Demands information from Bank of America, JP Morgan Chase, Wells Fargo and GMAC Mortgage/Ally ~Calls for suspension of foreclosures by mortgage servicers engaged in “robo-signing” in New York until accuracy of court documents and integrity of process are assured
NEW YORK, NY (October 12, 2010) – Attorney General Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that he is seeking information from four major mortgage servicers – Bank of America, JP Morgan Chase, Wells Fargo and GMAC Mortgage/Ally – concerning the filing of affidavits that falsely attest the signer has personal knowledge of the facts presented in home foreclosure proceedings, a practice known as “robo-signing.”
In view of the prevalence of this practice in the industry, Cuomo also called on mortgage servicers engaged in “robo-signing” in New York to immediately suspend all foreclosure actions in the state until they correct their procedures to comply with New York law and can assure the public and the courts that integrity has been restored.
“I will not allow New Yorkers to lose their homes due to mortgage goliaths that buck the system by submitting affidavits signed without knowledge of the facts,” said Attorney General Cuomo. “Such conduct is a fraud upon our courts and a slap in the face of New Yorkers struggling to get by in this economy. My office will continue to root out these practices so homeowners receive the full protections afforded by our judicial system.”
Recent reports indicate that employees of these mortgage servicers routinely signed affidavits submitted in foreclosure proceedings without personal knowledge of the underlying facts or verification of loan file information, and without even reading the documents they signed. This practice, known as “robo-signing,” has tainted the integrity of the foreclosure process by which homeowners in New York lose their homes. Bank of America, JP Morgan Chase and GMAC Mortgage announced that they were temporarily halting pending foreclosures, while Wells Fargo has not suspended foreclosures despite the deficiencies uncovered.
Attorney General Cuomo is calling on these mortgage servicers to submit documents and information to his office concerning how foreclosure documents are prepared, verified, attested to and notarized, and how required notices are provided to New York homeowners. The letters request that the mortgage servicers stop re-filing foreclosures that had been suspended (and in Wells Fargo’s case, cease proceeding with pending foreclosures) until the Attorney General’s Office is assured that reliable and fair procedures are in place and that accurate, trustworthy documentation will be submitted to the New York courts. The letters also request that the mortgage servicers refrain from filing any new foreclosures until they can provide assurances that their procedures comply with New York law and are neither tainted nor inaccurate.
Because of the gravity of these transgressions and the high volume of foreclosures, Attorney General Cuomo is calling on all mortgage servicers engaged in “robo-signing” in New York to immediately suspend all pending foreclosure actions in the state, including evictions and foreclosure sales. Cuomo is also requesting that the mortgage servicers not file any new foreclosures until the companies correct their procedures.
Tens of thousands of New Yorkers have been devastated by the foreclosure crisis. In fact, the foreclosure rates in Nassau and Suffolk Counties rank among the ten highest in the nation. More than 60,000 New York homes are currently in foreclosure, and 130,000 New York homeowners have received pre-foreclosure notices this year after falling behind on their mortgage payments.
In addition to his office’s review of Bank of America, Chase, Wells Fargo and GMAC Mortgage/Ally, Attorney General Cuomo is working with other state attorneys general, banking regulators and other interested parties to assess the veracity of servicers’ foreclosure filings and ensure the fairness and accuracy of their processes.
Attorney General Cuomo advises New York homeowners who are facing foreclosure proceedings to do the following:
Contact the court to find out the status of your foreclosure proceeding.
Seek representation or advice from a qualified attorney. If necessary, contact your local bar association or legal services office for a referral. If you are unable to retain counsel, carefully review any documents filed thus far with the court to ensure their accuracy.
If you have not done so already, immediately contact your lender or servicer to discuss available alternatives to foreclosure such as a loan modification.
Consult with a government-approved housing counseling agency. To find counselors approved by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) in your local area, call 800-569-4287 or visit www.hud.gov. A list of housing counselors also can be found via the NYS Banking Department at www.banking.state.ny.us.
Call HOPE NOW at 1-888-995-HOPE. HOPE NOW is an alliance of housing counselors, mortgage companies, investors and other mortgage market participants that provides free foreclosure prevention assistance.
If you live in New York City, call 311 to schedule free foreclosure counseling sessions at the Center for New York City Neighborhoods.
New York homeowners who believe their homes were foreclosed based upon false or inaccurate documents filed in court by their lender or servicer should seek representation from an attorney. They may also file a complaint with the New York Attorney General’s Bureau of Consumer Frauds & Protection by calling 800-771-7755 or visiting www.ag.ny.gov.
The investigation, led by Special Deputy Attorney General for Consumer Frauds & Protection Joy Feigenbaum, is being handled by Special Counsel Mary Alestra, Assistant Attorney General Brian Montgomery and Deputy Bureau Chief Jeffrey Powell of the Bureau of Consumer Frauds & Protection under the direction of Executive Deputy Attorney General for Economic Justice Maria Vullo and Deputy Attorney General for Economic Justice Michael Berlin.
INDEX NO. 16 150-2008
SUPREME COURT – STATE OF NEW YORK
I.A.S. PART 17 – SUFFOLK COUNTY
P R E S E N T :
Hon. PETER H. MAYER
Justice of the Supreme Court
BENEFICIAL HOMEOWNER SERVICE CORPORATION,
TODD L. MASOTTI
In this foreclosure action, the plaintiff filed a summons and complaint on April 24, 2008, which essentially alleges that the defendant-homeowner(s), Todd L. Masotti and Michelle Casey, defaulted in payments with regard to a mortgage, dated September 20,2004, in the principal amount of $311,842.43, for the premises located at 38 Crestwood Lane, Farmingville, New York. Although the plaintiff annexes a power of attorney permitting “LPS Default Solutions, Inc.” to act on its behalf, the affidavit of merit is by an employee of “Lender Processing Services, Inc.” According to the court’s database, a foreclosure settlement conference was held on June 23,2010. The plaintiff now seeks a default order of reference and requests amendment of the caption to remove the “Doe” defendants. The plaintiffs application is denied for the following reasons:
(1) failure to submit evidentiary proof of compliance with the requirements of CPLR 3215(f), including but not limited to a proper affidavit of facts by the plaintiff [or by plaintiffs agent, provided there is proper proof in evidentiary form of such agency relationship], or a complaint verified by the plaintiff and not merely by an attorney or non-party, such as a servicer, who has no personal knowledge; and
(2) failure to submit an affidavit in support, which is in a properly sworn form, as required by CPLR 15 2 3 0 9( b) .
This constitutes the Decision and Order of the Court.
Dated: August 6, 2010
“They have no personal knowledge of the issue and they are supposed to. That is what these judges rely on when they issue judgments against homeowners,” said Matt Englett, KEL Law Firm.
(I-Newswire) October 2, 2010 – CENTRAL FLORIDA — Thousands of Floridians may soon be rescued from foreclosure. Last week KEL Attorneys filed a motion with the Supreme Court asking Chief Justice Canady for a stay on foreclosure cases being handled by law firms currently under investigation for document fraud.
The State Attorney General launched a formal investigation against Shapiro & Fishman, Marshall Watson and David Stern last month. Lenders hired the three big law firms, which handle 80 percent of all foreclosures in Florida, now accused of fraudulently signing documents to speed up the foreclosure process.
“They have no personal knowledge of the issue and they are supposed to. That is what these judges rely on when they issue judgments against homeowners,” said Matt Englett, KEL Law Firm.
Attorney Matt Englett has testimony from one of the people hired to just sign documentation. He describes a conference room with thousands of documents. He testified he would sign one affidavit after another, taking no more than a minute on each one.
“Time is money. The longer it takes to get the property back and sell the property, the more money they lose on that loan,” Englett said.
Englett hopes the motion will stop wrongful foreclosure it its tracks. He estimates that tens of thousands of homes may have already been wrongfully foreclosed upon, and about 80-percent of pending foreclosure actions contains fraudulent documents.
If Englett is successful, homeowners who have already lost their homes could collect thousands from their lender. And for the hundreds of others in Central Florida in the middle of foreclosure, it would buy time to save their home.
About KEL Attorneys:
Our law firm has had the honor to represent clients all over the country. We are also licensed in federal courts throughout the country and we are able to represent your case in state or federal court. In either venue, rest assured that our law firm will pursue your case aggressively and in the most cost effective manner possible.
We are not just your ordinary law firm, we operate as a full-service law firm that provides legal services nationwide and have a strong presence, with a law firm in Orlando and a law firm in Tampa. Due to size, legal expertise and handling client matters for over ten years, we can handle any legal issue or situation you may have.
Company Contact Information KEL Attorneys
111 N Magnolia Ave
Phone : 4075131900
Dear Judge XXXXX, I write you, and the other presiding and administrative judges of the Ohio Courts of Common Pleas, to draw your attention to an issue that may be of interest to you.
As you are aware, when a plaintiff in a foreclosure case moves for default or summary judgment, it will attach an affidavit from the lender or mortgage servicer attesting to the ownership and default status of loan. During the last week, questions have arisen about the validity of the foreclosure affidavits filed by a large servicer, GMAC Mortgage. GMAC (also operating as “Ally Financial”) issued a press release on September 20, 2010 announcing that it had directed certain of its vendors to suspend evictions and REO closings because of “a potential issue that was raised in a number of existing foreclosures challenging the internal procedure we used for executing one or more judicially required forms.”
A number of media outlets, including The Washington Post and The New York Times, reported on this statement. The news articles suggest that GMAC’s actions are related to a Florida deposition and a Maine deposition given by one of its employees, Jeffrey Stephan. Mr. Stephan signed thousands of foreclosure affidavits for GMAC, but in his depositions stated that he does not have knowledge of how the information in the affidavit is determined (Deposition of Jeffrey Stephan, June 7, 2010, p 30), does not know how the accuracy of the information is verified (Id.), does not review the exhibits attached to the affidavit (Id., p 54), does not read every paragraph of the affidavit (Id. p 61), and does not have the affidavit notarized in his presence (Id., p 56).
The depositions were not taken by my office, so I do not opine on their accuracy, but I wanted to draw your attention to this issue. At least one court has found that filing affidavits that falsely claim personal knowledge is a violation of the Ohio Consumer Sales Practices Act when filed in connection with consumer transactions. Midland Funding, LLC v. Brent, 644 F. Supp. 2d 961, 977 (N.D. Ohio, 2009).
More broadly, I urge you as administrators to share this letter with your colleagues and urge them to exercise caution when approving any foreclosure orders involving GMAC. Further, I encourage you to consider whether additional administrative procedures need to be established to protect homeowners who are facing the threat of foreclosure. Issues similar to those surrounding GMAC have arisen in Ohio. For example, my office filed an amicus brief in an appellate case where a foreclosure affidavit averred that it was executed in Florida but the jurat and notarization stated that it was executed in New Jersey. The 2nd District Court of Appeals ruled that the trial court did not abuse its discretion by striking the faulty affidavit. HSBC Bank USA v. Thompson, 2010-Ohio-4158.
Please feel free to contact me or my Consumer Protection Section Chief, Susan Choe, at 614.466.1305, if we can be of any assistance regarding this letter.
Ohio Attorney General
Sarah Lynn, Deputy Chief Counsel, Ohio Attorney General
Susan Choe, Consumer Protection Section Chief, Ohio Attorney General
Chase Home Finance, LLC
Lender Processing Services
Long Beach Mortgage
Washington Mutual Bank
Action Date: September 30, 2010
Location: New York, NY
On September 29, 2010, financial giant JP Morgan Chase announced it was suspending 56,000 foreclosures because its documents may have been “submitted without proper review.” To assist JPMorgan Chase, Fraud Digest suggests that it dismiss those actions where the Affidavits or Mortgage Assignments were signed by the following robo-signers: Beth Cottrell, Whitney Cook, Christina Trowbridge and Stacy Spohn from the Chase Home Finance office in Franklin County, OH; Margaret Dalton and Barbara Hindman from the Jacksonville, FL office of JPMorgan Chase; and any of the Lender Processing Services robo-signers from the Dakota County, MN office including Christina Allen, Liquenda Allotey, Christine Anderson, Alfonzo Greene, Laura Hescott, Bethany Hood, Cecelia Knox, Topako Love, Jodi Sobotta, Eric Tate, Amy Weis and Rick Wilken. In particular, JP Morgan Chase should look at those cases where the bank has supposedly assigned mortgages to WaMu, WMALT, Long Beach Mortgage Company and NovaStar trusts years after the closing dates of these trusts. The number of questionable or fraudulent documents is likely to be much closer to 560,000 than to 56,000, and that will only be a good beginning.
It was a very sad day for Floridians yesterday when the Florida Supreme Court issued a statement that it does not have authority to intercede while a fraud investigation is pending. Although we may not agree with the decision, we must respect procedures that must be followed.
Florida, do not quit what you are doing because there are many states that we must continue to focus on. Judges need to put themselves in the homeowners situation and understand we cannot make these fraudulent documents up. These documents are sworn statements, under perjury of law and notarized. As officers of the court they must be held accountable. No ifs, ands, buts or suppose here. These are not errors.
Rest assured that The Florida Bar still has many pending investigations with these foreclosure firms and they have authority overseeing the misconduct of their members.
I am your voice, America. I share your fears, read your concerns and do try my best to reach out to you.
SUPREME COURT – STATE OF NEW YORK
I.A.S. PART XIII SUFFOLK COUNTY
HON. MELVYN TANENBAUM
US BANK N.A.,
ORLANDO BORJA ET AL.,
ORDEREDthat this motion by plaintiff seeking an order granting summary judgment, amending the caption of the action and appointing a referee to compute the sums due and owing to plaintiff in this mortgage foreclosure action is granted.
The Court has repeatedly directed plaintiffs counsel, Steven J. Baum, P.c., to submit proposed orders of reference in proper form and counsel’s office has repeatedly failed to comply.
Accordingly, plaintiff’s counsel is hereby directed to submit a proposed order for the appointment of a referee in the forn required by this Court. Any further failure to comply with this order shall be deemed wilful.
Supreme Court of the State of New York, held
in and for the County of Kings, at the
courthouse at 360 Adams Street
Justice of the Supreme Court
MORTGAGE ELECTRONIC REGISTRATION SYSTEMS INC.,
To cancel the claim for the surplus monies on the above Index Number 1694 1/04 by the Claimant Merrill Lynch Mortgage Lending, Inc. Attorney Steven J. Baum. P.C. and to grant me, Bibi Roopan, the surplus monies on deposit in this matter. for the reasons that Neither Wilshire Credit Corporation, who owned the second mortgage to the premise commonly known as 14 Cypress Court Brooklyn, NY 11208, nor its parent company, Merrill Lynch Mortgage Lending. were present at the foreclosure and therefore did not claim their share of the foreclosure at that time (Notice of Appearance). En addition. Wilshire Credit Corporation transferred the mortgage loan to Strategic Recovery Group, LLC, db Aquara Loan Services, Its Successors and/or Assigns, P.O. Box 61026 Anaheim, CA 92803-6126 on October 29.2008 and on July 6,2010, Strategic Recovery Group sent me a letter to settle in full for $30,497.10.
Pending the hearing of this motion it is ordered that to cancel & stop the claim for the surplus monies on the above index Number 16941/04 by Claimant Merrill Lynch Mortgage Lending, Inc, Attorney Steven J. Baum, PC and for the surplus monies to stay at the courts until judgement by the judge and also that Merrill Lynch Mortgage Lending
The Florida Constitution and court rules did not give the Chief Justice authority to intercede in pending cases involving attorney misconduct, or to investigate allegations of fraud or misconduct in foreclosure cases. The fraud cases must first beadjudicated in trial courts.
Congressman Grayson has asked the Florida Bar to take action.
Florida Default Law Group has been added as the fourth law firm under investigation along the Law offices of David J. Stern, Shapiro & Fishman and Law Office of Marshall Watson.
Thank you to our friends at American United For Justice for providing this mind blowing audio on a conference Mr. Stern held for DJSP investors. These are some of the highlights of this conference in no particular order. Read it carefully and don’t miss the audio below.
“We take em’ from cradle to grave.”
David Stern, President and CEO of DJSP Enterprises, Inc.
His baseball pitch-
One of my favorite questions from one of my believers, one of my investors on the first call-in, “What inning are we in? If this was a baseball game, what inning are we in?” And my response is, we’re only in the 2nd inning. We still have 3 innings of foreclosures left, and after the foreclosures, we have 3 innings of REO liquidation and as the REO liquidations pan out, we get into the re-fi and we get into the origination.
[ . . . ]
So yeah, we’re in the 2nd inning, but guess what – when we get to the 9th inning, it’s going to be a doubleheader and we got a second game coming. So when people say, “Oh my God, the economy is bad!” I’m like, “Oh my God, it’s great.” I mean, I hate to hear people are losing their homes and credit isn’t available and credit is such that they can’t re-fi, but if you are in our niche, it’s what we do and it’s what we want to see.
Crystal ball admission here-
No matter what Obama rolls out, there is no stopping this inflow of continued defaults that we anticipate to go for another two or three years late behind that is the math of REO’s that need to be liquidated and at the end of the day, the cycle will start again. Well, foreclosure volumes through 2012 are expected to increase dramatically and remain at high levels going on till 2017?
“Increase in Modification Services… This is what Obama rolled out. . Home Affordable Modification Program. Unfortunately, it’s what…folks if you do what I do…unfortunately it is failing. We have the opportunity to handle the modification or where we do have a modification, we get to charge for title search, we get to charge for title exam, we get to charge for doc prep we get a 600.00 dollar incentive fee?
And at the end of the day when it’s all said, 66,000 have been done to date… of the 66,000 more than 20% have failed. So we can get the file in, we start with the foreclosure, we bill for the foreclosure, we get the mod in, we make the incentive, we doc prep, we get the title, the mod is done and guess what? It falls out. It all comes back to foreclosure land and we get to start the foreclosure all over again! So no matter what the Obama Administration brings our way. We have found a way to create a profit center on it and that I think is part of that success!”
THIS IS HUGE! Coming in… Florida might halt all Foreclosures…While pending investigation of MILLS!
Do what is right and protect these families. This involves children that do not understand what is going on. I lost my home to this fraud and they do not have to go through my stressful experience. You set new rules and these foreclosure mills continued to ignore you. What is it going to take?
I revere the law, the judicial system, and the legal profession and will at all times in my professional
and private lives uphold the dignity and esteem of each.
I will further my profession’s devotion to public service and to the public good.
I will strictly adhere to the spirit as well as the letter of my profession’s code of ethics, to the extent
that the law permits and will at all times be guided by a fundamental sense of honor, integrity, and fair
play. I will not knowingly misstate, distort, or improperly exaggerate any fact or opinion and will not
improperly permit my silence or inaction to mislead anyone.
I will conduct myself to assure the just, speedy and inexpensive determination of every action and
resolution of every controversy.
I will abstain from all rude, disruptive, disrespectful, and abusive behavior and will at all times act
with dignity, decency, and courtesy.
I will respect the time and commitments of others.
I will be diligent and punctual in communicating with others and in fulfilling commitments. I will exercise independent judgment and will not be governed by a client’s ill will or deceit.
My word is my bond.
Oath of Admission to The Florida Bar
The general principles which should ever control the lawyer in the practice of the legal profession
are clearly set forth in the following oath of admission to the Bar, which the lawyer is sworn on
admission to obey and for the willful violation to which disbarment may be had.
“I do solemnly swear:
“I will support the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of the State of Florida;
“I will maintain the respect due to courts of justice and judicial officers;
“I will not counsel or maintain any suit or proceedings which shall appear to me to be unjust, nor
any defense except such as I believe to be honestly debatable under the law of the land;
“I will employ for the purpose of maintaining the causes confided to me such means only as are
consistent with truth and honor, and will never seek to mislead the judge or jury by any artifice or false
statement of fact or law;
“I will maintain the confidence and preserve inviolate the secrets of my clients, and will accept no
compensation in connection with their business except from them or with their knowledge and approval;
“I will abstain from all offensive personality and advance no fact prejudicial to the honor or reputation
of a party or witness, unless required by the justice of the cause with which I am charged;
“I will never reject, from any consideration personal to myself, the cause of the defenseless or
oppressed, or delay anyone’s cause for lucre or malice. So help me God.”
SUPREME COURT – STATE OF NEW YORK
I.A.S. PART XXXVI SUFFOLK COUNTY
HON. PAUL J. BAISLEY, JR., J.S.C.
GMAC v. JOSEPH A. REMKUS
The note itself reflects that it was executed and delivered by the mortgagor to E*Trade. MERS is not mentioned in the note and is given no rights therein. Accordingly, the court is unable to discern from the submissions a factual or legal basis for MERS’ purported assignment of‘the underlying note to plaintiff. Moreover, even if the purported assignment were valid in all respects, plaintiffs submissions establish that at the time of the commencement of this action plaintiff was not the owner of the mortgage and note sued upon.
The Court notes that the questionable validity of the purported assignment is further reflected by the fact that it appears to have been executed on behalf of MERS by the same person, Jeffrey Stephan, who executed the “affidavit of merit” on behalf of the plaintiff in this action.
In light of the foregoing, the motion to appoint a referee is denied.
Proposed ex-parte order marked “not signed.”
Dated: July 28, 2008
Contiune reading the NY Case below…I have others similar
Washington Post Staff Writers
Wednesday, September 22, 2010; 9:22 PM
The nation’s overburdened foreclosure system is riddled with faked documents, forged signatures and lenders who take shortcuts reviewing borrower’s files, according to court documents and interviews with attorneys, housing advocates and company officials.
I go through hundreds of cases each week and I have been saving this one for a rainy day. We’ll it’s raining today.
SUPREME COURT – STATE OF NEW YORK I.A.S. PART XXXVI SUFFOLK COUNTY PRESENT: HON. PAUL J. BAISLEY, JR., J.S.C.
DATED: MAY 10. 2010
The Court is at a loss to understand how a purported “correcting assignment” can be executed eight days before the assignment it is purporting to correct. Moreover, the Court is at a loss as to the identity of the true holder of the mortgage at the time of the commencement of the action (irrespective of any arguments regarding the validity of the purported assignment(s) by MERS as nominee of the original mortgagee; see, for example, US Bank, N.A. II Collymore, 200 NY Slip Op 09019 [2d Dept 2009]), While it is well established that any issues as to a plaintiff’s standing to commence a foreclosure action are waived by the defendant-mortgagor’s failure to appear and answer (HSBC Bank v Dammond, 59 A03d 679 l2d Sept 2009]), the contradictory and conflicting submissions on this motion implicate far more than the more issue of “standing.” Indeed, the submissions appear to have been drafted with utter disregard for the facts, or for counsel’s responsibilities as an officer of the Court, and border on the fraudulent.
In the the circumstances, the motion, which is unsupported either factually or legally, is denied in all respects. Moreover, in light of the failure of the movant to establish that any party was in fact the holder of the mortgage (and the underlying note, see KLuge v Fugm:y, 145 AD2d [2d Sept 1988J) at the time of the commencement of this action – an omission that in the circumstances may not be corrected by mere amendment — the Court, on its own motion, hereby directs the plaintiff to show cause why the complaint should not be dismissed; and further directs Steven J. Baum, P.c. and Heather A. Johnson, Esq., the attorney of record for the plaintiff in this action and the scrivener of the affirmation referred to above, to appear before the undersigned on June 24, 2010 at II :00 a.m. to show cause why sanctions should not be imposed on plaintiff and/or its attorney(s) for frivolous conduct pursuant to 22 NYCRR §130-1.1 (c).
Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) moves under Article 11 of the Real Property Tax Law (RPTL) and within the limitations period set forth in RPTL § 1137 for an order setting aside a deed issued pursuant to a tax foreclosure proceeding under Article 11. The operative facts are uncomplicated and undisputed.
The central question presented in the instant matter are the rights, if any, Wilmington Finance and/or MERS gained under RPTL §I 125(a) by virtue of these references in the Mortgage.
To accept MERS’ argument would require the County to read every mortgage from A to Z to make sure there are no “Nominees” of the Lender entitled to notice of tax foreclosure in lieu of or in addition to the Lender.
Second, the Mortgage from which MERS derives its claim of right to statutory notice under RPTL § 1125 is by no means crystal clear as to what MERS’ involvement as “Nominee” requires after the recording of the mortgage. Indeed, MERS does not explain what role the “Nominee” plays in the recording of a mortgage, or thereafter, except perhaps as something akin to a power-of-attorney or agent, albeit with independent standing. If the later is the case, it is incumbent upon the “Nominee” to state its status as one due notice in the separate declaration of interest form required under section RPTL §1126, which the County does have a categorical duty to read.
According, the application of MERS shall be, and the same hereby is, denied.
Further,it appears that there is a conflict of interest in that MERS is both a plaintiff and defendant, at least as far as the original caption shows.
On November 7, 2007, Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems, Inc., (MERS), as nominee for Lend America, assigned the mortgage to Central Mortgage Company (CMC). The assignment states that November 10, 2006 mortgage was made by Defendant Caughman to MERS as nominee for Lend America.
The caption of the action lists MERS, ,as nominee for Lend America, as the plaintiff. Defendants are Sherri Caughman, MERS, as nominee for Lend America, John Doe and Jane Doe.
In this motion, plaintiff seeks an order striking Defendant Caughman’s answer; the appointment of a Referee to compute the amount due and owing and the amendment of the caption. The amended caption would substitute CMC as plaintiff, in place and instead of MERS, as nominee for Lend America. In the amended caption, Sherri Caughmann would remain as a defendant, MERS, as nominee for Lend America, would be added as a defendant and Mr. Caughman and Vicki Douglas were added as defendants.
In support of its motion, plaintiff argues that it is entitled to summary judgment because it has made out a prima facie case and that defendant’s answer does not show that there are any issues of fact which would warrant denial of its motion.
Defendants, in opposing the motion, contends that MERS has no standing, as a nominee, to bring action because its status as nominee is limited and does not give it the power to transfer or assign ownership rights in property on behalf of the party for which it is acting as nominee. They add that MERS has said that it is not in possession of the original promissory note and, as such it allegations are inconsistent with its exhibits. Thus, defendants conclude, this raises issues of fact.
Continuing, defendants conted that the mortgage and note involved here were issued in Violation of the Federal Truth in Lending Act in that plaintiff did not provide them with the disclosures required under 15USC1639(a)(1) and (a)(2)(A) and 12 CFR 226.32. These violations, say defendants, leaves them with a “continuing right” to rescind the deal, which they claim to do in their opposition.
Upon review, defendants’ motion is granted. Neither MERS nor CMC has shown that it had the mortgage and note at the time the action was commenced. Further,it appears that there is a conflict of interest in that MERS is both a plaintiff and defendant, at least as far as the original caption shows.
The parties are directed to appear before this court on May 4, 2010 at 9:30 am for a conference.
I am working on a special project & need your help to gather as many MERS Assignments as we can possibly get.
What is especially needed are the Certifying Officers signing these assignments for MERS. I don’t care if it’s old, new, signed, undated, unmarked, lender has gone bankrupt ages ago…I just want them ALL!
In support of its standing to maintain the action when the action was commenced is an “Assignment of Mortgage” executed by MERS as nominee of Home Funds Direct which includes a provision indicating the assignment is TOGETHER with the bond or note. . . ” . Not only has plaintiff failed to establish MERS’ right as a nominee for purposes of recording to assign the mortgage, more importantly, no effort has been made to establish the authority of MERS, a non-party to the note, to transfer its ownership. Without establishing ownership of the note at the time the action was instituted, the plaintiff lacked a right to maintain the action.
Here, there are no allegations or evidence that MERS was the owner of the note such that it could assign it to LPP. Thus, the assignment from MERS was insufficient to confer ownership of the note to LPP and it has no standing to bring this action. Kluge v. F umz ~1, 45 AD2d at 538 (holding that the assignment of a mortgage without transfer of the debt is a nullity); Johnson v. Melnikoff, 20 Misc3d 1142(A), “2 (Sup Ct Kings Co. 2008), n. 2, afr, 65 AD3d 519 (2d Dept 20 1 Oj(noting that assignments by MERS which did not include the underlying debt were a legal nullity); m e Elect ro pic Registration Svstem v, Coakley, 41 AD3d 674 (2d Dept 2007)(holding that MERS had standing to bring foreclosure proceeding based on evidence that MERS was the lawful holder of the promissory note and the mortgage).
Thus, even assuming arguendo that the language of the assignment from MERS to LPP could be interpreted as purporting to assign not only the mortgage but also the note, such assignment is invalid since based on the record, MERS lacked an ownership interest in the note. $ee LaSalle Bank Nat. Ass’n v. Lamv, 12 Misc3d 1191(A), “3 (Sup Ct Suffolk Co. 2006) (noting that “the mortgage is merely an incident of and collateral security for the debt and an assignment of the mortgage does not pass ownership of the debt itself ’);
Does a lender’s failure to explore options to prevent foreclosure in clear violation of Civil Code section 2923.5 affect title to foreclosed property when the property is purchased — not by a bona fide purchaser for value — but by the very lender who violated the statute?
NATURE OF THE CASE AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY
This case arises under the recently enacted Civil Code section 2923.5 which requires residential mortgage lenders to explore alternatives to foreclosure with borrowers before initiating non-judicial foreclosure proceedings
The is a Plaintiff Petition for review of cc 2923.5 regarding reversal of all violations of the act. The decision in the Appeal Court IV. Division 3 has shown no tender, no preemption etc. This goes for all people regardless if they have been foreclosed. If foreclosed with sale asking Court to review reversal for all.