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Spencer Fane Featured in Business Journal for Successful Defense in Class Actions

The Kansas City Business Journal reported on two rulings from the 8th U.S. Circuit Court this week, both of which featured a successful defense by Spencer Fane Partner Leslie Greathouse and Partner Loyd Gattis. The article, titled “Ruling in mortgage cases will make life rough for class actions,” focused on two intertwined cases, which involved class action lawsuits filed by borrowers in Missouri regarding loans they alleged violated the Missouri Second Mortgage Loan Act (MSMLA) by charging or collecting impermissible fees. The lawsuits were pending for more than a decade with collective potential damages of more than $100 million. The Court’s rulings on these cases were especially unique in regard to two concepts, Greathouse explained – tolling and juridical link. In Wong, the court ruled that juridical link did not apply where defendants are competitors and there is no evidence of a conspiracy or concerted scheme. In Thomas, the court ruled that tolling, which involves a pause in the statute of limitations while the case is underway, does not apply to cases where a federal court is applying the law of Missouri. “So you can see how that’s a big deal for the purposes of class actions in Missouri,” Greathouse said in the article. “It’s a very discrete issue of law but a really important one for parties in litigation and lawyers involved in these cases.” To learn more about the rulings and Spencer Fane’s successful defense, read the full Kansas City Business Journal article here.