Consumer Protection Litigation

The firm is one of the most experienced law firms in the country in representing consumers in class action lawsuits against businesses and corporations. Class actions are lawsuits in which an individual, or a group of individuals, sues a business on behalf of all individuals who have similar claims against the business. By allowing numerous claims to be brought in one lawsuit, class actions provide redress for harms that might be too small to address through individual lawsuits. The firm typically represents consumers in class actions against corporations that have engaged in fraud, or produced defective and dangerous products.

CPM acted as co-lead national class counsel in predatory lending actions against some of the largest mortgage lenders across the country. In addition, CPM has ongoing cases and investigations, launched by individuals contacting the firm, into predatory lending and credit card practices. The abusive loan practices include excessive interest and loan costs and undisclosed fees.

RECENT CASES OF NOTE

Gooden v. SunTrust Mortgage, Inc.
USDC, Eastern District of California
CPM represents a SunTrust borrower who was charged for force placed hazard and flood insurance.  The Complaint alleges that the amount of the hazard insurance required by SunTrust was greater than the amount allowed under the terms of the mortgage contract and under California law.  The Complaint also alleges that SunTrust force placed a flood insurance policy despite the fact that customer did not live in a flood zone and was not required to have flood insurance.  CPM is currently investigating similar complaints made by other SunTrust customers.

King v. InCharge Debt Solutions, Inc. and Capital One Bank (USA), NA
USDC, Western District of Virginia
CPM represents a former client of InCharge and Capital One credit card company who purchased a debt management plan (“DMP”) from InCharge, a credit counseling agency.  The complaint in King v. InCharge et al., alleges that the defendant credit counselor acted as a false non-profit when it was really set up to benefit creditors.  The complaint alleges that InCharge claimed that it would negotiate on behalf of consumers, when in reality there were not negotiations because all of the purported benefits of a DMP were pre-specified by the credit card companies.  It is alleged that InCharge charged consumers at rates that were far above actual costs and that InCharge failed to tell consumers that a large amount of its funding came from the credit card industry.

Avery v. Integrated Healthcare Holding Inc.
Orange County Superior Court
CPM is co-lead counsel in a class action lawsuit filed against the IHHI chain of hospitals in Southern California. CPM represents Registered Nurses and Respiratory Therapists who were not paid overtime wages in accordance with state law.

Bank of America HAMP Litigation
USDC, District of Massachusetts, Boston
CPM represents borrowers in a class action who allege they were wrongfully denied loan modifications under the Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP) program by Bank of America.

Campusano v. Bank of America N.A.
USDC, Central District of California
CPM represents borrowers in a class action who were entitled to permanent loan modifications and their agreement was breached by Bank of America.  CPM and co-counsel filed a motion to certify the class in December.

Stoody-Broser v. Bank of America N.A.
USDC, Northern District of California
CPM represents a group of BOA trust customers whose trust investments were directed into higher cost BofA products.

HL Leasing Ponzi Scheme
Fresno County Superior Court
CPM obtained a jury verdict for $46.5 million against the top two senior officers of HL Leasing, Inc. for their involvement in a Ponzi scheme. The jury verdict came three days after the court had entered a directed verdict for $114 million against HL Leasing, Inc., Heritage Pacific Leasing and Air Fred, LLC for a Ponzi scheme in which over 1200 victims lost approximately $137 million. (Jury Verdict 2011)

Credit Counseling Industry Suit names Chase, Money Management International and Others
USDC Central District of California
CPM filed a consumer fraud case against JP Morgan Chase & Co., Chase Manhattan Bank USA, Money Management International (also known as Consumer Credit Counseling Service) and Money Management By Mail, Inc. for fraudulent “debt counseling” and debt collections in the subprime credit industry.

Anastasiya Komarova v. MBNA America Bank, N.A.; National Credit Acceptance, Inc.
San Francisco Superior Court
In a rare jury trial against a credit card collection agency, a San Francisco jury ruled in favor of a young woman who was the victim of an abusive campaign to force her to repay a debt she never incurred. Anne Marie Murphy and Justin T. Berger represented Anastasiya Komarova, who was awarded $600,000 from National Credit Acceptance, Inc. in 2008. Komarova had been subjected to nearly a year of hostile telephone calls to her work place and a spurious arbitration proceeding, all over a bogus credit card debt and despite the fact that she repeatedly told the agency she never had an account with the credit card company in question. In issuing its verdict, the San Francisco Superior Court jury described National Credit Acceptance's conduct as "outrageous." The verdict is believed to be one of the largest verdicts in the country by a sole plaintiff alleging credit abuse.

Northern Trust Bank of California
Los Angeles County Superior Court
CPM filed a class action on behalf of beneficiaries of fixed-fee trusts charged excess trustee fees over a 20 year period. The case returned tens of millions of dollars to consumers.

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