The author of this post (Dave Krieger) is not an attorney. Try to find an attorney near you that does quiet title actions as successfully as Al West (I want proof of the winning cases) … and I’ll let him TEACH the bloody workshop and pay his/her airfare and expenses to boot! I’m not handing out legal advice today (nor will I ever, because the state bars, who are technically NOT affiliated with any Supreme Court jurisdiction, would love for me to stop talking about this subject, permanently), so if you need an attorney to assist you in a quiet title action, be prepared to do some serious digging to find one that knows their stuff. I’ll tell you why in a minute …
Since the beginning of this country, county land records were designed because America needed some sort of “fundamental order” in its keeping of land ownership records. And in this case, I’m talking about the proper ones, not the ones influenced by the behaviors of today’s legislatures (at the whims of the banking cartels). One of the many concerns within the realm of real property law, which I have had the pleasure of studying to the umteenth degree, much to the chagrin of others, began with my own experiences, which I write about in Clouded Titles, now in its final Mayday Edition version.
I expressly designed this work as an educational product because I found America lacking in the basic principals of real estate ownership that they may have either NOT learned in high school or college, or in the alternative, conveniently forgot about as part of the Age of Entitlement generations. There are two issues here that I will discuss further, the key reasons for WHY quiet title actions should become part of your legal research and education to benefit your future and the future of America, if there ever is to be one.
There are a lot of Patriot-type folks out there that will disagree with my theories and my educational principles regarding quiet title, but I can tell you, I’ve done them … and they work. Without quiet title, burps and hiccups in any given chain of title will render it impaired and thus, unmarketable. You can disregard your belief that the “county” you live in has any authority, but let me tell you, you are in the minority of all of the registered voters who have faith in their county government, until their government proves them otherwise. If you want change, then run for public office and change things! First, have some respect for our current system, because it’s the only thing we have in place that stands in the pendulum path of civility versus anarchy. Those of you out there who think you can still get title in allodium … keep dreaming. We’re way past that point.
The first issue I will discuss here is WHY most attorneys DON’T WANT TO do quiet title actions!
Attorneys who specialize in real property law should completely understand the principals of quieting title, including pleadings and procedure, which Al West and I share in the workshops I host around the country. Many attorneys ignore quiet title, because it represents (for the most part in a majority of the cases) a finite end to issues involving superior title to property. This may also result in what is known as a “lien stripping” of a promissory note (which of course is what the judges suspect), which is then rendered unsecured because the quiet title action may end up causing the complete removal of the mortgage or deed of trust, if the parties who show up can’t prove they have superior title. I said nothing about the Note here because the having a lien vis a vis a promissory note does not, in of itself, constitute superior title, unless the the Note has terms within it wherein the borrower gives up title to the property until the lien is retired in full. Title theory states operate that way. Lien theory states however, grant an “interest” in the property by what I call a “unilateral adhesion contract”, which is a one-way ticket to hell! It’s called a mortgage or deed of trust. Of late (within the last 15 years), these two documents have been tainted by a process called MERS (an acronym for Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems, Inc.), whose parent, MERSCORP (in whatever incorporated form it happens to be in at any given point in time) runs the obfuscation game for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and the rest of its members.
Most attorneys refuse to study the convoluted ways of the MERS® System, which I believe was started up to hide the behaviors of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac (the two Examined Members talked about in the April 13, 2011 Consent Order involving MERS and its parent) as they involve the chain of title (but also to the financial benefit of other users of the database). Thus, attorneys do NOT know what my network of attorneys know. Thus, they render inconsistent and improper pleadings (IMHO). Thus, anyone who attends my workshops will probably come away with more information than attorneys learn about quieting title than they learned about in the whole of their law school. Since they don’t teach MERS in law school (to the degree we do in our workshops and educational materials), you can bet most attorneys don’t want to be bothered with it when they can be making a monthly income off the backs of desperate homeowners who want to stay in their homes (sadly, most of them have no game plan for the future).
Attorneys who specialize in foreclosure defense have quickly learned (as I have surmised here) HOW TO stall a foreclosure. During that time, they bill their clients with a monthly fee that similarly equates to their monthly mortgage payments. This is the first wave of foreclosure fraud. Many attorneys want their clients to file bankruptcy to stop a foreclosure sale, yet seemingly, they ignore the 10-year “stain” on their clients’ credit reports as a result of what? Delaying the inevitable? According to the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (O.C.C.; who coddles MERS, because they’re all “in on it” together, in whatever sort of conspiracy you want to call it) has plainly stated on its website that bankruptcy is simply just a “stall tactic” (for the inevitable). I would have to ask these folks at the OCC, “Whose side are you on here?” All of what has taken place in the shaping of legislation has obviously been instigated by the banks. It may be time to vote out those in the electorate who aren’t on “your side” when it comes to property ownership and maintaining proper real property records in the county courthouse. The continuation of this current way of doing things illustrates my point on the need for quieting title even more.
Attorneys would rather have their monthly annuities coming in than seeing a finite end to their client’s case involving a quiet title action. There is no guarantee that getting your title quieted will stop some bank (or MERS, as it unsuccessfully did in the Groves case in Texas) from pursuing you down the road, but the “law of the case” seems to make things a bit easier. In short however, why have a “finite end” to things in favor of a monthly paycheck? For example, if a law firm has 10 attorneys doing foreclosure defense and each one brings in a retainer (for a single client) of $5,000 and then bills them for two years at $1,000 a month; if each attorney had 50 clients to “stall” for, the gross income to that firm would be $2,500,000 in retainers and $12,000,000 in monthly fees. That’s $14,500,000 for those of you doing the math. Such a business model it is. This is why it’s so hard to find an attorney to do quiet title work. Another major reason attorneys don’t favor doing quiet title actions is that these attorneys simply don’t want to be chastised and ridiculed by a judiciary that appears heavily vested in the very securities that are screwing America!
Equally important however, which attorneys overlook, is HOW and WHY quiet title actions are necessary if our current “system” of property ownership is to be salvaged. Attorneys have to educate themselves FIRST, then they can educate the judges, who will then understand WHY quiet title actions are necessary. For the time being, most judges I’ve read up on think of quiet title as just another assertion for why a homeowner wants a “free house” when this is so far from the truth. It’s unfair and totally biased to ignore the fundamental basics of quieting title; thus, we will discuss it here in further detail.
Now let’s look at the other side of the coin … the second issue in this think piece …
From all the research my collective “network” has done, quiet title actions will become fundamentally commonplace because of what the MERS business model has done to contribute to the corruption of any chain of title it’s involved with. I will NOT buy a property that has MERS anywhere in the chain of title! I suggest you take my comment to heart here, especially if you’re an investor. This can only be overcome by (again, my suggestion and not legal advice, in the “if it were me” scenario) stipulation to judgment in the quieting of title prior to the deal being closed. That means that MERS would have to be notified, so it too can “sign off” on what rights it thinks it (or its member users) may have (which I humbly disagree that any exist other than what’s in the contract, which are feebly explained by language a third grader can’t understand, let alone a future homeowner who doesn’t ask questions before signing papers at closing). I would love to debate Bill Beckmann about how successful his “business model” really is, because the only thing I see here is how it benefits the users of his “system” and NOT homeowners. I’ll explain in more detail in a minute …
Most title attorneys will NOT admit that Schedule B circumvents the payment of 99% of any claims against a title policy. They wouldn’t want you to know that because the title insurance industry is a racket unto itself that I’m not going to go into detail about in this particular article. I will however, discuss it in finite detail when the book THE QUIET TITLE WAR MANUAL is finally published. One needs to have all of his “A” game on before venturing into the shark-infested waters of what I term the quasi in rem quiet title realm. Title attorneys further do NOT care about MERS, because users of the MERS® System do NOT record proper assignments anyway, and most title companies (“the racket”) have subscribed to the fact that they can now “write around the defects in title” simply because MERS exists somewhere in the chain. Schedule B is the key here. Read it and weep, preferably BEFORE you buy a worthless homeowners’ indemnity policy.
I don’t give a damn about the insurability of a property, but the “system” of the way things are done around here seems to cater to that modus operandi. I care more about the marketability of property and what a prudent and reasonable person would do when confronted with a piece of property that is loaded with chain of title issues. Hopefully RUN … in the opposite direction, far away from the deal! I realize that this may leave millions of blighted homes out there unoccupied, but it’s about damned time we sent Congress and our state legislatures a message: Either come up with a game plan to keep owners in “the game”, or watch your system turn into total chaos! You let the banks “dangle the carrot” and you looked the other way when you repealed the Glass-Steagall Act and then end result was a system of modified securitization that has now turned this entire country’s court system into a game of reckless indulgences by foreclosure mill law firms who are making beaucoup bucks off the banks to keep the “game” in play in courts across the country, as long as it can, in the end, take the property, by whatever means (including the manufacture of phony documents for the purposes of litigation).
This is another reason why the banks are trying to actively change the Uniform Commercial Code (the “UCC”). This is the last resort of any viable defense in both foreclosure and quiet title actions. The banks know this full well. If they can totally tip the scales in their favor, borrowing money will leave a bad taste in people’s mouths once they see others getting screwed. Wait a minute! That’s already happening here!
Instead of being honest about how they make money, the major banks have corrupted the securitization scheme in favor of side bets, called credit default swaps. The borrowers seem to never have any of this payout money applied to their bottom line, but the banks who started it are reaping big benefits. Securitization DOES INDEED affect the chain of title, because the Pooling and Servicing Agreements (“PSAs”), are never adhered to. These are the governing regulations established by Congress under 17 CFR 210, 228, 229 et seq. Conduct a full audit of one of these securitized trusts and you’ll see why investors are screaming that the failure rate of these REMICs is 100%!
This is another reason that MERS was created: to facilitate securitization. This beta model has done more harm than good despite what MERS tells its members. If you look at their policies and procedures, you can plainly see that MERS® System users violate MERS’ policies with wanton impunity. This is another reason WHY quiet title actions are fundamentally necessary. This is another reason why the laws need to be changed to allow property owners to finitely challenge any piece of paper that is publicly recorded having to do with their chains of title. This is all part of quieting title and THIS is what MERS and the banks DON’T WANT. But … it gets better!
If MERS and its parent had their way, all quiet title actions and their respective state statutes that mandate quiet title would be declared unconstitutional and your case discarded!
MERS does NOT care about your rights to property. MERS and its parent, MERSCORP (the for-profit corporation that is going to find itself embroiled in more lawsuits in the future, I predict, when the real truth comes out) caused to be filed an amended pleading (in the California federal case in Robinson) that asserted that the California Quiet Title Statutes were unconstitutional! Can you believe the arrogance? Is MERS now better and more powerful than the state legislatures? Have we elected a pack of wimps that can’t stand up to them? You be the judge here, because you have the power to change things! State statutes regarding the quieting of title were created for a purpose … not to be ignored by MERS! MERS has some sort of liability somewhere in this equation (facilitating breach of contract possibly) and someday it will be called upon to ante up.
MERS seems to forget that there is language contained within the contracts in which it’s named as a nominee and beneficiary or mortgagee (yet these terms are NOT specifically defined within the mortgage or deed of trust, so they become conveniently arguable as to their meaning in court) that specifically gives homeowners a duty-bound, contractual right to defend title to their property. This is why every State in the Union is now faced with conflicting rulings when MERS is a party to any action. That is fact, not my opinion. Further, MERS doesn’t get to cause a breach in contracts it’s named in, in the name of squelching a quiet title action! You should take out your mortgage or deed of trust and read the first few pages, especially the “seisin mechanism”. That part of the contract is your contractual duty to defend title. If you don’t, YOU’RE IN BREACH OF CONTRACT! YOU DIDN’T ABIDE BY THAT SECTION OF THE CONTRACT YOU SIGNED! THE LENDER SHOULD BE SUING YOU FOR BREACH, BUT THEY DON’T. WHY? BECAUSE THEY’VE ALREADY BEEN PAID OFF BY CREDIT DEFAULT SWAP MONEY! (The money, by the way, that wasn’t applied to your “bottom line” balance as typically referenced in Section 23 of your long-form mortgages and deeds of trust.)
What? You didn’t know all of this when you signed the damned note and mortgage/deed of trust at closing? Well … welcome to the real world!
As long as there is a mortgage or deed of trust out there with this language in it, you have a contractual duty to quiet title! Maybe the lenders and Fannie and Freddie will remove the seisin mechanism completely from their security instruments at the insistence of MERSCORP, and will change the language to read:
“BORROWER COVENANTS that Borrower may not actually own the property they just bought, or in the alternative, have just purchased a property full of holes that title companies will not insure. Borrower agrees that they are stuck with what they bought and further agree that any rights to litigate to correct title are hereby waived completely.”
When it comes to the foregoing language, the courts seemingly treat Borrowers as if they have no rights at all … because … they owe somebody! Title doesn’t matter … because the judge said so! Read some of the appellate case law on quiet title and you will see where appeals have been reversed and remanded to allow attorneys for property owners to amend their complaints to quiet title, because they didn’t get them right in the first place! Then you will see WHY attorneys need to be educated on the subject! It’s a shame you have to appeal quiet title actions because foreclosure mills denounce this practice, ignoring the contractual right (which to me wreaks of tortious interference with contractual relations). Again, judges seemingly ignore this too!
Further, there is established case law regarding the quieting of title. We have compiled quite a bit of it for your research, which is on the 16GB USB flash drive every attendee gets as part of their research materials for attending these classes. Sorry, you have to attend the classes. We do NOT sell the flash drives a la carte with no explanation behind it as to how we came up with this research!
Still confused, this is what we have the upcoming quiet title workshop in Chicago for. Visit the Clouded Titles website for details. The Chicago event offers three different workshops on chain of title assessments (COTA), quiet title actions and a session on the Uniform Commercial Code, state-specific, taught by attorney Robert M. Janes, who I deem the UCC “guru” in America. You and/or your attorney needs to especially attend THAT workshop if you’re going to attend any of the events we’re offering here! This is the educational series you want to drop the dime on! This is the only event remaining this year with this kind of discount offering. We will not be doing another event like this in 2015, maybe ever! That’s right, I’m making a pitch here for your benefit!
When we start addressing the real issues involving quiet title, then American homeowners will become more responsible and productive citizens!
I should hold a contest to see how many folks out there have incorporated themselves as one of the defunct lenders of the past, or MERS, for that matter. There seems to be a lot of brouhaha about those scenarios as well. I will discuss two relevant cases in the future regarding this point (involving MERS and America’s Wholesale Lender; “AWL”; anyone with an AWL mortgage or deed of trust will want to pay attention to this upcoming article!)
As a sidenote … if the courts don’t want continuous and voluminous foreclosure cases wreaking havoc on their dockets, perhaps they should consider the positive nature of quieting title when a case dismissal occurs. Why should the bank get a “second bite at the apple”?
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