Another PennyMac Crash! CA Case for Homeowner

American jurisprudence is clearly still struggling with the fact that in most cases the forecloser either does not exist or does not have any interest in the loans they seek to enforce. In virtually all instances PennyMac is acting in the role of a sham conduit while allowing its name to be used as the front for a nonexistent lender.

Such foreclosers use semantics and legal procedure to create and cover-up the illusion of “ownership” of the debt (the loan) and the illusion of having the rights to enforce the note bestowed by a true creditor. This case opinion is correct in every respect and it conforms with basic black letter law in all 50 states; yet courts still strive to find ways to allow disinterested parties to foreclose.

Get a consult and Chain of Title Analysis! 202-838-6345
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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Hat tip to Bill Paatalo
see GULIEX v. PennyMAC HOLDINGS LLC, Cal: Court of Appeal, 5th Appellate Dist. 2017 https://scholar.google.com/scholar_case?case=9436462246811997539&hl=en&lr=lang_en&as_sdt=2006&as_vis=1&oi=scholaralrt
This case amply demonstrates the following:
  1. The need for a chain of title report
  2. The need for a chain of title analysis
  3. The need for legal research and good memorandums of law
  4. The need to understand “chains of title” or “chains of events” and the laws applicable thereto (e.g. judicial notice, legal presumptions etc.)
  5. The need to formulate a presentation to the judge that is very persuasive.
  6. The need to appeal when trial judges don’t apply the law or don’t apply the law correctly.

The following are significant quotes from the case.

Plaintiff, a homeowner and borrower, sued the defendant financial institution for wrongs allegedly committed in connection with a nonjudicial foreclosure sale of his residence. Plaintiff’s main theory was that the financial institution did not own his note and deed of trust and, therefore, lacked the authority to foreclose under the deed of trust. (e.s.)

The financial institution convinced the trial court that (1) it was, in fact, the beneficiary under the deed of trust, (2) a properly appointed substitute trustee conducted the foreclosure proceedings, and (3) the plaintiff lacked standing to claim the foreclosure was wrongful. The financial institution argued its chain of title to the deed of trust was established by facts stated in recorded assignments of deed of trust and a recorded substitution of trustee. The trial court took judicial notice of the recorded documents. Based on these documents, the court sustained a demurrer to some of the causes of action and granted summary judgment as to the remaining causes of action. On appeal, plaintiff contends he has standing to challenge the foreclosure and, furthermore, the judicially noticed documents do not establish the financial institution actually was the beneficiary under the deed of trust. We agree. (e.s.)

As to standing, the holding in Yvanova v. New Century Mortgage Corp. (2016) 62 Cal.4th 919 (Yvanova) clearly establishes plaintiff has standing to challenge the nonjudicial foreclosure on the ground that the foreclosing party lacked the authority to initiate the foreclosure because it held no beneficial interest under the deed of trust. (e.s.)

As to establishing facts by judicial notice, it is well recognized that courts may take notice of the existence and wording of recorded documents, but not the disputed or disputable facts stated therein. (e.s.) (Yvanova, supra, 62 Cal.4th at p. 924, fn. 1; Herrera v. Deutsche Bank National Trust Co. (2011) 196 Cal.App.4th 1366, 1375 (Herrera).) Under this rule, we conclude the facts stated in the recorded assignments of deed of trust and the substitution of trustee were not subject to judicial notice. (e.s.) Therefore, the financial institution did not present evidence sufficient to establish its purported chain of title to the deed of trust. Consequently, the financial institution failed to show it was the owner of the deed of trust and had the authority to foreclose on plaintiff’s residence.

We therefore reverse the judgment and remand for further proceedings.

….

The Links in PennyMac’s Purported Chain of Title

“Links” in a chain of title are created by a transfer of an interest in the underlying property from one person or entity to another. An examination of each link in the purported chain of title relied upon by PennyMac reveals that certain links were not established for purposes of the demurrer. Our analysis begins with a description of each link in the purported chain (and each related document, where known), beginning with the husband and wife who sold the residence to Borrower and ending with the trustee’s sale to PennyMac.

Link One-Sale: Clarence and Betty Dake sold the residence to Borrower pursuant to a grant deed dated April 19, 2005, and recorded on June 30, 2005. The parties do not dispute this transfer.

Link Two-Loan: Borrower granted a beneficial interest in the residence to Long Beach Mortgage Company pursuant to a deed of trust dated June 21, 2005, and recorded on June 30, 2005. The parties do not dispute this transfer.

Link Three-Purported Transfer: Long Beach Mortgage Company purportedly transferred its rights to Washington Mutual Bank by means of a document or transaction not identified in the appellate record. Also, the appellate record does not identify when the purported transaction occurred. Borrower disputes the existence of this and subsequent transfers of the deed of trust. (e.s.)

Link Four-Purported Transfer: Washington Mutual Bank purportedly transferred its rights to JPMorgan Chase Bank, National Association in an unidentified transaction at an unstated time. (e.s.)

Link Five-Assignment: JPMorgan Chase Bank, National Association, successor in interest to Washington Mutual Bank, successor in interest to Long Beach Mortgage Company, purportedly transferred the note and all beneficial interest under the deed of trust to “JPMorgan Chase Bank, National Association” pursuant to an assignment of deed of trust dated July 25, 2011, and recorded on July 26, 2011.

Link Six(A)-Assignment: JPMorgan Chase Bank, National Association transferred all beneficial interest in the deed of trust to PennyMac Mortgage Investment Trust Holdings I, LLC pursuant to a “California Assignment of Deed of Trust” dated September 14, 2013, and recorded on November 15, 2013.

Link Seven-Trustee’s Sale: California Reconveyance Company, as trustee under the deed of trust, (1) sold the residence to PennyMac at a public auction conducted on November 20, 2013, and (2) issued a trustee’s deed of sale dated November 21, 2013 and recorded on November 22, 2013. PennyMac, the grantee under the deed upon sale, was described in the deed as the foreclosing beneficiary.

Link Six(B)-Purported Assignment: The day after the trustee’s sale, JPMorgan Chase Bank, National Association executed a “Corporate Assignment of Deed of Trust” dated November 21, 2013, purporting to transfer the deed of trust without recourse to PennyMac Holdings, LLC. The assignment was recorded November 22, 2013. This assignment was signed (1) after JPMorgan Chase Bank, National Association had signed and recorded the “California Assignment of Deed of Trust” described earlier as Link Six(A) and (2) after the trustee’s sale was conducted on November 20, 2013. Consequently, it is unclear whether any interests were transferred by this “corporate” assignment.

3. Links Three and Four Are Missing from the Chain

Postscript from Editor: This Court correctly revealed the fraudulent strategy of the banks, to wit: they created the illusion of multiple transfers giving the appearance of a solid chain of title BUT 2 of the transfers were fake, leaving the remainder of the chain void.

Appeals Court Challenges Cal. Supreme Court Ruling in Yvanova/Keshtgar

The Court, possibly because of the pleadings and briefs refers to the Trust as “US Bank” — a complete misnomer that reveals a completely incorrect premise. Despite the clear allegation of the existence of the Trust — proffered by the Trust itself — the Courts are seeing these cases as “Bank v Homeowner” rather than “Trust v Homeowner.” The record in this case and most other cases clearly shows that such a premise is destructive to the rights of the homeowner and assumes the corollary, to wit: that the “Bank” loaned money or purchased the loan from a party who owned the loan — a narrative that is completely defeated by the Court rulings in this case.

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

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see B246193A-Kehstgar

It is stunning how lower courts are issuing rulings and decisions that ignore or even defy higher court rulings that give them no choice but to follow the law. These courts are acting ultra vires in open defiance of the senior authority of a higher court. It is happening in rescission cases and it is happening in void assignment cases, like this one.
 *
This case focuses on a void assignment or the absence of an assignment. Keshtgar alleged that “the bank” had no authority to initiate foreclosure because the assignment was void or absent. THAT was the first mistake committed by the California appeals court, to wit: the initiating party was a trust, not a bank. This appeals court completely missed the point when they started out from an incorrect premise. US Bank is only the Trustee of a Trust. And upon further examination the Trust never operated in any fashion, never purchased any loans and never had any books of record because it never did any business.
 *
The absence of an assignment is alleged because the assignment was void, fabricated, backdated and forged purportedly naming the Trust as an assignee means that the Trust neither purchased nor received the alleged loan. Courts continually ignore the obvious consequences of this defect: that the initiator of the foreclosure is claiming rights as a beneficiary when it had no rights as a beneficiary under the deed of trust.
 *
The Court, possibly because of the pleadings and briefs refers to the Trust as “US Bank” — a complete misnomer that reveals a completely incorrect premise. Despite the clear allegation of the existence of the Trust — proffered by the Trust itself — the Courts are seeing these cases as “Bank v Homeowner.” The record in this case and most other cases clearly shows that such a premise is destructive to the rights of the homeowner and assumes the corollary, to wit: that the “Bank” loaned money or purchased the loan from a party who owned the loan — a narrative that is completely defeated by the Courts in this case.
 *
There really appears to be no question that the assignment was void or absent. The inescapable conclusion is that (a) the assignor still retains the rights (whatever they might be) to collect or enforce the alleged “loan documents” or (b) the assignor had no rights to convey. In the context of an admission that the ink on the paper proclaiming itself to be an assignment is “nothing” (void) there is no conclusion, legal or otherwise, but that US Bank had nothing to do with this loan and neither did the Trust.
 *
Bucking the California Supreme Court, this appellate court states that Yvanova has “no bearing on this case.” In essence they are ruling that the Cal. Supreme Court was committing error when it said that Yvanova DID have a bearing on this case when it remanded the case to the lower court of appeal with instructions to reconsider in light of the Yvanova decision.
 *
One mistake committed by Keshtgar was asking for quiet title. The fact that the MORTGAGE is voidable or unenforceable is generally insufficient grounds for declaring it void and removing it from the chain of title. I unfortunately contributed to the misconception regarding quiet title, but after years of research and analysis I have concluded that (a) quiet title is not an available remedy against the mortgage unless you have grounds to declare it void and (b) my survey of hundreds of cases indicates that judges are resistant to that remedy. BUT a similar action for cancellation of instrument could be directed against the an assignment, substitution of trustee on deed of trust, notice of default and notice of sale.
 *
Because there was an admission by Keshtgar that the loan was “non-performing” and because the court assumed that US Bank was a lender or proper successor to the lender, the question of what role the Trust plays was not explored at all. The courts are making the erroneous assumption that (a) there was a real loan contract between the parties who appear on the note and mortgage, (b) that the loan was funded by the originator and that the homeowner is in default of the obligations set forth on the note and mortgage. They completely discount any examination of whether the note is a valid instrument when it names not the actual lender but a third party who is also serving as a conduit. In an effort to prevent homeowners from getting windfalls, they are delivering the true windfalls to the servicers who are behind the initiation of virtually every foreclosure.
*
The problem is both legal and perceptual. By failing to see that each case is “Trust v Homeowner” the Courts are failing to consider that the case is between a private entity and a private person. By seeing the cases as “institution v private person” they are giving far too much credence to what the Banks, up until now, are selling in the courts.
https://www.vcita.com/v/lendinglies to schedule CONSULT, leave message or make payments.

Tonight’s Guest on the Neil Garfield Show: On the Heels of Yvanova come Sciarratta and Gieseke

legal-room

  California Foreclosure Justice

Click in to tune in to:  The Neil Garfield Show

Or call in at (347) 850-1260, Tonight at 6 pm EST Thursday.

The legal landscape is changing in California.  After a foreclosure drought, Yvanova opened a floodgate of new decisions that bolster a homeowner’s right to challenge a fraudulent foreclosure pre- and post-sale.

Joining us tonight on the Neil Garfield Show is San Diego attorney Charles Marshall who had a case vacated in Gieseke v. Bank of America, when BOA won on summarily without having to provide an oral argument based on a lack of standing.  The case was remanded the case back to District Court where it will be reconsidered. Gieseke Remand Order 5 20 16 from 9th Circuit.

Charles will discuss Gieseke in regards to the recent California Yvanova and Keshtgar decisions.
Marshall Law
Attorney Charles Marshall
Email: cmarshall@marshallestatelaw.com
Website: marshallesquire.com
Phone number: 619.807.2628, 619.755.7825

Note:Attorneys Stephen Lopez and Charles Marshall are not affiliated.

9th Circuit Uses Yvanova Reversing Trial Court

It seems obvious that if a complete stranger to the transaction (see the wording from the San Francisco study), is attempting to enforce a debt or seek a foreclosure, they should have no rights at all. And if a party accepts a modification application, they are making several representations about their authority and what they will do with the application. But the courts have resisted all such notions until very recently.

THE FOLLOWING 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 Quotes Yvanova13-17297

This is the stuff that  makes lay people crazy.

Plaintiff Newman filed a lawsuit in California to stop a foreclosure claiming BONY didn’t have the right to foreclose. The trial court dismissed his case because he supposedly didn’t have standing to raise that issue. Then he filed an appeal. During his appeal, the Yvanova decision was released.

So the 9th Federal Circuit applied Yvanova to the pending appeal and reversed the trial court, adding that there could be an action, as Newman had brought, to hold parties responsible for handling of a modification request. That should be a no-brainer but the courts keep getting twisted up in the idea that the banks need to be protected when it is the homeowners who need protection.

Of course for good measure the decision is announced as not to be used for precedent — but it is difficult to see how it could not be precedent.

The bottom line, I think, is that the Courts are very reluctantly coming around to the view that they will allow those actions or defenses that they must allow while they allow wide latitude to pretender lenders. It’s another step toward equality under the law but we are a still quite some distance to a level playing field.

It seems obvious that if a complete stranger to the transaction (see the wording from the San Francisco study), is attempting to enforce a debt or seek a foreclosure, they should have no rights at all. And if a party accepts a modification application, they are making several representations about their authority and what they will do with the application. But the courts have resisted all such notions until very recently.

The trend over the last decade is giving rise to a new fraudulent industry. Posing as the creditor and even suing upon the debt is cloaked in presumptions that the fabricated documents are true, putting the burden on the average citizen to disprove a nonexistent fact. And accepting a modification application as part of a larger scheme to force the homeowner into foreclosure was and might still be OK, because servicers supposedly are under no duty to do anything — not withstanding Dodd Frank and other statutes and regulations.

Schedule A Consult Now! or call 202-838-6345

Like the Mortgages, Rescission is Counter-Intuitive

WE HAVE REVAMPED OUR SERVICE OFFERINGS TO MEET THE REQUESTS OF LAWYERS AND HOMEOWNERS. This is not an offer for legal representation. In order to make it easier to serve you and get better results please take a moment to fill out our FREE registration form https://fs20.formsite.com/ngarfield/form271773666/index.html?1453992450583 
Our services consist mainly of the following:
  1. 30 minute Consult — expert for lay people, legal for attorneys
  2. 60 minute Consult — expert for lay people, legal for attorneys
  3. Case review and analysis
  4. Rescission review and drafting of documents for notice and recording
  5. COMBO Title and Securitization Review
  6. Expert witness declarations and testimony
  7. Consultant to attorneys representing homeowners
  8. Books and Manuals authored by Neil Garfield are also available, plus video seminars on DVD.
For further information please call 954-495-9867 or 520-405-1688. You also may fill out our Registration form which, upon submission, will automatically be sent to us. That form can be found at https://fs20.formsite.com/ngarfield/form271773666/index.html?1452614114632. By filling out this form you will be allowing us to see your current status. If you call or email us at neilfgarfield@hotmail.com your question or request for service can then be answered more easily.
================================

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

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There seems to be some miscommunication regarding rescission. The confusion seems to emanate from the assumption that the “borrower” would lose if there was a creditor with standing who filed a lawsuit to vacate the rescission. If so, that would be missing the point. The point is not whether the homeowner would lose if the lawsuit was filed. The point is that the lawsuit is never going to be filed. The rescission is effective as a matter of law, regardless of whether there exists an arguable or even valid defense.

Normally as lawyers we would anticipate the end result, but in this case the end result never happens because there is no creditor with standing, which is the whole point of understanding the false claims of securitization that have permeated the foreclosure marketplace. The answer, which I understand is completely counter-intuitive, is that there is no creditor — i.e., no party who could answer to the description of the owner of the debt (not the paper) — i.e. the party to whom the money is actually owed. The absence of a creditor is hard to fathom, but it is nonetheless true. AND THAT is why no bank, despite advice of counsel, has filed any action within the 20 day window to file, that seeks to vacate the rescission.

It may be true that we could expect to lose if there was a case filed and there was a trial. But if the case is never filed, the rescission stands. And since it is effective by operation of law, the loan contract (if it was ever consummated — which is doubtful) is canceled, the note is void and the mortgage is void. The only restriction I see is that in judicial states after judgment, it would appear that there is no loan contract that still exists after judgment and so there is nothing to cancel.

Looking at the date of documents is not the way to determine when a loan contract was consummated. We must return to basics, and that is what is presumed but the presumption is wrong. basic contract law X makes an offer to Y. Y accepts the offer. X and Y exchange consideration. In these loans, not only did X and Y NOT exchange consideration, but the very fact that they didn’t makes X a predatory lender as per REG Z. But more to the point, if X did not perform by loaning money to Y, there is no loan contract= no consummation= void note and void mortgage. If there was a consummation you need to know the date of funding, which is after the documents were signed and could be days, weeks or even months afterwards.

Check the Yvanova decision for more on this. Ownership of the debt, as per the Yvanova court, is what counts, not merely possession of paper that could and probably is fabricated.

Here are some quotes from recent articles or upcoming articles

“TILA rescission in which the notice of rescission alone (upon mailing) immediately cancels the loan contract, and voids the note and mortgage — even if the rescission is disputed on grounds of the 3 year limitations etc.

As Justice Scalia said, “the statute makes no distinction between disputed and undisputed rescission.” Thus the rescission is effective even if it APPEARS As though the right to rescind under TILA may not have existed on the date the notice of rescission was mailed.
NOTE TO LAWYERS: ANY OTHER INTERPRETATION WOULD REQUIRE THE “BORROWER” TO FILE SUIT TO MAKE THE RESCISSION EFFECTIVE WHICH IS THE OPPOSITE OF THE TILA RESCISSION STATUTE, REGULATION Z AND THE UNANIMOUS DECISION OF THE US SUPREME COURT IN JESINOSKI. THE STATUTE PUTS THE RESPONSIBILITY FOR PUTTING THE EFFECTIVENESS OF THE TILA RESCISSION IN ISSUE SQUARELY ON THE PARTIES PURPORTING TO BE THE LENDER AND THEY ONLY HAVE 20 DAYS FROM RECEIPT TO FILE A LAWSUIT SEEKING TO HAVE THE RESCISSION VACATED.”

A Brief Summary of Thoughts on Yvanova Decision

WE HAVE REVAMPED OUR SERVICE OFFERINGS TO MEET THE REQUESTS OF LAWYERS AND HOMEOWNERS. This is not an offer for legal representation. In order to make it easier to serve you and get better results please take a moment to fill out our FREE registration form https://fs20.formsite.com/ngarfield/form271773666/index.html?1453992450583 
Our services consist mainly of the following:
  1. 30 minute Consult — expert for lay people, legal for attorneys
  2. 60 minute Consult — expert for lay people, legal for attorneys
  3. Case review and analysis
  4. Rescission review and drafting of documents for notice and recording
  5. COMBO Title and Securitization Review
  6. Expert witness declarations and testimony
  7. Consultant to attorneys representing homeowners
  8. Books and Manuals authored by Neil Garfield are also available, plus video seminars on DVD.
For further information please call 954-495-9867 or 520-405-1688. You also may fill out our Registration form which, upon submission, will automatically be sent to us. That form can be found at https://fs20.formsite.com/ngarfield/form271773666/index.html?1452614114632. By filling out this form you will be allowing us to see your current status. If you call or email us at neilfgarfield@hotmail.com your question or request for service can then be answered more easily.
================================

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

—————-

see http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/court-decision-to-shake-up-lending-market-says-leclairryan-attorney-300226113.html

Lawyers for banking are advising banks to brace themselves. The

party for them may be nearing its end. Here is a quote from one of the bank lawyers:

“The Supreme Court’s recent ruling in Yvanova v. New Century Mortgage Corporation will have a profound impact on the lending industry,” said McWhorter, whose practice focuses on representing financial institutions and business entities in commercial, business and bankruptcy litigation. Under the ruling, a borrower can challenge a non-judicial foreclosure sale by alleging that there was a break in the chain of assignments of the beneficial interest in the deed of trust and that sale was void.

“This decision strikes down a long line of decisions that stood for the proposition that defaulting borrowers lacked standing to challenge such assignments,” noted McWhorter. “This decision may increase the filing of wrongful foreclosure actions against lenders, challenging the validity of the assignments based on alleged violations of pooling and servicing agreements by lenders.”

“Although the Court itself called its ruling a narrow one, the implications are quite wide: many courts look to California for legal leadership, so this case could have national ramifications,” McWhorter said.

I have not completed analyzing Yvanova. But here is my current summary of its significance.

*

First, it stands for the proposition that if the assignment of mortgage is void (not voidable) then it has no legal effect and it cannot be ratified by anyone, because you can’t make a void act legal just by saying it is legal. That is something the banks have been getting away with for ten years. Judges were proceeding on the assumption that the borrowers owed money to SOMEONE it doesn’t matter to whom the debt is owed. The Yvanova Court recognizes that this is a dangerous assumption and is not a legal presumption.

*

It’s dangerous because it leads to what we have seen — a complete stranger to a transaction making a claim simply because they think they can get away with it. If that was the law, then people would be mining for “debts” and then suing on them regardless of the fact that the alleged “debt” was owed to someone else with whom the claimant had no legal relationship. This would lead to chaos.

*

So Yvanova stands for the proposition that if a foreclosure is initiated or completed at the behest of a party who is relying upon a void assignment, then that foreclosure is wrongful, and the borrower is entitled to damages. It might lead to a decision on title issues as well. Inferentially it also means that the investors whose money was used for this scheme also have an action for damages against an intermediate party who used self help to make it appear that they spoke for the unidentified “investor.”

*

The Yvanova court takes a strong stand on a very common sense notion — that only the owner of the debt can sue to collect or enforce the debt. And both tacitly and expressly the Yvannova court dispenses with the idea that it is more important to save the banks and their progeny than to apply the rule of law. The Glaski case is reaffirmed and the court reverses prior inconsistent rulings of other California appellate courts that somehow borrowers had no legal standing to attack ownership of the debt. The banks have been relying upon alleging that they are the “holder” of the note and arguing that ends the discussion. That would only be true of they purchased the note, which they did not. It would also be true if they had purchased the debt, which they never did.

*

And the fact that the Yvanova court chose to say that only the owner of the debt could collect or enforce is monumental, because this is the first clear cut decision that drills down to the reality of the fake transactions by which the banks have created a huge network of false transactions or transactions based upon a false premise — that the REMIC Trusts were actual owners of the debt. So Yvanova aims squarely at the strategy of the banks of alleging they are “holders” and then arguing to the court that they are “holders in due course.”  If the Trusts were holders in due course then they would allege that in litigation and it would mean they paid for the paper (the note) and therefore would take delivery of the note free and clear of any borrower defenses. Payment changes everything.

*

The change in judicial attitude is reflected on the Eastern seaboard in Florida where judges are listening more carefully to the arguments of alleged borrowers. Yesterday Patrick Giunta, Esq. obtained an order from a Florida judge in a foreclosure case where the discovery items were compelled — the foreclosing party must deliver documents and answer questions that heretofore had been just out of reach of homeowners who were saying to the foreclosing party “I owe you nothing. You are not my creditor.”

*

Now that the Courts are drilling down to the real transactions, the Wall Street Scheme of proprietary false initial offerings of false mortgage backed securities will start to unravel. In the analysis that I do of each case file where we are hired to perform a review and commentary, these new case decisions will figure strongly in my reports.

California Supreme Court Rules in Yvanova, “The borrower owes money NOT TO THE WORLD at large but to a particular person or institution.”

Yvanova v New Century Mortgage 02182016 Supreme Court of California opinion

By William Hudson

Last week the California Supreme Court ruled in Yvanova v. New Century Mortgage Corporation (Case No. S218973, Cal. Sup. Ct. February 18, 2016) that homeowners have standing to challenge a note assignment in an action for wrongful foreclosure on the grounds that the assignment is void. Obviously if the court had ruled differently, the banks would have had absolute carte blanche to forge mortgage assignments with wild abandon. In fact, without a system of endorsements and assignments it would be almost impossible to determine what party has a legitimate interest in a property and chaos would have ensued (sound familiar?).

 
The Yvanova ruling puts to rest the prior assumption by most California courts that a homeowner lacks standing to challenge a void assignment. This decision has the potential to open the litigation floodgates by borrowers who were improperly foreclosed on due to fraudulent or improper assignments. In fact, you can bet that homeowners who lost their homes due to the court’s resistance to follow established law will be filing suit.

 
In Yvanova, she complained that the bank had resorted to the use of fraudulent documents in order to foreclose. First she identified that a bankrupt entity called New Century assigned a deed of trust years after the company ceased to exist. The mortgage assignments demonstrated that even though New Century was dissolved in 2008, New Century allegedly assigned Yvanova’s deed of trust to Deutsche bank in 2011. It was also discovered that Yvanova’s note could not have been delivered to the Morgan Stanley trust pool because the trust had a cutoff date of January 2007. Deutsche Bank, the servicer, claims to have transferred the deed of trust to that pool in December 2011. Thus, 3 years and 11 months after the trust had closed.

 
By law, and to ensure tax-free pass-through status by the REMIC (Real Estate Mortgage Investment Conduit) notes placed in trusts must be placed into the pool by a certain date. The Morgan Stanley trust had a cutoff date of January 2007 but Deutsche Bank claims the note they received by a zombie assignment was placed in the pool in 2011. Thus, a nonexistent company called New Century transferred a note to a closed trust.

 
Up until Yvanova was settled, the California courts rejected hundreds of similar claims over the years stating that borrowers were not a party to or holder of the debt (see Jenkins f. JP Morgan Chase). The California courts essentially ruled that homeowners may now challenge wrongful foreclosures on the grounds that the assignment of the note was invalid or the chain of assignment was faulty. In securitized trusts, it is fairly common for the endorsements and assignments to be either inaccurate or downright fraudulent (photoshopped, robosigned, etc.). The big securitizing banks like Ocwen, Deutsche, Morgan Stanley and Wells Fargo better prepare for a tsunami of wrongful foreclosure suits in California.

 
The California Supreme Court, by ruling in favor of Yvanova, effectively confirmed the 2013 California Appellate ruling Glaski v. Bank of America, which held that a homeowner facing a non-judicial foreclosure has standing to challenge violations of the pooling and servicing agreement. One of the most insightful quotes in Yvanova states, “The borrower owes money not to the world at large but to a particular person or institution, and only the person or institution entitled to payment may enforce the debt by foreclosing on the security.”

 

The California Supreme Court got it right when they elaborated that, “A homeowner who has been foreclosed on by one with no right to do so has suffered an injurious invasion of his or her legal rights at the foreclosing entity’s hands. No more is required for standing to sue.” Could it be that the California courts are tired of the 9 years of fraudulent banking games that have clogged the court system with no end in sight?

 
It wasn’t the homeowner who got sloppy, greedy and decided to start forging and photoshopping legal documents. It was the banks that engineered this complete fiasco from the top to bottom. Maybe now the banks will clean up their act, or they will be forced to find a more efficient and convincing way to forge and falsify endorsements and assignments. To date, the left hand doesn’t know what the right hand is doing- and the banks only hope that the homeowner doesn’t discover their deception.

 
I will reiterate again, if a bank claims to own a debt then why not simply show the documentation and prove it? This entire mess could be cleaned up very quickly if the banks would simply show the court evidence of ownership- but the courts know the banks don’t have it. By now we know that this entire debacle was engineered under the premise of plausible deniability and the screws are coming loose.
It is evident that the courts have had enough. The Supreme Court in Yvanova stated that:

 

“… California borrowers whose loans are secured by a deed of trust with a power of sale may suffer foreclosure without judicial process and thus ―would be deprived of a means to assert [their] legal protections if not permitted to challenge the foreclosing entity‘s authority through an action for wrongful foreclosure. (Culhane, supra, 708 F.3d at p. 290.)

A borrower therefore ―has standing to challenge the assignment of a mortgage on her home to the extent that such a challenge is necessary to contest a foreclosing entity‘s status qua mortgagee‖ (id. at p. 291)— that is, as the current holder of the beneficial interest under the deed of trust.”
The decision goes on to state that:

 

“In seeking a finding that an assignment agreement was void, therefore, a plaintiff in Yvanova‘s position is not asserting the interests of parties to the assignment; she is asserting her own interest in limiting foreclosure on her property to those with legal authority to order a foreclosure sale. This, then, is not a situation in which standing to sue is lacking because its ―sole object . . . is to settle rights of third persons who are not parties. (Golden Gate Bridge etc. Dist. v. Felt (1931) 214 Cal. 308, 316.)”

Apparently the California Supreme Court just grew a pair and the remaining 49 states might want to listen up. With all of the fraud settlements that have occurred over the past seven years, it is evident that what is occurring isn’t simply sloppy paperwork or unintentional oversight but blatant fraud, theft and criminal conspiracy if you want to be honest. It is a sad day in America when a homeowner must go all the way to the Supreme Court in order to obtain a fair and just ruling. If the courts had ruled in favor of the banks (and I am sure the judges in Yvanova knew what was on the line), there is no doubt in my mind that banks would have had a foreclosure feeding frenzy.

The court states the obvious, that there is an investor or entity who may suffer an unauthorized loss of its interest in the note if the foreclosure proceeds, “when an invalid transfer of a note and deed of trust leads to foreclosure by an unauthorized party, the ―victim‖ is not the borrower, whose obligations under the note are unaffected by the transfer, but ―an individual or entity that believes it has a present beneficial interest in the promissory note and may suffer the unauthorized loss of its interest in the note.”

And finally, the court gets to the meat of the matter- the issue of standing. “As it relates to standing, we disagree with defendants’ analysis of prejudice from an illegal foreclosure. A foreclosed-upon borrower clearly meets the general standard for standing to sue by showing an invasion of his or her legally protected interests (Angelucci v. Century Supper Club (2007) 41 Cal.4th 160, 175)—the borrower has lost ownership to the home in an allegedly illegal trustee‘s sale. (See Culhane, supra, 708 F.3d at p. 289 [foreclosed-upon borrower has sufficient personal stake in action against foreclosing entity to meet federal standing requirement].)  Moreover, the bank or other entity that ordered the foreclosure would not have done so absent the allegedly void assignment. Thus- [t]he identified harm—the foreclosure—can be traced directly to [the foreclosing entity‘s] exercise of the authority purportedly delegated by the assignment.”

In conclusion, the court clarifies who is allowed to enforce the note without showing overt favoritism to the bank. Please note the eloquence of the last line in this paragraph in the Yvanova decision:

“Nor is it correct that the borrower has no cognizable interest in the identity of the party enforcing his or her debt. Though the borrower is not entitled to object to an assignment of the promissory note, he or she is obligated to pay the debt, or suffer loss of the security, only to a person or entity that has actually been assigned the debt. (See Cockerell v. Title Ins. & Trust Co., supra, 42 Cal.2d at p. 292 [party claiming under an assignment must prove fact of assignment].) The borrower owes money not to the world at large but to a particular person or institution, and only the person or institution entitled to payment may enforce the debt by foreclosing on the security.

Again, “The borrower owes money NOT TO THE WORLD at large but to a particular person or institution, and ONLY the person or institution entitled to payment may enforce the debt by foreclosing on the security.” The court isn’t magically creating case law- this is exactly what the promissory note entitles the bearer to do- collect on a debt. The note does not say, “If you have a forged document you randomly printed a copy off the internet or photoshopped- you have standing.”

Only the individual or entity with actual STANDING can foreclose on a home. The fact that the homeowner defaulted on an alleged contract (that probably didn’t happen the way the contract reflects the transaction) doesn’t mean any party claiming to be a note holder can foreclose on the home. Like Jerry McGuire said, “SHOW ME THE MONEY.” Until the mortgagee shows up with actual evidence of ownership- no servicer, “lender” or unknown party should be able to randomly foreclose on a home simply by saying they own the note.

Again, this is the beauty of rescission. By precluding the servicer from walking into court with a forged note, mortgage and alleged contract- and forcing this party to demonstrate contractual standing- many fraudulent foreclosures would be prevented. It is tragic that so many people have lost their homes because the courts permitted a pretend lender with no standing to waltz in and take a home simply by showing fraudulent documents and making false claims.

Finally, the Yvanova ruling leaves us with the crowning glory of this decision, “A homeowner who has been foreclosed on by one with no right to do so has suffered an injurious invasion of his or her legal rights at the foreclosing entity‘s hands. No more is required for standing to sue.” Thank you California Supreme Court justices for ruling according to law instead of the banking lobby.

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