Case Index - NCLC Closed Cases

Auto Finance Discrimination

As co-counsel in a series of national class action lawsuits brought under the Equal Credit Opportunity Act, NCLC has successfully attacked racially discriminatory lending practices in the used (and new) car business, with settlements valued at well over $100 million. The cases, which were filed against some of the nation’s largest auto finance companies and banks, charged that the defendants maintained policies which permit car dealers to "mark-up" the finance rates on loans based on subjective criteria unrelated to creditworthiness. This mark-up policy has had a disparate impact on African-American and Hispanic customers, who end up paying more for credit than whites with similar credit ratings. The lawsuits, which exposed practices that had operated secretly for over 75 years and had resulted in higher-interest rate car loans for minorities, have transformed car financing practices across the industry.

Bank Overdraft Fees

  • Yourke v. Bank of AmericaComplaint 
    (Appendix A, Appendix B, Appendix C-1 and C-2, Appendix D, Appendix E, Appendices F-G)

Debt Collection

  • Blake v. Riddle & Wood, Second Amended Class Action Complaint for telephone harassment of Massachusetts debtors.
  • Clawson, appellant v. Midland Funding - Opinion of Court of Appeals Decision, Feb. 26, 2013. 
    The Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals reversed approval of a nationwide settlement affecting 1.44 million victims of a debt buyer's "predatory practices" in using robosigned affidavits to obtain state court collection judgments. The Court found that the original settlement was unfair, unreasonable, and inadequate, that the district court abused its discretion in certifying the nationwide settlement class, and that the notice to prospective class members did not satisfy due process. This step allows all of the other robo-signing cases brought against Midland around the United States to proceed. NCLC represented one of the appellants in the case.
  • Dorrian v. LVNV  Second Amended Complaint on behalf of class of individuals sued by debt buyer which is unlicensed in Massachusetts. Class certified and partial Summary Judgment for Plaintiffs was overturned by the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court. 479 Mass. 265 94 N.E.3d 370 (2018).
  • Fritz v. Resurgent Capital Services and LVNV, Case No. 11–CV–3300 FB VVP in the Eastern District of New York. Memorandum & OrderFinal judgment, Sept. 16, 2016
    This case challenges the practice of debt buyer LVNV filing state court collection suits in the name of Resurent Capital, one of its unlicensed subsidiaries, in order to protect itself from liability. In a ruling on July 24, 2013, the court denied the defendants' Motion to Dismiss in all respects but one. He held that plaintiffs had stated a viable misrepresentation claim under the FDCPA. The court recognized that misrepresenting the owner of the debt was a material violation even though the true owner was a corporate parent because it could confuse and mislead the least sophisticated consumer. Another FDCPA violation that also passed muster was that defendants falsely reported the amount of the debt to CRAs by including state court costs even when they hadn't yet gotten a judgment in their collection action awarding such costs.
    Affirmative defenses of collateral estoppel (due to state court collection judgments), abstention and Noerr Pennington were rejected too. The only claim that was dismissed related to an individual collection letter that also misrepresented ownership of the debt, but was filed beyond the 1 year statute of limitations for such a claim. The decision is reported at 2013 WL 3821479.
  • Jenkins v. General Collection Co., Second Amended Class Action Complaint and Settlement Agreement
  • Kulig v. Midland Funding, Case No. 13 CV 4715, US District Court (EDNY) - suit for systematically filing time-barred lawsuits against hundreds of New York consumers who fell behind on their credit card payments. The suit covers New York consumers whose credit card was issued by a Delaware bank. Under NY law, these collection suits must be filed within 3 years of default on the account, but Midland routinely sues long after that. Settled on an individual basis.
  • Lannan v. Levy & White, Case No. 14 cv 13866 - Partial summary judgment as to liability and class certification were granted in an FDCPA and MA Ch. 93A suit against an attorney debt collector who misrepresented the amount owed by persons receiving ambulance services when he calculated prejudgment interest from the date the services were provided, rather than from the date a demand for payment was sent to the patient. In addition, as a separate violation, in his small claims complaints, the attorney lumped prejudgment interest that hadn't yet been awarded into the amount claimed to already be due at the time of filing of the complaint. The court found this could be confusing to an unsophisticated consumer deciding how to respond to the complaint. Complaint || Order Subsequently, a class action settlement was approved by the Court.
  • Pettway v. Harmon Law Offices, P.C., Second Amended Class Action Complaint
  • Spence v. CavalryComplaint and Class Action Settlement involving major debt buyer’s practice of retroactively adding interest to the balances on credit card debts it purchased.

ERISA

Foreclosures

Military Pensions

Mortgage Related Claims

HAMP Trial Period Plan (TPP) Contract Claims
  • Complaint against Bank for failure to honor its agreements with borrowers to modify mortgages and prevent foreclosures under the United States Treasury’s Home Affordable Modification Program (“HAMP”).
Mortgage Discrimination by Subprime Lenders
National class action cases brought under the Fair Housing Act and the Equal Credit Opportunity Act against certain subprime mortgage lenders:
Mortgage Securitization Discrimination

Private Child Support Collection Agencie

Refund Anticipation Loan Cross Lender Debt Collection

Small Loans at High Cost

  • Chester v. Tancorde - Complaint and Class Action Settlement against small loan company for violations of TILA.
  • Tullie v. T & R Market – Complaint and Class Action Settlement against pawnbroker for TILA and state law violations
  • In re: Chase Bank USA, N.A. “Check Loan” Contract Litigation, Master Class Action Complaint

Student Loans

  • Bible v. United Student Aid Funds, Inc – Case Number 1:13-cv-00575, U.S. District Court, S.D. Indiana. A $23 Million dollar settlement was approved in this class action asserting that United Student Aid Funds, a non-profit guarantor for certain student loans, unlawfully imposed collection costs on student loan borrowers like Plaintiff. Plaintiffs' contention was that the Higher Education Act, which is incorporated in the parties' promissory note, provides that collection costs cannot be imposed if a borrower enters into a rehabilitation agreement within 60 days of default. Defendants argued that the applicable regulations should be interpreted to permit the imposition of such costs. The case had gone up to the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals, which in a split decision, reversed dismissal of the suit. USAF then filed a non-frivolous affirmative suit against DoE to strike down its favorable interpretation of the regulation on APA grounds. Nevertheless, mediation before a retired federal judge led to a favorable settlement for the class.