Cases

Lass v. Bank of America, N.A., and BAC Home Loans Servicing, L.P.

Staff: Billy Hinshaw
Attorneys: Paul J. Lukas, Kai H. Richter

On April 1, 2011, we filed a Complaint on behalf of a proposed class of homeowners who were required by Bank of America to purchase flood insurance. The lawsuit alleges that (1) Bank of America unlawfully required borrowers to obtain excessive amounts of flood insurance for their property; and (2) Bank of America accepted unlawful kickbacks and commissions in connection with force-placed (also known as lender-placed) flood insurance.

Based on this alleged conduct, Plaintiff’s Complaint asserts that Bank of America violated the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA), breached its contracts with consumers, violated its duty of good faith to customers, and unjustly enriched itself in violation of applicable law.

Plaintiffs are seeking, among other things, reimbursement of all unfair and excessive premiums.

Nichols Kaster has other cases against Bank of America.  Please see our overview pages for more information on our cases related to Force-Placed Hazard Insurance and to Bank of America’s Flood Insurance Requirements

Case Status Updates
Boston, MA (PRWEB) On September 21, 2012, the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit issued a pair of decisions upholding claims by borrowers in two class action lawsuits against Bank of America. For the Appeals Court’s decisions, click on links for Lass and Kolbe.       ... Read More »
Click here to read the article in The Huffington Post.
On February 9, 2012, the First Circuit Court of Appeals held oral argument in the Lass v. Bank of America lawsuit.  Attorney Kai Richter argued that the district court erred by dismissing the lawsuit, and urged the First Circuit to reverse the decision.  A decision in the case is expected ... Read More »
Click here to read the article in The New York Times.
On April 1, 2011 we filed a lawsuit against Bank of America, N.A., and BAC Home Loans on behalf of a proposed class of homeowners who were required to purchase flood insurance. The case number is 1:11-CV-10570, and was assigned to The Honorable William G. Young.

What Is A Class Action?

In a class action lawsuit, one or more people, called the “class representative” (in this case Susan Lass), sue on behalf of themselves and other people who have similar claims.  Together, this group of people is called a “class” or “class members.”  The class representative and the class members together are called the “Plaintiffs.”  The companies they sue (Bank of America), are called the “Defendants.”  The judge or jury resolves the claims for everyone in the class—except those who ask to be excluded from the lawsuit.

Is This Case Certified As A Class Action?

Not at this time. Rule 23 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure governs class actions in federal courts. The Court has not yet decided whether to allow this lawsuit to proceed as a class action under this rule. At an appropriate time, we intend to file a motion with the Court asking it to certify the lawsuit as a class action. The Complaint alleges that treatment of the lawsuit as a class action is appropriate for the following reasons:

  • There are numerous individuals in the proposed classes.
  • There are factual and legal issues that are common to each member of the proposed classes.
  • The common factual and legal issues predominate over any individual issues that may be unique to particular borrowers.
  • The named plaintiff’s claims are typical of the claims of the members of the proposed classes.
  • The named plaintiff and the lawyers will adequately represent the proposed classes.
  • The company acted or refused to act on grounds that apply generally to the proposed classes.
  • Prosecution of separate actions by or against individual members of the proposed classes would create a risk of inconsistent outcomes.
  • A class action will be superior to many individual lawsuits, and will provide members of the proposed classes a chance of redress.

Who Is Included?

The lawsuit is being brought on behalf of the following proposed classes:

Proposed Nationwide Flood Insurance Class:

All persons who were charged for lender-placed flood insurance by Defendants and who paid such charges, in whole or in part, within the applicable limitations period.

Proposed Massachusetts Class:

All persons who have or had a loan or line of credit with Defendants secured by their residential property and were required by Defendants to purchase or maintain flood insurance on their property in the State of Massachusetts within six (6) years prior to this action’s filing date through the date of final disposition of this action.

What Time Frame Is Covered?

If you have been required to purchase flood insurance by Bank of America any time from April 2005 to the present, we would be interested to hear from you.

How Long Will This Case Take?

Class actions can often take many years.  Please check this page periodically for updates on the case’s status.

Is There Money Available Now?

No. The Court has not yet decided whether the plaintiffs’ claims are valid or whether the case may proceed as a class action.

How Can I Help?

As part of our investigatory efforts, we are interested in speaking with other Bank of America customers who have concerns about Bank of America’s flood insurance requirements. If you believe that you were required to purchase or maintain unnecessary or excessive flood insurance by Bank of America, we would be interested in hearing from you.

If you have any information that may assist us with this case, please contact our clerk on the case, Billy Hinshaw, by email at whinshaw@nka.com or call toll free at (877) 448-0492.

How Do I Learn More?

To learn more about this case, feel free to contact us toll free at 1-877-448-0492, write to us at Nichols Kaster, PLLP, 4600 IDS Center, 80 South Eighth Street, Minneapolis, MN 55402, or email our clerk, Billy Hinshaw, at whinshaw@nka.comYou may also check this site for periodic updates.


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