$17 Million Settlement Approved – Alleged Violation of the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act
NEWPORT BEACH, Calif., Sept. 4, 2018 /PRNewswire/ — A California federal judge granted final approval to a $17 million settlement in a nationwide class action lawsuit filed by consumers, represented by Daniel Robinson of Robinson Calcagnie, Inc. and Evan Borges of Greenberg Gross LLP, against PHH Corporation, its subsidiaries and affiliates (“PHH”), and Realogy Holdings Corp. and its subsidiaries and affiliates (“Realogy”).
The lawsuit was initially filed on November 25, 2015, in the United States District Court, Central District of California, alleging that PHH and Realogy violated section 8(a) of the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (“RESPA”), 12 U.S.C. § 2607(a), by improperly paying and receiving kickbacks, referral fees, or other things of value in connection with the referral of title insurance and other settlement services.
After over a year of intensive litigation and discovery, the parties reached an agreement to settle the case in a mediation presided over by Judge Jay Gandhi (ret.). The $17 million settlement, which was preliminarily approved on January 29, 2018, conveys significant benefits to class members. According to Mr. Robinson, who was appointed settlement class counsel along with Mr. Borges, “We are very proud of this result which provides class members with cash payments of approximately 17.7% of the title-, escrow-, and closing-related charges they paid in connection with the qualifying mortgage loans, which is an average payment of over $360 to each of the 32,217 class members.”
Class members include individuals who, on or after November 25, 2014 and on or before November 25, 2015, (1) closed on any mortgage loan originated by PHH Corporation, PHH Mortgage Corporation, PHH Home Loans, LLC, or their affiliates (including loans where PHH Mortgage Corporation provided origination services on behalf of any PLS Partners), and (2) paid title-, escrow-, or closing-related charges in connection with that mortgage loan to Title Resource Group LLC or its affiliates.
In response to the final approval order, Mr. Borges stated, “This was a hard-fought case every step of the way. We are extremely pleased to have been able to obtain such a tremendous result for the class, one that is virtually unequalled in RESPA cases.”
The plaintiffs are represented by Daniel S. Robinson, Wesley K. Polischuk, and Michael W. Olson of Robinson Calcagnie, Inc. (www.robinsonfirm.com, 949.720.1288) and Wayne R. Gross and Evan C. Borges of Greenberg Gross LLP (www.ggtriallaw.com, 949.383.2860).
The case is Sheri Dodge, et al. v. PHH Corporation et al., case number 8:15-cv-01973 in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California. For more information on the settlement, please go to www.realestatefeesettlement.com.
Source Robinson Calcagnie, Inc.