United States District Court, N.D. California, San Jose Division
ORDER GRANTING DEFENDANT'S MOTION TO DISMISS;
DENYING PLAINTIFF'S MOTION FOR LEAVE TO FILE AN AMENDED
COMPLAINT Re: Dkt. Nos. 8, 21
J. DAVILA UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
Kanta and Ram Datt allege that Defendant Wells Fargo Bank
fraudulently, negligently, and willfully caused Plaintiffs to
pay excessive mortgage and interest payments. See
Complaint (“Compl.”), Dkt. 1. Plaintiffs,
however, have already litigated most of the claims arising
from the alleged overcharging in state court and are thus
foreclosed from relitigating them again. The claim not
previously litigated is time-barred. The Court finds this motion
suitable for consideration without oral argument.
See N.D. Cal. Civ. L.R. 7-1(b). Having considered
the Parties' papers, Defendant's motion to dismiss is
GRANTED with prejudice and Plaintiff's
motion for leave to file an amended complaint is
August 14, 2007, Plaintiffs took out a 30-year mortgage from
World Savings Bank. Compl. at 2. Wachovia acquired World
Savings Bank on December 31, 2008, then Wells Fargo acquired
Wachovia. Id.; see also Scott G. Alvarez,
The Acquisition of Wachovia Corporation by Wells Fargo
& Company, Fed. Res. (Sept. 1, 2010), https://www
testimony/alvarez20100901a.htm. In December 2009, Plaintiffs
and Defendant entered into a loan modification agreement,
which lowered the loan balance. Compl. at 3. The term of the
modified loan was forty years, with the payments during the
first five years set as “interest only.”
2012, Plaintiffs defaulted on their loan by failing to make
two payments. Id. Plaintiffs claim they made-up the
delinquent loan payments in 2013 and made all scheduled loan
payments until the loan was paid off in 2018. Id. In
January 2016, Plaintiffs attempted to refinance their loan.
Id. Defendant, however, advised them that because
they missed two payments in the past 24 months, they were
ineligible to refinance the loan. Id. Plaintiffs
and/or their agents then began “calling Defendant to
determine why Defendant had reported their payments as being
late, when all payments since the modification had been
timely to the best of Plaintiffs' knowledge.”
Id. Plaintiffs allegedly possessed documentation
showing the same. Id. Plaintiffs then attempted to
refinance their loan at another institution but were denied
due to the late payments on their credit report. Id.
allege that Defendant eventually “confirmed that there
was an accounting error made and Plaintiffs had not actually
missed or made any late payments, ” but still refused
to correct the problems so that Plaintiffs could complete the
refinance. Id. at 4. The 2016 error, thus, continued
to cause Plaintiffs to pay a higher interest rate and more
money per month because it prevented them from refinancing.
Id. It also caused Plaintiffs to be charged
“excess late penalties and fees.” Id.
Plaintiffs were able to refinance with Chase Bank. Defendants
accepted $750, 388.68 in April 2018 as full payment of the
loan. Id. Plaintiffs claim the $750, 388.68 was
inflated due to the allegedly incorrect accounting of
Plaintiff's loan. Id. at 5.
assert three claims in their first complaint: (1) fraud, (2)
violations of the FCRA, and (3) violations of the Home Owners
Loan Act (“HOLA”); they seek to recover punitive
damages based on the fraud claim. See generally
Compl. In their amended complaint, Plaintiffs continue to
seek punitive damages and assert four claims: (1) fraud, (2)
violations of the FCRA, (3) negligence, and (4) violations of
California Business & Professions Code § 17200
et seq. Dkt. 22, Ex. A.
March 6, 2019, Plaintiffs filed this action. See
Dkt. 1. About a month later, on April 4, 2019, Defendant
filed a Motion to Dismiss Plaintiffs' Complaint. Motion
to Dismiss (“Mot.”), Dkt. 8. On April 18, 2019,
Plaintiffs filed an opposition to this motion.
Opposition/Response re Motion to Dismiss
(“Opp.”), Dkt. 18. Defendant filed a reply. Reply
re Motion to Dismiss (“Reply”), Dkt. 19.
September 25, 2019, Plaintiffs filed a motion for leave to
file an amended complaint. Notice of Motion and Motion for
Leave to File First Amended Complaint (“Mot.
AC”), Dkt. 21, 22. Defendant filed an opposition to
this motion. Opposition re Motion for Leave to File
(“Opp. AC”), Dkt. 27. Plaintiffs did not submit a
reply. See N.D. Cal. Civ. L.R. 7-3(c) (requiring
reply be filed within 7 days after the opposition was due).
Plaintiffs initiated this action, they pursued an action in
state court. On December 29, 2017, the state court granted
Defendant's motion for summary adjudication on
Plaintiffs' fraud and Section 17200 claims and request
for punitive damages. Declaration of Alejandro E. Moreno
(“Moreno Decl.”), Dkt. 27, Ex. 3 at 2. On January
2, 2018, the state court granted Defendant's motion for
summary adjudication on Plaintiffs' negligence claim.
Id. Additionally, on January 26, 2018, the state
court dismissed Defendant, with prejudice and entered
judgment in Defendant's favor for all causes of action
raised in the complaint (fraud, negligence, violations of
Section 17200, and punitive damages). Id.