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Certification battle in Ohio MERS class action heats up

Certification battle in Ohio MERS class action heats up


Lexology-

On April 23, 2012, the plaintiff in State of Ohio ex rel. David P. Joyce, Prosecuting Attorney of Geauga County Ohio v. MERSCORP, Inc., et al., N.D. Ohio Case No. 1:11-cv-02474, filed its motion seeking an order certifying the action as a class action, appointing Geauga County as class representative, and appointing plaintiff’s counsel, the New York law firm of Bernstein Liebhard LLP, as class counsel. The plaintiff argues that the case, which the plaintiff is attempting to bring on behalf of all 88 Ohio counties for relief relating to the allegedly unlawful failure of MERS and its member institutions to record millions of mortgages and mortgage assignments throughout Ohio, meets all requirements of Rule 23(a) and that certification is proper under any one of the 3 subsections of Rule 23(b). The plaintiff hopes to persuade the court that the MERS/member institution policy concerning recordation of mortgages and assignments is a “common scheme or course of conduct” that has given rise to claims “ideally suited for class certification.”

[LEXOLOGY]

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Cleveland County, Oklahoma commissioners hires firm to investigate MERS filings

Cleveland County, Oklahoma commissioners hires firm to investigate MERS filings


I am confident that many more counties will step up to the plate and demand their cut from all the revenue that has been lost due to the MERS artifice.


Norman Transcript-

Cleveland County commissioners on Monday hired a law firm to investigate whether a banking system systematically failed to pay mortgage filing fees to the county clerk.

Commissioners Rod Cleveland and Rusty Sullivan said national banking companies joined the Mortgage Electronic Registration System (MERS) Inc., a private enterprise that started in 1997, to handle records of mortgage transactions.

The problem, Cleveland said, is that “any time a mortgage is touched, any transaction at all, then there should be a filing fee paid to the county.”

[NORMAN TRANSCRIPT]

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COMPLAINT | State of Ohio, Geauga County v. MERSCORP, MERS et al., No. 11-M-001087

COMPLAINT | State of Ohio, Geauga County v. MERSCORP, MERS et al., No. 11-M-001087


IN THE COURT OF COMMON PLEAS
GEAUGA COUNTY, OHIO

STATE OF OHIO, ex.rel.
DAVID P. JOYCE
PROSECUTING ATTORNEY OF GEAUGA
COUNTY, OHIO
Courthouse Annex, 231 Main St. Suite 3A
Chardon, Ohio 44024

On behalf of Geauga County and all others similarly
situated,

Plaintiff,

v.

MERSCORP, INC.
1818 Library Street, Suite 300
Reston, Virginia 20190

and

MORTGAGE ELECTRONIC REGISTRATION
SYSTEMS, INC.
1818 Library Street, Suite 300
Reston, Virginia 20190

[…]

[ipaper docId=69166120 access_key=key-9gi3i39l3vj116tff1y height=600 width=600 /]

 

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Bernstein Liebhard Llp, With David P. Joyce, Prosecuting Attorney For Geauga County, Ohio, Announces Class Action Against MERS And Its Members

Bernstein Liebhard Llp, With David P. Joyce, Prosecuting Attorney For Geauga County, Ohio, Announces Class Action Against MERS And Its Members


October 13, 2011:  Bernstein Liebhard LLP, with David P. Joyce, Prosecuting Attorney for Geauga County, Ohio, announced today that a lawsuit has been filed in the Geauga County Court of Common Pleas by Plaintiff Geauga County, on behalf of itself and all other Ohio counties, (the “Class”) against MERSCORP, Inc., Mortgage Electronic Registration System, Inc. (“MERS”), and MERS’s members (collectively, “Defendants”).  

In the class action complaint, Plaintiff Geauga County, on behalf of itself and all other Ohio counties, alleges violations of Ohio state law arising from Defendants’ failure to record intermediate mortgage assignments in, and pay the attendant county recording fees to, Ohio county recording offices.  In failing to record, Defendants systematically broke chains of title throughout Ohio counties’ public land records by creating “gaps” due to missing mortgage assignments they failed to record, or by recording patently false and/or misleading mortgage assignments.  Defendants’ purposeful failure to record has eviscerated the accuracy of Ohio counties’ public land records, rendering them unreliable and unverifiable — damage to public land records that may never be entirely remedied. 

Ohio’s recording laws have been in place for nearly 200 years.

 

The case is captioned State of Ohio, ex rel. David P. Joyce Prosecuting Attorney of Geauga County, Ohio v. MERSCORP, Inc., et al., No. 11-M-001087.  For more information, please contact either Stanley D. Bernstein at (212) 779-1414, bernstein@bernlieb.com or Christian Siebott at (212) 779-1414, siebott@bernlieb.com.

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