In The Media

A class action filed on behalf of California fire victims against Countrywide Home Loans was settled November 25, 2009 in Los Angeles Superior Court (Van Der Touw v Countrywide, BC392189).

Based on alleged violations of California‟s Civil Code Section 2954.8, and Business and Professions Code Section 17200, the class action suit claimed that the mortgage lender, Countrywide Home Loans, breached California laws by not paying homeowners the minimum 2% interest on insurance proceeds held by their lender. The code sections apply to state, not federally, chartered institutions.

The practice of withholding interest on monies held from insurance settlement proceeds or escrow account holders amounted to free funds at the expense of diligent homeowners who suffered damages from an insured peril. Individually, no case would have prevailed because any recovery would have been insignificant compared to the costs of litigation.

Countrywide Home Loans, a California corporation, ultimately agreed to fund a class settlement in recognition of past unpaid interest.

Mr. Brian Heffernan, the attorney representing homeowner plaintiffs, commented, “This was a case that reflects our troubled economic times. As most disaster victims already know, financial institutions will go to great lengths to hold [insurance settlement] money as long as possible. Fire victims constantly have to overcome the red tape and hassles to convince the „Loss Draft‟ department to eventually disburse the customers‟ own insurance proceeds necessary to rebuild their homes. This settlement should at least remove one obstacle along the way to rebuild their home.”

Homeowners who borrowed from or held escrow accounts with Countrywide during the period covered by the class action litigation, June 6, 2004 and June 30, 2008, are advised to check their mail for instructions regarding the class action settlement.

Inspirational Quotes

I realize now that home is where people get their strength from. Whether it makes sense or not to come home, that doesn’t matter. People want to live in their home and nothing’s gonna stop somebody from rebuilding their home.

Todd Graves, Secret Millionaire

Testimonials

After a fire took our home and neighborhood of approximately 200 homes, CARe was able to help us with understanding the process of working with insurance after our loss. The founders of this company understood our position fully, as they have experienced losing their own home to a fire. They will help you by offering one on one consultation, help you calculate your “complete” loss and educate you in the way insurance really works. We were able to gain a more complete recovery of our loss through their integrity and competent ability to help us to understand the insurance industries goals, payments and procedures which are not taught by the insurance industry. If you are unfortunate to have this type of trauma in your life I fully recommend you to get a free consultation before signing anything with your insurance company. You have experienced enough; let CARe guide you through the process, you do not have to lose anything else.

Grass Fire Survivor, 2007