Facts: A homeowner obtained a loan secured by a trust deed on their property. The owner went into default and the lender filed a notice of default (NOD). The lender failed to discuss alternatives to foreclosure with the owner prior to filing the NOD, as required by law. No agencies or penalties were in place to enforce the requirement on the lender. The lender foreclosed on the property.
Claim: The owner sought to pursue money damages from the lender, claiming the lender wrongfully foreclosed on their property since it failed to contact the owner to discuss alternatives to foreclosure prior to filing an NOD.
Counterclaim: The lender claimed the owner may not pursue money damages since the requirement to contact the owner did not create an owner’s right to pursue action against the lender for failure to discuss alternatives to foreclosure.
Holding: A California court of appeal held the owner may pursue money damages from the lender since no penalties or agencies existed to enforce the requirement, thus the owner had a private right to pursue action for the lender’s failure to discuss alternatives to foreclosure. [Skov v. U.S. Bank (2012) 207 CA4th 690]