By James Thorner, Times Staff Writer
Posted: Jan 29, 2010 07:23 PM
Facing foreclosure, a Tampa Bay homeowner has sued her mortgage lender with a novel defense: Her no-documentation home loan was a "defective financial product" that helped bring down the U.S. financial system. Taking a page from the product liability playbook, Linda Soronen said the bank never should have approved her $162,000 quick-and-easy home loan in 2006. Wachovia Bank initiated foreclosure proceedings against the Largo retiree in December, and Soronen countersued on Jan. 6. Banks made no-doc loans without checking a borrower's income and employment, earning them the moniker "liars loans." When Soronen took out a loan from World Savings Bank, which Wachovia later bought, she was a "partially disabled, unemployed 57-year-old nurse," the lawsuit said. Soronen wants her mortgage voided and punitive damages of $10 million.