R. Frederick Walters

R. Frederick Walters

(816) 421-6620

fwalters@wrrsvlaw.com

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“You hire a lawyer maybe once in your life. It’s a significant event. You want to enter that courtroom with confidence and credibility. We are trial lawyers. That’s what we do and we do it exceptionally well.”

 

Only a special class of trial attorney can walk into a courtroom and successfully prosecute a slip and fall accident one day, a products liability case another day, a medical negligence matter on yet another day, then spend several weeks trying a complex class action lawsuit.

 

Fred Walters is that class of trial attorney.

 

Fred was born and raised on a farm in southern Missouri, one of eight children.  His childhood instilled in him the fighting spirit, work ethic, and compassion that define his lifelong work to right the wrongs of those injured by the actions or negligence of others.

 

During his career, Fred has reached that goal many times over.  As lead trial counsel, he obtained a $110 million jury verdict on behalf of Missouri consumers who were charged illegal fees on their second mortgage loans. In the last seven years alone, he has served as lead counsel in numerous class action cases filed on behalf of consumers.  As a result of Fred’s outstanding advocacy on behalf of his clients, he has obtained more than $662 million in recoveries and allowed claims.

 

With each case, Fred always remembers that he’s working toward justice and working for his clients. His success in the courtroom, his extensive jury trial experience, and his tenacious spirit for justice is unparalleled.

 

 

 

2014 Best Atty Mo Best Lawyers (RFW)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Significant Representations

Obtained settlements, approved claims and jury verdicts in excess of $662 million on second mortgage class action cases, including a second mortgage class action jury verdict of $110,106,875  Over the last 12 years, Fred has devoted most of his time to protecting consumers from predatory lending practices.  As lead trial counsel in a class case, Fred obtained a $110,106,875  jury verdict on behalf of Missouri consumers.  Fred also spearheaded the recovery of more than $662 million in monetary recovery and allowed claims for the consumer classes.

 

The Second Mortgage cases include:

 

  • $300 Million Allowed Claim. As lead counsel, Fred negotiated an allowed claim of $300 million dollars against RFC and in favor of a class of more than 70,000 borrowers across the United States.  The allowed claim will be partially satisfied from the assets of the bankruptcy estate which recovery is likely to be the range of 7 to 13 cents on the dollar.  Further, a recovery that when combined with the estate recovery could yield up to the full value of the allowed claim will be pursued from certain insurance policies.  In re Residential Capital, LLC, et al., Case No. 12-12020 (MG), United States Bankruptcy Case for the Southern District of New York

 

  • $92,000,000 Settlement for consumers in Thomas v. U.S. Bank National Association, Case No. 1216-CV20561. Under Fred’s leadership, WRRSV successfully prosecuted this second mortgage case which resulted in a $92,000,000 class action settlement.  The settlement was on behalf of over 2,400 class members who obtained approximately 1,500 second mortgage loans that were purchased by, assigned to, or serviced by U.S. Bank. Class Members received a substantial payment ranging from an estimated $250 to $142,257 ($33,499 on average).

 

  • $68,300,000 Settlement for consumers in Beaver v. U.S. Bank National Association,Case No. 1216-CV21345. As lead counsel, Fred obtained a $68,300,000 class action settlement on behalf of over 3,000 class members who obtained approximately 1,800 second mortgage loans that were purchased by, assigned to, or serviced by the Trust Parties. Class Members received a substantial payment ranging from an estimated $250 to $86,000 ($20,303 on average).

 

  • $36,000,000 Settlement for consumers in McLean, et al. v. First Horizon Home Loan Corporation (f/k/a McGuire Mortgage Company) Case No. 00 CV 228530 (Cir. Ct. Mo.).  Under Fred’s leadership, the WRRSV trial team procured a $36,000,000 class action settlement on behalf of over 4,000 class members who obtained second mortgage loans secured by Missouri residential real estate from First Horizon, McGuire Mortgage or FT Mortgage Companies between November 16, 1994 and April 13, 2005. Class Members received a substantial settlement payment, averaging over $10,000 per loan for loans made before January 1, 1999, and averaging over $700 per loan for loans made on or after January 1, 1999.

 

  • $22,700,000 in settlements for consumers in Mitchell v. Residential Funding Corp.

 

  • $10,427,592  in a series of settlements for consumers in Gilmor, et al. v. Preferred Credit Corporation, et al., Case No. 4:10-cv-00189-ODS.

 

  • $4,255,437 Settlement for consumers in Couch, et al. v. SMC Lending, et al., Case No. CV100-4332 CC. With Fred as lead counsel WRRSV was able to negotiate a$4,255,437 settlement with Residential Funding Corporation on behalf of 147 class members who obtained 88 second mortgage loans from SMC Lending on or after June 29, 1994. SMC Lending sold and assigned these 88 loans to Residential Funding Corporation. Class Members received a substantial payment under the Settlement. The estimated settlement payments range from a low of $4,530 to a high of $109,527 with an average of $28,479 per loan.

 

  • $4 million Settlement for consumers in Schwartz , et al. v. Wachovia Equity Servicing, LLC, et al., Case No. 00 CV226639 (Mo. Cir.) Fred was instrumental in securing a $4,000,000 class action settlement on behalf of 81 class members who obtained 52 second mortgage loans secured by Missouri residential real estate from Bann-Cor Mortgage on or after October 31, 1994. Bann-Cor Mortgage sold and assigned these 52 loans to TMS Mortgage, Inc., doing business as The Money Store. Class Members received a substantial settlement payment. The estimated settlement payments range from a low of $6,737 to a high of $82,069, with an average of $32,458 per loan.

 

  • $3,300,000 Settlement for consumers in Thompson v. Sovereign Bank, N.A.  Fred and the WRRSV trial team prosecuted and settled a class action lawsuit asserted against Sovereign Bank, N.A., in five separate class action cases for recoveries totally $3,300,000. Each of those cases alleged that now-defunct sub-prime mortgage lenders violated the Missouri Second Mortgage Loan Act by charging illegal fees in connection with residential second mortgage loans in the State of Missouri.

 

  • $2,460,845 Settlement for consumers in Shokere vs. Residential Funding Company., et al., Case No. 1116-CV30478. WRRSV obtained  a $2,460,845  class action settlement on behalf of 166 class members who obtained 110 second mortgage loans that were purchased by, assigned to, serviced by or master serviced by Residential Funding Company. Fred served as lead counsel on the case. Class Members who obtained a loan from First Plus Bank and who do not exclude themselves from the settlement will receive a payment ranging from an estimated $5,613 to $89,522 ($32,834 on average). Class Members received a payment ranging from $250 to an estimated $23,457 ($2,229 on average).

 

  • $1,075,700 Settlement for consumers in Baker, et al. v. Century Financial Group, Inc., et al., Case No. CV100-4294 CC. Fred and the WRRSV trial team recovered $1,075,700 on behalf of 46 class members who obtained 28 second mortgage loans from Century Financial Group on or after June 28, 1994. Century Financial Group sold and assigned these 28 loans to Residential Funding Company. Class Members received a substantial settlement payment. The estimated settlement payments range from a low of $500 to a high of $63,611, with an average of $22,208 per loan.

 

Obtained  over $11.5 million for a child who was sexually abused by her swim coach, a recovery ranked 13th in the top plaintiff wins in Missouri in 2012.  Fred achieved a life-changing recovery for a young girl who was sexually abused by her swim coach. While the underlying facts are horrific, the result was extraordinary. The trial of the underlying claim against those responsible for supervision of the minor and the perpetrator resulted in a judgment on behalf of the minor for $5,040,000. When the insurance companies refused to pay the judgment, Fred vigorously pursued claims against the carriers for coverage and insurance bad faith.  The firm ultimately recovered over $11.5 million for the victim, in addition to a confidential settlement from another insurer.  The recovery was ranked 13th in the top plaintiff wins in 2012. Doe v. Lexington Insurance Company, et. al.

 

Obtained a multimillion dollar substantial confidential settlement for the defective design and construction of the concrete floor of an 800,000 square foot distribution facility.  Fred and the WRRSV trial team obtained a multimillion dollar confidential settlement for the defective design and construction of the concrete floor of an 800,000 square foot distribution facility.  The claim was brought for the benefit of the owner by the general contractor on the Project who pursed recovery from its subcontractors for their defective work.

 

Successfully prosecuted several cases against Missouri Highway and various developers for inadequate erosion control.  Through Clean Water Act and inverse condemnation litigation, Fred and the trial team at WRRSV successfully prosecuted several cases against MDOT and various developers for inadequate erosion controls on behalf of a 274-acre lake.  In addition to monetary recovery, ongoing developments in the watershed were required to change their erosion control practices to protect the lake from the adverse effects of storm-water runoff and sedimentation stemming from the developments.

 

Jury award of $16 million for formaldehyde exposure.  In a case that received national attention, Fred represented a family exposed to excessive formaldehyde by the products used to manufacture their mobile home.  The jury awarded the family $16 million—the highest jury verdict in Clay County at that time.  As a result of the verdict, the manufacturers of the particle board reevaluated their practices and began to take action to reduce the amount of formaldehyde used in their products.

 

Jury verdict of $1.2 million against insurance carrier.  When arson destroyed a former bank building while the owner was in the process of remodeling the building as a boutique hotel, the insured made a claim under his policy for coverage.  The insurance company not only refused to pay the claim, but filed suit against its own insured claiming there was no coverage for the building because the insured was connected with the arson.  Fred filed a counter-claim against the recalcitrant insurer on behalf of the owner and took the recalcitrant insurer to trial as lead trial counsel. The jury exonerated the owner with a  $1,200,000 jury verdict. After the verdict was rendered, the insurer continued to claim that their insured had committed arson, which made it difficult for the insured to obtain other coverage. Accordingly, a second suit was filed for defamation, resulting in an even more favorable disposition for the client.  At the request of the insurance company, that settlement is confidential.

 

Practice Areas

Class Action
Personal Injury & Wrongful Death
Consumer Fraud & Product Liability
Business Disuputes

 

Work Experience

Law Clerk, Missouri Court of Appeals, 1973−1975

Partner, Linde, Thompson, Langworthy, Kohn & VanDyke, P.C.

 

Education

J.D., University of Missouri School of Law, 1973

B.S. in Mechanical Engineering, University of Missouri, 1970

 

Honors & Awards

The National Trial Lawyers: Top 100, 2012, 2014

Super Lawyer, Super Lawyers Magazine, 2008−2012, 2014, 2015

Best Attorneys in Missouri, Best Lawyers Magazine, 2014

Received AV (highest) rating from Martindale-Hubbell Law Directory, a peer rating system for attorneys

Dean of the Trial Bar, Kansas City Metropolitan Bar Association, 2014

 

Memberships

Kansas City Metropolitan Bar Association

Missouri Bar Association

Kansas Bar Association

 

Bar Admissions

Missouri

Kansas

U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri

U.S. District Court for the Western District of Missouri

U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Missouri

U.S. District Court for the District of Kansas

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit

 

Organizations

American Arbitration Association

American Association for Justice

Missouri Association of Trial Attorneys

 

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