Case: United States v. Countrywide Financial Corporation

2:11-cv-10540 | U.S. District Court for the Central District of California

Filed Date: Dec. 21, 2011

Closed Date: Dec. 30, 2016

Clearinghouse coding complete

Case Summary

This case, brought by the United States in December 2011 against Countrywide Financial Corporation, resulted in the largest residential fair lending settlement in U.S. history. $335 million was paid to compensate more than 200,000 African-American and Hispanic borrowers who were allegedly charged higher fees and interest rates because of their race or national origin. The United States also claimed that Countrywide and its subsidiaries ("the Countrywide Defendants") steered thousands of African…

This case, brought by the United States in December 2011 against Countrywide Financial Corporation, resulted in the largest residential fair lending settlement in U.S. history. $335 million was paid to compensate more than 200,000 African-American and Hispanic borrowers who were allegedly charged higher fees and interest rates because of their race or national origin. The United States also claimed that Countrywide and its subsidiaries ("the Countrywide Defendants") steered thousands of African-American and Hispanic borrowers into subprime mortgages when non-Hispanic white borrowers with similar credit profiles received prime loans.

Prior to entry of the Consent Decree, the Countrywide defendants had stopped originating residential loans. In addition to the monetary relief, the consent decree contained remedial provisions to become effective in the event the Countywide defendants ever reentered this business. These included implementation of policies and practices to prevent and detect potential fair lending violations not only on the basis of race or national origin, but also on the basis of marital status. Regarding monetary relief, the court required that the defendants deposit $335 million to compensate allegedly aggrieved persons for monetary and other damages they may have suffered as a result of the defendants' alleged violations of the FHA and the ECOA. Each party bore its own costs and attorneys' fees.

The Consent Decree had a four-year term, beginning December 21, 2011.

On January 25, 2016, the Court (Philip S. Gutierrez) entered an amended Consent Decree which extended provisions of the settlement to December 30, 2016. The amended decree required the defendants to present a proposal to the court for the distribution of all money remaining in the Settlement Fund by October 14, 2016.

On April 5, 2016, the court granted am April 4 disbursement order, which granted, among sums to other organizations: (a) The National Urban League $1,000,000.00; (b) National Council of La Raza $1,500,000.00; (c) Habitat for Humanity $1,000,000.00; (d) d. Self−Help Ventures Fund $1,500,000.00; (e) Atlanta Neighborhood Development Partnership $1,000,000; (f) Opportunity Resource Fund $1,000,000.00; (g) Neighborhood Housing Services of Chicago $1,500,000.00; (h) NHS of Los Angeles County $2,000,000.00.

On October 27, 2016, the court approved the defendant's second disbursement plan.

The was no further docket activity after this order and the case is now closed.

Summary Authors

Gregory Pitt (7/16/2012)

Asma Husain (2/14/2016)

Raul Noguera-McElroy (4/19/2019)

People

For PACER's information on parties and their attorneys, see: https://www.courtlistener.com/docket/4147962/parties/united-states-v-countrywide-financial-corporation/


Judge(s)

Gutierrez, Philip S. (California)

Wistrich, Andrew J. (California)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Dougherty , Burtis M. (District of Columbia)

Holder, Eric H. Jr. (District of Columbia)

Mosteller, Daniel P. (District of Columbia)

Murphy, Donna M. (District of Columbia)

O'Beirne, Patricia (District of Columbia)

Rosenbaum, Steven H. (District of Columbia)

Sneed, Sekret T (California)

Weidman, Leon W. (California)

Judge(s)

Gutierrez, Philip S. (California)

Wistrich, Andrew J. (California)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Dougherty , Burtis M. (District of Columbia)

Holder, Eric H. Jr. (District of Columbia)

Mosteller, Daniel P. (District of Columbia)

Murphy, Donna M. (District of Columbia)

O'Beirne, Patricia (District of Columbia)

Rosenbaum, Steven H. (District of Columbia)

Sneed, Sekret T (California)

Weidman, Leon W. (California)

Attorneys(s) for Defendant

Asfour, Kevin S. (California)

Brody, Melanie (District of Columbia)

Goldstein, Seth M. (California)

Other Attorney(s)

Perez, Thomas E. (District of Columbia)

Documents in the Clearinghouse

Document

Docket

Oct. 27, 2016 Docket
1

Complaint

United States of America v. Countrywide Financial Corporation

Dec. 21, 2011 Complaint

Press Release

United States of America v. Countrywide Financial Corporation

No Court

Dec. 21, 2011 Press Release
4

Consent Decree

United States of America v. Counrtywide Financial Corporation

2011 U.S.Dist.LEXIS 150263

Dec. 28, 2011 Settlement Agreement
20

Amended Consent Order

Jan. 25, 2016 Order/Opinion

Docket

See docket on RECAP: https://www.courtlistener.com/docket/4147962/united-states-v-countrywide-financial-corporation/

Last updated May 12, 2022

ECF Number Description Date Link
1

COMPLAINT against defendants Countrywide Bank, Countrywide Financial Corporation, Countrywide Home Loans Inc. Case assigned to Judge Philip S. Gutierrez for all further proceedings. Discovery referred to Magistrate Judge Andrew J Wistrich; (Filing fee $ 350 NOT REQUIRED); Jury Demanded; filed by plaintiff United States of America.(esa)[LODGED PROPOSED CONSENT ORDER] Modified on 12/27/2011 (esa). (mg). (Entered: 12/27/2011)

Dec. 21, 2011 RECAP
2

NOTICE TO PARTIES OF ADR PROGRAM filed.(esa) (Entered: 12/27/2011)

Dec. 21, 2011 RECAP
3

STANDING ORDER regarding Newly Assigned Case: This action has been assigned to the calendar of Judge Philip S. Gutierrez. The responsibility for the progress of litigation in the Federal Courts falls not only upon the attorneys in the action, but upon the Court as well. "To secure the just, speedy, and inexpensive determination of every action," Fed. R. Civ. P. 1, all counsel are hereby ordered to familiarize themselves with the Fed. R. Civ. P., particularly Fed. R. Civ. P. 16, 26, the Local Rules of the Central District of California, this Court's Order for Jury Trial, and this Court's Order for Court Trial (See document for further details) by Judge Philip S. Gutierrez. (ir) (Entered: 12/27/2011)

Dec. 22, 2011 RECAP
4

CONSENT ORDER by Judge Philip S. Gutierrez: In the event that either Countrywide Defendant reenters the business of originating residential loans, Defendants shall notify the United States at the earlier of sixty (60) days before it intends to reenter this line of business or the time that they notify their federal regulators of either Countrywide Defendant's intent to reenter this line of business. Countrywide Defendants shall also implement policies, practices and monitoring designed to prevent and detect potential fair lending violations, and shall provide the United States with the details of these policies, practices, and monitoring, forty-five (45) days prior to implementing such reentry. The United States shall have thirty (30) days to review and agree or object to the proposed policies. Within thirty (30) days of the effective date of this Order, Defendants shall cause to be deposited in an interest-bearing escrow account the total sum of three hundred and thirty-five million dollars ($335 million) to compensate allegedly aggrieved persons for monetary and other damages they may have suffered as a result of Defendants' alleged violations of the FHA and the ECOA ("Settlement Fund"). Defendants shall provide written verification of the deposit to the United States, along with the account number and identification of the depository institution, within five days of the depositing of the funds described above. Any interest that accrues shall become part of the Settlement Fund and be utilized and disposed of as set forth herein. Within sixty (60) days of entry of this Order Defendants also shall enter into a contract retaining a Settlement Administrator ("Administrator"), subject to approval by the United States, to conduct the activities set forth in the following paragraphs. The United States shall identify aggrieved persons with respect to its race and national origin discrimination claims within ninety (90) days of receipt of all the information and data it requested. The Order shall expire in four (4) years or, if earlier, on the satisfaction of the conditions set forth in Paragraph 15 of this Order. Each party to this Order shall bear its own costs and attorneys' fees associated with this litigation. The Court shall retain jurisdiction for the duration of this Order to enforce the terms of the Order, after which time the case shall be dismissed with prejudice. (see document for further details) (MD JS-6. Case Terminated) (bm) (Entered: 01/03/2012)

Dec. 28, 2011 RECAP
5

NOTICE OF DISCREPANCY AND ORDER by Judge Philip S. Gutierrez, ORDERING Motion to Access The Electronic Case Filing (ECF) System; Motion To File Brief Amicus Curiae submitted by William Michael Cunningham received on 1/3/12 is not to be filed but instead rejected. Denial based on: Other: Case closed; no further filings are permitted except a motion to reconsider judgment; PACER is available to all filers for viewing and printing only; ECF is designated only for attorneys. See attached documentation. (bm) (Entered: 01/04/2012)

Jan. 3, 2012 PACER
6

NOTICE OF DISCREPANCY AND ORDER: by Judge Philip S. Gutierrez, ORDERING Letter to Chief Judge of th Housing and Civil Enforcement Section received on 1/3/12 is not to be filed but instead rejected. Denial based on: Other: Case is closed; no futher filings are permitted. (bm) (Entered: 01/06/2012)

Jan. 5, 2012 PACER
8

NOTICE OF DISCREPANCY AND ORDER: by Judge Philip S. Gutierrez, ORDERING Petitioners' brief to justify why they should be included in the global mortgage settlement between USA and Bank of America submitted by Petitioners David Kissi and Edith Truvillion received on 4/19/2012 is not to be filed but instead rejected. Denial based on: Case closed. No further filings are permitted. (Attachments: # 1 Petitioners' Brief Part 2 of 3, # 2 Petitioner's Brief Part 3 of 3) (lw) (Entered: 04/23/2012)

1 Petitioners' Brief Part 2 of 3

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2 Petitioner's Brief Part 3 of 3

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April 20, 2012 PACER
9

NOTICE OF MOTION AND MOTION to Intervene ( Motion set for hearing on 1/13/2014 at 01:30 PM before Judge Philip S. Gutierrez.), MOTION to Enforce Consent Order filed by intervening plaintiffs Javier Hernandez, Soledad Corona, christina corona, Rigoberto Razo, Cathelene Hughes, Richard Lueras, Mary Lueras, Marvin Baldwin. (Attachments: # 1 Declaration, # 2 Exhibit 1, # 3 Exhibit 2, # 4 Exhibit 3, # 5 Exhibit 4, # 6 Exhibit 5, # 7 Exhibit 6, # 8 Exhibit 7, # 9 Exhibit 8)(Attorney Lenore L Albert added to party Javier Hernandez(pty:bkmov), Attorney Lenore L Albert added to party Soledad Corona(pty:bkmov), Attorney Lenore L Albert added to party christina corona(pty:bkmov), Attorney Lenore L Albert added to party Rigoberto Razo(pty:bkmov), Attorney Lenore L Albert added to party Cathelene Hughes(pty:bkmov), Attorney Lenore L Albert added to party Richard Lueras(pty:bkmov), Attorney Lenore L Albert added to party Mary Lueras(pty:bkmov), Attorney Lenore L Albert added to party Marvin Baldwin(pty:bkmov))(Albert, Lenore) (Entered: 11/30/2013)

1 Declaration

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2 Exhibit 1

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3 Exhibit 2

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4 Exhibit 3

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5 Exhibit 4

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6 Exhibit 5

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7 Exhibit 6

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8 Exhibit 7

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9 Exhibit 8

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Nov. 30, 2013 PACER
10

Proposed Order filed by Movants Marvin Baldwin, Soledad Corona, Javier Hernandez, Cathelene Hughes, Mary Lueras, Richard Lueras, Rigoberto Razo, christina corona re: MOTION to Intervene MOTION to Enforce Consent Order 9 (Albert, Lenore) (Entered: 11/30/2013)

Nov. 30, 2013 PACER
11

ORDER by Judge Philip S. Gutierrez: The Court hereby ORDERS the documents listed below be STRICKEN for failure to comply with the Court's Local Rules, General Orders, and/or Case Management Order: The 01/13/14 hearing date was closed on 11/25/13: 10 MOTION to Intervene; MOTION to Enforce Consent Order 9 (wm) (Entered: 12/04/2013)

Dec. 4, 2013 PACER
12

NOTICE OF MOTION AND MOTION to Reopen Case, MOTION to Enforce Judgment filed by intervening plaintiff Marvin Baldwin, Soledad Corona, Javier Hernandez, Cathelene Hughes, Mary Lueras, Richard Lueras, Rigoberto Razo, christina corona. Motion set for hearing on 2/24/2014 at 01:30 PM before Judge Philip S. Gutierrez. (Attachments: # 1 Proposed Order, # 2 Declaration, # 3 Exhibit, # 4 Exhibit, # 5 Exhibit, # 6 Exhibit, # 7 Exhibit, # 8 Exhibit, # 9 Exhibit, # 10 Exhibit)(Albert, Lenore) (Entered: 12/11/2013)

1 Proposed Order

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2 Declaration

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3 Exhibit

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4 Exhibit

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Dec. 11, 2013 PACER
13

NOTICE OF ERRATA filed by Movants Marvin Baldwin, Soledad Corona, Javier Hernandez, Cathelene Hughes, Mary Lueras, Richard Lueras, Rigoberto Razo, christina corona. correcting MOTION to Reopen Case MOTION to Enforce Judgment 12 (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit)(Albert, Lenore) (Entered: 12/11/2013)

1 Exhibit

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Dec. 11, 2013 PACER
20

AMENDED CONSENT ORDER by Judge Philip S. Gutierrez (see document for further details). Related to: NOTICE OF MOTION AND MOTION to Reopen Case to Extend Consent Order 18 . (bm)

Jan. 25, 2016 RECAP
14

Opposition Opposition re: MOTION to Reopen Case MOTION to Enforce Judgment 12 filed by Plaintiff United States of America. (O'Beirne, Patricia) (Entered: 02/03/2014)

Feb. 3, 2014
15

Opposition re: MOTION to Intervene MOTION to Enforce Consent Order 9 filed by Defendants Countrywide Bank, Countrywide Financial Corporation, Countrywide Home Loans Inc. (Attorney Seth M Goldstein added to party Countrywide Bank(pty:dft), Attorney Seth M Goldstein added to party Countrywide Financial Corporation(pty:dft), Attorney Seth M Goldstein added to party Countrywide Home Loans Inc(pty:dft))(Goldstein, Seth) (Entered: 02/03/2014)

Feb. 3, 2014
16

REPLY in support of MOTION to Reopen Case MOTION to Enforce Judgment 12 filed by Movants Marvin Baldwin, Soledad Corona, Javier Hernandez, Cathelene Hughes, Mary Lueras, Richard Lueras, Rigoberto Razo, christina corona. (Albert, Lenore) (Entered: 02/11/2014)

Feb. 11, 2014
17

MINUTES (IN CHAMBERS) ORDER DENYING the Motion to Intervene and Enforce the Settlement Agreement by Judge Philip S. Gutierrez denying 12 Motion to Reopen Case; denying 12 Motion to Enforce Judgment: Thus, for the foregoing reasons, the Court DENIES the motion to intervene and enforce the settlement agreement. (see document for further details) (bm) (Entered: 02/18/2014)

Feb. 18, 2014
18

NOTICE OF MOTION AND MOTION to Reopen Case to Extend Consent Order filed by plaintiff United States of America. Motion set for hearing on 2/22/2016 at 01:30 PM before Judge Philip S. Gutierrez. (Attachments: # 1 Proposed Order) (O'Beirne, Patricia) (Entered: 12/23/2015)

Dec. 23, 2015
21

Notice of Appearance or Withdrawal of Counsel: for attorney Steven A Ellis counsel for Defendants Countrywide Bank, Countrywide Financial Corporation, Countrywide Home Loans Inc. Adding Steven A. Ellis as counsel of record for Countrywide Financial Corporation, Countrywide Home Loans, Inc., and Countrywide Bank for the reason indicated in the G−123 Notice. Filed by Defendants Countrywide Financial Corporation, Countrywide Home Loans, Inc., and Countrywide Bank. (Attorney Steven A Ellis added to party Countrywide Bank(pty:dft), Attorney Steven A Ellis added to party Countrywide Financial Corporation(pty:dft), Attorney Steven A Ellis added to party Countrywide Home Loans Inc(pty:dft))(Ellis, Steven) (Entered: 03/24/2016)

March 24, 2016
22

STIPULATION for Extension of Time to File Motion for Entry of Disbursement Order filed by defendants Countrywide Bank, Countrywide Financial Corporation, Countrywide Home Loans Inc. (Attachments: # 1 Proposed Order)(Ellis, Steven) (Entered: 03/24/2016)

March 24, 2016
23

Notice of Appearance or Withdrawal of Counsel: for attorney Steven A Ellis counsel for Defendants Countrywide Bank, Countrywide Financial Corporation, Countrywide Home Loans Inc. Seth M. Goldstein is no longer counsel of record for the aforementioned party in this case for the reason indicated in the G−123 Notice. Filed by Defendants Countrywide Financial Corporation; Countrywide Home Loans, Inc.; and Countrywide Bank. (Ellis, Steven) (Entered: 03/29/2016)

March 29, 2016
24

ORDER GRANTING STIPULATION TO EXTEND TIME TO FILE MOTION FOR ENTRY OF DISBURSEMENT ORDER by Judge Philip S. Gutierrez, re Stipulation for Extension of Time to File 22 : Pursuant to the Stipulation submitted by Plaintiff UNITED STATES OF AMERICA and Defendants COUNTRYWIDE FINANCIAL CORPORATION; COUNTRYWIDE HOME LOANS, INC; COUNTRYWIDE BANK, and good cause appearing therefor, the Court HEREBY ORDERS as follows: The Defendants shall have up to and including April 1, 2016 to file the disbursement proposal required by Paragraph 1 of the Amended Consent Order. (bm) (Entered: 03/29/2016)

March 29, 2016
25

Joint NOTICE OF MOTION AND MOTION for Order for Entry of Disbursement Order filed by Defendants Countrywide Bank, Countrywide Financial Corporation, Countrywide Home Loans Inc. (Attachments: # 1 Proposed Order) (Ellis, Steven) (Entered: 04/01/2016)

April 1, 2016
26

DISBURSEMENT ORDER by Judge Philip S. Gutierrez granting 25 MOTION: Subject to Paragraph 3 of this Order, the Court hereby approves and authorizes the Defendants to make the following disbursements from the Settlement Fund: a. The National Urban League will receive $1,000,000.00 (one million dollars). b. National Council of La Raza will receive $1,500,000.00 (one and a half million dollars). c. Habitat for Humanity will receive $1,000,000.00 (one million dollars). d. Self−Help Ventures Fund will receive $1,500,000.00 (one and a half million dollars). e. Atlanta Neighborhood Development Partnership will receive $1,000,000.00 (one million dollars). f. Opportunity Resource Fund will receive $1,000,000.00 (one million dollars). g. Neighborhood Housing Services ("NHS") of Chicago will receive $1,500,000.00 (one and a half million dollars). h. NHS of Los Angeles County will receive $2,000,000.00 (two million dollars). i. NeighborWorks of Orange County will receive $500,000.00 (five hundred thousand dollars). j. NHS of Inland Empire will receive $500,000.00 (five hundred thousand dollars). k. NHS of New York City will receive $2,000,000.00 (two million dollars). l. NHS of South Florida will receive $1,500,000.00 (one and a half million dollars). (see document for further details) (bm) (Entered: 04/05/2016)

April 5, 2016
28

ORDER GRANTING STIPULATION TO EXTEND TIME TO FILE MOTION FOR ENTRY OF DISBURSEMENT ORDER 27 by Judge Philip S. Gutierrez. The Court HEREBY ORDERS as follows: The Defendants shall have up to and including October 28, 2016 to file the disbursement proposal required by Paragraph 4 of the Amended Consent Order. (lom) (Entered: 10/18/2016)

Oct. 17, 2016
29

Joint NOTICE OF MOTION AND MOTION for Order for Entry of Second Disbursement Order filed by Defendants Countrywide Bank, Countrywide Financial Corporation, Countrywide Home Loans Inc. (Attachments: # 1 Proposed Order) (Ellis, Steven) (Entered: 10/26/2016)

Oct. 26, 2016
30

SECOND DISBURSEMENT ORDER by Judge Philip S. Gutierrez granting 29 MOTION. (bm) (Entered: 10/28/2016)

Oct. 27, 2016

State / Territory: California

Case Type(s):

Fair Housing/Lending/Insurance

Key Dates

Filing Date: Dec. 21, 2011

Closing Date: Dec. 30, 2016

Case Ongoing: No

Plaintiffs

Plaintiff Description:

United States

Attorney Organizations:

U.S. Dept. of Justice Civil Rights Division

Public Interest Lawyer: Yes

Filed Pro Se: No

Class Action Sought: No

Class Action Outcome: Not sought

Defendants

Countrywide Financial Corporation, Private Entity/Person

Defendant Type(s):

Bank or credit provider

Case Details

Causes of Action:

Fair Housing Act/Fair Housing Amendments Act (FHAA), 42 U.S.C. §§ 3601 et seq.

Equal Credit Opportunity Act (ECOA), 15 U.S.C. § 1691

Availably Documents:

Trial Court Docket

Complaint (any)

Monetary Relief

Injunctive (or Injunctive-like) Relief

Outcome

Prevailing Party: Plaintiff

Nature of Relief:

Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement

Damages

Source of Relief:

Settlement

Form of Settlement:

Court Approved Settlement or Consent Decree

Amount Defendant Pays: 335 million

Order Duration: 2011 - 2017

Issues

General:

Housing

Predatory lending

Discrimination-area:

Lending

Discrimination-basis:

National origin discrimination

Race discrimination

Race:

Black

National Origin/Ethnicity:

Hispanic