice of an underlying claim stemming from a failed real estate transaction, finding that the "claims made" policy was "not a contract of adhesion but was agreed to by sophisticated parties" (Templo Fuente De Vida Corp. and Fuente Properties Inc. v. National Union Fire Insurance Company of Pittsburgh, P.A., No. A-18 September Term 2014, 074572, N.J. Sup.; 2016 N.J. LEXIS 144).
ATLANTA - The 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Feb. 12 affirmed a district court's dismissal of a property owner's fraud and other claims against various lenders, finding that the defendants were entitled to accelerate the loan payment (Nancy G. Clark v. Chase Bank USA, N.A, et al., No. 15-13366, 11th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 2427).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The District of Columbia Court of Appeals on Feb. 11 held that a lower court erred in finding that an insurance policy's professional services exclusion bars coverage for underlying claims against insureds stemming from mortgage-backed securities investments, reversing and remanding the lower court's ruling in favor of the insurer (Carlyle Investment Management L.L.C., et al. v. ACE American Insurance Co., et al., No. 14-CV-659, D.C. App.; 2016 D.C. App. LEXIS 35).
CLEVELAND - An Ohio federal judge on Feb. 9 granted a bank's motion to dismiss a quiet title claim, finding that lenders were not barred from foreclosing on a property because they failed to assert a foreclosure claim as a compulsory counterclaim in another related lawsuit (Judith D. Kralovic, individually and as executrix of the Estate of Raymond C. Kralovic, v. JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A., et al., No. 1:15 CV 1468, N.D. Ohio; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 16403).
TULSA, Okla. - A federal magistrate judge in Oklahoma on Feb. 4 quashed a subpoena served on an officer of a Native American tribe by a bank seeking evidence in an underlying payday lending dispute after finding that, even though the tribal officer had sworn to declarations in the dispute, the tribe had not waived its sovereign immunity with respect to the loan agreements at issue (James Dillon v. BMO Harris Bank, N.A., et al., No. 16-mc-5, N.D. Okla.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 13433).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Department of Justice on Feb. 5 announced that it has reached a $470 million settlement with HSBC Bank USA NA, addressing mortgage origination, servicing and foreclosure abuses.
RICHMOND, Va. - Unlawful debt collection class allegations against a company associated with tribal payday lender Western Sky Financial are not subject to arbitration because the arbitration agreement at issue impermissibly attempts to sidestep state and federal law in favor of tribal jurisdiction and, therefore, is invalid and unenforceable, the Fourth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals held Feb. 2 in reversing a federal judge's ruling (James Hayes, et al. v. Delbert Services Corporation, Nos. 15-1170 and 15-1217, 4th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 1747).
PHILADELPHIA - The Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Feb. 1 affirmed a district court's decision to dismiss a property owner's complaint against Bank of American N.A. (BANA), finding that she failed to submit any evidence to support her claims for violation of the U.S. Constitution and fraud (Youseline Dophin v. Bank of America Mortgage Company, et al., No. 15-3138, 3rd Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 1681).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Wells Fargo & Co. on Feb. 3 announced that it has reached a preliminary $1.2 billion settlement with the federal government that will resolve claims pending against it in relation to its Federal Housing Administration (FHA) lending program.
SAN FRANCISCO - A California federal judge on Feb. 2 denied a motion filed by a bank to dismiss claims for violation of California's unfair competition law (UCL), elder abuse and rescission, finding that a controversy exists as to whether property owners were the victims of predatory lending practices in relation to two reverse mortgages on their home (Willie York, et al. v. Bank of America, et al., No. 14-cv-02471, N.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 12333).
SEATTLE - The Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Jan. 29 filed its decision to affirm a district court's dismissal of various federal claims asserted by borrowers in relation to the refinancing of their property, finding that their claims for violation of the Truth in Lending Act (TILA) were time-barred (Khamsing Sitthidet, et al. v. First Horizon Home Loans, et al., No. 12-35551, 9th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 1611).
NEW ORLEANS - The Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Jan. 29 affirmed a district court's decision to grant summary judgment for a bank on a borrower's breach of contract claim, finding that he breached the related deed of trust first when he defaulted on his loan payments (Mark Mahavier, as power of attorney for Willard Mahavier, v. PNC Bank, National Association, No. 15-50308, 5th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 1522).
ATLANTA - The 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Jan. 28 affirmed a district court's decision finding that several lenders did not violate the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) because they were not debt collectors under the FDCPA (Alexander Harvin v. Nationwide Title Clearing, et al., No. 15-11262, 11th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 1376).
SEATTLE - After finding that former property owners' claims for violation of the Truth in Lending Act (TILA) and declaratory judgment were barred by the doctrine of res judicata, a Washington federal judge on Jan. 26 granted summary judgment in favor of a bank and found that a deed of reconveyance and an assignment of deed were void (Bank of America, et al. v. Anthony G. Mwaura, et al., No. 13-1726, W.D. Wash.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 9768).
DETROIT - After finding that a magistrate judge did not err in recommending that a borrower's complaint against a loan servicer and others be dismissed, a Michigan federal judge on Jan. 27 denied a motion to amend the ruling (Darlene Garner v. Select Portfolio Servicing, et al., No. 15-10377, E.D. Mich.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 9142).
SACRAMENTO, Calif. - After finding that borrowers failed to assert facts to support their claims for wrongful foreclosure, violation of California's unfair competition law (UCL) and other claims, a California federal judge on Jan. 26 granted a motion to dismiss filed by lenders but found that sanctions were not warranted (Isaac Gutierrez, et al. v. Bank of America, N.A., et al., No. 2: 14-CV-01246, E.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 9064).