According to the HUD-1, the title insurance policy was to be issued by LSI. In no event shall the authority of a state-chartered bank to sell title insurance exceed the authority of a nationally chartered bank to do so. Neither actually performed, or caused to be performed, a need money now Rhode Island title examination that is legal or recognized under West Virginia law. Yet, the Plaintiffs were charged for such legal services. Quicken Loans is a large corporation sophisticated in matters pertaining to leal estate and mortgage loans. Quicken Loans does business in West Virginia and is clearly familiar with the laws of this State with regard to mortgage loans and loan closings. Quicken Loans is not only aware of its need money now Rhode Island employees engaging in this "distasteful" conduct, but it provides financial incentives for them to do so. Throughout this litigation, Quicken Loans has refused to concede that it has engaged in any improper or illegal conduct despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary. Jefferson for failing to read the 81 pages of loan closing documents. Quicken Loans contends that the Plaintiffs failed to execute the Truth-in- Lending Statement at die closing and that said failure was partially the fault of a "great deal of inattention from Plaintiffs.
Instead, with reckless indifference, Quicken Loans hired LSI to perform an "abstract or title search" and to issue title insurance in direct violation of West Virginia statute.
It is fortuitous for LSI that it is not a party to this litigation. Both Quicken and LSI are fortunate that this is not a class action litigation. This is an enormous potential profit, which Quicken Loans could have reaped had the Plaintiffs not instituted this litigation. Plaintiffs argue that this Court is well justified in utilizing a ratio as high as 9-1 in its consideration and review of any punitive damage award in this matter. However, when the defendant has acted with actual evil intention, much higher ratios are not per se unconstitutional.
The first concerns a defendant who has engaged in conduct that can be classified as "extreme negligence or wanton disregard but with no actual intention to cause harm. Therefore, in performing a "ratio" analysis, this Court concludes that Quicken Loans should be judged by the former standard of conduct. Therefore, this Court concludes that it should be guided by the ratio set forth in TXO of an outer limit of roughly 5 to 1 e. The law is clear that the wealth of a defendant cannot justify an otherwise unconstitutional punitive damages award.
This Court does not intend to "enhance" the punitive damages award. The following paragraph of this Order will be redacted from the original Order filed with the clerk. The costs of the litigation The total cost of this litigation to the Plaintiffs is set forth below and is substantial. It is obvious that Plaintiffs could not have afforded to pursue this matter if they were 11 www. This matter was, and continues to be, aggressively defended by Quicken Loans utilizing highly competent, intelligent and skilled counsel. Accordingly, this mitigating factor is irrelevant c. Other civil actions against Quicken Loans based on the same conduct The parties agree that Quicken Loans has not had other civil actions against it based on the same conduct. The appropriateness of punitive damages to encourage settlement Quicken Loans argues that this Court must not make a punitive damage award that goes beyond that which is necessary to encourage "fair and reasonable" settlements where a "clear wrong" has been committed.
Quicken Loans argues that the complexity of this case mitigates against a punitive damage award. Quicken Loans proceeded in this matter, at its own peril, when others reached compromises, with full knowledge of the consequences should it not prevail. Quicken Alabama no faxing loans Loans did not prevail and must now face the music. This Court concludes mat under the full Games analysis, as directed by the Supreme Court in Quicken Loans, a puniti ve damages award is just, proper and fundamentally fair based upon the all of the facts and evidence in this matter. The Supreme Court did not direct this Court as to how said offset was to be made. Plaintiffs contend that Quicken Loans did not raise the issue of whether it was entitled to an offset for attorney fees and costs awarded in this matter and that, therefore, Quicken Loans has waived the issue.
Plaintiffs also assert that their fees and costs can be properly apportioned between the claims against Quicken Loans and the claims against the settling co-Defendants. The Supreme Court in Quicken Loans clearly recognized that an award of attorney fees and costs under fee-sWfting provisions, such as the WVCCPA, are "compensatory in nature. The public policy behind such fee-shifting provisions is to encourage private enforcement of statutes and to ensure effective access to the legal system.
The Supreme Court also noted that cases from other jurisdictions permitted attorney fees and costs awarded pursuant to a fee-shirting statute to be included as compensatory damages when considering the ratio of punitive damages to compensatory damages. Many of those cases affirmed the public policy behind fee-shifting provisions in statutes to enable plaintiffs to pursue legal actions where statutes have been violated and to ensure effective access to the legal system. While the Supreme Court held that attorney fees and costs are "compensatory in nature" and shall be used in considering the punitive damages to compensatory damages ratio in this matter, the Supreme Court did not address the issue of whether an award of attorney fees and costs under a fee- shifting statute, such as the WVCCPA, were fully compensatory damages subject to an offset for a prior settlement In Auwood v. To permit so would need money now Rhode Island need money now Rhode Island be contrary to the clearly stated legislative and public policy of enabling Plaintiffs to pursue legal actions were statutes have been violated and of ensuring effective access to the legal system and would have a chilling effect on said policy.