FLA S Ct Reverses Course on Homeowner’s Award of Attorney Fees and Raises Other Issues for Defense of Foreclosures

For those of us that have access to the data, we know that homeowners are winning foreclosure cases all the time. Nobody else knows because as soon as a homeowner wins or gets into a winning position they are offered money for their silence. The situation worsened when Florida and courts in other states turned down the homeowner’s demand for attorney fees after the homeowner had flat out won the case — especially where the case was dismissed for lack of standing.

Here the homeowner once again wins, having advanced several defense narratives. The homeowner applies for recovery of attorney fees and the demand is rejected because the loan contract no longer exists or because the party seeking to use it was shown not to be party to it, at least when suit was commenced. The Florida Supreme Court reversed that decision and rejected others like it.

Recognizing the danger of the erroneous rulings from the trial court and the district courts of appeal, the Court rejected arguments that a dismissal, voluntary or otherwise, based upon lack of standing meant that the loan contract no longer existed. While not completely abandoning the lower courts the Florida Supreme Court has narrowed the issues such that it is again almost always arguable and even inevitable that if the homeowner wins the foreclosure case an award of fees will follow.

fla s ct attny fees 1-4-19 sc17-1387 Glass v Nationwide

see also Follow Up Article to this Article

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Let us help you plan for trial and draft your foreclosure defense strategy, discovery requests and defense narrative: 202-838-6345. Ask for a Consult or check us out on www.lendinglies.com.
I provide advice and consultation to many people and lawyers so they can spot the key required elements of a scam — in and out of court. If you have a deal you want skimmed for red flags order the Consult and fill out the REGISTRATION FORM.
A few hundred dollars well spent is worth a lifetime of financial ruin.
PLEASE FILL OUT AND SUBMIT OUR FREE REGISTRATION FORM WITHOUT ANY OBLIGATION. OUR PRIVACY POLICY IS THAT WE DON’T USE THE FORM EXCEPT TO SPEAK WITH YOU OR PERFORM WORK FOR YOU. THE INFORMATION ON THE FORMS ARE NOT SOLD NOR LICENSED IN ANY MANNER, SHAPE OR FORM. NO EXCEPTIONS.
Get a Consult and TERA (Title & Encumbrances Analysis and & Report) 202-838-6345 or 954-451-1230. The TERA 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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This case opens a can of worms for the banks and servicers and corroborates much of what I have been writing for 12 years.

At issue was the homeowner’s right to prevail on an attorney fees award after winning the case in the trial court. This has previously been denied on the basis that cases dismissed for lack of standing meant that there was not contract. But the Florida Supreme Court says that the fact that just because the party involved had no right to enforce the contract doesn’t mean there was no contract.

The clear implication here is that the court did not want the erroneous rulings of trial courts and appellate district courts to be construed as completely canceling the loan contract. Any other ruling would be inherently ruling on the rights of unidentified third parties who DID have a right to collection of payment from the borrower’s debt and who did have a right to enforcement — without any notice to them because they are undisclosed and unknown.

The Supreme Court ruled that failure to allege or prove standing does not negate the fact that the homeowner is the prevailing party and entitled to fees under F.S. 57.105(7).

Citing its own decision in 1989, Katz v Van Der Noord 546 So 2d 1047, the Supreme Court held that even if the contract is rescinded or held to be unenforceable the prevailing party is still entitled to fees under the reciprocity provisions of F.S. 57.105(7).

This upends a basic strategy of the banks and servicers. Up until this decision they were virtually guaranteed an award of fees and costs if they won and immunity to fees if they lost. This reopens the fees issue and may give attorneys a reason to accept foreclosure defense cases — even on contingency or partial contingency.

But the court, perhaps in dicta, also mentions whether the note is negotiable, quoting from the homeowner’s arguments and pleadings.

Up until now the mere existence of the original note and in many cases a copy of the note, was sufficient to regard the note as a negotiable instrument. But the Florida Supreme Court is hinting at something here that the banks and servicers really don’t want to hear, to wit: it takes more that announcing the existence of a note to make it negotiable. This is not so.

Which brings me to my final point: read carefully the day the claimant is introduced and you will probably find that the note and assignment are not facially valid because they require reference to parole or extrinsic evidence. This bars legal presumptions, at least in the absence of a specific reference to the documents supporting the execution of the instrument as a substitution of trustee, an assignment or an endorsement.

The court was more than hinting at the idea that subsequent treatment of the note, which may have been a negotiable instrument at the time of execution (if the “lender” was in fact the lender). The question is whether the note is facially valid, to wit: whether the note specifically names a maker, payee and an unconditional promise to pay. If the originator was not the lender then extrinsic evidence would be required to prove the loan and the debt and the party who would have been appropriately named as payee on the note.

If subsequent indorsements or assignments for a note that WAS negotiable remove certainty from one or more of the elements of a facially valid instruments, then it is no longer a negotiable instrument. And THAT means that the all “reasonable” assumptions and legal preemptions are taken off the table.

The reason is simple. In order to be a negotiable instrument the assignee or successor must have certainty as to the parties and terms of the note. If extrinsic or parole evidence is required to provide that certainty the instrument is not negotiable and thus not entitled to any assumptions or presumptions.

So for example (taken from another case) when a Substitution of Trustee occurs in a nonjudicial state and it is executed by “U.S. Bank National Association, as trustee, in trust for registered Holders of First Franklin Mortgage Loan Trust, Mortgage Loan Asset-Backed Certificates, Series 2007-FF I, by Select Portfolio Servicing, Inc., as attorney-in-fact” then there are several points that require extrinsic or parole evidence, making the note non negotiable or at least arguably so.

In this scenario for an assignee to take a note from a party claiming rights to enforce in this instance one must know

  1. The name of the Trust, and the jurisdiction in which it was organized and is now existing.
  2. The instrument by which US Bank claims to be trustee
  3. Identification of “registered holders”
  4. The identification and content of the certificates
  5. The instrument by which SPS claims to be “attorney in fact”
  6. If you look closely you will also see that there is a question as to whom it is claimed that SPS is representing as attorney in fact. In any event “attorney in fact” means that a power of attorney exists but without specific reference to that power of attorney by date and parties, extrinsic or parole evidence is required meaning that no assumptions or legal presumptions may be made.

In other words the note cannot be accepted by anyone without extrinsic evidence. The fact that documents are apparently accepted by the assignees doesn’t change anything as to the facial validity of the document. Without facial validity there can be no negotiability under Article 3 of the UCC. Without negotiability there can be no assumptions or legal presumptions and thus the claimant must prove every element of its claim without presumptions.

And of course when the homeowner wins an award of attorney fees is now once again probable in addition to court costs.

Remember always: the point is not who can get away with enforcement. The point of the law is assuring that the owner of the debt is the one enforcing the debt and collecting the proceeds of enforcement. Before false claims of securitization this premise was almost universally true. Now it is rarely true that the true owner of the debt is represented.

And the apparent absence of such a party due to manipulation of the debt by intermediaries, does not legally create a vacuum into which anyone with knowledge and access to data may step in and claim rights of enforcement. As stated in California Ivanova decision the law does not allow the borrower’s debt to be owed to anyone whose premise is simply that they claim it.

Using TILA Rescission as Jurisdictional Issue

I think TILA Rescission should be approached as a jurisdictional issue since it focuses on the procedural aspects of the TILA Rescission statute. In other words it should always be front and center.

I think a problem with TILA Rescission is that not even borrowers understand that the rescission issue is over. By asking a court to  make rescission effective you underline the correct premise that rescission has already occurred. All your pleadings after that should be based upon that premise or you undermine yourself.

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Let us help you plan for trial and draft your foreclosure defense strategy, discovery requests and defense narrative: 202-838-6345. Ask for a Consult or check us out on www.lendinglies.com.
I provide advice and consultation to many people and lawyers so they can spot the key required elements of a scam — in and out of court. If you have a deal you want skimmed for red flags order the Consult and fill out the REGISTRATION FORM.
A few hundred dollars well spent is worth a lifetime of financial ruin.
PLEASE FILL OUT AND SUBMIT OUR FREE REGISTRATION FORM WITHOUT ANY OBLIGATION. OUR PRIVACY POLICY IS THAT WE DON’T USE THE FORM EXCEPT TO SPEAK WITH YOU OR PERFORM WORK FOR YOU. THE INFORMATION ON THE FORMS ARE NOT SOLD NOR LICENSED IN ANY MANNER, SHAPE OR FORM. NO EXCEPTIONS.
Get a Consult and TERA (Title & Encumbrances Analysis and & Report) 202-838-6345 or 954-451-1230. The TERA 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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The plain wording of the statute says that rescission is effective, as a matter of law, when delivered (or sent via USPS). SCOTUS says no lawsuit is required to make rescission effective. The fact that the banks treat it as ineffective is something they do at their own peril. The statute explicitly says otherwise along with REG Z procedures based on the statute 15 USC §1635 and the Jesinoski decision.
*
Under the statute and Reg Z the loan contract is eliminated and replaced with a new relationship under the statute — a set of procedures creating a statutory claim for the debt. It follows that ONLY a party who is an actual creditor or owner of the debt can even appear much less claim or defend anything about rescission. If they claim standing from the loan contract, they have no standing.
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Hence if the formers holders of the now nonexistent note and mortgage are also creditors they have no problem. They can plead anything they want, including defenses to or motions (or lawsuits) to vacate TILA Rescission. 
*
BUT usually the former holders of the loan contract (note and mortgage) were using the loan CONTRACT as the sole basis of their standing — desiring to raise legal presumptions from the existence of those contracts (note and mortgage).
*
What happens next is incontrovertible by logic or legal reasoning. Although they might be named parties to an action pending in court such ex-holders have lost their standing in that court action or they never had it to begin with. By operation of law the note and mortgage from which all their claims derive do not exist. That is a jurisdictional issue and it MUST be decided against the banks — by operation of law. Failure to present this has resulted in a number of escape hatches for judges who don’t like TILA Rescission. Your job is to close those hatches.
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The whole point of the rescission strategy is to remove any possibility of an arguable claim for standing to foreclose on the now nonexistent mortgage or deed of trust. Unless the claim for standing is based upon ownership of the debt subject matter jurisdiction is absent.
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This means that no claim or defense against the effectiveness of the rescission can be raised by anyone other than the owner of the debt.  
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This also means that there can be no foreclosure because the loan contract has been replaced by a statutory “contract.”
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Borrowers undermine this premise by filing lawsuits asking the court to declare that the rescission is effective. The TILA Rescission statute 15 USC §1635 has already answered that and THAT is what should be pled. SCOTUS has also already answered that in the Jesinoski case. Asking the court to declare it so means that you take the position that the statute has not already answered that question, that SCOTUS has not already ruled and that therefore it is now up to the trial court to make a ruling.
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You are opening the door for argument when there is no such argument intended by the statute or the US Supreme Court. Upon being invited to do so a judge who doesn’t like the statute will come with reasons not to declare the rescission effective — usually based upon objections from parties who could not possibly have standing to raise such objections.
*
If that is true (and it is true by definition in our legal system once the highest court has ruled) then a party seeking relief from rescission would need to allege that they are the owners of the debt and then  prove it without reference to the note or mortgage. In other words they would need to prove they funded the debt or they purchased it with actual money.
*
We all know that the fake securitization scheme was entirely dependent upon illegally funding the origination and purchase of the loans in the fictitious name of the trust for the account of the underwriter and that the investors were cut off contractually from having any right, title, interest or even opportunity to review or audit the portfolio of loans claimed to be in a fictitious pool that was being managed by a trust that did not exist, which in turn was managed by a trustee that had no powers of administration for the benefit of nonexistent beneficiaries.
*
Hence the problem of the banks is clearly that they can’t prove funding or purchase because doing so would expose their illegal activities. Whether this would actually lead to a free house is debatable, depending upon the exercise of equitable jurisdiction in the courts.
*
What is clear is that the banks were told by their own lawyers not to ignore rescission or they would lose everything. They ignored it anyway believing they could steamroll through the courts, which was in fact an accurate measurement of their own power.
*
BUT as the banks persist along this strategy they continually build the inventory of homes that by operation of law are still owned by the borrowers, all other actions being void ab initio, not voidable by any stretch of the imagination.
*
AND the banks are by their own actions and inaction causing the debt to slip away from them as well. Under TILA Rescission the old loan contract is replaced with a new statutory contract. Actions for enforcement under that contract must be based on violation of TILA. TILA has a statute of limitations. Thus claims beyond the statute of limitations are barred. And THAT means that claims for the debt are barred after the statute of limitations (on claims arising from TILA) has run — as result of plain arrogance of the banks — and no fault of any borrower.

How to Beat the Shell Game

The bottom line is that the foreclosures are a sham. The proceeds of the foreclosure never go into a REMIC Trust because there is neither a REMIC election nor a Trust, much less any entity that outright owns the debt, note or mortgage. In order to win, you must know that the securitization players use sham conduits and fictitious names at will, leaving an ever widening gap between the real and the unreal. It’s the gap that enables so many homeowners to win.

Without getting too metaphysical about it, I am reminded by what Ghandi said when he won India’s independence against all perceived odds. He said that in the end truth always wins out. Always. Of course he didn’t say when that happens.

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

I provide advice and consultation to many people and lawyers so they can spot the key required elements of a scam — in and out of court. If you have a deal you want skimmed for red flags order the Consult and fill out the REGISTRATION FORM. A few hundred dollars well spent is worth a lifetime of financial ruin.

PLEASE FILL OUT AND SUBMIT OUR FREE REGISTRATION FORM WITHOUT ANY OBLIGATION. OUR PRIVACY POLICY IS THAT WE DON’T USE THE FORM EXCEPT TO SPEAK WITH YOU OR PERFORM WORK FOR YOU. THE INFORMATION ON THE FORMS ARE NOT SOLD NOR LICENSED IN ANY MANNER, SHAPE OR FORM. NO EXCEPTIONS.

Get a Consult and TERA (Title & Encumbrances Analysis and & Report) 202-838-6345 or 954-451-1230. The TERA 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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I recently received an email from someone dealing with “Shellpoint” servicing. I thought it might be beneficial for everyone to see my response, to which I have added some edits.

Shellpoint is an apt name. It is a Shell company organized to deflect inquiries and claims from the real actors. The “point” is how they stab homeowners. Modifications are pointless in most cases, designed to place the homeowner in a hopeless economic situation in which they cannot avoid foreclosure.

Mods are intentionally convoluted and virtually nothing is happening on their side except the process of asking for more documentation when you have already sent or they already have it. Some mods are “granted” but only after they have raked the homeowner over the coals and they offer ice in the inter, along with their outright theft of the debt from the actual legal or equitable owner.

The new lender, effectively, is the so-called servicer who in turn has a Purchase and Assumption Agreement with the underwriters of so-called mortgage bonds or certificates. They are not bonds and they are not actual certificates. While those underwriters do business in the  fictitious name described as a REMIC trust when dealing with homeowners, they do not use the fictitious name when they create the illusion of ownership of the debt, note or mortgage.

CWABS is Countrywide. CW was an aggregator only in the loosest sense of the word. Most believe that CW acquired the loans and then was the seller to REMIC Trusts. The entire scheme was a sham. CW did not acquire any loans and was therefore not the seller of the debt, note or mortgage. The REMIC Trust was legally nonexistent and /or had no transaction conducted in its name in which the Trustee of the so-called REMIC Trust was entrusted with your loan to manage on behalf of beneficiaries who also were nonexistent.

The investors who purchased certificates issued in the name of the fake trust are not beneficiaries. The Trustee has absolutely no power to even inquire as to the affairs of the Trust much less actively manage them. Read the PSA — all the way through.

Although there are a few exceptions the investors disclaim any right, title or interest to the debt, note or mortgage. If they were beneficiaries they would have rights to the loans and rights regarding the management of those loans.  The named Trustee would have fiduciary duty to the investors regarding those loans. In truth the underwriter of the certificates was actually the issuer acting under the name of the nonexistent trust which was neither the direct nor indirect owner of any assets, much less loans. And the Trustee is merely a rent-a-name to make it look like a serious financial institution was at the head of this scheme.

Companies like Shellpoint claim their power is derived from the nonexistent trust that does not own the debt, note or mortgage and which will not receive the proceeds of foreclosure.

If their powers and rights are said to derive from the existence of the Trust, then they have no power. They have no right to collect anything or enforce anything unless a specific owner of the debt, note and mortgage is (a) identified and (b) the owner gives specific rights and direction to an agent (servicer) to conduct business in the name of the owner or for the benefit of the owner of the debt, note and mortgage.

Proving this to a judge who is at best skeptical of such claims is essentially impossible. That is because the defense narrative would require digging deep into the books and records of the trust (there are none) and deep into the records of the previous and current servicers to determine where they sent money that they collected from homeowners supposedly pursuant to the terms of a promissory note. The current state of such narratives is that they are deemed not credible or “not proven” even though they are true. And accordingly the attempts at such discovery and investigation are thwarted by the court sustaining objections to such discovery.

Those objections are lodged by lawyers who claim that they represent the named claimant. That is also a misrepresentation in many cases because the claimant they have named does not exist and has no direct or indirect power or rights over the debt, note mor mortgage. Since the claimant does not exist, that should be the end of the matter. But once again rebuttable presumptions come to the rescue of the lawyers of nonexistent clients. And once again those presumptions are not rebuttable without getting proof from sources who simply will never comply even if ordered by a court.

But just to be clear, this is a possible basis for suing the lawyers who filed such claims either knowingly or by failing to conduct basic due diligence. Any normal lawyer would not knowingly take directions from a third party in which they were to file suit or start a nonjudicial foreclosure on behalf of a nonexistent entity that neither exists nor has any interest in the subject matter of litigation. So later when you file suit for wrongful foreclosure, abuse of process, RICO or whatever you decide are proper grounds and causes of action, consider the foreclosure litigation to be  a vehicle for laying the groundwork for actions in fraud, misrepresentation and negligence.

So the lawyers who win these cases enter the courtroom knowing that the defense narrative is true but they do not assert it as a claim they must prove.  They are adept at keeping the burden of proof away from their client homeowner. The winning lawyers basically follow the track of keeping the burden of proof on the claimant who seeks foreclosure. The lawyers know that the the claimant simply will not and cannot answer certain questions that can be used to undermine the legal presumptions on which the entire claim is based, contrary to the actual facts. The winning defense lawyers are the ones who use timely objections and good cross examination (i.e., constant follow-up). In the end the witness or the document will collapse under its own weight.

 

Fundamentals of Foreclosure

Probably the biggest mistake and most common mistake I ever made as a lawyer was by assuming certain things at the very beginning of a case. No case is more dangerous ground for assumptions than foreclosures.

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

I provide advice and consultation to many people and lawyers so they can spot the key required elements of a scam — in and out of court. If you have a deal you want skimmed for red flags order the Consult and fill out the REGISTRATION FORM. A few hundred dollars well spent is worth a lifetime of financial ruin.

PLEASE FILL OUT AND SUBMIT OUR FREE REGISTRATION FORM WITHOUT ANY OBLIGATION. OUR PRIVACY POLICY IS THAT WE DON’T USE THE FORM EXCEPT TO SPEAK WITH YOU OR PERFORM WORK FOR YOU. THE INFORMATION ON THE FORMS ARE NOT SOLD NOR LICENSED IN ANY MANNER, SHAPE OR FORM. NO EXCEPTIONS.

Get a Consult and TERA (Title & Encumbrances Analysis and & Report) 202-838-6345 or 954-451-1230. The TERA 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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WHAT TO KEEP IN MIND:
When a lawsuit is filed or nonjudicial foreclosure is initiated, the party bringing the claim always has the burden of proving the legal elements of the claim. Such a party must prove that it has the right to make the claim (standing) in addition to establishing the elements of a cause of action. A party only has the right to make a claim (i.e., the court only has jurisdiction) if the the claiming party has been injured in some way by the Defendant or homeowner, in the case of foreclosures. The claiming party must identify itself and allege that it exists and is otherwise sui juris (able to make a claim under state law). In foreclosures, this element is nearly always misrepresented.
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In foreclosure cases the claim is always the same — the involuntary sale of the subject property. The elements to be proven by the claimant, in addition to its legal existence, are that it is injured by nonpayment. The claimant can also allege that it is bringing the action on behalf of the party injured if it identifies the [arty with sufficient specificity such that the homeowner can seek to confirm whether the agency relationship exists. Otherwise the right to cross examine witnesses, guaranteed under the 6th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution is violated. In the courts this has been a weak spot for judges who simply assume that the named claimant exists and was injured by the homeowner’s alleged non payment. Aggressive advocacy is required to redirect the court’s attention to basic, fundamental elements of lawsuits and nonjudicial foreclosures.
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If the claimant has proved a prima facie case the burden of proof shifts to the homeowner. Without proof that is accepted into evidence by the Judge, the court is merely presuming facts rather than finding them by weight of the evidence. The common practice is for the claimant to invoke legal presumptions arising from the apparent facial validity of an instrument. But the courts go too far in using such presumptions in also presuming that every word on the document is also valid and true. Again aggressive advocacy is required to redirect the court’s attention.
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Without the presumptions it is most likely impossible for the claimant to prove a case on its own behalf much less for any third party. Frequently the claimant does not legally exist (REMIC Trust) and thus is not sui juris and has no place being referred to as claimant in either judicial or nonjudicial foreclosures.
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The usual pattern is that the name of an entity is asserted and implied to be a trust without stating where it was formed, under what jurisdiction, and whether it still exists, and if so, where it exists. Normally the address would be the same as the Trustee but this is not the case with REMIC Trusts; this is because the rules for domicile of a business entity require its place of business to be where it does business and maintains activities that are administered by the trustee. But if no business activity is conducted by the Trust it is usually because there is nothing that has been entrusted to the named Trustee to actively administer on behalf of the beneficiaries of a trust. If there is nothing in trust then there is no trust and the trust allegation must be ignored.
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To avoid the overuse of legal presumptions, homeowners (by and through their counsel) must “prove” a narrative that contradicts the facts that are presumed. The burden of proof however is much lower than proving a case or a defense. It is more akin to a probable cause finding or even less.
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The narrative must raise serious and credible issues under which the facts at trial might be found that are inconsistent with the facts that the claimant is presuming. The court would then ignore the legal presumptions and require the claimant to prove their case with facts rather than presumptions.
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Documents that contain inconsistencies with each other or even within the same document are the most likely sources of a credible narrative under which the actual facts  found at trial might differ from the facts that the claimant seeks to be presumed. In virtually all foreclosure cases where the claimant is forced to prove the facts rather than being allowed to rely on preemptions, our observation is that the case is settled under seal of confidentiality.

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).

 

Tonight! The Neil Garfield Show with Illinois Attorney Dan Khwaja — LOPEZ Case

US Bank v Lopez

Thursdays LIVE! Click in to the The Neil Garfield Show

Or call in at (347) 850-1260, 6pm Eastern Thursdays

It is always a pleasure to speak with an attorney who is an ardent advocate for consumers. And it is good to know they are out there even though everyone is complaining about not finding an attorney. Dan wins cases and motions because he fights every step of the way — but like every good litigator he thinks about the case before he writes or says anything.

Here the note was sent for endorsement AFTER suit was filed. Truth is stronger than fiction. In the Lopez case an Illinois Appellate Court reversed the trial judge and dismissed the foreclosure. Then the same court reversed its own decision en banc and affirmed the foreclosure. Now Khwaja is taking it to the Illinois Supreme Court. He has the law and the rules on his side. You can see what he filed here: US Bank, Trustee v Lopez.

Included in the above link is what was filed with the attached appendix and relevant documents. It has the first complaint and note, second complaint and note, the affidavit of Robert Rappe Jr admitting the note was sent for endorsement after the foreclosure was filed. The first and second opinions. Everything is here that you need to look at if you want to review it.

At issue now is whether the rules mean anything or if the rules promulgated by the Illinois Supreme Court can be ignored. This of course has been the continuing cry of homeowners who were seeking workouts and modifications only to be inexorably drawn into foreclosure. In a word, the access of borrowers to their creditors has always been continually blocked during the modern era that involves false claims of securitization.

The fact pattern involves the familiar US Bank as Trustee for a presumed Trust. The parties continue to refer to the Plaintiff as “US Bank” which of course is not the case. The named Trust is the Plaintiff — if it exists. If it doesn’t exist then there is no Plaintiff notwithstanding the size of US Bank. Since the style of cases is a  shorthand “US Bank” becomes shorthand for US Bank, as trustee for the XYZ Trust.

Guest Information:

Daniel Khwaja, Esq.
Attorney at Law
ph (312)-933-4015
 

Tonight — Silent Roles of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac — Hiding Behind the Obtuse

How to Withhold Vital Information from Homeowners

Thursdays LIVE! Click in to the The Neil Garfield Show

Or call in at (347) 850-1260, 6pm Eastern Thursdays

Charles Marshall, Attorney and Bill Paatalo, licensed investigator discuss the moral hazard created by the Government Sponsored Entities (GSEs) banks, the courts and the regulators in allowing “presumptions” to be used even when the actual facts are different from the presumed facts.

Fannie and Freddie have long been a mystery wrapped in an enigma.

Before false claims of securitization, before fabrication and forgery of documents, the GSEs had fairly clear role in the origination, servicing and enforcement of mortgages. Now they are used as cover to hide lack of ownership where the banks and servicers make the homeowner travel and endless loop leading nowhere.

Now, as to any specific loan, we don’t know which of the following applies:

  1.  GSE is the guarantor of the loan (basically like a third party insurer with government backing)
  2. GSE is Master Trustee of a REMIC Trust in which there is a named Trustee who has the same powers, rights and obligations as the Master Trustee — i.e., no powers to actively administer the active affairs of the trust because there is no business or assets in the trust.
  3. GSE is or was a purchaser for cash.
  4. GSE is or was a purchaser using MBS issued by a named trust that either exists or doesn’t exist.
  5. GSE, using Trust A MBS paid Trust A for loans owned by the Trust or for loans not owned by the trust.
  6. GSE was a seller of the subject debt, note or mortgage.
  7. GSE claimed ownership when it didn’t own the subject debt, note or mortgage.
  8. GSE showed subject loan on its website but had no interest in the subject debt, note or mortgage (or foreclosure).
  9. Third parties claimed that GSE owned the subject debt, note and/or mortgage and it was true.
  10. Third parties claimed that GSE owned the subject debt, note and/or mortgage and it was false.
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