A Las Vegas Jury recently awarded a family $3.4 million in a wrongful foreclosure case. As you can guess, this wasn’t your everyday foreclosure. It kind of reminds you of the McDonalds hot coffee case. After testimony, the Jury found that Countrywide Home Loans, Inc. wrongfully foreclosed on the Plaintiff’s condo and awarded the Plaintiff $922,690 in compensatory damages and $2.5 million dollars in punitive damages. As a lawyer who regularly sues insurance companies, mortgage companies and credit card companies, I think the Jury got it right.The Plaintiffs had temporarily moved to Tucson, Arizona for work. Countrywide sued for foreclosure, wrongfully, and sold the condo. The Plaintiffs discovered what happened in 2003. Somewhere down the line, the Plaintiff’s personal possessions were discarded and some items, including a wedding dress and family photos, may have been thrown into the trash. How could something like this happen? Good Question. The foreclosure was supposed to happen on another condo.
As a lawyer, you always wonder why this case wasn’t resolved by Countrywide prior to the trial. One can only guess as to what Countrywide was thinking. Normally, the two sides just don’t value the case in the same way. I would like to congratulate the Plaintiff’s attorney on a job well done. Countrywide said in a statement that they are very disappointed in the result. Yea, imagine that. Now, they will probably spend a fortune appealing the juries decision, instead of doing the right thing and paying the Plaintiffs for their screw-up.