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Lawsuits against financial institutions in the San Francisco Bay Area remained active in April 2010, with 144 new filings in Bay Area courts.  (Federal courts for Oakland, San Jose and San Francisco, and state courts for Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Napa, San Francisco and Sonoma Counties.)  This compares to 144 lawsuits in March, 129 lawsuits in February, and 114 lawsuits in January.
 
Of the 144 April lawsuits, the majority (52) accused financial institutions of wrongful foreclosure.  Another 39 alleged violations of the Truth in Lending Act (TILA) or other forms of predatory lending.
 
Homeowner lawsuits remained widespread, with numerous plaintiffs claiming that banks unfairly allowed them to take out loans they could not afford, refused to explore alternatives to foreclosure, and refused to negotiate loan modifications.  Several plaintiffs alleged that they thought they had applied for fixed rate mortgages, but instead received adjustable rate mortgages.
 
Other lawsuits against financial institutions alleged fraud, breach of fiduciary duty, breach of contract, unfair debt collection practices, and violations of the Fair Credit Reporting Act.  Purported violations of the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA) were also common.
 
In the employment arena, plaintiffs most frequently alleged failure to pay overtime wages.  Other employment claims included race and gender discrimination and wrongful termination.
 
Cooper, White & Cooper’s Financial Crisis Group offers expertise in handling the issues being raised in the nation’s current housing, finance, banking, and real estate industry turmoil.  Staffed by attorneys who are fully experienced in transactional and regulatory counseling, jury trials and complex litigation, bankruptcy, banking, and publicly traded securities, the Group stands ready to assist a wide variety of clients during these difficult times.  Immediately responsive and pursuing aggressive action plans, we have consistently produced highly successful results.  For further information, please contact Jill Rowe.

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