Florida servicer hit with $11.5 million verdict.

Position:Briefing Book

A Galveston County, Texas, jury ruled against a Florida-based home loan company and ordered it to pay a Texas City woman $11.5 million after finding the company committed fraud in servicing her home-equity loan.

The jury verdict, handed down Nov. 29 in Texas' 212th District Court, found that Ocwen Federal Bank, West Palm Beach, Florida, engaged in unfair, unlawful and deceptive business practices in servicing the home-equity loan of Sealy Davis. In a 10-2 vote, the jury awarded Davis $10 million in punitive damages and $1.15 million in attorney's fees.

In February 2002, Davis took out a $31,000 home-equity loan on the Texas City residence where she had lived since 1942, with Ocwen acting as servicing agent on the loan. In 2003, Davis became ill and spent four days in the hospital, which forced her to miss one loan payment.

Davis maintains Ocwen told her...

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