Articles Posted in Banking

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The Supreme Court affirmed the North Carolina Business Court’s substantive decision interpreting N.C. Gen. Stat. 105-130.5(b)(1) so as to preclude The Fidelity Bank from deducting “market discount income” relating to discounted United States obligations for North Carolina corporate income taxation purposes. The Supreme Court, however, reversed the Business Court’s decision to dismiss the second of two judicial review petitions that Fidelity Bank filed in these cases and remanding that matter to the North Carolina Department of Revenue with instructions to vacate that portion of the Department’s second amended final agency decision relating to the deductibility issue for lack of subject matter jurisdiction, holding that the Business Court’s decision to dismiss the portions of the second judicial review petition challenging the Department’s decision concerning the deductibility issue in the second amended final agency decision was erroneous. View "Fidelity Bank v. N.C. Department of Revenue" on Justia Law

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Borrowers executed a promissory note to purchase real property. The debt was secured by a deed of trust on the underlying real property. Bank, the alleged holder of note and subject deed of trust, filed a complaint against Borrowers under the deed of trust, seeking judicial foreclosure and judgment on the note, alleging that Borrowers defaulted under the terms of the note by failing to make payments. Borrowers moved to dismiss for failure to state a claim, arguing that the evidence was insufficient to establish that Bank failed to establish its status as a holder of the note and therefore did not have the right to foreclose. The court of appeals affirmed. The Supreme Court reversed, holding that Plaintiff’s complaint adequately stated a cause of action for judicial foreclosure and that the court of appeals erred by applying the requirements applicable in non-judicial foreclosure by power of sale to Plaintiff’s judicial foreclosure action. View "U.S. Bank National Ass’n v. Pinkney" on Justia Law

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Borrowers executed a promissory note to purchase real property. The debt was secured by a deed of trust on the underlying real property. Bank, the alleged holder of note and subject deed of trust, filed a complaint against Borrowers under the deed of trust, seeking judicial foreclosure and judgment on the note, alleging that Borrowers defaulted under the terms of the note by failing to make payments. Borrowers moved to dismiss for failure to state a claim, arguing that the evidence was insufficient to establish that Bank failed to establish its status as a holder of the note and therefore did not have the right to foreclose. The court of appeals affirmed. The Supreme Court reversed, holding that Plaintiff’s complaint adequately stated a cause of action for judicial foreclosure and that the court of appeals erred by applying the requirements applicable in non-judicial foreclosure by power of sale to Plaintiff’s judicial foreclosure action. View "U.S. Bank National Ass’n v. Pinkney" on Justia Law

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Plaintiffs were individual investors in undeveloped real estate that purchased real property shortly before the collapse of the real estate market. In 2010, Plaintiffs commenced this action seeking to recover against a bank and its appraisers for their alleged participation in a scheme to defraud investors by artificially inflating property values. Specifically, Plaintiffs alleged that they would not have purchased the real property but for faulty appraisal information and that the bank should have disclosed the inflating appraised property values to them. The trial court granted Defendants’ motion to dismiss on the basis that Plaintiffs did not receive the appraisals at the time of their decisions to purchase. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding that because it was undisputed that Plaintiffs decided to purchase the investment properties without consulting an appraisal and obligated themselves to purchase the properties independent of the loan process, Defendants were entitled to dismissal of all claims. View "Arnesen v. Rivers Edge Golf Club & Plantation, Inc." on Justia Law

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Plaintiff was assured by Bank that he would qualify for and receive a small business, government-backed loan. After Plaintiff was notified that no government-backed loan was available and aware that he had various potential causes of action against Bank, Plaintiff nonetheless sought and obtained a new commercial loan from the Bank and subsequently expressly waived all offsets and defenses. More than six years after Plaintiff first became aware that no government-backed loan was available, he filed a complaint alleging that he obtained the commercial loan in reliance upon the Bank’s representation that the government-backed loan was forthcoming. Bank raised the statutes of limitation as an affirmative defense and filed a compulsory counterclaim to collect on the amount owed on the commercial loan. The trial court granted summary judgment for Bank. The Court of Appeals reversed. The Supreme Court reversed on the grounds that the undisputed facts showed that Plaintiff chose to obtain a new commercial loan after learning no government-backed loan was available and repeatedly reaffirmed his obligations under the commercial loan and expressly waived any offsets and defenses to the loan and against Bank. Remanded. View "Ussery v. Branch Banking & Trust Co." on Justia Law

Posted in: Banking, Contracts

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A Bank issued two loans to an LLC guaranteed by two Guarantors. After the LLC defaulted, the Bank sued the LLC and the Guarantors for the outstanding indebtedness. Plaintiff then sold the properties at a foreclosure proceeding at which it was the sole bidder. Plaintiff subsequently dismissed all claims against the Bank. The Guarantors moved to join the LLC as a defendant in the action. The trial court entered an order ruling that joinder of the LLC was appropriate. The court then entered summary judgment against the Guarantors on the issue of their liability for payment of the deficiency. The LLC and the Guarantors then amended their answers to assert the anti-deficiency defense set forth in N.C. Gen. Stat. 45-21.36. After a trial, the court reduced the Guarantors’ liability pursuant to section 45-21.36, concluding that once the LLC was joined as a party, the Guarantors were entitled to benefit from the LLC’s use of section 45-21.36. The Court of Appeals affirmed. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding (1) the LLC was properly joined in this case; and (2) irrespective of the LLC’s presence in the litigation, the non-mortgagor Guarantors were entitled to raise the anti-deficiency defense. View "High Point Bank & Trust Co. v. Highmark Props., LLC" on Justia Law

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Defendant guaranteed loans made by Regions Bank to certain entities that later defaulted on the obligations. As part of a restructuring agreement, Defendant executed a forbearance agreement and waived “any and all claims, defenses and causes of action” in exchange for Regions Bank’s agreement not to exercise collection remedies under the loan documents. The LC Entities later defaulted on their obligations under the forbearance agreement. Plaintiff subsequently purchased Regions Bank’s interest in the LC Entities’ loans. Plaintiff then sought recovery of the indebtedness from Defendant. The trial court entered judgment for Defendant, concluding that Regions Bank had procured her guaranty in violation of the Equal Credit Opportunity Act (ECOA) and that this violation constituted an affirmative defense. The court of appeals affirmed. The Supreme Court reversed, holding that, in executing the forbearance agreement, Defendant waived her potential claims against the lender, including those under the ECOA, in exchange for leniency in repaying the debt. Remanded. View "RL Regi N.C., LLC v. Lighthouse Cove, LLC" on Justia Law

Posted in: Banking

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Borrowers applied from a home mortgage loan from Lender. During the transaction, a loan officer made an incorrect statement about lien priority. Borrowers later filed breach of fiduciary and negligent misrepresentation claims against Lender, alleging that the junior status of Lender’s lien decreased the marketability and value of their home and exposed them to increased liability. The trial court granted Lender’s motion for summary judgment on all claims. The Court of Appeals concluded that material issues of fact barred summary judgment on Borrowers’ breach of fiduciary duty claim, reasoning that Lender’s assurance of a first priority lien on Borrowers’ new mortgage loan was an act beyond the scope of a normal debtor-creditor relationship. The Supreme Court reversed, holding that the trial court correctly granted summary judgment for Lender on both claims where no fiduciary duty existed and where Plaintiffs did not forecast evidence that they made a reasonable inquiry into the validity of the loan officer’s statements. View "Dallaire v. Bank of Am., N.A." on Justia Law

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Plaintiffs obtained loans from Defendant, a bank. Plaintiffs later, on behalf of themselves and all those similarly situated, filed a complaint alleging that Defendant's loan transactions violated North Carolina's unfair and deceptive practices statute. Specifically, Plaintiffs alleged that they paid loan discount fees but did not receive discounted loans and that the fees they were charged in connection with origination of their loans were unnecessary and unreasonable. The trial court granted partial summary judgment for Plaintiffs on their loan discount claims and excessive pricing claims under N.C. Gen. Stat. 75-1.1. The court of appeals affirmed entry of summary judgment on Plaintiffs' loan discount claims but reversed the grant of summary judgment on the excessive fees claims. The Supreme Court reversed, holding (1) issues of material fact existed in regards to Plaintiffs' loan discount claims; and (2) Plaintiffs' excessive pricing claims were not recognized by section 75-1.1. Remanded. View "Bumpers v. Cmty. Bank of N. Va." on Justia Law

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In 2005, Tonya Bass executed an adjustable rate promissory note with Mortgage Lenders Network USA. The Note was then transferred several times: from Mortgage Lenders to Emax Financial Group, from Emax to Residential Funding Corporation, and from Residential Funding to U.S. Bank. The Note evidenced these transfers by three stamped imprints. In 2009, U.S. Bank filed this foreclosure action after Bass failed to make timely payments. The trial court dismissed the foreclosure action, concluding that because the Note was not properly indorsed and conveyed to Emax or Residential Funding, U.S. Bank was not the rightful holder of the Note. The court based its ruling that the first stamp was "unsigned" and failed to establish negotiation from Mortgage Lenders to Emax. The Supreme Court reversed, holding (1) the indorsements on the Note unambiguously indicated the intent to transfer the Note from each preceding lender and finally to U.S. Bank; and (2) therefore, U.S. Bank was the holder of the Note and had the authority to bring this foreclosure action against Bass. View "In re Foreclosure of Bass" on Justia Law