BRIDGEPORT, Conn. - A Connecticut jury on March 12 found that an employer negligently released asbestos into the ambient air, exposing one of its employees, but that the exposure was not a substantial factor in his mesothelioma (Marsha Lagerberg, executor of the estate of Erick Lagerberg, et al. v. Armstrong International Inc., et al., No. CV 11-6023127S, Conn. Super., Fairfield at Bridgeport).
SEATTLE - After finding that the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA) did not apply to a borrower's mortgage loan, a Washington federal judge on March 12 granted a bank's motion for summary judgment on the claim (Candice Warren v. Capital One, N.A., No. 14-0656, W.D. Wash.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 30731).
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) on March 13 announced the release of the Truth in Lending Act and Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA) Integrated Disclosure (TRID) Resource Guide.
SAN FRANCISCO - A California appeals panel on March 9 affirmed a lower court's ruling that a commercial general liability insurance policy's intellectual property exclusion precludes coverage for an underlying lawsuit alleging that the insured used the name and likeness of a designer, author and inventor to market its products without permission from the insured's estate (Alterra Excess and Surplus Insurance Co. v. Estate of Buckminster Fuller, No. A140453, Calif. App., 1st Dist., Div. 2; 2015 Cal. App. LEXIS 216).
LANSING, Mich. - Questions of fact remain as to whether the presence of a garden hose at the entrance to a grocery store presented an "open and obvious" hazard, making summary judgment inappropriate on a premises liability claim brought by the estate of a woman who was seriously injured and died after tripping over the hose, a split panel of the Michigan Court of Appeals ruled March 5 (Peter T. MacAskill, et al. v. The Kroger Co., et al., No. 319297, Mich. App.; 2015 Mich. App. LEXIS 446).
CHICAGO - An Illinois federal judge on March 5 partially granted a motion to dismiss filed by a bank and servicing firm, allowing a home owner's claims for violation of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) and the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA) to proceed (Regina L. Banks v. Green Tree Servicing LLC, et al., No. 14-cv-2825, N.D. Ill.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 27172).
ATLANTA - The 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Feb. 27 reversed a decision that a borrower lacked standing to bring claims against a title company and law firm but affirmed dismissal of her claims for violation of the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA) (Patricia L. Clements v. LSI Title Agency Inc., et al., No. 14-11636, 11th Cir.; 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 3144).
NEW YORK - A brake-grinding machine manufacturer must face liability for a man's exposure from asbestos-containing brakes used in conjunction with the grinder, a New York justice held in an opinion posted Feb. 27 (Linda Vellucci, as executrix of the heirs and estates of John Vellucci v. Borg Warner Corp., et al., No. 190201/12, N.Y. Sup., New York Co., 2015 N.Y. Misc. LEXIS 518).
DALLAS - A Texas appeals court on Feb. 27 affirmed a trial court's decision grating summary judgment in favor of a real estate firm in relation to a condominium owner's claims that her unit contained mold, finding that it did not err in refusing her additional time for discovery (Michelle Manatou v. Ebby Halliday Real Estate Inc., No. 05-13-01035, Texas App., 5th Dist.; 2015 Tex. App. LEXIS 1942).
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. - An Illinois appeals court on Feb. 25 heard arguments over whether a jury's $1,443,810.53 asbestos verdict can stand in the face of challenges to the verdict form's lack of itemization and references to a leasee's nearby use of asbestos (In re: Estate of Lilienthal, No. 4-14-0280, Ill. App., 4th Dist.).
PHILADELPHIA - An estate's executor failed to produce evidence of the existence of a valid and paid-for policy of voluntary life insurance with the estate's former employer and insurer, a Pennsylvania federal judge ruled Feb. 10, granting summary judgment on breach of contract and breach of fiduciary duty claims (Seth J. Diener, guardian ad litem of Estate of Joseph Thomas Mancuso IV, et al. v. The Renfrew Centers Inc. and Life Insurance Company of North America, No. 11-4404, E.D. Pa.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 16421).
RICHMOND, Va. - The Fourth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Feb. 10 affirmed dismissal of an estate representative's claims related to alleged force-placed insurance, finding that his claim for violation of Maryland consumer fraud statutes failed (Richard Castle, in his capacity as Personal Representative for the Estate of Jane Mary Castle, v. Capital One, National Association, et al., No. 14-1141, 4th Cir.; 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 2068).
SEATTLE - A Washington federal judge on Feb. 9 granted summary judgment in favor of a bank and a loan-servicing company, dismissing a borrower's claims for violation of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) and the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA) (Leticia Lucero v. Cenlar FSB, et al., No. 13-0602, W.D. Wash.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 15468).
ST. PAUL, Minn. - After finding that two banks properly responded to qualified written requests sent by property owners in relation to their mortgage, a Minnesota federal judge on Feb. 6 found that their claims for violation of the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA) and other claims failed (Stacy A. Fleming, et al. v. US Bank National Association as Trustee for CitiGroup Mortgage Loan Trust Inc., et al., No. 14-3446, D. Minn.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 14538).
WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. - A state court jury Feb. 10 found that a physician and the concierge medical care plan with which he was associated are liable to the estate of a plan member who alleged that a blood clot in her leg went undiagnosed for almost a month, causing her to undergo an above-the-knee amputation and returned a verdict of more than $8.5 million in damages (Robert Beber, et al. v. Charles Metzger Jr., et al., No. 50-2009-CA-034380, Fla. 15th Jud. Cir., Palm Beach Co.).
SAN FRANCISCO - There is a triable issue as to whether a plan participant complied with the governing plan documents' requirements for changing beneficiary designation, the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals held Jan. 28, reversing summary judgment in an interpleader case seeking a determination as to the proper beneficiary of proceeds under two employee benefit plans (Lawrence M. Becker, as fiduciary of the Xerox Corporation Savings Plan and Xerox Corporation Retirement Income Guarantee Plan and Carmen Stephanie Mays-Williams v. Asa Williams Jr., as personal representative of the Estate of Asa Willie Williams, No. 13-35069, 9th Cir.).
DETROIT - A Michigan federal judge on Jan. 28 granted a bank's motion to dismiss a case, finding that claims for violation of the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA), negligence and other claims asserted by former property owners failed and should be dismissed (Roderick Ray, et al. v. US Bank National Association, et al., No. 14-cv-11831, E.D. Mich.; 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 9424).
MONTPELIER, Vt. - The Vermont Supreme Court on Jan. 23 reversed a trial court's establishment of a final bar date because an insurer's liquidation estate has ample assets and the final bar date would be unfair to insureds and others with long-tail asbestos-related claims (In re Ambassador Insurance Company, Inc., No. 2013-184, Vt. Sup.).