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Hospicomm, Inc. v. Fleet Bank, N.A.

United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania
338 F. Supp. 2d 578 (2004)


Facts

Hospicomm, Inc. (Hospicomm) (plaintiff) contracted to provide management services for Hamilton Continuing Care Center (Hamilton). Pursuant to the agreement, Hospicomm opened bank accounts with Fleet Bank, N.A. (Fleet) (defendant) on Hamilton’s behalf. Only authorized persons holding valid transfer cards issued by Fleet were permitted to access the accounts. Hospicomm eventually learned that a former employee, Guillermo Martinez, had gained unauthorized access to the accounts after requesting and receiving from Fleet a Visa automated teller machine (ATM) card. Martinez used the ATM card to withdraw more than $148,000. Hospicomm reimbursed Hamilton for the stolen funds. Hospicomm then filed suit against Fleet, arguing that Fleet had violated the duty of good faith required by Pennsylvania’s Uniform Commercial Code (UCC) Article 4 when Fleet issued the ATM card to Martinez without informing Hospicomm or Hamilton and when Fleet failed to discover the suspicious account transactions. Fleet filed a motion to dismiss, contending that UCC Article 4 did not apply to ATM card transactions.

Rule of Law

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Issue

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Holding and Reasoning (Surrick, J.)

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  • A “yes” or “no” answer to the question framed in the issue section;
  • A summary of the majority or plurality opinion, using the CREAC method; and
  • The procedural disposition (e.g. reversed and remanded, affirmed, etc.).

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