The Creig Northrop Potential Class Action Lawsuit
According to the Baltimore Sun, the Baltimore Business Journal, and others, Creig Northrop and Long and Foster are being sued in Federal Court in Maryland for alleged kickbacks Northrop was getting from Lakeview Title and part-owner of Lakeview, Lindell Eagan. The listed plaintiffs in the case are Patrick and Christine Baehr. The suit is for more than $11 million. The plaintiffs’ lawyers are seeking class certification, meaning they want to make it a class action lawsuit.
Creig Northrop and his organization have been sue a number of times in state court. Those cases are all currently closed. Three were for contract actions and one was seeking a declaratory judgement. Long & Foster is listed as having been sued at least 13 times in Maryland circuit courts. One of those cases laid the groundwork for the federal lawsuit. That case was listed as a tort matter. The same lawyers were listed as plaintiff’s counsel in that particular case. The case is in the Circuit Court for Howard County, case #13C11089075.
The current, proposed class action lawsuit is in federal court, for which we do not track stats. If you are potentially a part of the class, there is likely nothing you need to do at this time. The plaintiff counsel is listed as Glenn (G Russell) Donaldson and Greg Lawrence. Interestingly, Donaldson also appears to be a real estate agent based out of Crofton.
The lawsuit alleges violations of RESPA – the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act. In plain english, this law prevents “kickbacks” for referring business. Northrop’s wife was employed by the title firm at issue. Post employment, there was a “marketing agreement” between the two firms. You can read more facts here.
Before you go thinking this is some bogus suit by a couple of shlocky injury lawyers, you should likely take note of one of the plaintiff lawyer’s recent successes. In 2010, Lawrence got an $81 million ruling against UBS. Defense lawyers are from DLA and Baxter, Baker, a quality Baltimore firm. This should be a fun one to watch.
Again, if you feel you are impacted, there’s likely nothing to do. You may, however, reach out to plaintiff counsel to feel secure.