JPMorgan Chase & Co. is facing A lawsuit from a couple claiming that the bank sold $10 million worth of jewelry and other valuables that they kept in safe deposit boxes.
Jorge And Stella Araneta They said JPMorgan sent the funds’ bills to the wrong address, causing them to default on their accounts. They claim that when they paid the arrears in full after their discovery, JPMorgan promised to return the assets stored in the funds. But the bank, instead, auctioned off the contents.
United States District Judge Naomi Rice BuchwaldOn Wednesday, he denied one of the requests in his 2022 lawsuit under New York banking law, but the case against negligence and other charges is still ongoing.
JPMorgan declined to comment on the decision. In court filings, the bank said late payments persist and that it sent warnings to Aranetas ahead of the auction. JPMorgan has decided to stop offering new safe deposit boxes as of December 2021.
The couple, who reside in the Philippines but have an apartment on Park Avenue in Manhattan, sued the bank last year.
The couple, who reside in the Philippines but have an apartment on Park Avenue in Manhattan, sued the bank last year. They claim to have rented safe deposit boxes at JPMorgan’s New York City branches beginning in 2006 after the bank bought them and renewed them annually, deducting payments from their checking accounts and sending invoices and statements to addresses in Manhattan and Miami.
In March 2016, the bank sent out notices about the renovation of two of the crates, warning that they would be punctured and the contents removed if payments were not received within 60 days, Aranetas said. According to the lawsuit, those notices were not sent to addresses in New York or Miami, but to a mailbox in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, which the Aranitas family says they never received.
In February 2017, the bank punctured four of the couple’s seven chests, removed the contents and moved them to a safe location. The couple argue they did not know the funds had been opened and their accounts updated until October 2019, after which JPMorgan allegedly assured them they would return their valuables.
Jorge and Stella Araneta said JPMorgan sent the funds’ invoices to the wrong address, causing them to default on their accounts.
However, the bank sold the content at auction less than 10 months later for a total of more than $552,700, according to the lawsuit. Aranetas claims that this is only a fraction of what the contents, consisting mainly of precious metals, jewels, and coins, were worth. They have established a value between $8 million and $10 million USD.
The bank said in response to the complaint that Stella Araneta He had not sent payments to some of the funds for several years and had sent several rounds of correspondence to the addresses on file. And while the bank acknowledged making some payments to the funds in October 2019, it said it sent more notices in July 2020 warning the contents would be sold at auction later that year if full payment was not made.
JPMorgan says so, too Stella Araneta He wrote several checks addressed to Louisiana.
With information from Bloomberg