FacultyFaculty/Author Profile
Diane A. Bettino

Diane A. Bettino

Reed Smith LLP
Partner
Princeton, NJ, USA


Diane A. Bettino Partner dbettino@reedsmith.com

Princeton
T: +1 609 514 5962
F: +1 609 951 0824

Education
William & Mary School of Law, 1991, J.D.
Temple University, 1986, B.A., History, Classical Piano

Professional Admissions / Qualifications
New Jersey Pennsylvania New York

Court Admissions
U.S. District Court - District of New Jersey
U.S. District Court - Eastern District of Pennsylvania
U.S. Court of Appeals - Third Circuit


Overview
Diane is the managing partner of the Princeton Office, and a member of the Financial Industry Group. She practices in the area of Financial Services Litigation and concentrates her practice in complex state and federal litigation, including residential mortgage lending, auto finance, insurance products and equipment finance. She has defended such consumer based claims in class actions, mass actions, government investigations and single consumer claims. Her experience also includes assisting the firm’s financial services clients in achieving settlements of numerous cases involving the Option ARM product, recovering substantial sums wrongfully taken through fraudulent mortgage schemes, and obtaining favorable closure in matters involving numerous claims of alleged fraud for overcharges relating to excess wear and damage on returned lease vehicles.

In addition to her concentration in financial services litigation, Diane has successfully represented clients on a variety of litigation matters in areas of data security, medical billing, commercial litigation, environmental law and school law. Diane also represents clients before regulatory agencies, including state Attorney Generals, the New Jersey Department of Banking and Insurance and the Division of Consumer Affairs.

Diane has authored numerous amicus briefs on behalf of various trade associations on issues such as the interpretation of overlapping regulatory schemes. She also regularly lectures on topics pertaining to the consumer financial services industry.

Representative Matters

  • Representing mortgage lenders, servicers and trustees in "robo-signing" and other foreclosure-related matters, including Wells Fargo Bank in the New Jersey Order to Show Cause proceeding In Re Document Irregularities, Docket No. F-059553-10.
  • Agostino v. Quest Diagnostics Inc., 2010 WL 5392688 (D.N.J. 2010) and Agostino

    v. Quest Diagnostics Inc., 256 F.R.D. 437 (D.N.J. 2009). Representing Quest Diagnostics in putative class action suits alleging improper billing and collection for lab tests.

  • US Bank v. Guillaume, (NJ Supreme Court 2012). Obtained favorable ruling on challenge to the sufficiency of the pre-foreclosure breach letter. The ruling will assist with clearing up the backlog of frozen foreclosure cases in New Jersey.
  • Oliver v. American Home Mortgage Servicing, Inc., 2009 WL 4129043 (D.N.J. 2009). Represented mortgage servicer in putative class action alleging overcharges and obtained dismissal of the case at the trial level and case settled for a nominal amount on an individual basis.
  • Perkins v. Washington Mutual, FSB, 655 F. Supp. 2d 463 (D.N.J. 2009). Represented mortgage servicer in putative class action alleging overcharges. Obtained dismissal on motion to dismiss.
  • Rickenbach v. Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., 635 F. Supp. 2d 389 (D.N.J. 2009); Rickenbach v. Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., 2010 WL 920869 (D.N.J. 2010). Represented mortgage servicer in putative class action alleging overcharges. Obtained dismissal of most of the case, settled for a nominal amount on an individual basis.
  • Shinn v. Champion Mortg., et al., 2009 WL 4250058 (D.N.J. 2009); Shinn v. Champion Mortg., et al., 2010 WL 500410 (D.N.J. 2010). Represented mortgage servicer in putative class action alleging overcharges. Settled for a nominal amount on an individual basis.
  • Zotti v. CitiFinancial No. L-4803-05 (Bergen Co. N.J.). Successfully defended CitiFinancial from putative class action; authored Motion to Dismiss and Compel to arbitration which resulted in Plaintiff voluntarily dismissing case.
  • Paness v. BMW Financial Services, NA, LLC, No. L-1182-02 (Bergen Co. N.J.). Obtained dismissal on the basis of the voluntary payment rule of putative nationwide class action alleging a violation of the Uniform Commercial Code and other laws arising from fees charged under the early termination provision of automobile leases; no appeal.
  • Rudnick v. Bank of America, No. 01CV02589 (D.N.J.). Successfully defended putative class action alleging consumer fraud and civil RICO claims premised on alleged violations of New Jersey automobile leasing laws; settled on an individual basis.
  • Parkin v. Bank of America (Middlesex County, New Jersey). Defended against claims that post-repossession notices violated the Uniform Commercial Code and state consumer protection laws.
  • Joyce v. Hann Financial Services, Corp. (Kings County, New York). Defended against claims that post lease termination notices violated state laws.
  • Hann Financial Services, Corp. v. Bulbulia (Essex County, New Jersey). Defended against claims that post lease termination demand for excess wear and damages violated state laws.
  • Denisi v. Household Finance, et al. (D.N.J.). Defended and obtained voluntary dismissal putative class action alleging that improper attorneys’ fees and costs were charged in prior foreclosure proceedings in violation of consumer fraud and other laws.
  • Doty v. Bayview Financial, et al. (D.N.J.). Defending putative class action alleging that improper attorneys’ fees and costs were charged in prior foreclosure proceedings in violation of consumer fraud and other laws.
  • Okrem v. Federal National Mortgage Association, et al. (D.N.J.). Defended and obtained dismissal of putative class action alleging that improper attorneys’ fees and costs were charged in prior foreclosure proceedings in violation of consumer fraud and other laws.
  • Exquisite Caterers, LLC, et al. v. Popular Leasing USA, Inc., et al., No. 04-4467 (D.N.J.). Successfully defended lease assignee in putative nationwide class action alleging violations of the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act. Negotiated and implemented nationwide settlement class after defeating national class certification.
  • Gulf Coast Audio Partnership, et al. v. Banclease Acceptance Corporation, et al., No. A-173174 (58th Jud. Dist., Jefferson County, TX). Successfully defended lease assignee in putative statewide class action seeking remedies under the Texas Uniform Declaratory Judgments Act.
  • Windy City Metal Fabricators & Supply, Inc., and Midwest Co v. CIT Technology Financing Services, Inc., et al, Civil Action No.: 1:05-cv-05451 (U.S.D.C., IL). Defended lease assignee in putative statewide class action lawsuit alleging violations of Illinois Consumer Fraud and Deceptive Practices Act.
  • Almanzar, et al. v. IndyMac (D.N.J.). Defended putative class action alleging fraud, consumer fraud and deception in connection with the origination of Option Adjustable Rate Mortgages. On motion to strike the class, plaintiff voluntarily dismissed the class claims and proceeded to file a mass action. Claims settled for a nominal amount on an individual basis.

Publications

  • "GE Capital Settles NY and NJ NorVergence Claims," Reed Smith Client Alerts, 1 February 2005 Co-Author(s): Mark S. Melodia Speaking Engagements
  • New Front in Financial Institution Scrutiny - Treble Damages Threat in Connection with FHA-Insured Loans, June 2011
  • Reed Smith's "Option ARMs: What Are Your Options in Option ARM Cases?" Teleseminar, 9 April 2008

Employment History

  • 1997 - Reed Smith
  • 1991 - Picco Herbert Kennedy Interests

Diane serves as the Princeton Office Managing Partner and is also the representative for the Firmwide Associate Development Program. Diane resides in Pennington, New Jersey, with her husband and two children. Diane is an avid skier, runner and earned her Black Belt in Tae Kwon Do.

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