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Chase Bank Liable for Failure to Mediate Modification Attempts in Good Faith; Sanction Held not Excessive!

June 27, 2014

U.S. Bank, N.A. v. Sawyer

Court: Maine Supreme Court
Opinion Date: June 24, 2014
Judge: Mead
Areas of Law: Banking, Real Estate & Property Law

In 2009, David and Debra Sawyer defaulted on a mortgage held by U.S. Bank N.A. In 2012, the Bank filed a complaint for foreclosure. At the time the complaint was filed, J.P. Morgan Chase Bank N.A. had taken over as loan servicer. Four court-ordered mediations subsequently took place, during which time the Sawyers attempted to negotiate a modification with Chase. The mediations were unsuccessful, largely due to Chase’s repeated delays and requests to submit documentation that the Sawyers had already submitted. At a show cause hearing, the superior court subsequently dismissed the Bank’s complaint with prejudice, concluding that the Bank was not prepared to proceed at the hearing. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding (1) the sanction was not excessive under the circumstances, and (2) there was evidence that the Sawyers were prejudiced by the Bank’s failure to participate in the mediation process in good faith.


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Nancy Duffy McCarron, CBN 164780
Attorney, Real Estate Broker, BBB Arbitrator, CA Notary Public
Certified Forensic Loan Auditor, Property Manager

 

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