Articles Posted in Banking

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Plaintiffs asserted six causes of action against Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. (Wells Fargo), the Federal National Mortgage Association (Fannie Mae), Erika Knapstein, Bank of the West, and Jeff T. Courtney arising out of the foreclosure and subsequently sale of Plaintiffs’ residence. As a premise for all causes of action, Plaintiffs asserted that the assignment of their mortgage was defective. The district court dismissed Bank of the West and Courtney for failure to prosecute and granted summary judgment in favor of Wells Fargo, Fannie Mae, and Knapstein. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding (1) whether the assignment of the mortgage was properly executed was not a material issue in the causes of action addressed in this appeal because Plaintiffs could not show an injury arising from the assignment, and therefore, Plaintiffs lacked standing to assert any cause of action that dependent upon the validity of the assignment; and (2) the district court correctly dismissed Courtney for failure to prosecute, but Bank of the West should have been dismissed from the action for lack of standing. View "Marcuzzo v. Bank of the West" on Justia Law

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After voters in School District rejected a bond proposal to construct an addition to existing high school building, School District entered into a lease-purchase agreement with Bank, which agreed to finance the project. Appellants, residents and taxpayers in the school district, sought declaratory and injunctive relief contending that the agreement violated Neb. Rev. Stat. 79-10,105. The trial court denied relief, concluding (1) under section 79-10,105, lease-purchase agreements may be used to make school improvements without the voters’ approval if the project is not funded by bonded debt; and (2) School District in this case did not fund the project through bonded indebtedness. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding (1) Appellants’ claims were moot because, as of the time of this appeal, the addition had been completed, but the public interest exception to the mootness doctrine applied; and (2) section 79-10,105 does not prohibit a school district from entering into a lease-purchase agreement to finance a capital construction project if it has not created a nonprofit corporation to issue bonds for the school district, and because there was no evidence that this occurred in this case, School District did not violate section 79-10,105 by entering into the lease-purchase agreement with Bank. View "Nebuda v. Dodge County Sch. Dist. 0062" on Justia Law

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In 2010, Plaintiffs purchased real estate from Charter West National Bank. Plaintiffs later filed suit, alleging that Charter West represented that the property would be free and clear of all liens but manipulated the language of the deed to reflect that the conveyance was subject to liens of record. Charter West moved to compel arbitration pursuant to the real estate purchase agreement, which contained an arbitration clause. Plaintiffs filed an objection asserting that the arbitration clause was void because it failed to comply with Nebraska’s Uniform Arbitration Act, and the Federal Arbitration Act (FAA) was inapplicable because the transaction did not involve interstate commerce. The district court denied the motion to compel arbitration without prejudice based on a lack of evidence that the transaction affected interstate commerce as to trigger the provisions of the FAA. Charter West appealed. The Supreme Court dismissed the appeal on the grounds that there was no final, appealable order entered by the district court capable of appellate review. View "Wilczewski v. Charter West Nat'l Bank" on Justia Law

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Defendant executed a promissory note in favor of the entity that was soon to merge with First Tennessee Bank National Association. The note was secured by a deed of trust for property in California. First Tennessee later filed a complaint against Defendant, alleging that he was in default on the note and seeking damages in the amount of $274,467. The district court granted summary judgment in favor of Defendant, concluding that First Tennessee’s claim was barred by a California statute of limitations. First Tennessee appealed, arguing that the district court erred in finding that the limitations period was not tolled by either a California statute or provision of the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA). The Supreme Court affirmed, holding (1) the California tolling statute could not be applied against Defendant, a nonresident of California, without violating the Commerce Clause; and (2) although Defendant was a member of the National Guard, he was neither on “active duty” during his membership nor had he ever been called to active service, and therefore, the SCRA provided no basis to toll the limitations period. View "First Tenn. Bank Nat’l Ass’n v. Newham" on Justia Law

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Synergy4 Enterprises, Inc. brought an action against Pinnacle Bank on claims of promissory estoppel, negligent misrepresentation, and fraud, alleging that Pinnacle Bank caused damages by orally assuring Synergy4 that Pinnacle would provide a $1 million credit line and then only providing $400,000 provided for in a commitment letter. The district court sustained Pinnacle’s motion for summary judgment, concluding that Synergy4’s claims were barred by Nebraska’s credit agreement statute of frauds. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding that because Synergy4’s claims were based on a credit agreement that was not in writing, they were barred by Nebraska’s credit agreement statute of frauds. View "Synergy4 Enters., Inc. v. Pinnacle Bank" on Justia Law

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Debtors contracted with Builder to finish construction on a house. After Debtors defaulted on progress payments, Builder sued Debtors and Bank, claiming that Defendants falsely represented or concealed material information about whether Debtors could pay for the work. The district court sustained Defendants’ motions for summary judgment on Builder’s fraud and conspiracy claims. Debtors then confessed judgment on Builder’s breach of contract claim. After a bench trial, the district court ruled for Defendants on Builder’s equitable and promissory estoppel claims. The Supreme Court affirmed in part and reversed in part, holding (1) the court erred in granting summary judgment to Debtors on Builder’s fraud claim and to Debtors and Bank on Builder’s civil conspiracy claim; and (2) during trial, the court did not err in finding that Builder had failed to prove by clear and convincing evidence that Bank promised to fund Builder’s work that was definite enough to induce Builder’s foreseeable reliance on the statement, but these factual findings did not preclude Builder’s proof of the same facts for its fraud claims. Remanded. View "deNourie & Youst Homes, LLC v. Frost" on Justia Law

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Defendants gave a promissory note to Bank and secured a loan with a trust deed on real property. Defendants defaulted on the note, and Bank initiated foreclosure proceedings. The property was sold after a sheriff's sale. Bank subsequently filed a complaint to recover the deficiency. The district court granted Defendants' motion for summary judgment, holding that because Bank filed its complaint ninety-nine days after the sheriff's sale, the action was barred by the three-month statute of limitations in Neb. Rev. Stat. 76-1013. The Supreme Court reversed, holding (1) the special three-month statute of limitations on actions for deficiency set forth in the Nebraska Trust Deeds Act applies where a lender elects to judicially foreclose upon the real estate, but the special limitation applies only where the property has been sold by exercising the power of sale set forth in the trust deed; and (2) because the judicial foreclosure of the trust deed in this case did not result in the sale of property under a trust deed, it did not fall under the statutory language in section 76-1013, and the deficiency action was governed by the general statute of limitations for actions on written contracts. Remanded. View "First Nat'l Bank of Omaha v. Davey" on Justia Law

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Lender made loans to Borrower that were secured by deeds of trust describing real estate owned by Borrower. As additional security for the loans to Borrower, Guarantor promised payment of the indebtedness on the promissory notes. Borrower subsequently defaulted, and Lender sought payment of the indebtedness from Guarantor. Guarantor moved to amend his answer to assert he was not liable to Lender because Lender was barred by section 76-1013 of the Nebraska Trust Deeds Act (Act) from pursuing a deficiency action against Borrower. The district court granted summary judgment in favor of Lender. At issue on appeal was whether a guaranty of a promissory note secured by a deed of trust is subject to the Act. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding that Guarantor's guaranty was not subject to the Act, and under the terms of the guaranty, Guarantor was liable for the total amount of Borrower's debt, less the trustee's sale price. View "Mut. of Omaha Bank v. Murante" on Justia Law

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In November 2009, Plaintiff filed suit against Bank seeking judgment for principal and interest allegedly due and owing on a $15,000 certificate of deposit (CD) opened by her mother in July 1984. The CD matured in April 1985. The district court granted summary judgment in favor of Bank, finding that Plaintiff's claims were barred by the applicable statute of limitations. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding that Plaintiff had to commence her action either seven years after the maturity date of the CD or one year after July 1, 2008, and therefore, Plaintiff's claims were barred by limitations, and the district court therefore did not err in entering summary judgment for Bank. View "Swift v. Norwest Bank-Omaha West" on Justia Law

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Prime Realty, Inc. (Prime) acted as general partner for two limited partnerships (collectively, the Partnerships). Without the Partnerships' limited partners' knowledge, Prime took out two loans from a bank (the Bank) and, by deed of trust, secured the loans with Partnerships' property. The Bank ultimately sold the collateral and applied the proceeds to the loans. The Partnerships sued the Bank for conversion, alleging that the loans were for a nonpartnership purposes and, as such, Prime lacked authority to offer the Partnerships' property as collateral without the limited partners' consent under the Partnership agreements. The district court concluded that the Bank had converted the Partnerships' property and awarded the Partnerships damages and prejudgment interest. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding (1) the Partnerships' complaint was timely; (2) the Bank converted the Partnerships' property; (3) the district court improperly awarded damages in the full amount of the proceeds applied to the loans because a portion of the first loan served a Partnership purpose; and (4) prejudgment interest was proper only in the amount the Bank applied to the second loan. View "Brook Valley Ltd. P'ship v. Mut. of Omaha Bank" on Justia Law