United States District Court, D. Massachusetts
CHRISTINE M. ADAMS, Plaintiff,
WELLS FARGO BANK, Defendant.
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER ON PLAINTIFF'S MOTION FOR
LEAVE TO AMEND AND DEFENDANT'S MOTION TO DISMISS
DENNIS SAYLOR, IV UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
an action concerning a possible foreclosure on the property
of plaintiff Christine M. Adams. The amended complaint
asserts two claims under Massachusetts law against the
mortgage holder, defendant Wells Fargo Bank.
facts appear as alleged in the proposed amended complaint,
except as otherwise indicated.
November 2007, Christine Adams entered into a
“pick-a-payment” mortgage loan with World Savings
Bank. In return, World Savings Bank was granted a mortgage on
Adams's property located at 136 Oak Hill Avenue in
Seekonk, Massachusetts. (Proposed Am. Compl. ¶ 4). Wells
Fargo Bank is the successor, through merger with Wachovia
Corporation, to World Savings Bank.
December 2010, Wells Fargo reached a settlement agreement
with a class of Wachovia borrowers who had entered into
“pick-a-payment” mortgages. See In re
Wachovia Corp. “Pick-a-Payment” Mortgage
Marketing & Sales Practices Litigation, No.
09-CV-2015-JF (N.D. Cal. Dec. 10, 2010). Adams was a class
member whose claim was covered by the settlement agreement.
(Proposed Am. Compl. ¶ 5). The settlement agreement
divided the class of borrowers itself into three
“classes” (A, B, and C), each of which was
entitled to a different type of recovery. (Opp. to Mot. for
Leave to File Am. Compl., Ex. A at 30-31). The settlement
agreement also provided that Wells Fargo would make
“loan modifications available” for Class B and
Class C borrowers between December 18, 2010, and June 30,
2013. (Opp. to Mot. for Leave to File Am. Compl., Ex. A at
point-the pleadings do not indicate when-Adams defaulted on
her loan. According to Wells Fargo, Adams has attempted to
delay foreclosure in a variety of ways, including the filing
of eight different bankruptcy petitions. (Mem. in Supp. at 2
to Adams, following her default, “in and around 2015,
” she sought a mortgage modification from Wells Fargo.
(Proposed Am. Compl. ¶ 9).
contends that on December 3, 2015, a Wells Fargo
representative e-mailed her and told her that a “short
sale offer of $375, 000” had been approved for her
property. (Proposed Am. Compl. ¶ 10; Response to Mot.
for More Definite Statement, Ex. A at 45). Later that month,
Wells Fargo sent her a letter titled “Mortgage
Modification Options” that, among other things, allowed
her to “check” a “box” to
“request a loan modification.” (Proposed Am.
Compl. ¶ 10; Response to Mot. for More Definite
Statement, Ex. A at 44).
contends that the two communications from Wells Fargo left
her “unclear” as to her obligations, but that she
tried to go forward with the short sale. (Proposed Am. Compl.
¶¶ 10, 11). A letter apparently sent to Adams on
December 3 stated that the short sale had to close before
January 15, 2016. (Proposed Am. Compl. ¶ 11; Response to
Mot. for More Definite Statement, Ex. A at 46-49). At some
point, Wells Fargo extended the approval date for the short
sale until March. (Proposed Am. Compl. ¶ 11). Adams
scheduled a closing for January 19, 2016, but (according to
her) it could not go forward because Wells Fargo had made a
typographical error in its letter granting the extension.
(Id.). Adams requested new approval letters from
Wells Fargo, but the bank allegedly “withheld”
sending them. (Id.).
April 2016, Wells Fargo sent Adams a letter indicating that
“the short sale process could not be completed”
because the deadline of March 2016 had passed. (Proposed Am.
Compl. ¶ 12). Adams alleges that as a consequence the
buyer of her property “lost funding and no short sale
could be completed.” (Id.).
alleges that on May 15, 2017, Wells Fargo advised her that
she had various options to “keep her home, ”
including “a loan modification, ” and various
options to “leave her home, ” including a short
sale or deed in lieu of foreclosure. (Proposed Am. Compl.
¶ 14; Response to Mot. for More Definite Statement, Ex.
A at 5-8).
apparently responded with a “request for mortgage
assistance.” (Proposed Am. Compl. ¶ 15; Response
to Mot. for More Definite Statement, Ex. A at 9). On June 22,
2017, Wells Fargo informed her that the bank would not be
“moving forward with a review of [her] mortgage for
assistance” in light of her “mortgage history, 
recent information you provided [to] us, and the current
circumstances surrounding your mortgage.” (Response to
Mot. for More Definite Statement, Ex. A at 9).
28, 2017, Adams received a notice from Wells Fargo “to
assist [her] in competing a short sale.” (Proposed Am.
Compl. ¶ 16).
21, 2017, Wells Fargo sent her another letter stating that
she should contact the bank “for short sale assistance
when you receive a purchase contract to sell your
home.” (Proposed Am. Compl. ¶ 17). It also stated
that she would need to sign a “purchase contract”
before the bank would “work with [her] to complete a
short sale again.” (Response to Mot. for More Definite
Statement, Ex. A at 11).
later point, Adams received a letter from Wells Fargo's
counsel indicating that a foreclosure sale on her property
would take place on September 21, 2017. However, Adams
contends that she was also sent a different notice that
identified the foreclosure sale as scheduled for September
September 12, 2017, Wells Fargo sent a letter stating that
“your concerns were previously addressed by us, and we
didn't find you had enclosed any new information or
significantly different details which would change our
response.” (Proposed Am. ...