Consumer Financial Services
Our Consumer Financial Services practice group represents banks; mortgage lenders and brokers; mortgage servicers; consumer finance companies; title lenders; payday lenders; collection agencies; and other business entities engaged in consumer transactions. We help clients in obtaining required licenses; negotiating with regulators over examination reports and complaints; and assisting our clients with the myriad of state and federal laws affecting their business.
Our consumer finance litigation team regularly defends our clients in state and federal courts throughout Virginia. Our litigators are well versed in defending suits alleging violations of Virginia laws as well as federal laws such as the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, Fair Credit Reporting Act, Truth in Lending Act, Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act, and Equal Credit Opportunity Act to name a few.
Our experience in this practice area includes:
- Advice on compliance with state and federal consumer lending and protection laws;
- Assistance with state regulatory issues including issues with the Virginia Bureau of Financial Institution; and
- Advising clients in arbitration and in in litigation in Virginia state and federal courts.
- Bradford v. HSBC Mortgage Corporation, 2011 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 80950 (E.D.Va. 2011). Successfully defended a national mortgage lender for alleged violations of the Truth in Lending Act and the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act.
- Landes v. Cavalry Portfolio Services, LLC, 2011 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 35467 (E.D. Va. 2011). Obtained dismissal with prejudice of a class action complaint affecting 91,000 class members. The plaintiff sought class certification for an alleged Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) violation involving dunning letters offering “tax season savings.” The plaintiff contended that the letters were deceptive, and thus violated the FDCPA, because the consumer would not actually have saved the stated amount due to potential income tax implications. We successfully argued that had the collection agency dispensed tax advice as the plaintiff demanded, the collection agency would have been engaging in the unauthorized practice of law, a misdemeanor offense in Virginia. The Court further agreed that there is no requirement in the FDCPA that any such tax disclosure is required. This was a case of first impression within the Fourth Circuit.
- Katz v. Allied Interstate et al., 2010 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 25579 (E.D.Va. 2010). ACA International’s Mapbulletin newsletter lists this case as one of the top four Big Wins-Call Volume Cases in its 2010 Year in Review Litigation Trends. We successfully defended a national collection agency for alleged violations of state and federal laws.
- Schmidt v. Household Finance Corporation, 276 Va. 108, 661 S.E.2d 834 (2008). In a suit raising issues regarding the Virginia Consumer Protection Act, Truth in Lending Act, and the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act, we successfully defended a national mortgage lender in a case that was appealed to the Supreme Court of Virginia.
- Ruiz v. E*Trade Bank et al., 2009 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 115455 (E.D.Va. 2009). Prevailed on summary judgment from claims alleging violations of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act and the Equal Credit Opportunity Act.
- Barrigan v. Decision One, 2009 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 1105 (E.D.Va. 2009) aff’d 353 Fed. Appx. 813 (4th Cir. 2009). Successfully defended national mortgage lender in District Court and on appeal to the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals.