Harry Engel, a retired minister and resident of Grand Prairie, TX, passed away in July 2010. His wife and children have now filed a wrongful death claim against JP Morgan Chase and two other defendants in Dallas County Court.
The allegation is that the defendants – JP Morgan Chase, LPS Field Services and EMC Mortgage, caused intentional infliction of emotional distress. The defendants are also charged with gross negligence, trespassing and wrongful foreclosure. Not to mention deceptive trade and outright fraud.
The Engels had been living in their home and paying off the mortgage for 22 years. In Feb 2010, they got a letter from Chase saying that the mortgage could be refinanced on a lower monthly payment. When they went to the bank, a Chase employee named Michael Paretti allegedly advised them to deliberately miss one payment so that they could quality for refinancing.
Chase then sent them a letter saying their loan modification application was rejected and they would have to bring their mortgage current immediately. They met with Mr. Paretti again, and were instructed to pay in an amount. They did pay in said amount, but more letters followed, including a foreclosure notice and then an eviction notice.
Harry Engel was terrified at the thought of losing his home and collapsed under the stress on July 1, 2010, a few days after getting the eviction notice. He died of the stress induced heart attack in the ambulance on the way to the hospital.
JP Morgan Chase then evicted Harry Engel's newly widowed wife Wanda Engel from their marital home and changed the locks. Harry and Wanda Engel had been married for 57 years and had three adult children – Debra, Steve and Josh Engel.
The house is now empty and managed by LPS Field Services. EMC Mortgage was the foreclosure company used by Chase. The lawsuit seeks to reclaim the house and damages for loss of love and counsel, funeral expenses, future loss of companionship, loss of inheritance and all legal expenses, among other things.
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