MIAMI (Legal Newsline) – A Florida woman and a New York woman are suing a mortgage servicer and an insurance company over claims their agreement provides for unlawful kickbacks.
Robin McNeil and Leslie Lewis, individually and for all others similarly situated, filed a class-action lawsuit March 7 in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida against LoanCare LLC and American Security Insurance Co. (ASIC), alleging breach of contract, breach of good faith and fair dealing, unjust enrichment, tortious interference with a business relationship, violations of the Truth in Lending Act, and violations of the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act.
The suit states LoanCare and ASIC have had an agreement for many years whereby ASIC performs many of LoanCare's mortgage-servicing functions and is the exclusive provider of force-placed insurance coverage for homeowners with mortgage loans owned or serviced by LoanCare.
In exchange, ASIC allegedly provides LoanCare with unlawful kickbacks disguised as legitimate compensation, including unearned "commissions" paid to a LoanCare affiliate, "expense reimbursements," payments for illusory reinsurance premiums that carry no commensurate transfer of risk, and free or below-cost mortgage-servicing functions.
As a result, LoanCare homeowners allegedly bear the cost of these kickbacks because the defendants do not pass on these rebates to borrowers. Force-placed insurance charges are allegedly deducted from borrowers' escrow accounts.
The plaintiffs and others in the class seek declaratory and injunctive relief, actual damages, compensatory and treble damages, interests, attorney fees and other costs. They are represented by attorneys Adam M. Moskowitz, Thomas A. Tucker Ronzetti, Rachel Sullivan and Robert J. Neary of Kozyak Tropin & Throckmorton in Coral Gables, Florida; attorneys Lance A. Harke, Sarah Engel and Howard M. Bushman of Harke Clasby & Bushman in Miami Shores, Florida; and attorneys Aaron S. Podhurst, Peter Prieto and Matthew Weinshall of Podhurst Orseck in Miami.
U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida Case number 1:16-CV-20830-KMW