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Quicken Loans, DOJ Take First Step in Legal Battle

The battle between Quicken Loans and the U.S. Department of Justice (DoJ) began on Monday when attorneys for the two parties appeared before District Judge Mark A. Goldsmith in a Detroit courtroom.

The DoJ filed suit against Quicken, the second-largest retail mortgage lender in the country, back in April 2015, alleging FHA lending violations—specifically, that Quicken inflated appraisals, approved borrowers with poor credit and insufficient income, gave speed bonuses to underwriters, and failed to disclose loan problems that cost million in government dollars.

The suit came on the back of Quicken’s own filing, which claimed the DOJ and the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) tried to strong-arm the lender into paying steep fees and admitting falsities.

A federal judge dismissed the case in January 2016, but Quicken’s executives vowed to continue the fight.

“This temporary procedural setback does not deter Quicken Loans from exposing the truth about the DOJ’s egregious attempts to coerce unjust ‘settlements’ from its victims, including Quicken Loans, but using the guise of the heavy hand and power of the federal government in doing so,” Quicken’s CEO Bill Emerson said in a press release.

Yesterday, marked the first step in what could very likely be a long and grueling legal process. The two parties met before Judge Goldsmith to address Quicken’s request for dismissal. If dismissal is not granted, both sides will discuss subsequent court dates leading up to the official trial on April 11, 2019.

If Goldsmith does not dismiss the DOJ’s charge, don’t count on any settlements. Dan Gilbert, Quicken Chairman and Founder, told The Detroit News the lender isn’t backing down.

“The baseless and groundless government lawsuit has no merit,” Gilbert said. “There is nothing in the DOJ’s trumped-up, distorted claims worthy of prompting or causing Quicken Loans to change any of our underwriting practices.”


About Author: Aly J. Yale

Aly J. Yale is a freelance writer and editor based in Fort Worth, Texas. She has worked for various newspapers, magazines, and publications across the nation, including The Dallas Morning News and Addison Magazine. She has also worked with both the Five Star Institute and REO Red Book, as well as various other mortgage industry clients on content strategy, blogging, marketing, and more.

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