Perdew, P. Russell

P. Russell Perdew

Partner
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Rusty Perdew litigates consumer class action, commercial and tort cases in jurisdictions across the country. Rusty also provides compliance and regulatory counseling to forward and reverse-mortgage lenders and loan servicers. Rusty is a member of the Firm’s Board of Directors.

Rusty Perdew litigates consumer class action, commercial and tort cases in jurisdictions across the country. Rusty also provides compliance and regulatory counseling to forward and reverse-mortgage lenders and loan servicers. Rusty is a member of the Firm’s Board of Directors.

Rusty represents clients in numerous consumer-facing industries, with a specific focus on the financial services industry. Rusty aggressively defends his clients in class action and high-exposure individual cases asserting claims alleging violation of state consumer-fraud or deceptive-trade-practice statutes, common-law fraud and breach of contract. Rusty also frequently defends financial services companies in individual and class-action litigation involving the following:

  • Truth in Lending Act (TILA) and Regulation Z
  • Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA) and Regulation X
  • Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA and FACTA) and Regulation V
  • Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) and Regulation F
  • Equal Credit Opportunity Act (ECOA) and Regulation B
  • Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA)
  • Federal and state False Claims Acts (qui tam cases)
  • Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO)
  • Provisions of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code and Bankruptcy Rules
  • State consumer protection statutes

Rusty closely follows and writes on legal developments involving statutes creating class-action liability for companies, including the Illinois Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA).

Rusty provides compliance and regulatory advice to forward and reverse-mortgage lenders regarding state and federal statutory and regulatory requirements. This work includes creating and modifying loan documents and disclosures to comply with all legal and industry requirements, developing new loan products, adapting to statutory and regulatory changes and responding to borrower, investor and regulator inquiries regarding existing loan products. Rusty is intimately familiar with relevant statutes and regulations, including TILA/Regulation Z, RESPA/Regulation X, and state statutes and regulations governing forward and reverse-mortgage loan products. And as a class-action and consumer-bankruptcy litigator, Rusty has particular insight into the types of issues that can arise with consumer-lending products.

Rusty’s recent experience includes:

  • Defending a loan servicer against a series of nationwide class actions alleging that property-inspection fees for FHA-insured loans violated HUD requirements
  • Defending a health insurer against a series of individual and class-action TCPA cases involving applicability of health-care message exception and issues of vicarious liability for third-party conduct
  • Defending a loan servicer against a class action involving allegedly improper bank-wire fees and recording fees in payoff statement
  • Obtaining a rarely issued supervisory order from the Illinois Supreme Court, which vacated a trial court’s order of substantial and punitive sanctions and ended the sanctions proceedings
  • Defending a loan servicer against multiple high-exposure TCPA cases turning on the definition of an automatic telephone dialing system and the validity and interpretation of the FCC’s 2015 Order implementing the TCPA
  • Defending a loan servicer against multiple class actions in Florida and New Jersey alleging the servicer charged premiums for lender-placed insurance that were allegedly inflated by improper kickbacks paid to the servicer
  • Defending a series of class actions against a residential mortgage servicer and affiliates alleging that late fees, property-inspection fees, property-valuation (BPO) fees and other charges for default-related services were inflated or improper under the loan contract and various state and federal consumer protection statutes
  • Defending a substantial class action against a nationwide franchisor filed by franchisees alleging breach of contract and fraud in how certain charges were passed on to the franchisees
  • Advising a manufacturer of personal care products in connection with a cluster of claims alleging that hair dye was defective because of the potential for an allergic reaction
  • Defending class-action lawsuits filed by counties, county commissioners and county attorneys alleging mortgage industry defendants failed to record mortgage assignments, depriving counties of revenue and allegedly damaging the integrity of county records
  • Defending False Claims Act, or qui tam, cases alleging mortgage industry defendants made false statements regarding MERS to avoid paying county recorder fees
  • Defending a large qui tam case alleging mortgage industry defendants made false statements regarding the nature and recoverability of homeowner association (HOA) fees
  • Defending class actions filed by borrowers alleging violations of TILA and other claims in connection with payment-option adjustable-rate loans (“Option ARM loans”)

Published decisions in cases Rusty worked on include the following:

  • Bennett v. Celtic Ins. Co., 2022 WL 865837 (N.D. Ill. Mar. 23, 2022) (dismissing TCPA class action without prejudice due to lack of allegations supporting vicarious liability)
  • Mathews v. PHH Mortg. Corp., 2020 WL 5260813 (N.D. Okla. Sept. 3, 2020) (partially dismissing class-action complaint against loan servicer because consumer-protection in defendant’s home state did not apply to borrowers in another state)
  • Leeal v. Ditech Financial LLC, 2020 WL 1066100 (E.D. Mich. Mar. 5, 2020) (granting summary judgment in favor of defendant loan servicer because prior state-court judgment purporting to void mortgage as to predecessor servicer was not binding on defendant)
  • Bertelsen v. CitiMortgage, Inc., 743 Fed. App’x. 128 (9th Cir. Nov. 20, 2018) (affirming summary judgment as to claims that loan servicer violated consumer-protection statute and committed fraud and negligence because no evidence of fiduciary duty or recoverable damage)
  • Giotta v. Ocwen Loan Servicing, LLC, et al., 2016 WL 4447150 (N.D. Cal. Aug. 24, 2016), aff’d 2017 WL 6397179 (9th Cir. Dec. 15, 2017) (dismissing class action against loan servicer under RICO, FDCPA, RFDCPA and UCL alleging improper default servicing fees because fees authorized by contract and no basis for fraud claims; affirming dismissal on appeal because borrowers failed to comply with contractual notice-and-cure provision)
  • U.S. ex rel. Adams v. Aurora Loan Services, LLC, et al., 813 F.3d 1259 (9th Cir. 2016) (dismissing qui tam claim against mortgage-industry defendants because allegedly false claims submitted to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were not submitted to U.S. government agency).
  • In re: MERS Litigation, No. 09-2119, 2015 WL 9268189 (D. Ariz. Dec. 21, 2015) (denying class certification denied to putative class of homeowners who faced non-judicial foreclosure under deeds of trust naming MERS as beneficiary)
  • Shelley v. Ocwen Loan Servicing, LLC, No. 1:13-cv-506, 2013 WL 4584649 (S.D. Ind. Aug. 28, 2013) (dismissing FDCPA claims against loan servicer dismissed because RESPA servicing-transfer notice is not a debt-collection communication under the FDCPA)
  • Maria Moore v. P&G-Clairol, Inc., 781 F. Supp. 2d 694 (N.D. Ill. 2011) (granting summary judgment for the distributor of hair dye in a case alleging a product defect due to a user’s allergic reaction)
  • Bonte v. U.S. Bank, N.A., 624 F.3d 461 (7th Cir. 2010) (affirming dismissal of TILA rescission claim against lender where none of the allegedly inaccurate disclosures were material)
  • Murray v. GMAC Mortgage, LLC, 532 F. Supp. 2d 938 (N.D. Ill. 2007), aff'd 2008 WL 1781160 (7th Cir. 2008) (affirming summary judgment on behalf of a mortgage lender in a "firm offer of credit" case under the FCRA because there was no evidence defendant willfully violated the statute)
  • Chatz v. BearingPoint, 364 B.R. 308 (N.D. Ill. 2007). Defense verdict in bankruptcy trial on behalf of an accounting firm against a $23 million claim alleging a negligent stock valuation
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CREDENTIALS
Education
  • J.D., Northwestern University School of Law, 1999
    Moot Court
  • B.A., summa cum laude, Bradley University, 1996
Bar Admissions
  • Illinois, 1999
  • Indiana, 2000
  • Wisconsin, 2013
Court Admissions
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
  • Supreme Court of Illinois
  • Supreme Court of Indiana
  • Supreme Court of Wisconsin
  • U.S. District Court for the Central District of Illinois
  • U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois
  • U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Illinois
  • U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Indiana
  • U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana
  • U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Wisconsin
  • U.S. District Court for the Western District of Wisconsin
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado
  • U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Florida
  • U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Nebraska
  • U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Illinois
  • U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Illinois
  • U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Indiana
  • U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Indiana
Professional Affiliations
  • Rusty teaches as an adjunct professor in two classes at Northwestern University School of Law—Trial Advocacy and Civil Discovery. In that capacity, he instructs, critiques, and grades law students on courtroom skills, including direct and cross-examination, opening statements, and closing arguments. He also lectures and directs classroom exercises regarding various aspects of pre-trial discovery.