Bmo Harris Charlotte NC

Full title: James DILLON, Plaintiff–Appellee, v. BMO HARRIS BANK, N.A.; Generations Federal Credit Union; Bay Cities Bank, Defendants–Appellants, and Four Oaks Bank & Trust Company, Defendant.

Court: United States Court of Appeals, Fourth Circuit.

Date published: May 29, 2015


After Plaintiff–Appellee James Dillon obtained loans from online lenders and then sued Defendants–Appellants BMO Harris Bank, N.A., Generations Federal Credit Union, and Bay Cities Bank (the “Banks”) for facilitating collection of those loans, the Banks sought to enforce arbitration clauses in the loan agreements between Dillon and the lenders. The district court denied these motions, and the banks filed renewed motions seeking to cure the deficiencies the court relied on in dismissing their claims. The district court then denied the renewed motions without considering their merits; it construed them as motions for reconsideration and denied them on that basis. The banks appealed. 


Court Judgment

Banks filed renewed motions in a dispute over Dillon’s arbitration agreement. The district court initially denied the initial motions, stating that the pleadings did not establish arbitrability. However, the banks did not challenge this ruling in their renewed motions. The court should have resolved the renewed motions on their merits, as the district court’s decision did not determine whether Dillon consented to arbitration. The court must now determine if Dillon’s claims are referable to arbitration under an agreement in writing, and if the banks are aggrieved by Dillon’s failure to arbitrate under a written agreement. The court must hold an expeditious and summary hearing to resolve any unresolved questions of material fact.

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