Conflict of Laws Residential Real Estate

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Trust Law’s Material Purpose Doctrine, the Traditional Protector of Settlor-Intent is Under Attack: The TEDRA Factor

In recent years, reformers of trust law have been hard at work defanging the plain meaning rule, primarily by liberalizing the doctrines of reformation and deviation. The rule is discussed generally in §8.15.6 of Loring and...more

Locke Lord QuickStudy: New Jersey Appellate Court Rules That HAMP Does Not Bar State Breach of Contract Claims

In Miller v. Bank of America Home Loan Servicing, L.P., A-0169-13T2, the New Jersey Appellate Division recently held that while HAMP precludes a private right of action, it “does not preempt pursuit of valid state law claims...more

Mortgage Foreclosure Ordinances Preempted by Existing State Law

The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court (the “SJC”) recently decided that two mortgage foreclosure ordinances adopted by the City of Springfield were preempted by existing state law. In Easthampton Savings Bank v. City of...more

Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court Rejects Municipal Foreclosure Ordinances

Can a Massachusetts municipality impose ordinances on banks that are more onerous than existing statewide law? In a recent landmark decision, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court (“SJC”) answered “no.” In Easthampton...more

Nevada District Court Bars Foreclosure Sale of First Lien HUD-Insured Mortgage

Recently, a federal district court held that a homeowners association (HOA) foreclosure sale is not valid against HUD-insured loans. The District Court noted that the Ninth Circuit has held that federal rather than state law...more

CERCLA Preempts Local Cleanup Bylaws; PRPs Everywhere Breath a Sigh of Relief

In an important decision yesterday, Judge Douglas Woodlock of the District of Massachusetts confirmed that CERCLA preempts local cleanup bylaws. The case involved one aspect of the cleanup of the W.R. Grace Superfund Site in...more

New Jersey Federal Court Examines Claim Dispute Under Standard Flood Insurance Policy

The court in Damiano v. Harleysville Ins. Co., Case No. 13-cv-07293-FLW-LHG, 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 97988 (D.N.J. July 17, 2014) recently addressed the scope of claims that can be asserted against property insurers issuing...more

California Foreclosure Law: A Defaulting Borrower Cannot Enjoin A Foreclosure Sale By Asserting That The Lender Lacks Standing

Under California’s non-judicial foreclosure statutes, a defaulting borrower cannot enjoin a lender’s initiation of foreclosure proceedings by asserting that the lender lacks standing. (Keshtgar v. U.S. Bank, N.A. (2014) 192...more

Mortgage Servicers Face Consumer Lawsuits Under CFPB “Periodic Statement” Final Rule

The CFPB’s final rule amending Regulation Z, which implements the Truth in Lending Act (TILA) as amended by Dodd-Frank, became effective January 10. Among other things, the new rule requires mortgage servicers to provide...more

D.C. Circuit Holds Government False Claims Case Not Precluded By National Mortgage Settlement

On June 10, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia affirmed the district court’s decision not to enjoin the federal government from pursuing alleged False Claims Act violations against a bank that argued such...more

Statute of Repose: A New Weapon in Environmental Defense Counsel’s Arsenal

The June 9, 2014, Supreme Court ruling in CTS Corp v. Waldburger represents a victory for companies and landowners with legacy environmental liabilities in states with a statute of repose applicable to tort claims. Moreover,...more

Supreme Court to Rule on Controversial Right of Rescission Timeline for Mortgages

The Supreme Court agreed this month to resolve a stark divide in the United State Courts of Appeals regarding the time bar for residential mortgage borrowers to file suits related to mortgage loan rescissions under the Truth...more

Supreme Court Seeks Federal Government Opinion on National Bank Act Preemption of State Foreclosure Law

Considering a petition for certiorari filed by Federal National Mortgage Association in a case concerning which state’s law governs a national bank’s authority to serve as trustee under a deed of trust—the state in which the...more

Borrowers File Petition for Writ of Certiorari Related to Permanent Loan Modification Under HAMP

Citing a circuit split among the Seventh, Ninth and Eleventh circuits and the “great importance” of settling the question, the borrowers filed a petition writ of certiorari in the Supreme Court asking the Court to determine...more

Federal Circuit Decision Settles GAO/COFC Split on Agency’s Use of Cooperative Agreements

In March, the Federal Circuit settled a split between the Government Accountability Office (“GAO”) and the Court of Federal Claims that focused on the gray area between cooperative agreements and procurement contracts. Siding...more

Florida, Georgia And Texas Appraisal Update: Is Causation A Coverage Question For The Court Or A Damages Question For The Panel?

In most jurisdictions, underlying coverage issues must be resolved prior to invoking appraisal in a first-party property claim. The question of what constitutes a coverage issue (typically reserved for a court’s judicial...more

Lenders and Servicers: Be Aware of How Trustees Handle Excess Proceeds from HOA Foreclosure Sales in Nevada

Lenders and servicers have been addressing the issue of some Nevada courts ruling that a foreclosure sale by a homeowners association (HOA) "wipes out" a senior deed of trust. Since the date of our last legal alert on this...more

Federal Preemption Does Not Preclude State Law Claim Based on Alleged HAMP Violations, Minnesota Supreme Court Holds

The Supreme Court of Minnesota last week reversed the dismissal of a borrower’s action against a loan servicer arising out of the servicer’s alleged breach of its Servicer Participation Agreement (SPA) with Fannie Mae under...more

Sixth Circuit Rules that PTFA Preempts Less Protective State Laws

The United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit reversed in part a district court’s order granting a motion to dismiss a complaint that included claims for wrongful eviction, denial of due process and outrageous...more

Sixth Circuit Holds PTFA Preempts Less Restrictive State Law, May Be Used To Establish State Law Causes Of Action

On February 7, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit held that while the Protecting Tenants at Foreclosure Act (PTFA) provides no private cause of action, plaintiffs may use violations of the PTFA to establish...more

First Circuit Ruling in Foreclosure Litigation May Help Lenders Facing HAMP-Related Claims

The law is well settled that borrowers do not have a direct right of action under the Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP) against a lender that fails to offer a loan modification. A split of authority continues,...more

Northern District Of California Decision Highlights Growing Divide Within Ninth Circuit Over HOLA Preemption

On January 14, the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California held that the federal Home Owners’ Loan Act (HOLA) preempts all of a borrower’s state law claims related to a loan originated by a thrift but held...more

Financial Services Report - Quarterly News, Winter 2013

Editor’s Note - Stuff didn’t happen this quarter. Lots of it. The federal government didn’t happen for two weeks in October, which caused some to celebrate and others to wring their hands and clamor for a strong,...more

Ballard Spahr Attorneys Weigh in on Lawsuit Alleging Collection of Illegal Finder's Fees

Last month, Ballard Spahr attorneys Gary C. Tepper and Daniel J. Tobin filed an amicus brief for the Mortgage Bankers Association in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit in Petry et al. v. Prosperity Mortgage Co.,...more

Federal Court Dismisses Second Challenge To California City’s Eminent Domain Plan

On November 6, the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California dismissed without prejudice as not yet ripe for determination a suit by investors seeking to preempt a California city’s plan to use its eminent...more

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