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Financial Services Litigation

Wargo French Singer has represented clients in the financial services industry for decades and understands the significant regulatory and litigation challenges facing such companies.

WFS attorneys have significant experience representing banks, loan servicers, investment companies, brokers, developers and other companies and professionals in a variety of disputes, including single party and class action commercial litigation and arbitration proceedings. We have litigated hundreds of matters involving state and federal consumer protection statutes targeted toward the financial services industry (such as the Truth in Lending Act, Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act, Fair Credit Reporting Act, Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, Equal Credit Opportunity Act, Fair Credit Billing Act, and California Homeowner’s Bill of Rights), mortgage and foreclosure issues, insurance and title issues, retail banking issues, along with claims for breach of contract, breach of fiduciary duty, negligence, unfair and deceptive trade practices, and successor liability.

  • Defended financial services institutions in actions involving issues of preemption under the Home Owners Loan Act (“HOLA”) and the National Banking Act (“NBA”).
  • Defended financial services organizations in actions by borrowers asserting a wide-variety of mortgage loan related claims, including allegations of wrongful foreclosure, loan modification disputes, lender-placed insurance issues, escrow account disputes, fraud, negligence, promissory estoppel, breach of contract, slander to title, and state mortgage statute violations.
  • Defended and prosecuted actions on behalf of financial services institutions involving issues of title to property and other real property disputes, including quiet title, eminent domain and takings, contested tax deeds, partition claims, title insurance disputes, and commercial tenancy disputes.
  • Represented financial institutions in actions involving identity theft, forged checks and other negotiable instruments, and the improper processing of negotiable instruments pursuant to Article 3 of the Uniform Commercial Code and recognized industry practices.
  • Represented senior and junior lienholders in title disputes, including in litigation with title insurance companies seeking to invalidate client’s interests.
  • Represented lenders in loan workout proceedings in and out of litigation, including loan modification and short sale matters, and defended clients against allegations that such workout proceedings violated state anti-foreclosure law.
  • Represented lenders and other secured and unsecured creditors, including unsecured creditors’ committees, in bankruptcy and receivership proceedings.
  • Defended financial institutions in disputes with employees and independent contractors.
  • Represented financial institutions in general commercial matters, including Uniform Commercial Code, contract and licensing disputes.
  • Represented financial institution in coordinated litigation regarding claims of usury and breach of contract in New York, California and Georgia. Obtained summary judgment on all claims brought in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Georgia, which was subsequently affirmed on appeal by the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit.
  • Represented senior lienholder against junior lienholder’s claims for quiet title and lien subordination based on allegations that client should have disclosed known third-party fraud in the chain of title. Obtained summary judgment and affirmance of summary judgment in client’s favor on appeal, where appellate court ruled that client held junior lienholder no duty of disclosure as a matter of law.
  • Represented unsecured lender in borrower’s Chapter 7 bankruptcy, litigating bench trial resulting in the issuance of a denial of discharge on the ground that borrower had transferred property prior to filing with intent to hinder collection efforts.  Obtained affirmance of judgment before Ninth Circuit Bankruptcy Appellate Panel.
  • Obtained $1MM judgment for national loan servicer in hotly-contested foreclosure action brought in Miami-Dade County, Florida.
  • Represented global commodities trader in recovering more than $1MM in insurance coverage against national insurer in litigation concerning an all-risk insurance policy that covered salt reserves stored at a marine terminal in Cherbourg, France.
  • Secured summary judgment on Florida RICO and Criminal Practices Act claims for securitized trust and national loan servicer sued in Seminole County, Florida.
  • Successfully represented cashless technology provider in defense of consumer class action claims relating to product disclosures, and resolved action on favorable terms before class certification briefings
  • Successfully prosecuted the enforcement of a $6.650MM loan guaranty secured by luxury condominium on behalf of a global energy conglomerate based in the United Kingdom.
  • Represented national financial services organization in trial court and appellate proceedings involving motion for attorneys’ fees following voluntary dismissal of complaint. Defeated motion and obtained affirmance on appeal after successfully arguing that law of the jurisdiction did not permit award of “prevailing party” attorneys’ fees when dismissal was filed for strategic reasons unrelated to the merits of the lawsuit.
  • Represented national financial services organization in trial court and appellate proceedings, prevailing on motion to dismiss allegations that client had improperly securitized home loan. Despite conflict of authority among appellate courts on issue, obtained affirmance of judgment after successfully arguing that cases finding against plaintiff were properly decided.
  • Represented national financial services organization in trial court and appellate proceedings, prevailing on motion to dismiss allegations that client had breached oral contract to negotiate a loan modification in good faith. Obtained affirmance of judgment on appeal, successfully arguing that purported oral contract was unenforceable “agreement to agree,” rather than enforceable promise to negotiate over future terms of contract.
  • Represented loan servicing company in class-action lawsuit alleging widespread violations of state law in resolving borrower default issues. Filed early motions to dismiss and to strike class allegations from complaint, arguing that named plaintiff failed to state a claim and that class could not be certified in any event given individualized issues of “materiality” relating to borrowers’ particular efforts to achieve resolution. While motions were pending, negotiated favorable pre-discovery settlement for client.