process service | FORECLOSURE FRAUD | by DinSFLA - Part 2

Tag Archive | "process service"

NY Judge Gives Green Light On RICO Class Action Against Law Firm in ‘Sewer Service’ Case SIKES v. MEL HARRIS & ASSOCIATES

NY Judge Gives Green Light On RICO Class Action Against Law Firm in ‘Sewer Service’ Case SIKES v. MEL HARRIS & ASSOCIATES



– against –

-et al.,

APPEARANCES: (See last page)

CHIN, Circuit Judge:

In this case, eight plaintiffs allege that a debt buying
company, a law firm, a process service company, and others
engaged in a “massive scheme to fraudulently obtain default
judgments against them and more than 100,000 other consumers in
state court. Plaintiffs allege that defendants did so by
engaging in “sewer servicer” — the practice of failing to serve a
summons and complaint and then filing a fraudulent affidavit
attesting to service. When the debtors failed to appear in court
because they did not have notice of the lawsuits, defendants
obtained default judgments against them.

Plaintiffs sue on behalf of themselves and all others
similarly situated. Their second amended complaint (the
“Complaint”) asserts claims under the Fair Debt Collection
Practices Act (the “FDCPA”)1,5 U.S.C. 5 1692 et sea., the
Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (“RICO”), 18
U.S.C. 5 1961 et sea., New York General Business Law (“GBL”) §
349, and New York Judiciary Law 5 487. Plaintiffs seek
injunctive relief, declaratory relief, and damages.
Defendants move to dismiss the Complaint pursuant to
Rules 9 (b) , 12 (b) (1) , and 12 (b) (6) of the Federal Rules of Civil
Procedure, challenging the sufficiency of every claim and the
subject matter jurisdiction of this Court. For the reasons that
follow, the motions to dismiss are denied in part and granted in

Continue below to the decision…

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© 2010-19 FORECLOSURE FRAUD | by DinSFLA. All rights reserved.

Posted in STOP FORECLOSURE FRAUDComments (1)




Debbie Bennett, Appellant, v. Christiana Bank & Trust Company, etc., Appellee.

Case No. 3D09-2653.

District Court of Appeal of Florida, Third District.

Opinion filed December 1, 2010.

Joseph J. Pappacoda, (Fort Lauderdale) for appellant.
Florida Foreclosure Attorneys, PLLC, and Klarika J. Caplano, (Clearwater) for appellee.


Debbie Bennett appeals the denial of her emergency motion to vacate a final foreclosure judgment. Based on the record and our conclusion that there was no personal service of process on Ms. Bennett, we reverse the judgment and remand for further proceedings.

On November 20, 2008, Christiana Bank & Trust Company filed an action to foreclose the mortgage on Ms. Bennett’s home. The plaintiff’s attorneys, Golson Felberbaum Law Firm, hired Pro-Vest LLC, a process service company, to serve Ms. Bennett. Christopher P. Mas, a Pro-Vest employee, filed a verified return of service on December 29, 2008. The return indicated that individual service was accomplished on December 20 at 4:13 p.m. The return further indicated that “DEFENDANT REFUSED TO DISCLOSE MILITARY STATUS; PROPERTY IS NOT A MOBILE HOME. I asked the person spoken to if the person served is married and I received a negative reply.”

Continue Below…

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© 2010-19 FORECLOSURE FRAUD | by DinSFLA. All rights reserved.

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FL 3rd DCA Appeals Court: “Process Service” OPELLA vs. Bayview Loan Servicing, LLC

FL 3rd DCA Appeals Court: “Process Service” OPELLA vs. Bayview Loan Servicing, LLC

No. 3D09-2921
Lower Tribunal No. 09-12657
Steven Ray Opella,

Bayview Loan Servicing, LLC.,

An Appeal from the Circuit Court for Miami-Dade County, Thomas S. Wilson, Jr., Judge.

Steven Ray Opella, in proper person.
Popkin & Rosaler, Brian L. Rosaler, Richard P. Cohn and Deborah Posner,
(Deerfield Beach), for appellee.


Steven Ray Opella appeals from a final summary judgment of foreclosure
entered in favor of Bayview Loan Servicing, LLC., claiming that he was never
served with process. Because the record unequivocally confirms that Opella was
neither served with process nor waived service, we reverse.

We also direct the clerk to forward a copy of this opinion to the Florida Bar for
consideration of conduct in violation of the Rules Regulating the Florida Bar.


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© 2010-19 FORECLOSURE FRAUD | by DinSFLA. All rights reserved.

Posted in STOP FORECLOSURE FRAUDComments (3)



Lynn E. Szymoniak, Esq., Editor, Fraud Digest, November 11, 2010

When men and women leave the military, the business community often does not reward them for their years of service with good-paying jobs. It is not surprising that veterans are among the Americans who are struggling to stave off foreclosure. Like many others, they are hoping that the bank will re-work the terms of their loans and help them through tough economic times – in the same way that the government helped the banks. They are hopeful that the banks will honor the mandate of Fannie and Freddie and offer meaningful re-working of the terms of their loans. Perhaps their 9% adjustable rates will be reduced to a 5% fixed rate. Perhaps the loan balance will be reduced to reflect the loss in value caused by the mortgage meltdown. Perhaps they can stay in their homes, because it would make economic sense for the bank to re-work their loans instead of forcing them out only to sell the house at less than 60% of the loan balance.

In this foreclosure struggle, these veterans are given no respect by the foreclosure mills. The Florida Attorney General has found that in thousands of cases involving members of the military, proof of service of process has been falsified. In thousands of other cases, former military families cannot get legal representation because they cannot afford to retain lawyers, but have just enough income to disqualify them for free representation through legal services programs. Without legal representation, they are left on their own to identify bank fraud. They must prove that the documents being presented by the mortgage-backed trusts are fraudulent and that the banks are fabricating evidence to force them out of their homes. Their years of military training and service did not prepare them for this particular battle.

Instead of a rocket-docket that forces military families out of their homes with no more than a 90-second hearing and a rubber stamp of the bank practices, there could be special measures taken in cases involving military families. The banks could be required to engage in mandated (but most often ignored) meaningful mediation. The banks could be required to present to the Courts a one-page straightforward “before and after” comparison that plainly shows the revised loan terms that were offered to these families.

Where no substantial effort was made by the banks, courts could appoint Special Masters to carefully examine the bank documents to make sure that banks were not relying on documents that had been fabricated just to speed the foreclosure. Where such documents were used to beat military families in foreclosure, courts could sanction the banks by requiring substantial concessions to meaningfully penalize the wrong-doing. Some restaurants and area businesses offer a free sandwich to veterans on Veterans Day.

© 2010-19 FORECLOSURE FRAUD | by DinSFLA. All rights reserved.

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Fraud in foreclosure summons a disturbing trend

Fraud in foreclosure summons a disturbing trend

CALAMITY Summonses are being misplaced or forged by servers CAUSES Critics say sloppiness and fraud leading to sudden spike

Posted: October 22, 2010 – 12:00am

The foreclosure case against Patrick Jeffs was thrown out of court when a Jacksonville judge ruled that the summons to inform him of the lawsuit was counterfeit.

Mark Browne was in Iraq when a process server tried to give his mother in New Mexico a summons to inform him that his house in Jacksonville was being foreclosed on. She didn’t accept it, but the server signed a document that said she did. A judge threw that out, too.

Nancy Rush sold her Jacksonville condo in March, walking away poorer after the short sale and was getting on with her life when her phone rang with unlikely news: She was in foreclosure. A week after she unloaded the unit at Kendall Town in Arlington, a Jacksonville judge ordered the home sold at auction to settle a $190,000 mortgage debt, even though Rush had never received a summons saying she was being sued. “I didn’t even know there was a court date,” Rush said. “It scared the crap out of me.”

Even the summons, the simple but important legal notice required to inform homeowners that they are being foreclosed on, has not been immune to the massive problems surrounding what has become known in Florida and across the nation as the foreclosure mess.

The Times-Union has reviewed documents where the same name with obviously different signatures was used to certify that papers were served to the homeowner.

While there is no simple way to know how often every type of irregularity occurs, there is documentation showing a sharp rise in one narrow area of concern.

Instances where summonses entrusted to servers have been reported as lost, once fairly rare, have skyrocketed, making it harder to document the fate of important paperwork. From barely more than 100 annually six years ago, more than 2,000 summonses have been lost in Duval County in each of the last two years.

Critics attribute the problems to both sloppiness and fraud.

Tammie Lou Kapusta, a paralegal in the office of David Stern, the foreclosure law firm at the center of much of the investigations, described the serving process as “a complete mess” during a recent deposition. Renters were served rather than property owners, Kapusta told the Florida Attorney General’s Office. An affidavit of service – the legal document required to verify that the summons was served properly – would be filed when the summons hadn’t been served, she said.

© 2010-19 FORECLOSURE FRAUD | by DinSFLA. All rights reserved.

Posted in sewer service, STOP FORECLOSURE FRAUDComments (1)

Full Deposition Transcript of Mary Cordova: Law Offices of David J. Stern/ GZ Gissen & Zawyer Process Service Inc.

Full Deposition Transcript of Mary Cordova: Law Offices of David J. Stern/ GZ Gissen & Zawyer Process Service Inc.

5 I do know we have to bill the clients in advance. It
6 wouldn’t be after the fact. From what I recall it would
7 be at least four people that were being served. That’s
8 the person being served, their unknown spouse, Mary Jane
9 and John Doe. So it’s forty-five dollars times four.
10 That’s the amount that we would do before they got
11 served or not, regardless if John Doe was served or the
12 unknown spouse was served.
13 Q It would still be a hundred and eighty
14 dollars?
15 A Right. That’s what I remember.
16 Q What did you think about that?
17 A I thought that was a little unfair. I felt
18 like I wanted to question why. I kind of got the
19 impression from my trainers that we don’t ask questions,
20 we just do what we are told. There was really no
21 handbook during my training as to which clients are
22 billed. I would sit with each training and — I’m
23 trying to remember. It’s been a year.
24 Q That’s okay.
25 A We didn’t have a manual so I was trying to

1 understand why they bill clients differently. I never
2 really got an explanation. I just typed really fast and
3 that’s why I was hired.
4 Q Were you ever aware that Stern had an
5 ownership interest in G&Z?

6 A No.
7 Q Besides process serving did G&Z offer any
8 other services? Were there skip tracers in there?
9 A There were skip tracers, yes.
10 Q Were there investigators?
11 A Private investigators.
12 Q Did David Stern utilize them as well to the
13 best of your knowledge?
14 A Yes. They had an office right next to the
15 input department of about three or four individuals that
16 were skip tracers. I think they had one private
17 investigator. He was an older man. I don’t recall his
18 name.

19 Q How did you become aware that Stern was using
20 them as well?
21 A Because when I was introduced during my
22 interview and after I got hired they said this is our
23 skip trace department and these are private
24 investigator/skip tracers. That’s how I was introduced,
25 by title.


9 Q So how come you were there only for two
10 months?
11 A I was there only two months because I had to
12 sign a paper that said — I wish I had that paper. They
13 gave out a paper to all employees saying if you don’t
14 sign this paper you’re pretty much considered fired.
15 Don’t even bother coming back to work if you don’t sign
16 it.
17 Q Was it a confidentiality agreement?
18 A Something like that, yeah.
19 Q What was in it that made you not want to sign
20 it?
21 A I wish I had a copy of it.
22 Q I wish you did too.
23 A It’s in my email somewhere. I didn’t have
24 internet at work the past couple of days.
25 Q You have a copy of it?

1 A I have a copy somewhere in my email, yeah.
2 Q Would you send it to me?
3 A Yes, I can send it.

13 Q Okay. That makes sense. So you basically
14 only worked with the night people and didn’t have that
15 much contact with the day people?
16 A I didn’t have that much contact other than
17 when I was training and in that thirty minute gap when
18 everyone is pretty much wrapping it up.
19 Q Did you ever hear anything or did you ever
20 notice anything that was to you made you feel
21 uncomfortable about doing work over there, specifically
22 with Stern’s office besides the four names on every
23 complaint?
24 A Well, not with Stern but the way G&Z was
25 handling. For instance, before I got hired I looked at

1 G&Z’s website and the part where they said they use
2 private investigators and skip tracers, it said that we
3 have fully licensed private investigators. There was
4 one guy Michael Gold and I mentioned him in that letter,
5 that was a skip tracer but he wasn’t licensed. He was
6 still going to school. The only licensed private
7 investigator that I recall was Ira and Michelle.
8 He was talking to a lady that I think only
9 spoke Spanish. There was a language barrier. He was
10 kind of bullying her. His tone of voice was well we
11 need to serve these papers. He was acting as if he was
12 a private investigator. He’s even announced himself as
13 a private investigator. He’s right next to me in the
14 other office and I just felt a little uncomfortable that
15 he’s claiming to be that and he’s not. He was asking
16 for her address and saying we have to do this and saying
17 we’ll serve it at your place of work if we need to. He
18 was really —
19 Q Bullying her?
20 A Bullying her into getting information. I just
21 kind of felt bad for the lady that he was talking to.
22 Q Nothing else about Stern?
23 A No. It was more about G&Z.
24 MS. CLARKSON: This is a two-page memo. It
25 looks like it was sent to Duane. Enter that as

1 Exhibit B. There was a letter dated September 9,
2 2009 that we’ll enter as exhibit C.
4 Q Mary, are those copies that we can keep?
5 A You can keep those. Actually, I have copies
6 on my little hard drive.
7 Q Mary, you indicated you were there
8 approximately two months at G&Z. Can you tell us why
9 you left, under what circumstances did you leave?
10 A Because I did not agree to sign that paper
11 that everyone had to sign.
12 Q That’s the only reason?
13 A That was it.
14 Q Did somebody come to you and say you must sign
15 it or else you have to leave?
16 A It was a group meeting. It was said that
17 everyone has to sign it. Don’t even bother working here
18 if you don’t. They told everyone that they had to sign.
19 Q Did others leave?
20 A No.
21 Q At that point in time?
22 A No.
23 Q You were the only one?
24 A I was the only one to my knowledge. I think
25 the environment from the impression I got at G&Z was

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Lender Processing Services LPS and ProVest: Resemblance is uncanny

© 2010-19 FORECLOSURE FRAUD | by DinSFLA. All rights reserved.

Posted in STOP FORECLOSURE FRAUDComments (3)

NY SUPREME COURT finds RECORDING DEFECTS |Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems Inc., v. Lisser

NY SUPREME COURT finds RECORDING DEFECTS |Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems Inc., v. Lisser

This is an action pursuant to RP APL Article 15 in which determination of its interest in real property, and to direct the Nassau County Clerk’s Office to accept a copy of a deed and mortgage for recording, insofar as the originals were misplaced and never recorded.

  • the Court seeks an explanation as to why the Affidavit of Merit is provided by a principal of the United General Title Insurance Company. What is the relationship of that company to Plaintiff? What authority does the affiant have to speak on behalf of Plaintiff? What is the basis of the affiant’s personal knowledge?
  • the Court questions whether or not MERS, as nominee for Am Trust Bank has standing to bring this action. A party who “claims an estate or interest in real property” may bring an action under Article 15 of the RPAPL. RPAPL ~1501(1). “The interest had by any mortgagee” is an interest in real property for purposes of bringing such an action. ~RPAPL1501(5). Is MERS a mortgagee for purposes of Article 15, or is MERS the mortgagee only for recording purposes? Can MERS bring this action without a Power of Attorney from the beneficial owner of the Mortgage?

Finally, the Court is reluctant to grant declaratory or other relief without evidence of the recorded interests in the Property from July 20 2007 and the current state of title.

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© 2010-19 FORECLOSURE FRAUD | by DinSFLA. All rights reserved.

Posted in chain in title, conflict of interest, conspiracy, foreclosure, foreclosure fraud, foreclosures, MERS, MERSCORP, mortgage, MORTGAGE ELECTRONIC REGISTRATION SYSTEMS INC., note, Real Estate, sewer service, trustee, TrustsComments (0)



Posted by SUItheGATOR on May 24, 2010

Another area that should be investigated in the foreclosure mill process is the “process serving” Mills such as ProVest LLC.

I worked at ProVest for 7 months a few years ago, as jobs are scarce. There were some issues there of some of the servers just “drop serving” the summons, (just leaving at the door and saying they gave it directly) or Sewer serves, (saying it was served and they never even left at the door). A few borrowers obtained legal counsel and executed their rights, as they were never properly served, but there are probably more borrowers unaware they have been “had”.

If Improperly served, the court dates cannot be set.

Due to ProVest’s aggressive style, and high volume of work, it is possible many servers, not direct employees, were forced to do the serves this way due to the volume and ProVest’s unrealistic expectations. They wanted a serve within 10 days of it being filed at the court house. As an employee, server or not, if you did not meet their outrageous timeframes it provoked what I call “public floggings” of employees. Not a nice place to work.

ProVest does process serving for many of the foreclosure mills such as Stern and FDLG… And for the record, when I was there, a husband worked for FDLG, and the wife worked for ProVest…

So, if you want more dirt for your compaign, here it is.. Check to see if the borrowers were properly served.


Lender Processing Services LPS and ProVest: Resemblance is uncanny

© 2010-19 FORECLOSURE FRAUD | by DinSFLA. All rights reserved.

Posted in FDLG, florida default law group, foreclosure, foreclosure fraud, foreclosure mills, insider, Law Offices Of David J. Stern P.A., sewer serviceComments (1)

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