Are Foreclosure Trustees Debt Collectors?

Such rulings from appellate courts undermine confidence in the judicial system for those who are victims of wrongdoing and reinforce the confidence and arrogance of those committing the wrongs that they will get away with it.

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https://www.vcita.com/v/lendinglies to schedule CONSULT, leave message or make payments.
THIS ARTICLE IS NOT A LEGAL OPINION UPON WHICH YOU CAN RELY IN ANY INDIVIDUAL CASE. HIRE A LAWYER.
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see 9th Circuit Foreclosure Trustee not a debt collector 10-56884

The entire “Substitution of Trustee” scheme is performed with two purposes only — (1) to record a self servicing document that will be considered facially valid establishing a “new” beneficiary and (2) the selection of an entity whose sole purpose is to facilitate foreclosure.

As a Trustee on a deed of trust it has obligations set forth in state statutes allowing the use of non-judicial foreclosure proceedings. The old beneficiary, frequently a title company, would follow the requirements of the statutes and common sense. The “new” one is “appointed” by a self-proclaimed beneficiary with instructions to foreclose. Hence the new trustee is obviously selected because of the likelihood that it will follow instructions from the self-proclaimed “successor” beneficiary and thus “establish” the validity of the new beneficiary and the data from the new beneficiary indicating the existence of a default. That is why it is described as “the foreclosure trustee.” The old one might require more information and documentation to establish the authenticity of the successor beneficiary.

The 9th Circuit here amending its prior opinion, rules out the foreclosure trustee as a debt collector because it is only selling collateral and not seeking recovery of money. Never mind the default letter that gives the amounts required for reinstatement or the redemption rights of any borrower. Playing right into the hands of the banks, the 9th Circuit has simply failed to deal with realities and instead has arrived at a result that this is as remote from the realities of today’s foreclosures as any Dickensian portrayal of the courts (see “Bleakhouse“).

The dissenting opinion from which I quote below sums up the weakness of this decision:

The suggestion in Hulse that a foreclosure proceeding is one in which “the lender is foreclosing its interest in the property” is flatly wrong. A foreclosure proceeding is one in which the interest of the debtor (and not the creditor) is foreclosed in a proceeding conducted by a trustee who holds title to the property and who then uses the proceeds to retire all or part of the debt owed by the borrower. See Cal. Civ. Code § 2931; Yvanova v. New Century Mortg. Corp., 365 P.3d 845, 850 (Cal. 2016). Any excess funds raised over the amount owed by the borrower (and costs associated with the foreclosure) are paid to the borrower. See Cal. Civ. Code § 2924k; see also Jesse Dukeminier & James E. Krier, Property 590 (2d ed. 1988). Thus, contrary to the holding in Hulse, “[t]here can be no serious doubt that the ultimate purpose of foreclosure is the payment of money.” Glazer, 704 F.3d at 463. Nor, because the FDCPA defines a “debt collector” as one who collects or attempts to collect, “directly or indirectly,” debts owed to another, 15 U.S.C. § 1692a(6), does it matter that the money collected at a foreclosure sale does not come directly from the debtor.

But even this fairly clear rendition of foreclosures recites “facts” that are in an alternate universe, to wit: that “the money collected at a foreclosure sale does not come directly from the debtor.” Where else did it come from? It came from the sale of the alleged debtor’s homestead which is property owned by the debtor and which can only be stopped by payment of the amount demanded or a lawsuit challenging the Substitution of Trustee, the status of the supposed successor beneficiary and the presence of a default between the homeowner, on the one hand, and the new beneficiary on the other hand. Either way the money comes from the debtor.

Add to that the obvious fact that Recontrust and other entities similarly situated are simply controlled entities of the large banks. In a word, they are appointing themselves as beneficiary and as successor trustee through the use of a sham entity that has no interest nor any power to act like a true trustee. The analytical issue appears to be that taken collectively, the Foreclosure Trustee, the self proclaimed successor beneficiary and the self proclaimed or appointed “servicer” are aiming for foreclosure under the guise of a quest for money.

Now You See Them, Now You Don’t

ARE LAW FIRMS CROSSING THE LINE FOR BANKS WHO WILL THROW THEM UNDER THE BUS?

It is a chaotic circular round of documents emanating ultimately by, for and from the same parties. And somehow it is becoming custom and practice to allow law firm employees to sign important documents that transfer possession, delivery, ownership and servicing rights from one party to another while those parties themselves sign nothing.

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

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I can’t help thinking about whether there is a motion in California and other nonjudicial states that allows you to challenge the right of the attorney to be the attorney of record when the law firm is a fact witness on issues that are central to the case. Having signed the proof of claim, being the trustee (who supposedly represents the party who signs a proof of claim), etc., the question is whether they are acting on their own behalf or on behalf of a third party who might indeed have some objections against the law firm representing the interests of parties whose interests might be antithetical to their own.

In a deed of trust you have the trustor (homeowner) and the Trustee in the middle between the trustor and the beneficiary who presumably is the creditor. By now we know that original beneficiary probably did not make the loan and that the alleged new beneficiary didn’t buy it. The beneficiaries’ claims are only as good as the words on the fabricated paper on which they are written and certain legal presumptions that are routinely misapplied.

So the first sign of trouble is the “Substitution of Trustee” wherein a “New” beneficiary executes a document appointing a new Trustee on the Deed of Trust. Why? What was wrong with the old one if everything was on the up and up? They substitute because they know the original Trustee won’t accept the instructions from the new party because the original Trustee has no objective reason to believe that the new “party” is a “beneficiary”. Who signs that “substitution of Trustee”?

It is usually someone who has been given instructions to sign it on the promise and premise that they have been appointed attorney in fact for the “new beneficiary.” In fact, in many cases their only job is signing documents that they have received instructions to sign. But the actual person signing knows absolutely nothing about the deal and has no knowledge about the facts behind the business of signing such documents — assuming their signature was not forged or robo-signed.

So in this and many if not nearly all cases, the actual signature is supplied by a third party who will then fabricate a power of attorney to do it — still without any facts about why the Trustee needs to be replaced. In most cases it is an employee of the law firm who by definition (?) has no actual interest in the loan, the debt, the note or the mortgage (Deed of Trust). This makes the person who signed it a fact witness and watch how the law firm fights to prevent that person from testifying at deposition or trial. In many cases they will assert that the person is no longer employed and they don’t know where he or she is now located.

And then you have the new Trustee who often turns out to be the same law firm who signed the Substitution of Trustee, making it a double self-serving document for which no legal presumptions should apply since there is no foundation in evidence that establishes the law firm as a real party in interest — and if such evidence existed the law firm would be disqualified from representing the allegedly new beneficiary and from being the Trustee AND advocate against the Trustor. If the legislature meant to allow that sort of thing they would have been violating the due process clause of the U.S. Constitution making the entire nonjudicial statutory scheme unconstitutional.

Who signs the power of attorney once it is fabricated? It is either the law firm employee or an employee who works for a “servicer” who in most cases is not named in any document as servicer. Who signs the validation of the foreclosure? Same person. It is a chaotic circular round of documents emanating ultimately by, for and from the same parties. And somehow it is becoming custom and practice to allow law firm employees to sign important documents that transfer possession, delivery, ownership and servicing rights from one party to another while those parties themselves sign nothing.

That is what they are talking about when they refer to “remote” vehicles. It is a situation where actions are taken and the people for whom the action was taken cannot be tied into the transaction in case someone needs to go to jail, or pay a fine or sanctions. But somehow the Courts have twisted this into meaning that what is good for the goose is not good for the gander. The banks can distance themselves from liability for a fabricated transaction but they also can receive the benefits of the fabrication as though they were present.

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NEW LOAN CLOSINGS — BEWARE!!!— NonJudicial Deeds of Trust Slipped into New Mortgage Closings in Judicial States

For more information please call 520-405-1688 or 954-495-9867

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IF YOU ARE HAVING A CLOSING ON A REFI OR NEW LOAN BEWARE OF WHAT DOCUMENTS ARE BEING USED THAT WAIVE YOUR RIGHTS TO CONTEST WRONGFUL FORECLOSURES — GET A LAWYER!!!

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EDITOR’S NOTE: It is no secret that the Bank’s have a MUCH easier time foreclosing on property in states that have set up non-judicial foreclosure. Banks like Bank of America set up their own “Substitute Trustee” (“RECONTRUST”) — the first filing before the foreclosure commences. In this “Substitution of Trustee” Bank of America declares itself to be the new beneficiary or acting on behalf of the new beneficiary without any court or agency verification of that claim. So in essence BOA is naming itself as both the new beneficiary (mortgagee) and the “Trustee” which is the only protection that the homeowner (“Trustor”). This is a blatant violation of the intent of the the laws of any state allowing nonjudicial foreclosure.
The Trustee is supposed to serve as the objective intermediary between the borrower and the lender. Where a non-lender issues a self serving statement that it is the beneficiary and the the borrower contests the “Substitution of Trustee” the OLD trustee is, in my opinion, obligated to file an interpleader action stating that it has competing claims, it has no interest in the outcome and it wants attorneys fees and costs. That leaves the new “beneficiary” and the borrower to fight it out under the requirements of due process. An Immediate TRO (Temporary Restraining Order) should be issued against the “new” Trustee and the “new” beneficiary from taking any further action in foreclosure when the borrower denies that the substitution of trustee was a valid instrument (based in part on the fact that the “beneficiary” who appointed the “substitute trustee” is not the true beneficiary. This SHOULD require the Bank to prove up its case in the old style, but it is often misapplied in procedure putting the burden on the borrower to prove facts that only the bank has in its care, custody and control. And THAT is where very aggressive litigation to obtain discovery is so important.
If the purpose of the legislation was to allow a foreclosing party to succeed in foreclosure when it could not succeed in a judicial proceeding, then the provision would be struck down as an unconstitutional deprivation of due process and other civil rights. But the rationale of each of the majority states that have adopted this infrastructure was to create a clerical system for what had been a clerical function for decades — where most foreclosures were uncontested and the use of Judges, Clerks of the Court and other parts of the judicial system was basically a waste of time. And practically everyone agreed.
There are two developments to report on this. First the U.S. Supreme Court turned down an appeal from Bank of America who was using Recontrust in Utah foreclosures and was asserting that Texas law must be used to enforce Utah foreclosures because Texas was allegedly the headquarters of Recontrust. So what they were trying to do, and failed, was to apply the highly restrictive laws of Texas with a tiny window of opportunity to contest the foreclosure in the State of Utah that had laws that protected consumers far better than Texas. The Texas courts refused to apply that doctrine and the U.S. Supreme court refused to even hear it. see WATCH OUT! THE BANKS ARE STILL COMING!
But a more sinister version of the shell game is being played out in new closings across the country — borrowers are being given a “Deed of Trust” instead of a mortgage in judicial states in order to circumvent the laws of that state. By fiat the banks are creating a “contract” in which the borrower agrees that if the “beneficiary” tells the Trustee on the deed of trust that the borrower did not pay, the borrower has already agreed by contract to allow the forced sale of the property. See article below. As usual borrowers are told NOT to hire an attorney for closing because “he can’t change anything anyway.” Not true. And the Borrower’s ignorance of the difference between a mortgage and a deed of trust is once again being used against the homeowners in ways that are undetected until long after the statute of limitations has apparently run out on making a claim against the loan originator.
THIS IS A CLEAR VIOLATION OF STATE LAW IN MOST JUDICIAL STATES — WHICH THE BANKS ARE TRYING TO OVERTURN BY FORCING OR TRICKING BORROWERS INTO SIGNING “AGREEMENTS” TO ALLOW FORCED SALE WITHOUT THE BANK EVER PROVING THEIR CASE AS TO THE DEBT, OWNERSHIP AND BALANCE. Translation: “It’s OK to wrongfully foreclose on me.”
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Foreclosure News: Who Gets to Decide Whether a State is a Judicial Foreclosure State or a Non-Judicial Foreclosure State, Legislatures or the Mortgage Industry?

posted by Nathalie Martin
Apparently some mortgage lenders feel they can make this change unilaterally. Big changes are afoot in the process of granting a home mortgage, which could have a significant impact on a homeowner’s ability to fight foreclosure. In many states in the Unites States (including but not limited to Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Vermont and Wisconsin), a lender must go to court and give the borrower a certain amount of notice before foreclosing on his or her home. Now the mortgage industry is quickly and quietly trying to change this, hoping no one will notice. The goal seems to be to avoid those annoying court processes and go right for the home without foreclosure procedures. This change is being attempted by some lenders simply by asking borrowers to sign deeds of trust rather than mortgages from now on.
Not long ago, Karen Myers, the head of the Consumer Protection Division of the New Mexico Attorney General’s Office, started noticing that some consumers were being given deeds of trust to sign rather than mortgages when obtaining a home loan. She wondered why this was being done and also how this change would affect consumers’ rights in foreclosure. When she asked lenders how this change in the instrument being signed would affect a consumer’s legal rights, she was told that the practice of having consumers sign deeds of trust rather than mortgages would not affect consumers’ rights in foreclosure at all. Being skeptical, she and others in her division dug further into this newfound practice to see if it was widespread or just a rare occurrence in the world of mortgage lending. Sure enough, mortgages had all but disappeared, being replaced with a deed of trust.
As a general matter, depending on the law in a state, a deed of trust can be foreclosed without a court’s involvement or any oversight at all. More specifically, the differences between judicial and non-judicial foreclosures are explained here in the four page document generated by the Mortgage Bankers’ Association. It is not totally clear whether this change will affect the legal rights of borrowers in all judicial foreclosure states, but AGs around the country should start looking into this question. Lenders here in New Mexico insist that this change in practice will not affect substantive rights but if not, why the change? The legal framework is vague and described briefly here.
Eleven lenders in New Mexico have been notified by the AG’s Office to stop marketing products as mortgages when, in fact, they are deeds of trust, according to Meyers and fellow Assistant Attorney General David Kramer. As a letter to lenders says: “It is apparent … that the wholesale use of deeds of trusts in lieu of mortgage instruments to secure home loans is intended to modify and abrogate the protections afforded a homeowner by the judicial foreclosure process and the [New Mexico] Home Loan Protection Act.”

Here it is: Nonjudicial Foreclosure Violates Due Process in Complex Structured Finance Transactions

No, there isn’t a case yet. But here is my argument.

The main point is that we are forced to accept the burden of disproving a case that had not been filed — the very essence of nonjudicial foreclosure. In order to comply with due process, a simple denial of the facts and legal authority to foreclosure should be sufficient to force the case into a courtroom where the parties are realigned with the so-called new beneficiary is the Plaintiff and the homeowner is the Defendant — since it is the “beneficiary” who is seeking affirmative relief.

But the way it is done and required to be done, the Plaintiff must file an attack on a case that has never been alleged anywhere in or out of court. The new beneficiary anoints itself, files a fraudulent substitution of trustee because the old one would never go along with it, and then files a notice of default and notice of sale all on the premise that they have the necessary proof and documents to support what could have been an action in foreclosure brought by them in a judicial manner, for which there is adequate provision in California law.

Instead nonjudicial foreclosure is being used to sell property under circumstances where the alleged beneficiary under the deed of trust could never prevail in a court proceeding. Nonjudicial foreclosure was meant to be an expedient method of dealing with the vast majority of foreclosures when the statute was passed. In that vast majority, the usual procedure was complaint, default, judgment and then sale with at least one hearing in between. Nearly all foreclosures were resolved that way and it become more of a ministerial act for Judges than an actual trier of fact or judge of procedural rights and wrongs.

But the situation is changed. The corruption on Wall Street has been systemic resulting in whole sale fraudulent fabricated forged documents together with perjury by affidavit and even live testimony. Contrary to the consensus supported by the banks, these cases are complex because the party seeking affirmative relief — i.e., the new “beneficiary” is following a complex script established long before the homeowner ever applied for a loan or was solicited to finance her property.

The San Francisco study concluded, like dozens of other studies across the country that most of the foreclosures were resolved in favor of “strangers to the transaction.” By definition, the use of several layers of companies and multiple sets of documents defining two separate deals (one with the investor lenders and one with the borrower, with the only party in common being the broker dealer selling mortgage bonds and their controlled entities) has turned the mundane into highly complex litigation that has no venue. In non-judicial foreclosures the Trustee is the party who acts to sell the property under instructions from the beneficiary and does so without inquiry and without paying any attention to the obvious conflict between the title record, the securitization record, the homeowner’s position and the prior record owner of the loan.

The Trustee has no power to conduct a hearing, administrative or judicial, and so the dispute remains unresolved while the Trustee proceeds to sell the property knowing that the homeowner has raised objections. Under normal circumstances under existing common law and statutory authority, the Trustee would simply bring the matter to court in an action for interpleader saying there is a dispute that he doesn’t have the power to resolve. You might think this would clog the court system. That is not the case, although some effort by the banks would be made to do just that. Under existing common law and statutory law, the beneficiary would then need to file a complaint, verified, sworn with real exhibits and that are subject to real scrutiny before any burden of proof would shift to the homeowner. And as complex as these transactions are they all are subject to simple rules concerning financial transactions. If there was no money in the alleged transaction then the allegation of a transaction is false.

It was and remains a mistake to allow such loans to be foreclosed through any means other than strictly judicial where the “beneficiary” must allege and prove ownership and the balance due on the loan owed to THAT beneficiary. Requiring homeowners with zero sophistication in finance and litigation to bear the initial burden of proof in such highly complex structured finance schemes defies logic and common sense as well as being violative of due process in the application of the nonjudicial statutes to these allegedly securitized loans.

By forcing the parties and judges who sit on the bench to treat these complex issues as though they were simple cases, the enabling statutes for nonjudicial foreclosure are being applied unconstitutionally.

Deny and Discover Strategy Working

For representation in South Florida, where I am both licensed and familiar with the courts and Judges, call 520-405-1688. If you live in another state we provide direct support to attorneys. call the same number.

Having watched botched cases work their way to losing conclusions and knowing there is a better way, I have been getting more involved in individual cases — pleading, memos, motions, strategies and tactics — and we are already seeing some good results. Getting into discovery levels the playing field and forces the other side to put up or shut up. Since they can’t put up, they must shut up.

If you start with the premise that the original mortgage was defective for the primary reason that it was unfunded by the payee on the note, the party identified as “Lender” or the mortgagee or beneficiary, we are denying the transaction, denying the signature where possible (or pleading that the signature was procured by fraud), and thus denying that any “transfer” afterwards could not have conveyed any more than what the “originator” had, which is nothing.

This is not a new concept. Investors are suing the investment banks saying exactly what we have been saying on these pages — that the origination process was fatally defective, the notes and mortgages unenforceable and the predatory lending practices lowering the value of even being a “lender.”

We’ve see hostile judges turn on the banks and rule for the homeowner thus getting past motions to lift stay, motions to dismiss and motions for summary judgment in the last week.

The best line we have been using is “Judge, if you were lending the money wouldn’t you want YOUR name on the note and mortgage?” Getting the wire transfer instructions often is the kiss of death for the banks because the originator of the wire transfer is not the payee and the instructions do not say that this is for benefit of the “originator.”

As far as I can tell there is no legal definition of “originator.” It is one step DOWN from mortgage broker whose name should also not be on the note or mortgage. An originator is a salesman, and if you look behind the scenes at SEC filings or other regulatory filings you will see your “lender” identified not as a lender, which is what they told you, but as an originator. That means they were a placeholder or nominee just like the MERS situation.

TILA and Regulation Z make it clear that even if there was nexus of connection between the source of funds and the originator, it would till be an improper predatory table-funded loan where the borrower was denied the disclosure and information to know and choose the source of a loan, thus enabling consumers to shop around.

In order of importance, we are demanding through subpoena duces tecum, that parties involved in the fake securitization chain come for examination of the wire transfer, check, ACH or other money transfer showing the original funding of the loan and any other money transactions in which the loan was involved INCLUDING but not limited to transactions with or for the fake pool of mortgages that seems to always be empty with no bank account, no trustee account, and no actual trustee with any powers. These transactions don’t exist. The red herring is that the money showed up at closing which led everyone to the mistaken conclusion that the originator made the loan.

Second we ask for the accounting records showing the establishment on the books and records of the originator, and any assignees, of a loan receivable together with the name and address of the bookkeeper and the auditing firm for that entity. No such entries exist because the loan receivable was converted into a bond receivable, but he bond was worthless because it was based on an empty pool.

And third we ask for the documentation, correspondence and all other communications between the originator and the closing agent and between each “assignor” and “assignee” which, as we have seen they are only too happy to fabricate and produce. But the documentation is NOT supported by underlying transactions where money exchanged hands.

The net goals are to attack the mortgage as not having been perfected because the transaction was and remains incomplete as recited in the note, mortgage and other “closing” documents. The “lender” never fulfilled their part of the bargain — loaning the money. Hence the mortgage secures an obligation that does not exist. The note is then attacked as being fatally defective partly because the names were used as nominees leaving the borrower with nobody to talk to about the loan status — there being a nominee payee, nominee lender, and nominee mortgagee or beneficiary.

The other part, just as serious is that the terms of repayment on the note do NOT match up to the terms agreed upon with the institutional investors that purchased mortgage bonds to which the borrower was NOT a party and did not issue. Hence the basic tenets of contract law — offer, acceptance and consideration are all missing.

The Deny and Discover strategy is better because it attacks the root of the transaction and enables the borrower to deny everything the forecloser is trying to put over on the Court with the appearance of reality but nothing to back it up.

The attacks on the foreclosers based upon faulty or fraudulent or even forged documentation make for interesting reading but if in the final analysis the borrower is admitting the loan, admitting the note and mortgage, admitting the default then all the other stuff leads a Judge to conclude that there is error in the ways of the banks but no harm because they were entitled to foreclose anyway.

People are getting on board with this strategy and they have the support from an unlikely source — the investors who thought they were purchasing mortgage bonds with value instead of a sham bond based upon an empty pool with no money and no assets and no loans. Their allegation of damages is based upon the fact that despite the provisions of the pooling and servicing agreement, the prospectus and their reasonable expectations, that the closings were defective, the underwriting was defective and that there is no way to legally enforce the notes and mortgages, notwithstanding the fact that so many foreclosures have been allowed to proceed.

Call 520-405-1688 for customer service and you will get guidance on how to get help.

  1. Do we agree that creditors should be paid only once?
  2. Do we agree that pretending to borrow money for mortgages sand then using it at the race track is wrong?
  3. Do we agree that if the lender and the borrower sign two different documents each containing different terms, they don’t have a deal?
  4. Can we agree that if you were lending money you would want your name on the note and mortgage and not someone else’s?
  5. Can we agree that banks who loaned nothing and bought nothing should be worth nothing when the chips are counted in mortgage assets?

 

MERS: No Agency with Undisclosed Rotating “Principals”

THE WASHINGTON SUPREME COURT DECISION WILL BE USED EXTENSIVELY AT THE EMERYVILLE AND ANAHEIM CLE WORKSHOPS.

The Stunning clarity of the decision rendered by the Washington Supreme Court, sitting En Banc, corroborates the statements I have made on this blog and under oath that they might just as well have put the name “Donald Duck” in as the mortgagee or beneficiary.

The argument, previously successful, has been that even if the entity MERS had nothing to do with financial transaction and even if they didn’t know about the transaction because the “knowledge” was all contained on a database that nobody at MERS checked for authenticity or veracity, the instrument was still valid. This coupled with a “public policy”argument that if the courts were to rule otherwise none of the MERS “mortgages” would be valid thus making the creditor unsecured.

The Washington Supreme court rejected that argument and further added that if such was the result, then it was through no fault of the borrower. SO now we have a situation where the law in the State of Washington is that MERS beneficiary instruments do not establish a perfected lien and therefore there is no opportunity to foreclose using either non-judicial or judicial means. A word of caution here is that this applies right now as law only in that state but that it closely follows the Landmark decision in Kansas Supreme Court. But the decision is extremely persuasive and reinvigorates the fight over whether the loans were secured loans or unsecured — especially powerful in bankruptcy courts.

It should be noted that the Washington Supreme Court has wider application than might appear at first blush. This is because the question was certified not from a state judge but from a federal court. Thus in Federal Courts, the decision might be all the more persuasive that MERS, which never had anything to do with the financial transaction, never handled a dime of the money going in or out of the loan receivable account, and never had any person with personal knowledge who could identify and verify that there was a disclosed principal for whom they were acting should be identified as a non-stakeholder with bare (naked) title recited in a fatally defective instrument.

This does not mean the obligation vanishes. It just means that they can’t foreclose through non-judicial foreclosure and probably can’t foreclose even through judicial means unless they accompany it with a request that the court reconstruct the mortgage — in which case they would need to allege and prove that the disclosed parties were the sources of funds for the origination of the loans, which in most cases, they were not.

The actual parties who were the source of funds either still exist or have been settled or traded out into new investment vehicles. This is why putting intense pressure to move the discovery along is so powerful. You are demanding what they should have had when they started the foreclosure timeline with a defective notice of default signed by a person who had no idea what the loan receivable account looked like or even the identity of the party or entity that had the loan booked as a loan receivable.

You’ll remember that MERS issued a proclamation to everyone that nobody should use its name in foreclosures in 2011. But that doesn’t address the underlying fatal defect of the MERS business model and the instruments that recite MERS as the mortgagee or beneficiary.

Th reasoning behind the rejection of the “Agency” argument is also very important. The court states that “While we have no reason to doubt that the lendersand their assigns control MERS, agency requires a specific principal that is accountable for the acts of its agent. If MERS is an agent, its principals in the two cases before us remain unidentified.12 MERS attempts to sidestep this portion of traditional agency law by pointing to the language in the deeds of trust that describe MERS as “acting solely as a nominee for Lender and Lender’s successors and assigns.” Doc. 131-2, at 2 (Bain deed of trust); Doc. 9-1, at 3 (Selkowitz deed of trust.); e.g., Resp. Br. of MERS at 30 (Bain). But MERS offers no authority for the implicit proposition that the lender’s nomination of MERS as a nominee rises to an agency relationship with successor noteholders.13 MERS fails to identify the entities that control and are accountable for its actions. It has not established that it is an agent for a lawful principal.” Hat tip again to Yves Smith on picking up on that before I did.

And the court even went further than that on the issue of modification that I have been pounding on for so long — how can you submit a request for modification with a proposal unless you know the identity of the secured party and the identity of any party or stakeholder who is unsecured? Hoe can anyone settle or modify a claim without knowing the identity of the claimant or the actual status of the claim as affected by payments of co-obligors? “While not before us, we note that this is the nub of this and similar litigation and has caused great concern about possible errors in foreclosures, misrepresentation, and fraud. Under the MERS system, questions of authority and accountability arise, and determining who has authority to negotiate loan modifications and who is accountable for misrepresentation and fraud becomes extraordinarily difficult.”

BUT WAIT! THERE IS MORE! The famed Deutsch bank acting as trustee ruse is also exposed by the court, leaving doubt ( a question of material fact that is in dispute) as to the identity and character of the creditor and the status of the loan. Without those nobody can state with personal knowledge that the principal due is now this figure or that and that the following fees apply. The Supreme Court in the footnotes takes this on too, although it wasn’t argued (but will be in the future I can assure you): “It appears Deutsche Bank is acting as trustee of a trust that contains Bain’s note, along with many others, though the record does not establish what trust this might be.”

The Court also is not shy. It also takes on the notion that the borrower is not entitled to know the identity of the creditor or principal and that the borrower only has a right to know the identity of the servicer. This of course is patently absurd argument. If it were true anyone could assert they were the servicer and you could not look behind that assertion to determine its veracity.

“MERS insists that borrowers need only know the identity of the servicers of their loans. However, there is considerable reason to believe that servicers will not or are not in a position to negotiate loan modifications or respond to similar requests. See generally Diane E. Thompson, Foreclosing Modifications: How Servicer Incentives Discourage Loan Modifications, 86 Wash. L. Rev. 755 (2011); Dale A. Whitman, How Negotiability Has Fouled Up the Secondary Mortgage Market, and What To Do About It, 37 Pepp. L. Rev. 737, 757-58 (2010). Lack of transparency causes other problems. See generally U.S. Bank Nat’l Ass’n v. Ibanez, 458 Mass. 637, 941 N.E.2d 40 (2011) (noting difficulties in tracing ownership of the note).”

And lastly, about making the rules up as you along, and moving the goal posts around, the Court challenges the argument and rejects the MERS position that the parties are free to contract as they choose despite any statutory language. Specifically the question what is what is the definition of a beneficiary. In Washington as in other states, the definitions of the Act apply to all transactions described and there is no room for anyone to change the law by contract. “Despite its ubiquity, we have found no case—and MERS draws our attention to none—where this common statutory phrase has been read to mean that the parties can alter statutory provisions by contract, as opposed to the act itself suggesting a different definition might be appropriate for a specific statutory provision.”

And again corroborating my work and manuals on the livinglies store. the Court finally addresses for the first time that I am aware, the essential reason why all this is so important. It is the auction itself and the acceptance of the credit bid from a non-creditor. Besides the challenges as to whether the substitution of trustee and instructions to trustee are valid, nobody can claim title suddenly born as a result of a “transfer” or assignment” or other document from MERS, an entity that had specifically claimed any interest in the obligation. The Court concludes that you either have the proof of being the actual creditor to whom the obligation is owed, in which case you can submit a credit bid if it is properly secured, or you must pay cash.

“Other portions of the deed of trust act bolster the conclusion that the legislature meant to define “beneficiary” to mean the actual holder of the promissory note or other debt instrument. In the same 1998 bill that defined “beneficiary” for the first time, the legislature amended RCW 61.24.070 (which had previously forbidden the trustee alone from bidding at a trustee sale) to provide:
(1) The trustee may not bid at the trustee’s sale. Any other person, including the beneficiary, may bid at the trustee’s sale.
(2) The trustee shall, at the request of the beneficiary, credit toward the beneficiary’s bid all or any part of the monetary obligations secured by the deed of trust. If the beneficiary is the purchaser, any amount bid by the beneficiary in excess of the amount so credited shall
18
Bain (Kristin), et al. v. Mortg. Elec. Registration Sys., et al., No. 86206-1
be paid to the trustee in the form of cash, certified check, cashier’s check, money order, or funds received by verified electronic transfer, or any combination thereof. If the purchaser is not the beneficiary, the entire bid shall be paid to the trustee in the form of cash, certified check, cashier’s check, money order, or funds received by verified electronic transfer, or any combination thereof. Laws of 1998, ch. 295, § 9, codified as RCW 61.24.070. As Bain notes, this provision makes little sense if the beneficiary does not hold the note.”

Thus this court has now left open the possibility of challenging wrongful foreclosures both in equity and at law for damages (slander of title etc.) It would be hard to believe that Washington State Attorneys won’t pounce on this opportunity to do some good for their clients and themselves.

Blomberg Celebrates New Revised Hogan

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Darrell Blomberg is a presenter at our kickoff of the national tour of seminars starting July 26, 2012 in Chandler, AZ. He is NOT a lawyer but in my opinion has a better understanding of the law, its application and the context of the fake securitized loans than practically any else I know. He is completely correct in his analysis of the Hogan decision below.

I strongly advise homeowners who are near the Chandler location, to go find a lawyer and or contact the one they already have and PAY for the lawyer to attend the seminar and maybe pay for their own attendance as well. Paralegal add-ons are available as well.

Editor’s Note:

Darrell is 100% right that this decision poses a mammoth shadow problem for those people who are working for “Trustees” and conducting sales, sending notices of default and sending notices of sale. Issuing a deed on foreclosure to a party who who was the creditor but submitted a credit bid instead of a cash bid is only one issue. The fact is that if the Trustee becomes aware of a bona fide dispute between the alleged beneficiary or creditor and the borrower the Trustee has only ONE CHOICE: They must petition the court for a ruling because the Trustee does not have the power to conduct hearings. It IS that simple.

The reason they are not doing that and the reason why there is a substitution of trustee filed in every case is that the original trustee WOULD do that and would conduct due diligence, which the banks cannot afford because they know they don’t have the goods — they are not the creditor and in many cases even the the real original creditor is no longer present because of the trading activity and recompilation of the pools with different assets, loans and even using other derivatives as assets. 

These facts will all come out when the burden is put on the supposed creditor to show the transaction in which they paid real money for the loan. No such transaction exists. So they cannot submit a credit bid and probably don’t have the authority to initiate foreclosure proceedings. The potential liability of the Trustees that were substituted and perhaps even the original trustees is staggering when applied to prior foreclosures. When it becomes clear that the new trustee is appointed by a stranger to the transaction calling itself the beneficiary when it is not the beneficiary and new trustee is owned or controlled by the new “beneficiary.”

By Darrell Blomberg, July 11, 2012:

The Supreme Court of Arizona released their amended opinion this morning.  I have attached it for you or here is the link:  http://www.azcourts.gov/Portals/0/OpinionFiles/Supreme/2012/CV110115PR.pdf.  The essential changes were confined to section 11.

First off, I offer HUGE KUDOS and THANKS to all the extraordinary people who contributed to the effort of getting this all the way to the Supremes and then back into their court for a well-earned reconsideration.

The challenge with Hogan was that the questions were never optimally framed and Hogan didn’t make the record with sufficient allegations and assertions.  His pleadings left too many escape hatches open.  (No slight to anybody; the questions didn’t appear until long after the best-for-the-day questions were put forth.)  I’m amazed at “amount” of decision we got from the Supremes considering those challenges.

I believe the new “Moreover, the trustee owes the trustor a duty to comply with the obligations created by the statutes governing trustee sales and the trust deed.” language is very beneficial to homeowners and attorneys.  I think this is vastly better than the prior decision and gives us a lot more umph.  This is a clear statement of the court tying “duty” together with “statutes governing trustee’s sales and the trust deed.”  I can’t remember something so elemental and so important happening for us at any administrative, judicial or legislative level.  Tying duty to the statutes and contract was always sketchy but this decision does it succinctly and boldly.

This is precisely what all of my “Cancellation Demand Letters” have been geared to convey.  This decision will certainly be added to every “Cancellation Demand Letter” from now on.

Don’t forget this amended language:”A.R.S. § 33-801(10) (providing that “[t]he trustee’s obligations . . . are as specified in this chapter [and] in the trust deed”).”  It’s sure to be used against our efforts.  I think this can be well mitigated by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau bulletin 2012-03 which tied the servicer (beneficiary?) and the sub-servicer (trustee?) together for liability purposes.  Perhaps it doesn’t reign in the trustees so much but it sure raises the temperature on the beneficiary.  With the right amount of pressure on the beneficiary maybe they’ll heat up the trustee for us.  (See attached or this link: http://files.consumerfinance.gov/f/201204_cfpb_bulletin_service-providers.pdf)

For the record, here is the language that was removed from the original opinion: “Moreover, the trustee owes the trustor a fiduciary duty, and may be held liable for conducting a trustee’s sale when the trustor is not in default.”

My commercial:  If you know anybody that is in need of an all-out analysis of the Arizona Trustee’s Sale process that I turn into a letter for the homeowner, please let me know.  My letters are a great way to make the record and maybe even cancel a few notices of trustee’s sales along the way.  (Contact info is below.)

For further consideration, here is Black’s 6th on “Duty.”

Duty. A human action which is exactly conformable to the laws which require us to obey them. Legal or moral obligation. An obligation that one has by law or con­tract. Obligation to conform to legal standard of reason­able conduct in light of apparent risk. Karrar v. Barry County Road Com’n, 127 Mich.App. 821, 339 N.W.2d 653, 657. Obligatory conduct or service. Mandatory obligation to perform. Huey v. King, 220 Tenn. 189, 415 S.W.2d 136. An obligation, recognized by the law, re­quiring actor to conform to certain standard of conduct for protection of others against unreasonable risks. Samson v. Saginaw Professional Bldg., Inc., 44 Mich. App. 658, 205 N.W.2d 833, 835. See also Legal duty;Obligation.

Those obligations of performance, care, or observance which rest upon a person in an official or fiduciary capacity; as the duty of an executor, trustee, manager, etc.

In negligence cases term may be defined as an obli­gation, to which law will give recognition and effect, to comport to a particular standard of conduct toward another, and the duty is invariably the same, one must conform to legal standard of reasonable conduct in light of apparent risk. Merluzzi v. Larson, 96 Nev. 409, 610 P.2d 739, 741. The word”duty” is used throughout the Restatement of Torts to denote the fact that the actor is required to conduct himself in a particular manner at the risk that if he does not do so he becomes subject to liability to another to whom the duty is owed for any injury sustained by such other, of which that actor’s conduct is a legal cause. Restatement, Second, Torts § 4. See Care; Due care.

In its use in jurisprudence, this word is the correlative of right. Thus, wherever there exists a right in any person, there also rests a corresponding duty upon some other person or upon all persons generally.

Duty to act. Obligation to take some action to prevent harm to another and for failure of which there may or may not be liability in tort depending upon the circum­stances and the relationship of the parties to each other.


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