Court Grants Final Approval to Settlement in TILA Case Against Wells Fargo Bank, N.A.
On April 11, 2017, the Court entered a final judgment approving the settlement with Wells Fargo and approving the distribution to the Damages Class Members in accordance with the settlement. Checks in the amount of $2,580.64 were mailed on June 7, 2017 to Damages Class Members who returned a W-9 form indicating that they were not subject to backup withholding. If such Class Members did not return a W-9 form or were otherwise subject to backup withholding, checks were mailed to them in the amount of $1,858.06. These settlement checks must be cashed by October 5, 2017. If you are a Damages Class Member and did not receive a check, contact our Firm or the settlement administrator, Garden City Group, 1-877-351-3539. For further information, see www.mortgagepayoffstatementclassaction.com.
Settlement Preliminarily Approved in Truth in Lending Case Against Wells Fargo Bank, N.A.
On November 18, 2016, the United States District Court for the Northern District of California granted preliminary approval of a class action settlement in McLaughlin v. Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. The proposed settlement provides for i) a $880,000 fund (representing 88% of total potential damages available under the Truth in Lending Act), to be distributed to Damages Class Members, and; ii) changes to Wells Fargo’s practices, whereby it will revise its template payoff statement letter to disclose held property insurance funds, as well as explanatory language. On December 8, notice of the proposed settlement was mailed to class members. Members of the Damages Class will also receive a copy of the Form tax letter and W-9.
The Court has scheduled a Final Approval Hearing on March 9, 2017 to consider whether the settlement is fair, reasonable, and adequate, and whether requests for attorneys’ fee and costs should be approved. Any attorneys’ fees and costs will be determined by the Court, would be paid separately by Wells Fargo, and would not diminish the settlement fund in any way.
Earlier this year, the Court certified this action as a class action, appointing Wolf Popper LLP as Class Counsel, and Wolf Popper partner Patricia I. Avery as lead counsel.
If you have any questions about this case, please contact the following attorneys:
Patricia I. Avery
Wolf Popper Appointed Class Counsel and Court Certifies Case to Proceed As Class Action
The Court in the Northern District of California issued an Opinion, McLaughlin v. Wells Fargo Bank, NA, 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 81358 (N.D. Cal. June 22, 2016), certifying this action to proceed as a class action on behalf of the following classes:
The following class is CERTIFIED under Rule 23(b)(3) to pursue damages only:
All borrowers with mortgages [*22] serviced and owned by Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. ("Wells Fargo") who, between June 23, 2014, and June 23, 2015, have received payoff statements which failed to disclose property insurance claim funds.
The following class is CERTIFIED under Rule 23(b)(2) to pursue declaratory relief only:
All borrowers with mortgages serviced and owned by Wells Fargo wherein Wells Fargo is holding property insurance claim funds on June 22, 2016.
Wolf Popper Defeats Motion to Dismiss Sought by Wells Fargo Bank, NA
Wolf Popper secured a precedent setting Order under the Truth in Lending Act’s (“TILA”) Regulation Z. The Court, in denying the motion to dismiss of Wells Fargo Bank, held that the bank is required under TILA to indicate the amount of property insurance proceeds held by the bank on the plaintiff customer’s payoff statement. The Court noted that “[n]o decision from our court of appeals has ever addressed the issue of whether TILA compels lenders to include ‘potential ‘ credits in payoff statements.” In holding for the plaintiff, the Court found, “[a]s a matter of law, the bank is wrong on this one.” McLaughlin v. Wells Fargo Bank, NA., No. C 15-02904 WHA, Order that TILA Required Insurance Proceeds to be Reflected in Payoff Statement (N.D. Cal. Oct. 29, 2015).