IN RE BALDERRAMA | FL BK Court "Deutsche Bank, Not proven to either the trustee or the Court that it holds a validly endorsed promissory note evidencing its purchase of the debt on the disputed property"

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IN RE BALDERRAMA | FL BK Court “Deutsche Bank, Not proven to either the trustee or the Court that it holds a validly endorsed promissory note evidencing its purchase of the debt on the disputed property”

IN RE BALDERRAMA | FL BK Court “Deutsche Bank, Not proven to either the trustee or the Court that it holds a validly endorsed promissory note evidencing its purchase of the debt on the disputed property”

In re: MARIA RENEE BALDERRAMA, Chapter 7, Debtor.
CARLA P. MUSSELMAN, as Chapter 7, Trustee, Plaintiff,
v.
DEUTSCHE BANK TRUST COMPANY AMERICAS, in trust for Residential Accredit Loans, Inc. Mortgage Asset-Backed Pass-Through Certificates, Series 2007-QH5, Defendant.

Case No. 6:10-bk-07828-KSJ, Adv. Pro. No. 6:10-ap-00245-KSJ.

United States Bankruptcy Court, M.D. Florida, Orlando Division.

May 4, 2011.

Seldon J. Childers, ChildersLaw LLC, Gainesville, FL, Plaintiff Attorney.

Carla P. Musselman, Maitland, FL, Plaintiff.

Daniel A. Miller, Broad and Cassel, West Palm Beach, FL, Defendant Attorney.

MEMORANDUM OPINION PARTIALLY GRANTING AND PARTIALLY DENYING TRUSTEE’S AMENDED AND RENEWED MOTION TO COMPEL PRODUCTION OF DEUTSCHE BANK

KAREN S. JENNEMANN, Bankruptcy Judge

In this adversary proceeding the Chapter 7 trustee, Carla Musselman, seeks to quiet title and to value at zero dollars defendant Deutsche Bank’s alleged secured interest in debtor Maria Balderrama’s non-homestead real property. As part of discovery, the trustee served interrogatories and document production requests seeking information about the bank’s purchase of the promissory note and mortgage on the disputed property.[1] Deutsche Bank resists producing any discovery related to the purchase history of the note and the chain of title of the mortgage arguing that, under Florida law, it has established its secured interest in the property merely by alleging it holds the original promissory note endorsed specially in its favor.[2] The trustee disputes Deutsche Bank’s characterization of Florida law and notes that neither the Court nor the trustee has seen the original endorsed note. She now requests the Court compel the bank to produce the requested information.[3]

[…]

Deutsche Bank, however, still has not proven to either the trustee or the Court that it holds a validly endorsed promissory note evidencing its purchase of the debt on the disputed property. Therefore, Deutsche Bank cannot rely on the General Rule to avoid responding to the trustee’s discovery requests pertaining to the authenticity of the note. The trustee has raised in her complaint doubts concerning the authenticity and effectiveness of the endorsements on the allonge to the note. The copies of the note and mortgage attached as an exhibit to its response therefore are insufficient to establish Deutsche Bank’s status as holder of the note.

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