Rancho Cucamonga Jury Orders Wells Fargo to Pay Consumers Over $750,000 for False Credit Reporting.

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On March 6, 2007, a civil jury in Rancho Cucamonga, San Bernardino County, California ordered Wells Fargo Home Mortgage to pay more than $750,000 in actual and punitive damages to Reed and Mary Ann Fisher of Oceanside. The Fisher's allegations against Wells Fargo arose out of a two-year uncorrected pattern of false and inaccurate credit reporting which damaged the Fisher's credit scores and which also resulted in credit denials. The Fishers were represented by Robert F. Brennan of Brennan, Wiener & Associates in La Crescenta, widely regarded as the leading consumer protection and credit damage law firm in Southern California (Reed & Mary Ann Fisher v. Wells Fargo Home Mortgage, Case No. RCV 074 822, San Bernardino Superior Court, Rancho Cucamonga Courthouse).

Following a seven-day jury trial, a civil jury in Rancho Cucamonga has just ordered Wells Fargo Home Mortgage to pay consumers Reed and Mary Ann Fisher over $750,000.00 in actual and punitive damages in a lawsuit arising out of alleged false credit reporting by Wells Fargo over a two-year period (Reed & Mary Ann Fisher v. Wells Fargo Home Mortgage, Case No. RCV 074 822, San Bernardino Superior Court, Rancho Cucamonga Courthouse).

In the spring of 2001, San Clemente residents Reed and MaryAnne Fisher had their home red-tagged because of land instability. They thought the biggest nightmare would be dealing with their red-tagged home, but this proved to be the lesser of their nightmares over the next two years.

The Fishers contacted Wells Fargo Home Mortgage, their mortgage servicer, and obtained a forebearance agreement so they did not have to make mortgage payments while their home was red-tagged. Ultimately, Wells Fargo transferred the mortgage to Freddie Mac, the mortgage holder, and Freddie Mac charged off the loan with a zero balance and no negative credit marks. The Fishers had always been current on their home mortgage payments, and had spotless credit.

Wells Fargo, however, continued to report false negative credit information to the credit bureaus that the Fishers were between 30 and 90 days late on their mortgage payments. Wells Fargo also began foreclosure proceedings on the Fisher's home when it had no right to do so.

The negative credit entries from Wells Fargo made it extremely tough for the Fishers to get another living situation and to pick up the pieces of their lives, having been denied their good names and credit by Wells Fargo's false credit reporting. This went on for two years. Wells Fargo would, on the one hand, send a letter to the Fishers stating that the credit information was being cleaned up, then on the other hand continue to report the negative credit information to the credit bureaus. Wells' negative credit information damaged the Fisher's credit scores.

The Fishers retained prominent Southern California consumer protection and credit damage attorney Robert F. Brennan of La Crescenta, to file a lawsuit to finally get Wells Fargo to stop the credit reporting. But with two years of negative credit reporting ruining their lives, the Fishers proceeded to trial to obtain their damages as well as a permanent court judgment showing that Wells Fargo had acted improperly.

On Tuesday, March 6, 2007 at 11:30 a.m., a Rancho Cucamonga jury gave them a judgment against Wells Fargo as well as over $750,000 in actual and punitive damages.

"This is yet another example of how the big players in the credit reporting industry really ignore and neglect the consumers they're supposed to protect," says Brennan. "The Fishers tried for two years to clean up their credit by themselves, only to have the door slammed in their faces repeatedly. Only when they hired an attorney and filed a lawsuit did things start to improve. But by then a lot of damage had been done."

Mr. Brennan also criticized Wells Fargo for acting as if the credit information belonged to Wells Fargo and not to the Fishers. "So often in these cases, you see an attitude that big banks like Wells Fargo believe that a consumer's credit information belongs to the bank. It does not. If nothing else, I hope Wells Fargo learns from this verdict that a consumer's credit information belongs to the consumer, and a bank has a sacred trust to protect it from wrongful damage."

Contact Information: Robert F. Brennan, Brennan, Wiener & Associates, 3150 Montrose Ave., La Crescenta, Ca. 91214, (818) 249-5291. Mr. Brennan and his firm are the leading consumer protection and credit damage attorneys in Southern California. Mr. Brennan has been selected as a "Southern California Super Lawyer" for two years running, for both 2006 and 2007.

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ROBERT BRENNAN