Victory for the Little Guy!

September 16, 2008

Jury gives woman $1.25M in lawsuit over mortgage

Baltimore Business Journal – by Eli Segall

A Baltimore native who defaulted on a subprime loan has been awarded $1.25 million in damages from her lender, Wells Fargo Bank N.A. The case may lead to similar lawsuits nationwide, and also may help Baltimore City’s suit against the bank, claiming it targeted minority neighborhoods with subprime loans, legal and banking experts say.

Kimberly L. Thomas was awarded $250,000 in damages and $1 million in punitive damages in Montgomery County Circuit Court July 31. A six-member jury convicted Wells Fargo of fraud, negligence and other charges for inflating Thomas’ income and assets on her mortgage application, and locking her into a bigger loan than she had applied for — one she couldn’t afford.

Thomas, 41, said in an interview with the Baltimore Business Journal that her case “destroys the myth” that the subprime mortgage meltdown is fueled by homebuyers taking loans they can’t handle.

“Everybody knows somebody who’s been messed over by them,” Thomas said of the San Francisco bank. “But you don’t see results. You don’t actually see people who say that they won.”

Read the Baltimore Business Journal story here.

 

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