Pestana v. Bank of America: United Law Center Appeal Secures Reversal of Decision on Critical Piece of Unfair Competition Litigation in Mortgage Modification Process

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United Law Center (ULC), the California consumer law firm leading the litigation charge against wrongful foreclosure, modification and title fraud, is celebrating the First Appellate District Court’s reversal of a lower court’s decision denying a cause of action under the unfair competition law (UCL) (Bus. & Prof. Code, Sect. 17200.) in Pestana v. Bank of America N.A. (pending publication).

United Law Center managing partner, Stephen J. Foondos.

United Law Center managing partner, Stephen J. Foondos.

Pestana could serve as yet another powerful example of how the banks are continuing to manipulate for profit and take advantage of Calif. homeowners pursuing the modification process,” explained ULC’s managing partner and founder, Stephen Foondos.

United Law Center (ULC), the California consumer law firm leading the litigation charge against wrongful foreclosure, modification and title fraud, is celebrating the First Appellate District Court’s reversal of a lower court’s decision denying a cause of action under the unfair competition law (UCL) (Bus. & Prof. Code, Sect. 17200.) in Pestana v. Bank of America N.A. (pending publication). Pestana’s suit alleged that his bank and its servicer conducted unfair or fraudulent business practices by telling him that only if he stopped making mortgage payments would they consider him for a loan modification. Based on a previously published California case law by ULC, Bushell v. JPMorgan/Chase (3rd Dist. Ct. App. No. C070643), homeowners in California may sue on a fraud cause of action for false promise if a bank promises a homeowner a modification, but ends up denying the modification. ULC has four published cases in California. For more information please visit http://www.UnitedLawCenter.com.

Plaintiff Daniel Pestana had sued his mortgage loan servicers, Bank of America, N.A., and BAC Home Loans Servicing (LP) after he was denied a loan modification under the federal Home Affordable Mortgage Program (HAMP), but offered a less favorable in-house modification, which he accepted. This is the common practice in the mortgage modification process:
1.    The bank allegedly told Pestana that they would not consider a modification of his mortgage unless he stopped making payments; in reliance on that promise Pestana stopped making payments and was promised a HAMP modification;
2.    For more than a year, the bank stalled in the evaluation process, allowing Pestana’s account to accrue additional late fees and penalties which damaged his credit while the bank was further enriched with increased servicing fees;
3.    The bank falsely told Pestana, a qualified borrower, that he did not qualify for a HAMP modification but instead was given a less favorable in-house modification;

While other causes of action denied by the trial court (Contra Costa County were sustained on appeal, ULC found success in this one very powerful cause of action, unfair competition or “unfair business practices”.

“The Pestana case could serve as yet another powerful example of how the banks are continuing to manipulate for profit and take advantage of California homeowners pursuing the modification process,” explained United Law Center’s managing partner and founder, Stephen J. Foondos. “We have represented thousands of homeowners who have suffered this same experience. We have found success in suing their bank and servicer directly for such violations with some receiving settlements into the six figures or more. “

Homeowners interested in determining if they have a case similar to Pestana or other landmark mortgage real estate cases like Bushell or Glaski can visit http://www.unitedlawcenter.com and take a few minutes to fill out a simple form about their experience with their mortgage company or servicer. They can also call United Law Center at 916-367-0622 to book a free, no-time limit consultation.

About United Law Center
United Law Center is the consumer law firm leading the litigation charge against wrongful foreclosure, modification and title fraud and other consumer oriented violations in California. With four published cases on the books in California, United Law Center is securing case law in favor of homeowners fighting banks to keep their homes. Millions of homeowners were affected by the fraudulent banking practices from 2003 to 2008 and United Law Center is on a mission to help right those wrongs. To determine if a homeowner has a valid case, they are encouraged to visit http://www.unitedlawcenter.com to schedule a free no-time-limit consultation.
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Heather Atherton
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