Disclosure: Goldstein & Russell, P.C. serves as counsel to the petitioners in this case.
Holding: To establish a violation of 12 U.S.C. § 2607(b) – which provides that “[n]o person shall give and no person shall accept any portion, split, or percentage of any charge made or received for the rendering of a real estate settlement service . . . other than for services actually performed” – a plaintiff must demonstrate that a charge for settlement services was divided between two or more persons.
Plain English Summary: Unearned fees – fees for which lenders provide no services – violate federal law only if the fees are split between two companies. This may seem strange, but the Court said that the law Congress passed was only about fee splitting. To control the level of fees that a single bank charges, Congress would have to be more specific.
Judgment: Affirmed, 9-0, in an opinion by Justice Scalia on May 24, 2012.
Merits Briefs for the Petitioners
Amicus Briefs in Support of Petitioners
Merits Briefs for the Respondent
Amicus Briefs in Support of the Respondent