Talaie v. Wells Fargo Bank

Summarized by:

  • Court: 9th Circuit Court of Appeals Archives
  • Area(s) of Law:
  • Date Filed: 12-14-2015
  • Case #: 13-56314
  • Judge(s)/Court Below: Circuit Judge Gould for the Court; Circuit Judges Fletcher and Christensen
  • Full Text Opinion

Mohammad and Rosa Talaie owned a mortgage owned and serviced by Wells Fargo Bank, which was transferred to U.S. Bank in 2006. In 2009, Congress enacted 15 U.S.C. § 1641(g) which requires notification to the borrower within thirty days when its mortgage loan is sold, transferred, or assigned to a third party. The Talaies sought damages due to Wells Fargo’s failure to notify. On appeal, the Ninth Circuit decided whether the notification requirement applied and continues to apply retroactively. The panel held that absent any clear indication by Congress, retroactivity of the statute requiring notice to borrowers within thirty days from when their mortgage is sold, transferred, or assigned to a third party does not apply retroactively, because application of the statute impairs the mortgage holder’s rights, increases the mortgage holder’s liability for past conduct, and would impose new duties. Therefore, Wells Fargo enjoys a strong presumption against retroactivity. Finally, because Congress did not include a clear intent for retroactivity, the Talaie’s claims fail because the mortgage was transferred in 2006 and the notification statute was not enacted until 2009. AFFIRMED.

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