Banking Litigation

Anastasi Jellum has a number of attorneys that focus on disputes and litigation involving financial institutions. We represent community banks and credit unions, as well as state and national banks. Anastasi Jellum also represents lenders throughout the United States related to government guaranteed loans and collections through the Small Business Administration (SBA), the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), and other programs.

Anastasi Jellum’s attorneys are particularly attuned to the impact of legal issues on our clients’ business, both near and long term. Our skillsets, experience in litigation and appeals, effort and persistence, results in successful or maximized settlement outcomes for our clients.

There are times when litigation is inevitable and when that occurs, we implement the necessary recovery methods, including:

  • Actions seeking money judgment
  • Foreclosure
  • Receivership
  • Attachment
  • Repossession, replevin, and claim and delivery
  • Restraining orders
  • Post judgment collection

In all cases, we take a pragmatic approach and seek opportunities for resolution, which protects our clients’ interests. In the past, we have obtained a stipulation for dismissal from plaintiff’s counsel in a foreclosure defense case, without interposing an answer.

Anastasi Jellum attorneys have extensive experience in the regulatory, loan documentation, and enforcement process; we are not just litigators who happen to be handling a matter for a financial institution. We are uniquely suited to handle the litigation of cases involving claims and defenses faced by financial institutions today. The attorneys at Anastasi Jellum protect the interest of our clients in virtually every nuance of lending and collection including:

  • Commercial loan document enforcement
  • Default credit transactions
    • Loan workouts
    • Receivership
    • Foreclosure
    • Repossession
    • Bankruptcy
  • Creditors’ rights
    • Judgments, execution, fraudulent conveyance
    • Bankruptcy rights in bankruptcy chapters 7, 11, 12 & 13
    • Collections
    • Court appointed entity and property receiverships
  • Lending Operations
    • Contracts
    • Mortgage product
    • Insurance coverage
    • Truth-in-Lending
    • Privacy issues
    • Federal Reserve Act Sections 23A and 23B
    • Lending limits, state and federal
  • State and federal regulatory issues
  • Uniform Commercial Code (UCC)
  • Lender liability claims
  • Defense of claims and counterclaims brought by borrowers and third parties
  • Contract disputes
  • Fiduciary duty
  • Negligence

We have initiated and defended a number of highly contentious cases, a sampling of which is summarized in Representative Cases. We have defended our clients on numerous direct actions and counterclaims asserting a wide variety of claims, including a number of attempts by mortgagors to evade or stall foreclosures, as well as those arising under:

  • Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA)
  • Truth in Lending Act (TILA)
  • Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA)
  • Minnesota’s Equity Stripping laws

Regulatory Issues.

Anastasi Jellum attorneys represent the interests of banks threatened with civil action before agencies including:

We are experienced in regulatory matters that can impact financial institutions, such as:

  • Regulation O; insider transactions
  • Regulation CC
  • Regulation E
  • RESPA
  • Electronic Funds Transfers and Internet Banking
  • NACHA
  • Uniform Commercial Code

Banking Litigation

Anastasi Jellum’s Litigation Team’s Notable Victories

Loan Defaults.

We commenced litigation on behalf of a Minnesota community bank against an LLC and several personal guarantors (“guarantors”), upon the default on a $1.5 million loan. The guarantors counterclaimed for various claims, including fraud in the inducement and failure of conditions precedent. The guarantors also asserted third party claims against the originating bank and the loan officer, personally. The claims were tried to a jury, resulting in a verdict dismissing the guarantors’ claims and defenses and awarding the bank judgment for the amount due on its loan, plus its attorneys’ fees and costs. The Minnesota Court of Appeals affirmed the jury verdict and concluded that the bank’s motion for Summary Judgment should have been granted, as a matter of law. The guarantors’ petition for review by the Minnesota Supreme Court was denied. Minnesota Court of Appeals File Nos. A11–1202, A11–1229.

We commenced litigation on behalf of a Minnesota community bank against an individual and entities he owned/controlled (collectively, “defendant”), on several loans totaling in excess of $5 million. The bank foreclosed on its mortgages by advertisement and, in separate actions, pursued the appointment of a receiver and entry of a deficiency judgment against defendant. Defendant counterclaimed, asserting that an oral agreement with a former bank vice president, which was corroborated by the former vice president, allowed defendant to utilize funds in a collateral account held by the bank to cure events of default on the loans. The bank moved for Summary Judgment and the court concluded that the terms of the loan documents and Minnesota Statutes § 513.33 barred the alleged oral agreement/modification of the loan documents and the Court entered judgment for the bank for the deficiency. Minnesota Court of Appeals File No. A10-824.

Breach of Contract.

An individual and two entities (collectively “plaintiffs”), commenced litigation against a Minnesota community bank, a holding company and a third party, asserting a claim for damages in the amount of $20,000,000. Plaintiffs were a former borrower and guarantor who had entered into and breached a forbearance agreement with the bank. The bank asserted its rights and was paid in full. Subsequently, plaintiffs sued the bank and the holding company. The bank asserted its defenses under the forbearance agreement and brought a motion for Summary Judgment against plaintiffs, seeking an award of the bank’s attorneys’ fees. The Court granted the bank’s motion and awarded the bank $16,707.40, in attorneys’ fees and costs, which our office subsequently collected through a garnishment. Plaintiffs subsequently appealed and the Minnesota Court of Appeals affirmed the District Court’s decision. The bank was further awarded its attorneys’ fees in the amount of $17,841.50, by the Minnesota Court of Appeals. Minnesota Court of Appeals File Nos. A08-0463, A08-0700.

We represented a Minnesota community bank in litigation against defendants alleging breach of a guaranty agreement, and to set aside fraudulent conveyances. Defendants counterclaimed, alleging tortious interference with contract, and other claims. The bank was granted Summary Judgment, awarding the bank a judgment for $2.8 million, and dismissed all counterclaims. A significant amount was collected by settlement of the fraudulent transfer claims.

Foreclosure.

Subsequent to a mortgage foreclosure, plaintiffs brought an action in Federal Court against a Minnesota community bank and others to void a pending eviction, the bank’s foreclosure, and the bank’s mortgage, as well as for damages of $500,000. The bank denied the claims and moved to dismiss the Complaint. Plaintiffs subsequently agreed to dismiss any and all claims against the bank, with prejudice, with no payment or other consideration provided to plaintiffs by the bank.

Plaintiffs sued a Minnesota community bank alleging that the bank breached the terms of a forbearance agreement entered into with plaintiffs. The bank counterclaimed for foreclosure of a number of mortgages and for a deficiency judgment against the guarantor. The matter was tried to a jury in Ramsey County and, subsequent to plaintiffs’ resting, the bank moved for and was granted a directed verdict by the Court, dismissing the plaintiffs’ claims and granting the bank judgment on its counterclaims.

Plaintiffs sued a federal credit union alleging that the credit union breached the terms of a forbearance agreement and its amendments entered into with plaintiffs. Plaintiffs sought the release of collateral and forgiveness of over $3,000,000, remaining owed to the lender. The credit union counterclaimed for confirmation of its foreclosure upon its UCC security interest in stock pledged by a guarantor and for a deficiency judgment against the guarantor. The parties brought cross-motions for Summary Judgment and the Court granted the credit union’s motion in its entirety. Plaintiffs subsequently appealed and the Minnesota Court of Appeals affirmed the decision of the District Court, but for one issue. Plaintiffs’ petition for review by the Minnesota Supreme Court was denied. Minnesota Court of Appeals File Nos. A10–857, A10–1583.

Real Estate.

We represented a community bank in litigation against a national title insurance company for a declaratory judgment to enforce a title insurance claim. Case was settled by the title insurance company agreeing to pay the entire claim.

Appellate Decisions

Community First Bank v. First United Funding, 2012 WL 2874048 (Minn. App. July 16, 2012)

Johnson v. US Federal Credit Union, 2011 WL 2437266 (Minn. App. June 20, 2011)

Summit Community Bank v. WHG MN, LLC, 2012 WL 1658872 (Minn.App. May 14, 2012)

Highland Bank v. Dyab, 2011 WL 781169 (Minn.App. March 8, 2011)

Donaldson v. Drake Bank, 2009 WL 437964 (Minn.App. Feb. 24, 2009)

US Federal Credit Union v. Avidigm Capital Group, Inc., 2008 WL 2796742 (Minn.App. July 22, 2008)

In re ACRO Business Finance Corp., 357 B.R. 785 (Bankr. D. Minn. 2006)