Financial Services Litigation

  • Overview
  • Experience
  • People

Lindquist & Vennum’s Financial Services Litigation team handle and resolve complex financial disputes to minimize client exposure and maximize client recoveries. We represent banks, trustees, court-appointed receivers, creditors, corporate trustees, hedge funds and corporations in state, federal and bankruptcy courts around the country. We have represented lenders in a wide variety of consumer and commercial disputes, resolving matters when possible and successfully recovering millions of dollars on behalf of our clients through litigation and post-judgment recovery when needed. In addition, our seasoned insurance recovery team has advised numerous financial institutions and bank officers and directors in recovering losses under their fidelity bonds and D&O policies. 

On the commercial side, we have successfully guided our bank clients through numerous multi-party complex disputes arising out of asset-based lending defaults, loan syndications, swap agreements, loan participations and securitized loans. Our consumer financial services litigators have experience in TCPA, TILA, ECOA, EFTA, FDCPA, FCRA, BSA and UDAAP claims in state and federal courts around the country. Our class action team has successfully defended against class action certifications on behalf of lending clients and moved to compel matters to arbitration when warranted. We have also successfully represented clients in a wide-range of sophisticated financial fraud matters, including Ponzi schemes, domestic and international check kiting and mortgage fraud.

Our bankruptcy litigation team regularly represents creditors and lending institutions to maximize recovery in bankruptcy and defend against complex fraudulent transfer litigation. Our attorneys have served as counsel in thousands of contested adversary proceedings in bankruptcy courts around the country and have handled pre- and post-petition transfer litigation, as well as automatic stay violations and dischargeability matters.

Experience

Bank Regulatory & Enforcement Litigation

Our regulatory litigation team has represented clients and bank officers and directors against claims brought by state regulatory agencies and the FDIC, OCC and CFPB around the country. 

  • Obtained a preliminary injunction against the CFPB enjoining the CFPB’s enforcement of a regulation that threatened to shut down a line of the financial institution’s business. See First Premier Bank v. U.S. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, 2011 WL 4458785 (D.S.D. 2011).
  • Successfully resolved claims ranging from $9 million to $127 million asserted by FDIC against bank officers and directors in the wake of nationwide bank failures in United States District Court in Minnesota, Kansas, California and Illinois. 
  • Secured a dismissal of claims involving an FDIC asset purchase agreement for a national bank facing potential exposure of $7,000,000. Midcities Metropolitan District No. 1 v. U.S. Bank, 44 F. Supp. 3d 1062 (D. Colo. 2014).
  • Defended a payment processor against claims brought by CFPB. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau v. Universal Debt & Payment Solutions (N.D. Ga. 2015).
  • Obtained dismissal of a $32.7 million False Claims Act case defending former officers and directors of an Illinois bank. United States ex rel. Conner v. Veluchamy, 2014 WL 51398 (N.D. Ill. Jan. 3, 2014).

Corporate Trust & Fiduciary Representation

Our corporate trust team regularly advises clients that serve as trustees under indentures and corporate trust agreements regarding fiduciary rights and duties. We are well-equipped to represent trustees and bondholders in trust transactions and have nationwide experience in handling payment defaults and forbearance agreements, amending and enforcing indentures, representing successor trustees and structuring finance transactions.   

  • Represented both an indenture trustee (on behalf of $425 million senior secured noteholders) and a DIP agent in connection with a Chapter 11 restructuring of Magnetation, LLC and its affiliates in the District of Minnesota.
  • Routinely represent indenture trustees in numerous trust instruction proceedings to obtain court confirmation and approval of their fiduciary obligations.
  • Breadth of experience in handling indenture trustees includes bond defaults involving nursing homes, hospitals and other healthcare facilities, charter schools, private colleges, casinos and mixed-use real estate developments.

Loan Workouts & Creditor Remedies

We regularly represent lenders and regional banks in multi-million dollar loan workouts, including real estate developments, assisted living facilities, life insurance trusts, agricultural credit facilities and the retail industry. We represent both lead and agent banks in workouts involving participated and syndicated loans, and have resolved SBA defaults regionally and nationally. 

  • Represented secured lenders in several bank stock foreclosure proceedings.
  • Represented lenders in more than ten large real estate development workouts, each in excess of $20 million.
  • Represented the lender in a $5 million asset based lending workout in the packaging industry.
  • Represented the lender in a $5 million check kiting matter in the mortgage lending industry.
  • Represented a regional bank in a $7 million assisted living facility workout.
  • Represented a national bank in a $20 million+ workout involving a real estate development and cash value life insurance trusts.
  • Represented national banks in several multi-million dollar actions involving the enforcement of interest rate swap agreements.
  • Represented both the first lien agent (under a $250 million prepetition bank facility) and DIP agent in connection with the prearranged Chapter 11 restructuring of Warren Resources Inc. and its subsidiaries in the Southern District of Texas.
  • Represented the second lien agent (under a $250 million prepetition bank facility) in connection with the prearranged Chapter 11 restructuring of Atlas Resource Partners, L.P. and its affiliates in the Southern District of New York.
  • Represented national banks in multi-million dollar agriculture workouts and Chapter 12 bankruptcy cases venued in Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, Wisconsin and Iowa.

Complex Commercial Lending Litigation

When workouts become unattainable, our litigation team is prepared to take our financial services clients to judgment and recovery and has extensive experience in complex commercial litigation. We have successfully enforced the terms of SBA and USDA and personal and commercial guaranties on behalf of our clients and have represented national banks in several multi-million dollar actions involving the enforcement of interest rate swap agreements. 

  • On behalf of a number of Chase Manhattan Bank entities, obtained summary judgment dismissing third-party claims by a portfolio manager arising out of a swap agreement with a trust holding securitized commercial loans.
  • Prosecuted claims by a bank over its ownership interest in a $40 million New Markets Tax Credit portfolio, resulting in the transfer of all ownership interests to the bank.
  • Represented two different financial institutions in litigation that consolidated claims arising out of the bankruptcy of Residential Financial Corporation against more than 80 banks alleging a form of strict liability for losses suffered by owners of mortgage securities that included loans purchased from defendant banks.
  • Successfully compelled arbitration and resolved putative class actions brought against a financial institution in connection with payment processing. See Gunson v. BMO Harris Bank, N.A., 43 F. Supp. 3d 1396 (S.D. Fla. 2014); Riley v. BMO Harris Bank, N.A., 61 F. Supp. 3d 92 (D.D.C. 2014); Graham v. BMO Harris Bank, N.A., 2014 WL 4090548 (D. Conn. July 16, 2014); Elder v. BMO Harris Bank, N.A., 2014 WL 1429334 (D. Md. Apr. 11, 2014).
  • Successfully recovered more than $200 million in commercial real estate through judicial and non-judicial foreclosure, including successfully prosecuting the largest public-trustee foreclosure in the history of Garfield County, Colorado.
  • Represented a bank and former officers and directors in civil claims arising out of a $35 million participated loan transaction.
  • Successfully obtained temporary injunctive relief and defeated all lender liability claims on behalf of a national bank to recover $4 million fraud and contract claims.
  • On behalf of national bank, successfully enforced the terms of interest rate swap agreements and obtained a $1.2 million judgment and dismissal of all lender liability claims.
  • Secured dismissal of tort claims against a commercial loan broker over allegations that a failed loan application caused a would-be borrower substantial penalties.

Consumer Lending and Lender Liability Defense

Our consumer litigation experience includes numerous lawsuits in which we have entirely defeated multi-million dollar lender liability claims through obtaining either dismissals or summary judgment. When borrowers have commenced claims against our clients without cause, we have successfully obtained awards of fees, costs and sanctions required to defend against frivolous lawsuits. 

  • Defeated all lender liability claims and obtained a $20 million judgment in favor of a secured creditor.
  • Defended a bank through trial and appeal against a $7 million dollar lender liability claim. The trial resulted in the dismissal of all claims against the bank and a verdict in the bank’s favor of more than $9 million, with judgment upheld on appeal. 
  • Defended a bank through pre-trial proceedings against a $10 million lender liability claim, with all claims resolving shortly before trial.
  • Obtained dismissal on motions practice of a $5 million dollar lender liability claim made by a guarantor involving a failed real estate development project.
  • Successfully defeated TCPA claims brought against a financial institution in AAA arbitration hearing, resulting in a complete defense award.
  • Successfully obtained dismissal of claims on behalf of financial institutions in numerous federal court matters challenging MERS system and foreclosure actions. Welk v. GMAC Mortg., LLC, 850 F. Supp. 2d 976 (D. Minn. 2012); Bland v. Deutsche Bank Nat. Trust Co., 2013 WL 4519423 (D. Minn. Aug. 26, 2013); Johnson v. Deutsche Bank Nat. Trust Co., 2012 WL 2119258 (D. Minn. June 11, 2012); Frillman v. Deutsche Bank Nat. Trust Co., 2013 WL 5406673 (D. Minn. Sept. 25, 2013); Broten v. IndyMac Mortgage Servs., 14-cv-5040 (D. Minn. 2015).

Fraud Litigation

Our complex fraud litigation experience is broad both in and out of bankruptcy court. We have recovered multi-million dollar verdicts on behalf of our clients in the mortgage lending industry against borrowers arising out of check kiting and borrower fraud. 

  • Represented a participated group of defendant banks in the $500 million Pearlman Ponzi scheme litigation and a related bankruptcy case.
  • Represented a national bank in a multi-million dollar fraud litigation claim involving a USDA guaranty.
  • Won a judgment in excess of $1 million following federal trial against borrowers for mortgage fraud, and successfully defended the result in a subsequent appeal.
  • Represented a bank client in a multi-faceted matter involving international check and wire fraud.

Receiverships

Our receivership team knows how to maximize the protections available to creditors and interested parties utilizing court-appointed receivers. We advise creditors and initiate receiverships when advantageous to our clients and represent court-appointed receivers in contested litigation matters around the country. Our team has significant experience with Minnesota's specialized receivership statute.

  • Obtained injunctive relief and emergency appointment of a receiver to preserve collateral.
  • Represent a court-appointed receiver to recover receivership assets in multiple foreign jurisdictions around the country.   
  • Enforced a secured creditor’s lien in real estate in Arizona in receivership proceedings.
  • Represented the federal equity receiver appointed by the United States District Court for the District of Minnesota in connection with the Thomas Petters Ponzi scheme.
  • Conducted “free and clear” sales of receivership assets.
  • Designed and implemented claim submission and distribution procedures.
  • Significant experience prosecuting claims to recover fraudulently transferred assets.
  • Obtained injunctive relief and emergency appointment of receiver to preserve collateral.
  • Represent court-appointed receiver to recover receivership assets in multiple foreign jurisdictions around the country.
  • Experience with white-collar crime cases including asset recovery and handling complex issues relating to criminal and civil forfeiture of assets.

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