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Bank wrongfully refused to pay cashier's check

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In an issue of first impression as to what circumstances an issuing bank may refuse to pay a cashier's check, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled in the instant case the issuing bank wasn't entitled to stop payment on it later.

In South Central Bank of Daviess County v. Lynnville National Bank, Bryan K. and Lisa C. Fisher, No. 87A01-0806-CV-256, the Court of Appeals for the first time today considered the propriety of a bank's refusal to pay a cashier's check under the Uniform Commercial Code.

Bryan and Lisa Fisher obtained a cashier's check for a down payment on a manufactured home they purchased through Landmark Housing Center, which had an account at South Central Bank. Shortly after the Fishers signed a contract with Landmark, they discovered Landmark was no longer a registered dealer with Patriot Homes and wanted to stop payment on the cashier's check. By then, South Central's bank manager had already called and confirmed the cashier's check with Lynnville and credited it to Landmark's account. Even after it was informed by Lynnville that it wasn't going to pay the cashier's check, South Central paid out $24,000 to a Landmark principal the next day.

South Central filed suit, alleging Lynnville wrongfully refused payment and sought the amount of the original cashier's check, plus prejudgment interest, attorney fees, and costs. Lynnville denied liability and contended South Central failed to mitigate its losses. The trial court granted Lynnville's cross-motion for summary judgment.

Indiana Code Section 26-1-3.1-411, which is modeled after Article 3 of the UCC, explains the specific situations in which an obligated bank can stop payment on a cashier's check. None of those circumstances occurred in this case, wrote Chief Judge John Baker.

"Lynnville's obligation to pay was clear and it was able to pay, but it refused payment on the check as an accommodation to the Fishers, who had no right to make that request," he wrote. "This statute was enacted specifically to discourage that practice."

The appellate court also found that South Central is a holder in due course of the cashier's check, which limits Lynnville's available defenses to those that fall under Indiana Code Section 26-1-3.1-305(a)(1), and none of those apply to Lynnville, he wrote.

Lynnville's arguments that South Central failed to mitigated its damages also failed. The Court of Appeals remanded with instructions to enter final judgment in favor of South Central in the amount of $31,917.55 - the original cashier's check - plus expenses, interest, and any consequential damages determined by the trial court.

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  1. Can I get this form on line,if not where can I obtain one. I am eligible.

  2. What a fine example of the best of the Hoosier tradition! How sad that the AP has to include partisan snark in the obit for this great American patriot and adventurer.

  3. Why are all these lawyers yakking to the media about pending matters? Trial by media? What the devil happened to not making extrajudicial statements? The system is falling apart.

  4. It is a sad story indeed as this couple has been only in survival mode, NOT found guilty with Ponzi, shaken down for 5 years and pursued by prosecution that has been ignited by a civil suit with very deep pockets wrenched in their bitterness...It has been said that many of us are breaking an average of 300 federal laws a day without even knowing it. Structuring laws, & civilForfeiture laws are among the scariest that need to be restructured or repealed . These laws were initially created for drug Lords and laundering money and now reach over that line. Here you have a couple that took out their own money, not drug money, not laundering. Yes...Many upset that they lost money...but how much did they make before it all fell apart? No one ask that question? A civil suit against Williams was awarded because he has no more money to fight...they pushed for a break in order...they took all his belongings...even underwear, shoes and clothes? who does that? What allows that? Maybe if you had the picture of him purchasing a jacket at the Goodwill just to go to court the next day...his enemy may be satisfied? But not likely...bitterness is a master. For happy ending lovers, you will be happy to know they have a faith that has changed their world and a solid love that many of us can only dream about. They will spend their time in federal jail for taking their money from their account, but at the end of the day they have loyal friends, a true love and a hope of a new life in time...and none of that can be bought or taken That is the real story.

  5. Could be his email did something especially heinous, really over the top like questioning Ind S.Ct. officials or accusing JLAP of being the political correctness police.

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