WINFIELD – A Hurricane lawyer and his wife are suing CitiMortgage, claiming the company is not allowing the couple to prepay on their mortgage like their contract allows.

James A. Dodrill and Terri L. Dodrill filed their lawsuit in Putnam Circuit Court on March 16. James is representing himself and his wife in the action.

The complaint accuses CitiMortgage of breaching the mortgage contract, fraud, and breach of good faith and fair dealing.

The Dodrills claim they bought a house in Putnam County in 2004. At the time, the mortgage was held by ABN AMRO Mortgage Group.

The complaint says that the contract allows them to make full or partial prepayments on the mortgage. The plaintiffs say when they made these prepayments, ABN AMRO immediately applied the money to the interest and principal of the mortgage.

Sometime later, CitiMortgage acquired ABN AMRO and the plaintiff's mortgage, the complaint states.

The plaintiffs continued to make bi-weekly prepayments on the mortgage, but CitiMortgage didn't apply the money to the loan, the complaint says.

Instead, the company held the money in an "unapplied funds" account, the complaint says.

Then, the mortgage company tried to get the plaintiffs to use its mandatory prepayment program for a fee, the complaint says. This practice goes against the mortgage contract, the Dodrills say.

CitiMortgage has also allegedly mailed threatening letters and sent threatening e-mails and called the Dodrills at home and work, saying the mortgage payment was late and they had to pay a late fee, or that the loan would be put into collection. The Dodrills say the company has reported them to credit agencies, affecting their creditworthiness.

These communications also noted the prepayment program administered by CitiMortgage, the complaint says.

"CitiMortgage was fully and completely aware of its contractual obligation to receive prepayments and immediately apply them to plaintiffs' loan account in full accord with the contractual provisions of the promissory note," the complaint says.

The plaintiffs are seeking compensatory and punitive damages and for a judge to order the company to make the condition of the mortgage reflect that the prepayments have been made.

The case is before Putnam Circuit Judge O.C. "Hobby" Spaulding.

Putnam Circuit Court case number: 09-C-86

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