In one of the largest judgments entered under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) in 2017, United States Federal District Court Judge Joanna Seybert recently awarded the sum of $15,200,000.00 to a class of loan officers of formerly employed by now-defunct Ideal Mortgage Bankers, Ltd, d/b/a Lend America, Inc.
After aggressively fighting to recover unpaid minimum and overtime wages owed to hundreds of loan officers over the course of 10 years, Stephan Zouras, LLP, as class counsel, secured the judgment personally against Michael Ashley, Lend America’s former Chief Business Strategist.
“We intend to immediately and vigorously pursue Mr. Ashley to collect the sums rightly due and owing to our clients as found by Judge Seybert”, stated Jim Zouras, lead class counsel for plaintiffs.
The loan officers were paid on a commission-only basis, with no guaranteed salary, and thus did not necessarily receive requisite minimum wage or overtime pay for working in excess of 40 hours per week.
All too often, loan officers employed by banks, mortgage companies and other financial institutions are wrongfully denied overtime pay when they work more than 40 hours per week. The failure to pay overtime and/or minimum wage – through “commission-only” pay schemes or otherwise – is a rampant in this industry.
The United States Department of Labor (DOL) defines a loan officer as someone that evaluates, authorizes or recommends approval of commercial, real estate or credit loans.
In addition, a loan officer may advise borrowers on financial status and payment methods and includes mortgage loan officers and agents, collection analysts, loan servicing officers and loan underwriters.
The DOL has stated that typical loan officers are entitled to minimum wage and overtime wages. Likewise, loan offices are entitled to a guaranteed minimum wage and overtime under state wage laws.
You can find answers to frequently asked questions about loan officer lawsuits here, however if you work or worked as a loan officer and would like more information on your wage rights, contact us.