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McCulley v. US Bank of Montana - $5 million punitive damages AFFIRMED; Watch what USSC does with this when US Bank files for USSC Writ of Certiorari

justia.com | April 17, 2015

McCulley v. U.S. Bank of Montana
Court: Montana Supreme Court
Citation: 2015 MT 100
Opinion Date: April 14, 2015
Areas of Law: Banking

Plaintiff sought a thirty-year residential financing loan from the predecessor to U.S. Bank in the amount of $300,000. Three years later, Plaintiff filed suit against U.S. Bank alleging that the Bank committed fraud by issuing, without notice, an eighteen-month, $300,000 commercial loan, rather than the thirty-year residential property loan for which she applied. A jury ultimately found in favor of Plaintiff and awarded her $1,000,000 in compensatory damages and $5,000,000 in punitive damages. The district court confirmed the punitive damages award and ordered that post-judgment interest would accrue from the of its decision. The Bank appealed, and Plaintiff cross-appealed. The Supreme court affirmed the direct appeal and reversed the cross-appeal, holding that the district court (1) did not abuse its discretion by excluding law witness testimony and Plaintiff’s medical records; (2) correctly concluded that the Bank committed actual fraud; (3) did not err in holding U.S. Bank liable for punitive damages arising out of Heritage Bank’s pre-merger conduct; (4) did not err in upholding the jury’s award of punitive damages; but (5) erred by ordering accrual of post-judgment interest from the date of its decision.

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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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