Citimortgage Inc. v. Tsoukalas
Allegations that a plaintiff violated the Connecticut Abusive Home Loan Lending Practices Act, Connecticut General Statutes §36a-746, do not constitute a proper special defense in a foreclosure suit. The plaintiff, Citimortgage Inc., filed a foreclosure suit against the defendants, alleging that on or about June 19, 2007 they borrowed $284,750, signed a mortgage and note, and failed to pay the principal and interest. The defendants filed a special defense, alleging that the plaintiff or the plaintiff's predecessors failed to explain to the defendants, who were unsophisticated and were not represented by counsel, the highest interest rate, the highest monthly payment, and the approximate total amount that the defendants would pay over the life of the loan, in violation of the Connecticut Abusive Home Loan Lending Practices Act, C.G.S. §36a-746. The defendants argued that the plaintiff or the plaintiff's predecessor knew, or should have known, that the defendants could not afford to pay and that the plaintiff or the plaintiff's predecessor engaged in immoral and unethical conduct that violated public policy and the Connecticut Unfair Trade Practices Act. The plaintiff moved to strike the special defenses and argued that the CUTPA count was not filed timely, within three years. The defendants objected that granting the motion to strike would eviscerate CUTPA. An action under C.G.S. §42-110g may not be brought more than three years after the occurrence of a violation. The court granted the motion to strike the CUTPA count, because it was not filed timely, on or before June 19, 2010. The court also granted the motion to strike the Connecticut Abusive Home Loan Lending Practices Act claim, because it does not constitute a proper special defense in a foreclosure suit. Even if the defendants' allegations are proved, a court can grant the plaintiff's motion to foreclose.