What is the effect of TILA Rescission on My title? Can I sue for damages?

I have been getting the same questions from multiple attorneys and homeowners. One of them is preparing a brief to the U.S. Supreme Court on rescission, but is wondering, as things stand whether she has any right to sue for damages. When our team prepares a complaint or other pleading for a lawyer or homeowner we concentrate on the elements of what needs to be present and the logic of what we are presenting. It must be very compelling or the judge will regard it as just another attempt to get out of justly due debt.

Let us help you plan your foreclosure defense strategy, discovery requests and defense narrative: 202-838-6345. Ask for a Consult

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Get a Consult and TEAR (Title & Encumbrances Analysis and & Report) 202-838-6345. The TEAR replaces and greatly enhances the former COTA (Chain of Title Analysis, including a one page summary of Title History and Gaps).

THIS ARTICLE IS NOT A LEGAL OPINION UPON WHICH YOU CAN RELY IN ANY INDIVIDUAL CASE. HIRE A LAWYER.

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Combining fact patterns from multiple inquiries we start with a homeowner who actually sent two notices of rescission (2010 and 2017). Questions vary from who do I sue for damages to how do I get my title back?

Note that the biggest and most common error in rescission litigation is that the homeowner attempts to (a) have the court declare the rescission effective contrary to their own argument that it is already effective by operation of law, 15 USC §1635, and (b) seek to enforce the TILA rescission statutory duties beyond one year after rescission.

Whether you can sue for damages is one question. Whether the rescission had the effect of removing the jurisdiction, right or authority to dispossess you of title is another. And whether title ever changed is yet another. Yes you can sue for damages if not barred by a statute of limitations. Yes authority is vitiated by operation of law regardless of the status of litigation. And NO, title never changed and you probably own your house unless state law restricts your right to claim such ownership.

All three questions are related.
Taking the last question (did title actually change?) first, my opinion is that the rescission was effective when mailed. Therefore the note and mortgage were void. The failure of the alleged “lender” to comply with the rescission duties and then pursue repayment within one year from the date of rescission bars them from pursuing the debt. So at this point in time (equally applicable to the 2017 rescission notice) there is no note, mortgage or enforceable debt.
  • Hence any further activities to enforce the note and mortgage were legally void. And that means that any change of title wherein a party received title via any instrument executed by anyone other than you is equally legally void. In fact, that would be the very definition of a wild deed.
  • The grantor did not have any right, title or interest to convey even if it was a Sheriff, Clerk or Trustee in a deed of trust.
  • Any other interpretation offered by the banks would in substance boil down to arguments about why the rescission notice should not be effective upon mailing, like the statute says and like SCOTUS said 9-0 in Jesinoski.
  • CAUSES OF ACTION would definitely include
    • the equitable remedy of mandatory and prohibitive injunctions to prevent anyone from clouding your title or harassing you for an unenforceable debt would apply. But as we have seen, the trial courts and even the appellate courts refuse to concede that the rescission notice is effective upon mailing by operation of law, voiding the note and mortgage.
    • such a petition could also seek supplemental relief (i.e., monetary damages) and could be pursued as long as the statute of limitations does not bar your claim for damages. This is where it gets academically interesting. You are more likely to be barred if you use the 20010 rescission than you are if you use the 2016 rescission.
    • a lawsuit for misrepresentation (intentional and/or negligent) might also produce a verdict for damages — compensatory and punitive. It can be shown that bank lawyers were publishing all over the internet warning the banks to stop ignoring rescission. They knew. And they did it anyway. Add that to the fact that the foreclosing party was most often a nonexistent trust with no substance to its claim as administrator of the loan, and the case becomes stronger and potentially more lucrative.
    • CLASS ACTION: Mass joinder would probably be the better vehicle but the FTC and AG’s (and other agencies) have bowed to bank pressure and made mass joinder a dirty word. It is the one vehicle that cannot be stopped for failure to certify a class because there is not class — just a group of people who have the same cause fo action with varying damages. The rules for class actions have become increasingly restrictive but it certainly appears that technically the legal elements for certification fo the class are present. It is very expensive for the lawyers, often exceeding $1 million in costs and expenses other than fees.
    • Bottom line is that you legally still own your property but it may take a court to legally unwind all of the wrongful actions undertaken by previous courts at the behest of banks misrepresenting the facts. Legally title never changed, in my opinion.

Taking the second question (the right to dispossess your title) my answer would obviously be in the negative (i.e., NO). Since there was no right to even attempt changing title without the homeowner’s consent and signature, petitions to vacate such actions and for damages would most likely apply.

  • This question is added because the courts are almost certainly going to confuse (intentionally or not) the difference between unauthorized actions and void actions.
  • The proper analysis is obviously that the rescission is effective upon mailing by operation of law.
  • Being effective by operation of law means that the action constitutes an event that has already happened at the moment that the law says it is effective. If a court views this simply as “unauthorized” actions then it will most likely slip back into its original “sin”, to wit: treating rescission as a claim rather than an event that has already transpired.

And lastly the issue of claims for damages. There are different elements to each potential cause of action for damages or supplemental relief. I would group them as negligence, fraud, and breach of statutory duty.

  • As to the last you are barred from enforcing statutory duties in the TILA rescission statute if you are seeking such relief more than one year after rescission. But there are other statutes — RESPA, FDCPA and state statutes that are intended to provide for consumer protection or redress when the statutes are violated. There are statutory limits on the amount of damages that can be awarded to a consumer borrower.
  • Fraud requires specific allegations of misrepresentations — not just an argument that the position taken by the banks and servicers was wrong or even wrongful. It also requires knowledge and intent to deceive. It is harder to prove first because fraud must be proven by clear and convincing evidence which is close to beyond a reasonable doubt. Second it is harder to prove because you must go into “state of mind” of a business entity. The reward for proving fraud is that it might open the door to punitive damages and such awards have been in the millions of dollars.
  • Negligence is the easier to prove that it is more likely than not that the Defendant violated a statutory or common law duty — a duty of care. So the elements are simple — duty, breach of that duty, proximate cause of injury, and the actual injury. Negligent misrepresentation and negligent super vision and gross negligence are popular.

NY Monroe Case: Default entered against homeowner — CASE DISMISSED on Standing — US Bank Never refiled.

multiple choice robo-pleading

NO PLEADING: HOMEOWNER WON ANYWAY

I have held off on discussing this case until some time passed. As far as I now know US Bank, like several cases I won, has not refiled for foreclosure. There is a good reason for that. US Bank is not the Plaintiff. The Plaintiff is named as a REMIC Trust, for which the attorneys claim that US Bank is the Trustee.

As such the Plaintiff does not own nor have any interest in the loan either as owner or servicer. Hence the named trustee (U.S. Bank) is named but it has nothing to do since the trust is nonexistent and in all events no attempt has ever been made to entrust the subject mortgage into the fiduciary hands of U.S Bank.

And THAT is because the only party with an equitable interest in the debt is a group of investors whose money was used to fund the origination or acquisition of the loan. The investors meanwhile think that their money was placed in trust and then used to purchase, not originate, loans.

Every once in a while a wily judge catches on from the face of the documentation. This judge ruled against US Bank as Trustee for a named REMIC Trust because he didn’t believe US Bank or the Trust was actually related to the subject loan. He gave them a chance to correct their pleading, but apparently out of fear of perjury, the lawyers for the nonexistent trust backed off, apparently permanently.

Let us help you plan your foreclosure defense strategy, discovery requests and defense narrative: 202-838-6345. Ask for a Consult.

Purchase now Neil Garfield’s Mastering Discovery and Evidence in Foreclosure Defense webinar including 3.5 hours of lecture, questions and answers, plus course materials that include PowerPoint Presentations. Presenters: Attorney and Expert Neil Garfield, Forensic Auditor Dan Edstrom, Attorney Charles Marshall and and Private Investigator Bill Paatalo. The webinar and materials are all downloadable.

Get a Consult and TEAR (Title & Encumbrances Analysis and & Report) 202-838-6345. The TEAR replaces and greatly enhances the former COTA (Chain of Title Analysis, including a one page summary of Title History and Gaps).

https://www.vcita.com/v/lendinglies to schedule CONSULT, leave message or make payments. It’s better than calling!

THIS ARTICLE IS NOT A LEGAL OPINION UPON WHICH YOU CAN RELY IN ANY INDIVIDUAL CASE. HIRE A LAWYER.

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see Memorandum and Order – USBank Trust NA as Trustee for LSF9 MPT v Monroe

Quoting from the complaint field by lawyers for their supposed client, a nonexistent trust with a completely denuded trustee, the court includes their own allegation in its ruling:

2 (“Plaintiff is the owner and holder of the subject Note and Mortgage or has been delegated authority to institute this Mortgage foreclosure action by the owner and holder of the subject Note and Mortgage.”);

What does that even mean? This is a perfect example of multiple choice robo-pleading. Either the Plaintiff is the owner and holder of the subject note or mortgage or they are not. If they own the debt,  they don’t say as much and certainly didn’t offer any proof at their uncontested hearing on damages. It’s pretty hard to lose an uncontested hearing but US Bank has done it multiple times, as reported in this case.

If they have been delegated authority by the owner and holder of the subject note and mortgage, they fail to say who delegated that authority and how the delegation occurred. Since the express purpose of the trust was to own the debt, note and mortgage and make payments to investors based upon the trust’s ownership of the debt, note and mortgage, Demoting the trust to the status of a conduit or agent would be completely adverse to the express wording and authority granted in the trust.

Actually that kind of wording is exactly what enables the players to claim interest in notes and mortgages adverse to the interests of the parties whose money was directly used to fund the origination and acquisition of loans.

 

Here are some revealing quotes from the District Judge:

The Complaint does not contain any details concerning U.S. Bank’s role as trustee or the powers it has over the trust property (including the mortgage here). (e.s.)

The party asserting subject matter jurisdiction carries the burden of proving its existence by a preponderance of the evidence. E.g., Makarova, 201 F.3d at 113; Augienello v. FDIC, 310 F. Supp. 2d 582, 587–88 (S.D.N.Y. 2004). This is true even on a motion for default judgment, since the principle that a default deems the well-pleaded allegations of the complaint to be admitted is inapplicable when a court doubts the existence of subject matter jurisdiction. Transatlantic Marine, 109 F.3d at 108.

2 While some of these issues were discussed elsewhere by U.S. Bank’s counsel, e.g., Dkt. No. 7, they were not included in the affidavit filed in support of default judgment.

“When a default is entered, the defendant is deemed to have admitted all of the well- pleaded factual allegations in the complaint pertaining to liability.” Bravado Int’l Grp. Merch. Servs., Inc. v. Ninna, Inc., 655 F. Supp. 2d 177, 188 (E.D.N.Y. 2009) (citing Greyhound Exhibitgroup, Inc. v. E.L.U.L. Realty Corp., 973 F.2d 155, 158 (2d Cir. 1992)). “While a default judgment constitutes an admission of liability, the quantum of damages remains to be established by proof unless the amount is liquidated or susceptible of mathematical computation.” Flaks v. Koegel, 504 F.2d 702, 707 (2d Cir. 1974); accord, e.g., Bravado Int’l, 655 F. Supp. 2d at 190. “[E]ven upon default, a court may not rubber-stamp the non-defaulting party’s damages calculation, but rather must ensure that there is a basis for the damages that are sought.” United States v. Hill, No. 12-CV-1413, 2013 WL 474535, at *1 (N.D.N.Y. Feb. 7, 2013)

In the past year, U.S. Bank’s attorneys—Gross Polowy—have repeatedly failed to secure default judgments in similar foreclosure cases before this Court. E.g., U.S. Bank Tr., N.A. v. Dupre, No. 15-CV-558, 2016 WL 5107123 (N.D.N.Y. Sept. 20, 2016) (Kahn, J.); Nationstar Mortg. LLC v. Moody, No. 16-CV-279, 2016 WL 4203514 (N.D.N.Y. Aug. 9, 2016) (Kahn, J.); Nationstar Mortg. LLC v. Pignataro, No. 15-CV-1041, 2016 WL 3647876 (N.D.N.Y. July 1, 2016) (Kahn, J.); cf. Ditech Fin. LLC v. Sterly, No. 15-CV-1455, 2016 WL 7429439, at *4 (N.D.N.Y. Dec. 23, 2016) (denying a motion for default judgment due to a defective notice of pendency); OneWest Bank, N.A. v. Conklin, No. 14-CV-1249, 2015 WL 3646231, at *4 (N.D.N.Y. June 10, 2015) (same). In each case, Gross Polowy’s motion was denied for one of two reasons: either the complaint failed to sufficiently allege subject matter jurisdiction, e.g., Dupre, 2016 WL 5107123, at *2–5, or the motion for default judgment failed to meet the requirements of the Court’s Local Rules, e.g., Moody, 2016 WL 4203514, at *2. Here, both of these failures are present.

The Complaint also includes no allegations concerning U.S. Bank’s ability to proceed under its own citizenship, despite bringing this case on behalf of the “LSF9 Master Participation Trust.” Compl.

While U.S. Bank is the nominal plaintiff in this case, it is longstanding federal law that “court[s] must disregard nominal or formal parties and rest jurisdiction only upon the citizenship of real parties to the controversy.” Navarro Sav. Ass’n v. Lee, 446 U.S. 458, 461 (1980). “Where an agent acts on behalf of a principal, the principal, rather than the agent, has been held to be the real and substantial party to the controversy. As a result, it is the citizenship of the principal—not that of the agent—that controls for diversity purposes.” Hilton Hotels Corp. v. Damornay Antiques, Inc., No. 99-CV-4883, 1999 WL 959371, at *2 (S.D.N.Y. Oct. 20, 1999) (citing Airlines Reporting Corp. v. S&N Travel, Inc., 58 F.3d 857, 862 (2d Cir. 1995)). At issue here is the application of this rule in lawsuits brought by a trustee on behalf of a trust. —3 Gross Polowy should be aware of this rule because they were “foreclosure counsel” for the plaintiff-appellee in Melina, 827 F.3d at 216–17, though in fairness it seems they were replaced by Hogan Lovells for both the subject matter jurisdiction issue and the subsequent appeal, id. at 216; OneWest Bank, N.A. v. Melina, No. 14-CV-5290, 2015 WL 5098635 (E.D.N.Y. Aug. 31, 2015), aff’d, 827 F.3d 214.

In Navarro, the Court held that trustees can be the real parties in controversy—regardless of the type of trust—provided that they “are active trustees whose control over the assets held in their names is real and substantial.” 446 U.S. at 465; see also Carden v. Arkoma Assocs., 494 U.S. 185, 191 (1990) (noting that, if the trustees are “active trustees whose control over the assets held in their names is real and substantial,” they are brought “under the rule, ‘more than 150 years’ old, which permits such trustees ‘to sue in their own right, without regard to the citizenship of the trust beneficiaries’” (quoting Navarro, 446 U.S. at 465–66)). The continued validity of this rule was endorsed by the Court in Americold. 136 S. Ct. at 1016.

If U.S. Bank wishes to proceed in federal court, it must, within thirty (30) days, move to amend its Complaint to address the deficiencies identified in this order. This motion to amend must be prepared in accordance with Local Rule 7.1(a)(4), which establishes the form for such a motion and lists the required papers. With that motion, to resolve the Court’s doubts concerning subject matter jurisdiction, U.S. Bank must also provide its articles of association (along with any other documentation required to establish the location of its main office), the trust instrument for the LSF9 Master Participation Trust,4 and any other documentation required to show that U.S. Bank’s control over the trust assets is real and substantial. Failure to comply with this Memorandum-Decision and Order when moving to amend the Complaint may result in the denial of the motion or sanctions. L.R. 1.1(d).

 

4 In the Dupre case discussed above, U.S. Bank also was instructed to file the trust instrument for the LSF8 Master Participation Trust (presumably another securitization vehicle for mortgage debt) in order to establish subject matter jurisdiction. 2016 WL 5107123, at *2. When it did file the trust instrument, “the text . . . was almost entirely redacted,” and the only visible portion seemed to oppose the notion that U.S. Bank was an active trustee with real and substantial control over the trust assets. Id. at *2, *4. This failure should not be repeated here, and filing documents under seal or with redactions requires advance permission of the Court. L.R. 83.13; see also Lugosh v. Pyramid Co. of Onondaga, 435 F.3d 110, 119–20 (2d Cir. 2006) (describing the standard for restricting public access to judicial documents).

 

Deutsch Bank National Trust Company Was Crushed in Texas in 2015. Why isn’t anyone listening?

When a judge looks carefully at the record, the bank loses. The use of Deutsch’s name in the style of the case still shows that Judges are considering the Plaintiff to be the named “Trustee” instead of the named (or named, which is frequently the case) Trust. In fact the Trustee has nothing to do with foreclosures. In this case the Judge wrote the following:

“Judgment (for the homeowner for declaratory relief) was based on findings and conclusions that Deutsche Bank had failed to prove chain of title back to the original lender, now defunct. The sole proof on which the bank relied — a purported assignment from “MERS as nominee for the lender, its successors and assigns” — was held void, because the assignor did not exist when the document was signed.

“Deutsche Bank’s first argument is based on a misrepresentation of the trial record. [i.e. the lawyers were lying to the court about what was in the trial record].

“The Burkes argued that the stamp block containing the Cathy Powers signature was not a part of the Note as originally executed, and instead offered a copy of the unindorsed Note as one of their own exhibits,

“This absence of documentary proof mirrors the lack of any testimonial evidence of holder status. Given its utter failure of proof, Deutsche Bank’s continuing assertion of a right to foreclose as holder of the Note is not just groundless, it is frivolous. On this trial record the current holder of the Burke Note remains a mystery.

“Deutsche Bank introduced no proof whatever of a prior transaction by which it acquired any rights in the Note. Absent such proof, L’Amoreaux is not controlling. Here MERS was acting on behalf of a defunct entity (IndyMac Bank), and its purported assignment was therefore void and invalid under the Texas common law of assignments, as explained below.

“There is simply no proof of an existing assignor with an existing right in the property capable of being assigned in 2011. It is undisputed that Indy-Mac Bank had been “dead” since 2008, several years prior to the 2011 assignment. (P. Ex. 6, at p. 1). Thus, any post-mortem transaction by that entity would be a nullity under Pool v. Sneed.

“In sum, L’Amoreaux does not undermine this court’s judgment in favor of the Burkes because (1) there is no record evidence of a prior assignment of the lender’s interest in the Note or Deed of Trust, (2) there is no record evidence that any purported assignor existed at the time of the 2011 assignment; and (3) there is no record evidence of a principal/agency relationship between MERS and any “successor or assign” of the lender when the assignment was executed.

“Deutsche Bank’s third argument is a red herring

“a homeowner is allowed “to challenge the chain of assignments by which a party claims a right to foreclose….” Id. at 224. It is true that in Texas an obligor cannot defend against an assignee’s efforts to enforce the obligation on a ground that merely renders the assignment “voidable at the election of the assignor,” such as a fraudulent signature by an unauthorized corporate agent. Id. at 225. The problem here is not a voidable defect that a defrauded assignor might choose to disregard — it is the absence of a valid assignor (i.e. a real entity owning the right to be assigned) in the first place. Cf. L’Amoreaux v. Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., 755 F.3d 748, 750 (5th Cir.2014) (considering homeowner’s challenge to validity of MERS assignment on its merits, implicitly rejecting bank’s “voidable” argument).

“A court’s primary duty in construing a written contract is to ascertain the true intention of the parties as expressed in the language of the document itself. Coker v. Coker, 650 S.W.2d 391, 393 (Tex.1983). In this document, the name of the assignor, “Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems, Inc.” appears three (3) times — in the body of the assignment, above the signature line, and in the corporate acknowledgement. Each time, MERS’s name is immediately followed by the phrase “as nominee for” the lender, IndyMac Bank, its successor and assigns. P. Ex. 2. Nowhere does this document hint that MERS intended to convey its own rights,[8] or that it was acting as principal rather than as agent for other entities.

Words matter, especially in real estate transactions. See Univ. Sav. Ass’n v. Springwoods Shopping Ctr., 644 S.W.2d 705, 706 (Tex.1982) (“the terms set out in a deed of trust must be strictly followed”); see also Mathis v. DCR Mortg. III Sub I, L.L.C., 389 S.W.3d 494, 507 (Tex.App. — El Paso, 2012) (“The rules of interpretation that apply to contracts also apply to notes and deeds of trust.”). Based on the words of the 2011 assignment, MERS was no more acting on its own behalf than was the bank’s own law firm.

“Deutsche Bank asks to reopen the trial record to provide “the wet ink original of the Note or testimony affirming Deutsche Bank’s status as holder of the Note.” (Dkt. 90, at 7). No authority or excuse is offered for this breathtakingly late request. Even assuming such evidence exists, Deutsche Bank does not pretend that it is “newly discovered”, nor that the bank was excusably ignorant about it until after trial despite using due diligence to discover it. See 11 WRIGHT, MILLER & KANE, FEDERAL PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE § 2808 (2012). After four years of litigation, including court-ordered mediation and trial on the merits, the time for such a deus ex machina maneuver has long since passed. The Burkes are entitled to the finality of judgment that our judicial process is intended to provide. The bank’s request for a do-over is denied.

Let us help you prepare for trial: 202-838-6345
Get a consult and TEAR (Title & Encumbrances Analysis and & Report) 202-838-6345. The TEAR replaces and greatly enhances the former COTA (Chain of Title Analysis, including a one page summary of Title History and Gaps).
https://www.vcita.com/v/lendinglies to schedule CONSULT, leave message or make payments. It’s better than calling!
THIS ARTICLE IS NOT A LEGAL OPINION UPON WHICH YOU CAN RELY IN ANY INDIVIDUAL CASE. HIRE A LAWYER.
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Hat tip Bill Paatalo

see Deutsche Bank Nat’l Trust Co. v. Burke, 117 F. Supp. 3d 953 – Dist

 

Christiana Trust/Wilmington Savings Crash and Burn on Standing and More

Florida 4th DCA Opinion:

In this mortgage foreclosure case, the underlying mortgage was passed around like the flu, giving rise to a complexity of ownership that frustrated the appellee’s attempts to demonstrate standing at trial. To the answer brief, the appellee attached a chart of the ownership lineage of the mortgage and note, with different types of arrows pointing in all directions, a valiant effort which demonstrated that the transfer history here defies pictorial representation.

Let us help you prepare your narrative (blue print) for litigation: 202-838-6345
Get a consult and TEAR (Title & Encumbrances Analysis and & Report) 202-838-6345. The TEAR replaces and greatly enhances the former COTA (Chain of Title Analysis, including a one page summary of Title History and Gaps).
https://www.vcita.com/v/lendinglies to schedule CONSULT, leave message or make payments. It’s better than calling!
THIS ARTICLE IS NOT A LEGAL OPINION UPON WHICH YOU CAN RELY IN ANY INDIVIDUAL CASE. HIRE A LAWYER.
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see J Gross 4th DCA Opinion Goshen Mortgage adv Supria 12-6-17

You can’t make this stuff up. Order to enter JUDGMENT for homeowner not merely dismissal.

On the original note, Centerpointe Financial, Inc. is the lender. There is no blank indorsement from Centerpointe. There was an allonge purporting to effect a transfer, but the allonge was lost and not produced at trial. Appellee conceded at trial that it was not a holder of the note, but contended that it qualified as a nonholder in possession with the rights of a holder.

“A nonholder in possession may prove its right to enforce the note through: (1) evidence of an effective transfer; (2) proof of purchase of the debt; or (3) evidence of a valid assignment.” Bank of N.Y. Mellon Tr. Co., N.A. v. Conley, 188 So. 3d 884, 885 (Fla. 4th DCA 2016). “A nonholder in possession must account for its possession of the instrument by proving the transaction (or series of transactions) through which it acquired the note.” Id. (citing Murray v. HSBC Bank USA, 157 So. 3d 355, 358 (Fla. 4th DCA 2015)).

Therefore, “[t]o prove standing as a nonholder in possession with the rights of a holder, the plaintiff must prove the chain of transfers starting with the first holder of the note.” PennyMac Corp. v. Frost, 214 So. 3d 686, 689 (Fla. 4th DCA 2017) (citing Murray, 157 So. 3d at 357-58). “Where the plaintiff ‘cannot prove that [a transferor] had any right to enforce the note, it cannot derive any right from [the transferor] and is not a nonholder in possession of the instrument with the rights of a holder to enforce.’” PennyMac, 214 So. 3d at 689 (quoting Murray, 157 So. 3d at 359).

Here, the first assignment of the note was invalid, because nothing in evidence demonstrated that the assignor had the authority to transfer or assign an interest in the note. Similarly, a second assignment was also invalid because nothing demonstrated that the assignor had an interest in the note that it could transfer. Among other problems, the third and fifth assignments transferred the mortgage, but not the note. The fourth assignment was infirm because of the problems with the earlier assignments.

One legal problem created by the third and fifth assignment is that a “mortgage follows the assignment of the promissory note, but an assignment of the mortgage without an assignment of the debt creates no right in the assignee.” Tilus v. Michai LLC, 161 So. 3d 1284, 1286 (Fla. 4th DCA 2015). “‘[A] mortgage is but an incident to the debt, the payment of which it secures, and its ownership follows the assignment of the debt’— not the other way around.” Peters v. Bank of N.Y. Mellon, 227 So. 3d 175, 180 (Fla. 2d DCA 2017) (quoting Johns v. Gillian, 184 So. 140, 143 (Fla. 1938)). The oblique reference in the assignments of mortgage to “moneys now owing” was not sufficient to transfer an interest in the note. See Jelic v. BAC Home Loans Servicing, LP, 178 So. 3d 523, 525 (Fla. 4th DCA 2015).

Because appellee failed to establish its standing to foreclose, we reverse the final judgment and remand for the entry of judgment for the appellant.

Wells Fargo “Explains” Securitization

YOU NEED AN INFINITE NUMBER OF BASES AND PLAYERS TO PLAY BALL WITH THESE GUYS: The Trustee controls the trust as trustee. Oops, wait, it is the Master Servicer who has all the control. No, wait again, it is the subservicer who has the right to administer the loan. But actually if there is an alleged default it is the special servicer who has exclusive authority over decision making. Except that the “Controlling Class” has the last say in the matter. But actually it is the Controlling Class Representative who has the last word.

I have always felt that there must be some way to force the other side into approving a modification or at least providing access by the borrower to the “lender” to discuss or negotiate the matter. I still believe that. Maybe this article will help spur some ideas. Information is leverage, especially in the world of false claims of securitization.

 

Let us help you prepare your narrative (blue print) for litigation: 202-838-6345
Get a consult and TEAR (Title & Encumbrances Analysis and & Report) 202-838-6345. The TEAR replaces and greatly enhances the former COTA (Chain of Title Analysis, including a one page summary of Title History and Gaps).
https://www.vcita.com/v/lendinglies to schedule CONSULT, leave message or make payments. It’s better than calling!
THIS ARTICLE IS NOT A LEGAL OPINION UPON WHICH YOU CAN RELY IN ANY INDIVIDUAL CASE. HIRE A LAWYER.
—————-

Hat Tip Bill Paatalo

see Wells Fargo Document – No Lender in Remics

Essentially the banks would have us believe that by magic they created loans without owners or holders in due course. So it might as well be the banks who foreclose under any pretense they choose to offer. The political decision was to let them do it for fear that the banks would bring down the entire system. But if that were true, the bank’s capital would be worthless as would every world currency including the dollar. They bluffed Presidents Bush and Obama and the Presidents blinked. Millions of foreclosures followed because the ordinary guy is just not that important even if it involves a substantial portion of a population.

I will provide my comments and suggestions for discovery or cross examination along with each statement in the above cited article. Keep in mind that the entire article is an exercise in deceit: It is assuming that securitization actually happened. If that were true then they would be more than happy to show that the subject loan was purchased on a certain date by the payment of value to a specific seller by a trust. The trust would then be a holder in due course. But as we have seen numerous times nobody ever refers to the trust as a holder in due course which can only mean there was no such purchase.

The indented portions are direct quotes from the WFDb article cited above.

The thing most borrowers fail to realize about conduit loans is that once a loan has been securitized, they are not working with a “lender” anymore.

That’s the first sentence of the “explanation.” And the first thing that pops out is “conduit loans.” What is a conduit loan? Is the subject loan a conduit loan? In what way is the subject loan a conduit loan? [This also corroborates what I have been writing for years — that Matt Taibbi (Rolling Stone Magazine) got it right when he describes securitization as a monster with multiple tentacles.]

There is no legal definition for a conduit loan. The banks would have us believe that if they present any tentacle, that is sufficient for them to foreclose on a loan. But that isn’t legal standing — it is fraud on the court. A loan is a loan, but Wall Street banks don’t want you thinking about that. But by calling it something different it immediately plays into the bias of the court assuming that the big banks know what they are doing and that only they can explain what is going on.

Corroborating my description of the “Conduit”: remark, WFB explains that you are not dealing with a lender anymore. Is that supposed to make us feel better? There is no lender? Was there ever a lender? If, yes, then please identify the party who loaned their money to the borrower.

Now this on servicer advances:

If a loan becomes delinquent, the Master Servicer is usually obligated to make the first three or four payments to the certificate holders as well as pay trust expenses on delinquent assets…

The Master Servicer is reimbursed when the borrower makes up the payment or when the property goes into foreclosure and is later sold.

So we are being told that the Master Servicer is making payments to investors regardless of whether the borrower makes any payment. First, the payments to investors are made by the Master Servicer because they are the only one with access to a giant slush fund or dark pool created out of money that should have a gone to each trust and been maintained as a trust account, administered by the trustee.

But it is true that the Master Servicer gets paid for the “servicer advances” when the property is sold. So if the investors received 12 months of payments (of at least interest), even though it was taken out of a reserve pool (read the prospectus) consisting of their own money, the Master Servicer gets paid as though it was a reimbursement when in fact it is a windfall. Needless to say the incentive is to let the case languish for years before foreclosure and sale take place.

The longer the time period between the alleged default and the sale of the property, the more money is received by the Master Servicer as “reimbursement” for money it never advanced.

The Special Servicer makes all final decisions about dispositions of defaulted property and Real Estate Owned (REO). Often they are also the holders of the “first loss pieces” of the pool. Because they are taking the most risk, as part of their agreement to take that risk, they usually insist on being the Special Servicer as a requirement of their investment. There are only a handful of special servicers in the country.

Really? So the Master Servicer, the subservicer and the Trustee of the alleged REMIC trust have no say in whether to work out or modify a loan that is economically not feasible but which could be feasible if there was a workout or modification. What is a first loss piece of the pool? What is the account name of the pool supposedly held in a bank somewhere? Does the account name match the alleged REMIC trust in any way? Is there an account administered by the Trustee? Does the Trustee get performance reports or end of month statements?

Oops wait! There are other people with special powers —

The PSA also designates a “Controlling Class” who will provide input on recommendations for Special Serviced Loans and REO.

If the Special Servicer is willing to extend the loan, they have to get permission from the Controlling Class Representative (CCR), who is a fiduciary for all the certificate holders.

Anyone who has seen that famous but from Abbot and Costello in the 1950’s understands what is happening here. The Trustee controls the trust as trustee. Oops, wait, it is the Master Servicer who has all the control. No, wait again, it is the subservicer who has the right to administer the loan. But actually if there is an alleged default it is the special servicer who as exclusive authority over decision making. Except that the “Controlling Class” has the last say in the matter. But actually it is the Controlling Class Representative who has the last word.

So in discovery ask which of those entities was contacted about modification and why the borrower was instructed to send the application and documents to the subservicer when the subservicer had no authority?

And let’s not forget the fact that the certificate holders have no right, title or interest in the loans, the debt , the note or the mortgage. So their “Fiduciary” (who apparently is not the Trustee of the alleged Trust) does what?  How do we contact these intermediaries to whom powers and obligations of a trustee are passed around like free money? How do we know if the subservicer is telling the truth when it reports that the “investor” turned down the settlement or modification.

And by the way, why do we not have recording of the modification agreement? Why does not the Trustee of the REMIC Trust sign the modification agreement? Instead it is ALWAYS the signature of the servicer who, as we already know, has no power to accept or deny requests for modifications — and of course it is never recorded in county records. Why?

Remember, there are no “pockets of money” to use for refinance. Special Servicers, although legally allowed by the PSA to forgive any portion of the debt, rarely do so because often that would negatively affect one or more of the bondholders at the expense of the others. Instead, the Special Servicer, on behalf of the conduit, will almost always foreclose and sell the asset.

Hmmmm. So the Special Servicer (and the CCR?) ordinarily chooses to drive down the price of the collateral and take a larger loss on the subject loan because it “would negatively affect one or more of the bondholders at the expense of the others.” But the principal reduction would positively affect some bond holders more than others by saving the collateral. So exactly what are they saying as Wells Fargo Bank about the roles and rules of securitization?

And lastly, why did WFB task authors to write about this when their experience is limited to manufactured home communities? Probably the same reason why robo-witnesses know nothing.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ocwen Admission Confounds Judges and Experts

This is a blatant attempt at deception  — a deceit without which none of the Trusts would be recognized as legal entities much less the owner of loans. Ocwen is admitting that there is no single owner of the loan it is allegedly “servicing.” “There is no single owner of the account, but rather the account is one of many in a securitized investment trust.”

For the uninitiated, this statement might suffice or at least be threatening enough as a challenge to their experience and intelligence to direct them away from the central false assertion that the trusts own any loan. They don’t.

Let us help you prepare for deposition or trial: 202-838-6345
Get a consult and TEAR (Title & Encumbrances Analysis and & Report) 202-838-6345. The TEAR replaces and greatly enhances the former COTA (Chain of Title Analysis, including a one page summary of Title History and Gaps).
https://www.vcita.com/v/lendinglies to schedule CONSULT, leave message or make payments. It’s better than calling!
THIS ARTICLE IS NOT A LEGAL OPINION UPON WHICH YOU CAN RELY IN ANY INDIVIDUAL CASE. HIRE A LAWYER.
—————-

Hat Tip Bill Paatalo

see Ocwen Responsive Letter – CFPB – 11-03-2017

In this real live case, Ocwen is fulfilling its job that includes obfuscation as one of its paramount duties. After first “answering” the CFPB requests with obfuscation it then states “The ownership status of the account is based upon our review of our records as of the date of this letter.” It doesn’t say that the information is correct or even believed to be correct. It doesn’t say they performed due diligence to determine whether a true chain of ownership exists, combing the various records of “predecessors.”

Nor is there a statement that Ocwen is authorized to service the account. It simply says that it IS servicing the account. And of course then they do not assert the basis of their authority since they never asserted their authority. It is implied. It is assumed. In court, it might well be presumed by the court, the foreclosure mill attorney and even by the borrower and the borrower’s attorney. This is one of the errors that snatches defeat from the jaws of victory. An attack on what is missing instead of trying to dodge what is there would result in far more victories for homeowners.

The attorney’s client is Ocwen. Ocwen is impliedly asserting authority to service but can’t show it. In one recent case of mine, they came in with a Power of Attorney signed by someone who purportedly executed the instrument on behalf of Chase. The problem was that Chase was never mentioned before in any pleading, documents or testimony. The POA was false.

Back to ownership: “there is no single owner” implies that there are many owners. There are several problems with that assertion or implication that involve outright lying. Ocwen is saying that the loan is in a securitized investment trust which certainly would imply that the loan is not in transit nor is it owned by more than one trust.

Further if the reference (omitted) is to investors, that too is a lie in most cases. The certificate indenture usually contains the express statement that the holder of the certificate receives no right, title or interest to the debt, note or mortgage in “underlying” loans (which have never been acquired by the trust anyway).

So what are we left with? No single owner which means that the securitized investment trust doesn’t own it because that is one single entity. Multiple owners does not refer to investors because the express provisions on their certificates say they have no ownership of the debt, note or mortgage in the alleged loan.

The counterintuitive answer is that the bank’s are saying there is no owner. But there is an owner. It is a group of investors whose money was used to fund or acquire the loan. This was not done through any trust, as they intended and as was required by the “securitization” documents. If that was the case then the trust would have been named as lender or as holder in due course. That never happened.

But the holders of worthless securities can claim an equitable interest in the loan and perhaps even the collateral. In order to establish that interest the investors must go to a court of competent jurisdiction. But in order to do that the investors must know about the specific loan transaction(s), which they don’t. The fact that they don’t know about it and can’t exercise their rights does not mean that legally, anyone can intervene and assert ownership rights.

Ten years ago I said get rid of the current servicers and stick a government agency in as intermediary so that investors, as real parties in interest and borrowers as real parties in interest could do what the lending industry normally does best — work this out so that nobody loses everything and nobody gets a windfall. This could have all been over years ago and the impact on the economy would have been a powerful stimulus leaving no inherent weakness in our economy or our currency.

Unfortunately the courts strayed from making legal decisions and instead made a political decision to save the banking industry at the expense of homeowners.

 

 

 

DEUTSCH BANK Memo Reveals Documents and Policies Ripe for Discovery

This completely corroborates what I have been saying for years along with a chorus of lawyers and pro se litigants across the county. It simply is not true that the attorney represents the trust or the trustee. 

This “Advisory” shows that there are documents that are rarely in the limelight and that clarify claims of securitization in practice. Note that the memorandum cited below comes from Deutsch Bank National Trust Company, as trustee and Deutsch Bank Trust Company Americas, as trustee.

These names are often NOT used when foreclosure actions are initiated where the name of the alleged REMIC Trustee is Deutsch Bank. It is important to note that neither of the two trust entities actually have been entrusted with any loans on behalf of any trust. Their name is used, for a fee, as windows dressing.

In this memo, Deutsch is attempting to limit its liability beyond the absence of any duties or trustee powers whose absence is revealed by reading the Pooling and Servicing Agreement (PSA) which is the alleged Trust instrument.

Let us help you plan your discovery requests: 202-838-6345
Get a consult and TEAR (Title & Encumbrances Analysis and & Report) 202-838-6345. The TEAR replaces and greatly enhances the former COTA (Chain of Title Analysis, including a one page summary of Title History and Gaps).
https://www.vcita.com/v/lendinglies to schedule CONSULT, leave message or make payments. It’s better than calling!
THIS ARTICLE IS NOT A LEGAL OPINION UPON WHICH YOU CAN RELY IN ANY INDIVIDUAL CASE. HIRE A LAWYER.
—————-

Hat tip to Bill Paatalo

See Deutsche Bank Memorandum – July 2008

I have previously published and commented on parts of this memorandum. This is an expansion on my comments. This “advisory” obviously intends to bring alleged servicers back in line because it states in the introductory paragraph that the Trustee respectfully requests that all servicers review the First Servicing Memorandum and adhere to the practices it describes.”

None of this would have been necessary if the servicers were conforming to the directions and restrictions contained in the First Servicing Memorandum. We all know now that they were not conforming to anything or accepting instruction from anyone other than the alleged “Master Servicers” for NEITs (nonexistent  inactive trusts).

In discovery, one should ask for any servicer memoranda that exist including but not limited to the Memorandum to Securitization Loan Servicers dated August 30, 2007 a/k/a the First Servicer Memorandum, and all subsequent correspondence or written directions to servicers including but not limited to this “Advisory Concerning Servicing Issues Affecting Securitized Housing Assets.

Note also the oblique reference to the fact that the cut-off date actually means something.  It states that “typically” the REMICs (actually NEITs) take ownership of loans at the time the securitization trusts are formed. Thus discovery would include questions as to whether or not that occurred and if not, when did transfer of ownership occur and with what parties. Also one would ask for correspondence and agreements attendant to the alleged “transaction” in which the Trust allegedly purchased the loans with trust money that came from the proceeds of sales of certificates to investors. If the Trust did not pay value for the loans then it did not acquire the debt. It only acquired the paper instruments that are used as evidence of the debt.

Perhaps most importantly, the memo comes down hard on the use of powers of attorney, which are a favorite medium through which lawyers for the foreclosing parties typically try to patch obvious gaps in the chain of ownership or custody of the loan documents.

Then the memo provides foreclosure defense attorneys with the opportunity to attack the foundation laid for testimony and exhibits from robo-witnesses. It states that all parties must “Understand the mechanics of of relevant securitization transactions and related custodial practices in sufficient details to address such questions in a timely and accurate manner.” As any foreclosure defense lawyer will tell you, the robo-witness knows nothing about “the mechanics of of relevant securitization transactions and related custodial practices.” [The problem is that most borrowers and foreclosure defense lawyers don’t know either].

The inability of the robo-witness to describe the specific securitization practices in real life as it pertains to the subject loan gives rise to a cogent attack on the foundation for the rest of his testimony. With proper objections, perhaps motions in limine, and cross examination, this could lead to a defensive motion to strike the witnesses testimony and exhibits for lack of foundation. The following quote takes this out of the realm of theory and argument and into simple fact:

Servicers must ensure that loss mitigation personnel and professionals engaged by servicers, including legal counsel retained by servicers, understand the mechanics of relevant securitization transactions and related custodial practices in sufficient details to address such questions in a timely and accurate manner. In particular, servicing professionals [including “loss mitigation”] must become sufficiently familiar with the terms of the relevant securitization documents for each Trust for which they act to explain, and where necessary, prove those terms and resulting ownership interests to courts and government agencies.”

Note the assumption that lawyers are hired by servicers and not the Trustee or the Trust. Thus the servicers hire counsel and then order that foreclosure be brought in the name of the alleged trust. But if there is no trust or no acquisition of the debt, or authorization (remember powers of attorneys are not sufficient), the servicer is without legal authority to do anything, much less collect money from homeowners or bring foreclosure actions.

Paragraph (2) of the this “advisory” also gives guidance and foundation for what various people, especially attorneys, can say about who they represent and how.

“The Trustee believes that all persons retained by the servicer should specifically role or capacity in which they are acting. … One would be less accurate… if he or she claimed to be … attorney for the Trustee. A more accurate statement [attorney for servicer] acting for [Deutsch] as trustee of the Trust.”

This completely corroborates what I have been saying for years along with a chorus of lawyers and pro se litigants across the county. It simply is not true that the attorney represents the trust or the trustee.

 

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