Tag Archives: MERSCORP Holdings Inc.

WHY UNDATED INDORSEMENTS FAIL

Under the subject matter of Debt Collection, Foreclosures and Chain of Title Education …  and Op-Ed as well:

UPDATED ON MARCH 19, 2017

The following diatribe is not to be construed as legal advice, but rather for educational purposes only.

A number of issues have surfaced in recent years, in light of the foreclosure crisis, two of which involvement indorsements on the promissory notes (or their respective allonges) and one regarding who the real parties in interest are when the MERS® System is involved.  By no means is any of this finite, as research is continually ongoing as to the “flaws” in the MERS business model, which to me, is impliedly criminal in nature. I don’t care whether this “business model” has been trademarked either.  It has left the door open for criminal RICO behavior and MERSCORP and its shareholders provided the platform for the thievery.

To me, the MERS® System was not only created as a platform by which to (as MERS’s own officers tell it) electronically transfer mortgages and notes within a database (owned by then-MERSCORP, Inc.), but also to act “as the getaway car” in the theft of tens of millions of residential properties across America ever since MERS became involved in mortgage foreclosures.  Like it or not, this smacks of criminal RICO.  MERS and its parent, of course, will deny any wrongdoing, like they did when I released the Williamson County Real Property Records Audit in January of 2013.

In fact, MERS was so vehemently upset with the release of the Williamson County Report that they caused to be published almost a full-page ad in the Austin American-Statesman newspaper on February 7, 2013, denying any wrongdoing and attempting to rebut the contents of the Report, which was reviewed by more than a half dozen foreclosure defense attorneys prior to its release and was accompanied by a legal opinion. One would have to ask, “How could little ole’ Dave Krieger write a report that would piss off the MERS hierarchy all the way to Reston, Virginia?”

I was inundated by phone calls from reporters at the time, attempting to elicit a comment as to MERS’s statement that “it didn’t do anything wrong”.  My simple response to them was: “If MERS didn’t do anything wrong, then why is everybody suing them?”  The reporters just laughed, affirmatively responding in kind and didn’t ask me any more follow-up questions.

In previous posts, I have attempted to identify who the real “agent” (MERSCORP calls it a “nominee”) is in the mortgage loan security instruments.  The term used in MERS-related paperwork is “Electronic Agent”.  There is only ONE “Electronic Agent” named in the back-office documents that virtually all foreclosure defense attorneys never get to see … and it’s NOT MERS.  I personally asked for those documents when writing discovery to MERS and MERSCORP in the Robinson case, which by the way is protected by work product privilege.   The Robinsons never got those documents because MERS and MERSCORP wouldn’t produce them.  Does this sound familiar to you?  Not if you didn’t know you had to ask for them, because they do in fact, exist. MERS just flat out want to verify its agency relationship with its members; frankly, because it doesn’t have any agency relationship with its members.  If you read the DiLibero case in Rhode Island, the Supreme Court noted that the executory contract was with MERSCORP, Inc. … or didn’t you pay attention to that part?  MERS obviously doesn’t want you to … and for good reason.

The “Electronic Agent” in the document I’m referring to is MERSCORP, Inc. (now MERSCORP Holdings, Inc.).  The Agreement I’m talking about is attached here: eta_warehouse_template_v6-mers-and-borrower4

In the foregoing document, in order to be successful in discovery, research shows you have to have a completed document between MERSCORP and the “member-user” of the MERS® System. The differences in your understanding of how these documents work appears to determine whether or not you’ll win your foreclosure case.  But that is only one element of liability here.

When I spoke of “the getaway car”, it generally means, an accomplice helped the robbers get away with the goods.  The getaway car driver generally is considered equally culpable in the crime (in this case, the theft of property by fraud) and is generally sentenced to prison, along with the perpetrators and actual actors in the scheme (the MERSCORP member-subscribers who use the MERS® System).  In criminal RICO, two or more actors are necessary, in a specific pattern of behavior, to orchestrate an act which results in an actual loss of money or property, which in this case, involved borrowers’ payments to a lender for a specific period of time, accompanied by a down payment (sometimes as much as 20% or more), in obtaining one of these so-called, MERS-originated Mortgages or Deeds of Trust.

I also have to mention identity theft here, because nowhere in any of these security instruments does it say that MERS, as an agent for the lender, should be allowed access to your social security number and other personal identifying information.  This becomes evident when anyone gets on the MERS Servicer ID Search system and wants to know who their “investor” is, which in of itself also promulgates fraud because MERSCORP, who owns the site, disclaims the site for accuracy because it’s just the driver of the getaway car.  The actual “actors” who perpetrated the fraud are the servicers who use the “System” to put whatever they want the borrower to see.  Borrowers actually believe the shit these servicers post on that site and use it in court. This is exactly what MERSCORP wants you to do.  And you fall for it?  Apparently, even the foreclosure defense attorneys don’t know what a Warehouse Lender template form is, because if they did, they’d be using it to unravel the MERS® System in front of the judge, demanding a filled-out, signed copy of the bloody form!  This is where the agency relationship was created folks … but not with MERS!  It was created with MERSCORP … as the “Electronic Agent”!  Nowhere in your security instrument does it say “MERSCORP” anywhere.  Look at all the millions of homes that were stolen using MERS and MERSCORP as the getaway car (in all those purported MERS assignments) when in fact, the corporate resolution giving then-Secretary William Hultman has never surfaced, despite being demanded to produce in discovery in the Ukpe case in New Jersey.

I spoke with former federal prosecutor Mark J. Malone by phone about this “corporate resolution”, supposedly generated in April of 1998, which he doubt even exists … which is why MERS won’t produce it.

I put those results in the OSCEOLA COUNTY FORENSIC EXAMINATION and caused them to be released to the Clerk of the Circuit Court of Osceola County, Florida on December 30, 2014.  After that Report was released to the public in 2015, there wasn’t a peep to be heard out of Reston, Virginia (where MERS and MERSCORP are headquartered), contrary to the stink they made when the Williamson County report was released.  That’s because the Osecola County Report intimated criminal RICO, “getaway car” implications for MERS and its parent.  Every one of the Board of Directors OF MERS and MERSCORP needs to be put in prison, and for well more time than what DOCX’s Lorraine Brown got.  Lorraine Brown was only an ass-puppet for Lender Processing Services, Inc., who quickly dumped DOCX to decrease its potential liability.  That’s pretty much like the CIA disavowing one of its agent’s actions when the agent is caught, to cut its ties to any potential liability down the road.  Instead, the U.S. Department of Justice, along with the Tampa FBI and the Osceola County Sheriff’s Department, whitewashed the Report by attacking the Clerk and myself.  It was more important to the Sheriff’s Department how much it cost to certify the 17 cases of evidence still in its possession, and who paid for it, rather than who was responsible for all of the criminal allegations that the Sheriff’s Department itself was involved in, because it got paid $90 per eviction, creating potential liability by extension of the fraud.  No wonder they all wanted to bury this by smearing me and the Clerk in the media.  This “issue” isn’t going to go away, because people (including attorneys and university researchers, are downloading this report and reading it in droves) are waking up to the real truths of the matter.  Giving the Sheriff’s Department in Osceola County the investigative powers regarding this Report is like the “fox guarding the henhouse”.

Also bear in mind that then-9th Circuit States Attorney, Jeff Ashton, declined to investigate the report (obviously, because it would be political suicide for him to “grow a pair”) and turned it over to the Sheriff’s Department, claiming “you have to follow the chain of command.  Meanwhile, Ashton decided that he’d rather “grow a pair”, among other things, viewing the AshleyMadison.com website on company time, which is one of the reasons he did not get re-elected in the Democratic Primary in 2016.  This means that the new 9th Circuit States Attorney, Aramis Ayala, is going to have to come out strong in favor of the people of her Circuit and do the right thing by investigating this report and convening a grand jury to investigate its contents.  If it means the Sheriff’s Department in Osceola County has to face civil litigation for its participation in eviction of all of those homeowners, so be it.

Look at your mortgage or deed of trust and tell me if you see MERSCORP listed as the “nominee”! 

Now … what is non-disclosure to you?

Were you ever told that MERSCORP was the “Electronic Agent” behind the scenes?  Of course not.  Is the MERS® System patent a matter of public record in the U. S. Patent and Trademark Office?  It sure is.  Is that constructive notice in the land records where the property is located?  Nope.  That’s because the “driver of the getaway car” had to remain the real secret here.

This is why I also believe that once the documents (notes an mortgages) were uploaded into the MERS® System, they were no longer needed; and thus, were shredded. I know that there are other contradictory opinions out there, but I relied on the 2009 Florida Mortgage Bankers Association letter to Judge Jennifer Bailey that implied that they didn’t need the original documents anymore.  Thus, I believe that there are no longer any original documents out there, just electronic copies that are reproduced for trial.  And because of UETA and eSign acts, electronic copies conveniently fit the bill … but they’re not the originals, are they?

Now the indorsements …

In the most recent decision, the Supreme Court of Hawaii, in Bank of America, N.A. v. Reyes-Toledo (see the 28-page opinion here: 2017-feb-28-hsct-pulished-opinion) opined (in part) the following:

“Bank of America has maintained that it was the holder of the Note based on the Egan Declaration and the blank indorsement on the Note. Accordingly, we consider whether the Bank produced sufficient evidence to demonstrate that it was entitled to enforce the Note as a holder of the instrument at the time that the foreclosure proceedings were commenced. The negotiation asserted by Bank of America involved negotiation by blank indorsement and transfer of possession of the Note. In contrast, a special indorsement occurs if the indorsement is made by the holder of an instrument and theindorsement identifies a person to whom it makes the instrument payable. When an instrument is specially indorsed, it becomes payable to the identified person and may be negotiated only by the indorsement of that person. Id. A blank indorsement occurs when an indorsement is made by the holder of an instrument and is not a special indorsement; in other words, a blank indorsement is not payable to an identified person.   When indorsed in blank, an instrument becomes payable to bearer and may be negotiated by transfer or possession alone until specially indorsed.

Here, the Note, which was attached to Bank of America’s motion for summary judgment as Exhibit A, contains two indorsements. One indorsement is a special indorsement by Countrywide Bank, FSB, to Countrywide Home Loans, Inc.  The other is a blank indorsement by Countrywide Home Loans, Inc.  Thus, because the Note was last negotiated by a blank indorsement, it may be negotiated by transfer of possession. Although Bank of America produced evidence that it possessed the blank-indorsed Note at the time it sought summary judgment, a material question of fact exists as to whether Bank of America possessed the Note, or was otherwise a holder, at the time it brought the foreclosure action. Indeed, the copy of the Note attached to the summary judgment motion does not reflect the date of the blank indorsement, and the Egan Declaration, which was made after the filing of the complaint in this case, does not indicate when the indorsement occurred. Further, there is no additional evidence in the record regarding the date of the indorsements or whether Bank of America possessed the Note at the time of the filing of the complaint. Thus, there is a material question of fact as to whether Bank of America was the holder of the Note at the time the foreclosure proceedings were commenced, which in turn raises the issue of whether Bank of America had standing to foreclose on the Property at the time it brought the foreclosure action.

Here, there is no evidence in the record, either through the Note itself, the Egan Declaration, or the other documents attached to the motion for summary judgment, showing that the blank indorsement on the Note occurred prior to the initiation of the suit. Consequently, there is a genuine issue as to whether Bank of America was entitled to foreclose when it commenced the proceeding. Thus, viewing the facts and inferences in the light most favorable to Homeowner, there is a genuine issue of material fact as to whether Bank of America held the Note at the time it filed the complaint. Accordingly, Bank of America failed to meet its burden of demonstrating that it was entitled to judgment as a matter of law, and the circuit court erred in granting Bank of America’s motion for summary judgment. For the reasons discussed, the ICA’s April 13, 2016 judgment on appeal is vacated. The circuit court’s December 9, 2014 Judgment is also vacated to the extent it grants summary judgment to Bank of America. The case is remanded to the ICA for a determination of whether the circuit court erred in dismissing Homeowner’s counterclaims.”

What the homeowners’ attorneys miss … 
The bigger picture here is the agency relationship claimed to have been possessed by MERS at the time of assignment.  Because the note indorsements are never dated, there’s no proof of when the effective date of transfer occurred.  Thus, in the foregoing instance, WHEN did Bank of America possess the Note?
Before, or after, it filed the complaint.  If the Warehouse Lender agreement says the Borrower, isn’t YOU, but the originating broker, and the interim funding lender is not the party you got the loan from,
As Bob Janes, J.D. has noted, agency must be proven by the Grantor, not the Grantee.  That means that MERS cannot self-authenticate its own agency relationships by and through its officers or through its counsel (“just take my word for it, your Honor”).  As much as you don’t trust lenders, their agents don’t fare much better if the lender lies and the agent repeats the lie in court.
I hardly ever see anyone specifically arguing UCC in court, let alone an undated indorsement and its relevant meaning when it comes to being able to enforce the note.  There is plenty of existing case law … and Hawaii just set another prime example of such.  This may mean a fight for another day, but when it comes to the recorded assignments involving MERS, one has to understand that the people in Reston, Virginia did not dot all their “i’s” and cross all their “t’s” when it came to allowing servicers to run rampant, using the MERS® System to defraud homeowners by publishing information on the MERS website to mislead homeowners, and then use contrived “Certifying Officers” (when the agency relationship of these employees, of the Servicer) is in question. We may not be able to challenge the assignment in every State, but then again, did the attorney even try to depose the robosigner and the notary to get more details.
UPDATE: 
I have had many folks present me with scenarios wherein the Allonge or “extra page” containing a blank indorsement was used at trial.  If you examine most of the case rulings, certain courts have presented us with commentary (discussion) on the subject of what constitutes a proper allonge under the Uniform Commercial Code.
EXTRA PAGES
These could involve document manufacturing, which might be sufficient to create issues of material fact necessary to avoid summary judgment and/or a motion to dismiss:  (1) what was scanned by the servicer (because that’s where we are assuming the copy of the note came from) that shows up as an extra page was either (a.) an extra page attached to the note that was separate to the note pages themselves, “created out of thin air”; (b.) an extra page attached to the note that was not a separate page from the last page of the Note, but was actually the “back side” of the note, which could be challenged as improper, as anyone could have rubber-stamped an indorsement onto the back page; or (c.) the document manufacturing by the servicer (of which we know Ocwen for example, does, because of reports indicating the same borrower’s note in 4 different stages of manufacture) in an attempt to create standing for its client lender.  The multiple creation of different notes has found its way into certain proceedings, which is enough to ask: Which one is the real note?
UNNAMED ALLONGES

Most courts I’ve read up on have issued rulings specific to HOW allonges are supposed to be attached to promissory notes and WHEN they are supposed to be used.  I would suspect that if a note has an extra page with no title on it (e.g., “ALLONGE TO NOTE”) that someone inside the servicer arbitrarily chose to attach an indorsement-in-blank stamp on an extra page to imply (or give the bank’s attorneys reason to imply) that it’s an allonge, when all it is, is a sheet of white paper with an indorsement stamp on it and does not constitute and allonge because it’s not properly labeled.

The other problem with allonges is that commonly, the space under the Borrower’s signature is supposed to be “filled up” with stamps BEFORE extra pages are being used.  When there is a whole page of room for indorsement stamps, followed by an extra page (properly labeled or not) reeks of document manufacturing.  In any case, there should be a specific objection made on the record … or someone needs to go back and research what constitutes a proper allonge.
DOCUMENT EXAMINATION

I know of at least 3 document examiners across the U. S. that can show up in court and testify as to whether a note is “original” or not.  I have to ask myself WHY lenders wait until the last minute to show up with the “original note” for the judge.  In one case in New Jersey, the bank’s law firm showed up (via a cover lawyer and not the lawyer who filed the foreclosure complaint) with a “faxed copy” of the note, claiming that it was the original.  That was objected to, of course, but the judge bought it anyway.  That case is on appeal.  With a document examiner at the ready when and if a hearing can be scheduled (or a deposition for production of the note for examination) to vet the document properly through an examiner, might scare the bank from bringing it in at all … which brings me to the last point.

THE REAL KEY REASON INDORSEMENTS FAIL

Let’s assume the 424(b)(5) Prospectus has been obtained in certified form from the SEC.  I suggest using the entire prospectus because the Pooling and Servicing Agreement (“PSA”) just isn’t enough.  The information within the Prospectus ties the Borrower’s loan to an “offering” through the sales pitch, which is the Prospectus to the investors, signed under penalty of perjury under the Sarbanes-Oxley Act.  The PSA may contain the section, “Assignment of the Mortgage Loans” under § 2.01; however, the PSA does not make up the WHOLE of the document it is contained within, the Prospectus.

If there are 3 true sales, including transfer from the Depositor to the Trust, as prescribed by the governing regulations of the Trust under § 2.01, shown within the entire Prospectus, in the portion known as the PSA, then where in the chain of indorsements is the endorsement to the Depositor and from the Depositor to the Trust?  The PSA is only a portion of the entire “picture”.  Without the framework of the Prospectus to back it up, your evidence can be challenged by the bank’s attorneys.  Oh, believe me, they had this whole thing figured out before the issues with REMICs ever surfaced in Court.  No judge wants to read a 300+ page document.  Someone has to.

SECOND UPDATE: 

In continuing the pattern of misbehavior, a most recent case out of Florida’s Fourth District Court of Appeals shows us multiple indorsements (albeit undated) present an entirely different issue as to standing.  When a bank proffers more than one note and the indorsements are different, this provides us with more ammunition to rebuff its advances that it has standing to proceed against you in a foreclosure case, as demonstrated below, in a single-page ruling:

Carty v. Bank of America, NA, Fla: Dist. Court of Appeals, 4th Dist. 2017 – Google Scholar

It’s not that we haven’t explored this avenue in previous posts.  It’s just that the courts are now just starting to recognize that our arguments really do have merit!

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Filed under Chain of Title Education, Debt Collection and Foreclosures, Op-Ed Piece

POINT – COUNTERPOINT: SECURITIZATION FAILURE EXPLAINED

“JANE … YOU IGNORANT SLUT!”

(As exclaimed by Dan Akroyd to Jane Curtin on Saturday Night Live …)

Sorry … I had to do that because you can’t say that to opposing counsel in foreclosure court … as much as you’d like to!  Still, I’m not an attorney, I can’t render legal advice, but I have been listed on at least one attorney’s “expert witness list” for upcoming trials! 

My blood boils when I’m consulting at a foreclosure trial and I hear the bank’s attorney claim that the borrower has nothing to do with the PSA because I know damned well that the borrower (nor his counsel) has a comeback that they can waylay on the bank’s attorney in point-counterpoint fashion, which is why I went with the opener that I did.

The bank’s attorney doesn’t want the borrower opening up the subject of securitization failure, because in so doing, the REMIC finds itself without standing to foreclose.  End of story … because the last attempt is always (when Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac aren’t involved) the use of MERS (through servicer fraud) “assigning” a note a mortgage years later into a REMIC trust. Securitization failure may look obvious on paper (what’s recorded in the land records) but it cannot account for the path the note didn’t travel.

The last trial I attended, I saw the bank’s attorney “step in it”.  You could hear her tiny little heels squish in the pile of dung she just sunk into asking the expert witness (who understands securitization) about the “closing date”, then suddenly realizing that she opened Pandora’s Box.  Sadly, the foreclosure defense attorneys need to climb on board with this thought process, as elaborate as it might be.  I’m going demonstrably put it into as easy a graphic as I can, using various scenarios (“submitted for your approval”, as the Twilight Zone‘s Rod Serling would say from the grave). You have to educate the judge!  You have to!  I don’t care if the other side jumps up and down with objections, you have to keep on keeping on.

FEW ATTORNEYS REALLY “GET IT”

First, let me share a pdf with you, written by (in my book) one of the most brilliant attorneys on record:

charlies-wallshein_securitization-fail-part-one-001

The foregoing even has “affirmative defenses” included in this paper, if you know what you’re looking for.  Thanks to Charlie, I used a chunk of his explanation and diatribe in a Texas Rule 736 motion I drafted for use by counsel, which, when coupled with a Rule 12 motion by the attorney (a motion demanding to know who the law firm was representing in its Application to foreclose), the law firm “non-suited” the foreclosure case (made it go away)!

I shall further elaborate, as I do in chain of title assessments where the last party to allegedly have the note and mortgage transferred to them is the REMIC … years after the fact.  The borrowers and their attorneys focus on the Pooling and Servicing Agreement and miss the whole enchilada completely.  It’s not just the PSA we’re talking about here folks!  It’s the entire “sales pitch” … I’m talking about the 424(b)(5) prospectus (and none other than).

The PSA does NOT contain your loan number!  The prospectus contains your loan number!

The prospectus contains well more of the governing regulations than the PSA, all neatly signed under penalty of perjury under the Sarbanes-Oxley Act!   When the bank’s attorney says the Borrower has nothing to do with the Assignment, why then are you stumped?  Why can’t your attorney object?  It can’t be because of ignorance, right?

However, just because your loan number is listed within the prospectus doesn’t mean that your loan is actually in the pool (or made the pool before the cut-off date).  Look at it in the simplest of terms:

  1. Why do lenders use the MERS® System?  

The lenders use the MERS® System as a means to register and securitize mortgage notes within the secondary markets.  However, before the note (and its accompanying electronic paperwork) can be traded (transferred, sold, resold, multiple times over), it has to be digitally uploaded into the MERS® System, which was created for the purposes of electronically transferring the note!  

This is why (when you look at your loan on the MERS® Servicer ID page, the loan reads “ACTIVE”.   That means, it’s “actively” being transferred (potentially multiple times over) from one entity to another while the Servicer’s name remains constant.  When you see the word “INACTIVE”, it means the loan is no longer being traded, most likely because it is NON-PERFORMING!  Who could get away with selling non-performing loans?  Only in the securities market can you get away with that!  This goes back to the late Judge Arthur Schack in the HSBC v. Taher case, which was reversed and assigned to another judge, because the powers that be (the Appellate Department) said Schack went too far (in vetting the truth about robosigning using parties claiming to be officers of MERS). So, as long as the note doesn’t end up in its “final resting place” (as claimed by REMICs in millions of foreclosures), we have an “ACTIVE” note trading within the MERS® System.

2. The servicers who subscribe to the MERS® System purposefully abuse it!

The MERS® System, as I have previously noted in other posts, as well as in the OSCEOLA COUNTY FORENSIC EXAMINATION, allows servicers and their minions and subordinates within their default divisions or their contracted third-party document mills, to “manufacture” standing by creating assignments out of thin air, utilizing the name Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems, Inc., accompanied by what is proclaimed an “official title”, with only flimsy, non-notarized proclamations by William Hultman or his “successors” within MERSCORP Holdings, Inc. potentially attached to the pleadings as a means of “verification” of the use of the title by the “nominee” (who also thinks it’s a beneficiary, which it’s not).

Regardless of their “signing authority” or other Limited Power of Attorney proof of anything (as Limited Powers of Attorney can be falsely created to reinforce a claim by the REMIC that certain servicers are covered to do exercise certain powers under the power of attorney), there is nothing in the MERS Rules of Membership that forces the users of the MERS® System to “play by the rules”.  In fact, all of the users of the MERS® System have to “indemnify” MERS and its parent of any liability in connection with the creation of these documents, which means it’s “open season” in the fraud department in the creation of these documents.

   3. Parties outside of the MERS® System are allowed to participate with the servicers in creating the documents employing the use of the MERS® System! 

During the Osceola County Forensic Examination, my team discovered (in hundreds of assignments) the use a law firm in the creation of the assignments.  Many times, the assignment itself contained the words, “Prepared by:”, with either the name of the law firm, a law firm attorney or a non-lawyer working for the law firm.  My take here is that this is where you have RICO issues because the servicer, a law firm, a notary and multiple employees of both, are tasked with the creation of the document.  We are not just talking civil RICO issues here, but also criminal RICO, because the document is generally created under the direction of the law firm handling the foreclosure (in mortgage states), or in the alternative, a document processing company (e.g. LPS, CoreLogic, etc.) being involved in engineering the “proper parties” onto a piece of paper that is going to be relied upon in court to foreclose on the property.  The law firm handling the foreclosure will then rely on an assignment that it was involved in creating to steal the home, knowing full well that the assignment contains multiple misrepresentations which are not provable because the assignments clearly show the note and mortgage were transferred into the REMIC years after the Cut-off Date!

This is why I intend to write a follow-up paperback aptly titled, “How To Screw MERS!” (or something like that), to explain how to circumvent the MERS®System in your dealings in real estate (part of your due diligence before you buy a piece of property using a “MERS Member”, which is false, because the alleged “MERS Members” aren’t really “members”; they’re user-subscribers of the MERS® System, through the use of an executory contract with MERSCORP Holdings, Inc. (which is nowhere to be found on your note, your security instrument or the assignment).

4. The “Electronic Tracking Agreement – Warehouse Lender” clearly shows who the “players” are … and MERSCORP Holdings, Inc. is one of them!

If you look at the attached: eta_warehouse_template_v6-mers-and-borrower4, you will see what I am describing here, as to who the “electronic agent” really is. Is this disclosed to you at closing?  Hi there boys and girls, can you say “Truth-in-Lending Act violations right out of the gate?” … sure you can!  (playing on Mr. Rogers’ voice).

Do you see where your “name” is inserted as to “Borrower”?   Didn’t think so.  That’s because you’re not the Borrower, the originating lender or mortgage broker (like that pesky “Rocket Mortgage” and other digital online services that make it so easy to “get approved in minutes” for a mortgage loan).

Notice in the third paragraph where it says, “the Borrower is obligated to pledge the Mortgage Loans to the Lender”?  Notice the term used “Loans” is in the plural?  That’s because the “Borrower” in this agreement is the originating mortgage broker/lender and the “Lender” in this agreement is the “Interim Funding Lender” (like Countrywide, WaMu, IndyMac, etc.).  Look who the “Electronic Agent” is:  MERSCORP Holdings, Inc.!   What is an agent?  (hint: a nominee)

Then why isn’t MERSCORP Holdings, Inc. (the parent of MERS, the entity with all the money) plainly stated on your loan paperwork, including your Note? Where is the Truth-in-Lending Act when you need it regarding non-disclosure of the real “truth”.  It was hidden from you at closing?  That might even bring about suspicion for a RESPA violation as well.

Notice within Paragraph 4 of this agreement where it says that the “Lender and the Borrower desire to have certain Mortgage Loans registered on the MERS® System (defined below) such that the mortgagee of record under each Mortgage (defined below) shall be identified as MERS;”   Did you ever sign a paper like this at closing?   I’ll save you the time looking for it.  You didn’t.  That’s because the “Borrower” in this agreement, involving the placement of your loan into the MERS® System IS NOT YOU!  Did you agree to that?   Didn’t think so.  But it sure the hell explains how your loan got “registered” on the MERS® System, doesn’t it?

This was all created to be part of the securitization process.  This is why the entire process is flawed … and why it needs to be eliminated … and why the parties who created it need to be in prison!  The MERS®System is the platform through which the RICO acts were committed.  Indemnification or not, the platform is there … and it’s knowingly being abused.

YOUR NAME AND ORIGINAL LOAN NUMBER IS ON THE ASSIGNMENT!

This begs the question: How can you NOT be involved?  The assignment is talking about your very loan and mortgage (or deed of trust) being conveyed by the employees of the mortgage loan servicer (who can’t get the originating lender to do it because it’s more than likely defunct), whose employees create the document out of thin air, under the instruction from: (a.) one of the major title companies; (b.) the foreclosure mill attorneys involved in the litigation; and (c.) a third-party document mill tasked by the servicer to keep the transaction at arms length to avoid suspicion.  In any case, the document is a fraud.  They know it. And you know it.  But the judges don’t know it because no one knows how to tell the judge a thing or two about the real aspects of securitization because they know that 99% of these assignments are fraudulent and by ruling against the bank on securitization failure, they would open up a “three-ring circus” in their courtroom while jeopardizing their political futures.

The servicer uses its own “loan number” which generally does not match yours.  But when the bogus assignment is drafted (and many times backdated for a purpose) by the servicer’s employees or that of the law firm or third-party document mill, your original loan number and name is on the assignment.  Why not simply ask the judge to take your name off that document (since you’re not involved in it) and we’ll call it a day?   You know how that will end up, right?

You first have to object to the attorney’s comment that you’re not involved in the PSA, because technically, the PSA talks in general about operations within the REMIC itself.  If you’re going to enter the PSA as evidence, you’re shortchanging yourself and your case.  What you should be entering is the entire 424(b)(5) prospectus.  It still costs $4.00 a copy from sec.gov on their forms page.  They have a contract with United Parcel Service to ship it to you at no charge.  You pay $4.00.  Get the whole prospectus.  The front end of the prospectus is what contains the cut-off and closing date, not the PSA.  Have you ever noticed that, or did you just take someone’s word for it?

exhibit-9_occ-asset-securitization-comptrollers-handbook

Notice the foregoing “Page 8” and where it came from … the 1997 Comptroller’s Handbook issued by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency.  This handbook was issued before MERS Version 3 came into being.  Notice how the first paragraph below the diagram talks about the Borrower being a party to the securitzation chain?   Do you understand why?  Because in simple fashion, in order to make the chain work (the whole system), the Borrower’s payments facilitate the income stream to the investors, who received non-recourse bonds on the Closing Date (or Start-up Date, according to IRS terminology) of the REMIC.

That is, unless securitization failure occurred at the Start-up Date.  This begs the use of an expert witness at trial to can testify as to the facts, followed by the use of depositions of the parties creating the document (the assignment) to reinforce the fraud being plied on the court.

Actually, securitization failure occurred BEFORE that!  It occurred at the Cut-off Date!

It couldn’t have happened because after the note and mortgage was uploaded into the MERS® System database (owned by now-MERSCORP Holdings, Inc.), I believe the original paperwork was no longer needed and was shredded.  My forensic examiners and I have heard this on more than one occasion, right out of the mouths of the bankers!  Thus, when the Borrower went into default: (a.) the servicer handling the loan dummied up an assignment, knowing already that it didn’t have the original loan; (b.) the servicer went into the MERS® System and downloaded the “uploaded electronic copy” and printed it out and took it into court (after adding a bunch of other “allonges”, “indorsements” to the note to try to tie the chain of title together with the chain of custody of the note.

Let me be clear here!  I do not believe that the allonges and the indorsements were completely added until AFTER the original note was retrieved from MERS. The latest article by Neil Garfield, which contains a statement: “I have obtained confirmation from a large bank vendor (Visionet Systems, Inc.) that it rectifies “lost notes” by reapplying the “signature images” upon stored copies. –Bill Paatalo, December 10, 2016.” goes to the core of the following scenario:

My wife and I attended a trial in Fort Myers, Florida where Bill Paatalo was admitted as an “expert witness”.  I went for two reasons.  First, I wanted to see what kind of questions the bank’s attorney and the judge were going to ask Bill about his expertise and the facts of the case; and second, we had dinner with Bill after that to further discuss the case, which ended up without a Final Judgment being issued that day (in court) because the judge wanted more education, in the form of trial briefs by the attorneys, which were due yesterday (I have not seen the brief).

This clearly also shows that the Notes were, at one time (as I suspected) electronic copies.  And riddle me this (as the Riddler said to Batman) … where do you think Visionet Systems, Inc. got the copy of the note?  Visionet is NOT a user of the MERS® System (check for yourself like I did) and therefore, they had to get the note from somewhere (more than likely the servicer, who IS a user of the MERS® System).  This now begs the deposition of someone at Visionet Systems, Inc. to verify this chicanery.

There are at least two cases supporting this conclusion! 

If you’ll simply Google a pdf of “In re Saldivar” (Texas) and “Glaski v. Bank of America” (California), you can see from these two cases that the court finally recognized that if the note and mortgage (or deed of trust) weren’t assigned until years after the Cut-off Date”, there is no verifiable evidence of WHEN or IF the note and security instrument actually “made it into the pool of loans” within the REMIC trust! This is what Bill Paatalo testified to at trial in Fort Myers.  When attacked by the bank’s attorney on the possibility that the note and mortgage made the cut-off date and that the assignment was strictly a memorialization of that fact, Paatalo responded to the “fact” that the assignment itself shows the date of the assignment being two years after the REMIC closed; thus, there is no possibility that the governing rules of the REMIC were complied with.  I am referring to the entire 424(b)(5) prospectus here, NOT just the PSA!

The OCC clearly contemplated that the Borrowers were the parties signing the notes and security instruments, which contained the provision (in paragraph 19 or 20, depending on which long form security instrument was employed at that time) that “the note, or a partial interest in the note” may be sold or transferred. It says nothing about the parties involved in that transaction, the “boss of the note” at foreclosure proceedings, or securitization of the loan.

Not only is the chain of title screwed up (because the right hand doesn’t know what the left hand is doing), certain parties came in contact with each other to “dummy up” paperwork to steal the house.  It’s that plain and simple.

That my friends, is a short-form explanation of the formula for securitization failure in roughly 3200 words, despite the fact I’m not an attorney nor do I render legal advice.  Share this with everyone because the life you save may be that of someone you don’t know that desperately needs to view this educational post!

BTW: For those of you wanting a progress report on the new FDCPA book I’m working on … I’ve about 40 pages to go!  I’m trying to get it done by the end of the year!  It contains some real damning information every “consumer” should know about, from foreclosures, to credit cards and car loans to student loans … all of which have been securitized … including relevant case law to back up the education I provide in this book! 

Dave Krieger, Clouded Titles

 

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Filed under Chain of Title Education, Op-Ed Piece

SURVIVING FORECLOSURE

Op-Ed … 

One of the greatest achievements in life is being able to own a home.  It’s an outward sign of wealth building.  It’s one of the biggest financial commitments that a person can make, not necessarily one they should make.

The banking industry in America continues to survive despite all of the scandal that continues to plague them.  Many folks survived the economic fiasco of 2008 because the entire economy was not affected.  When only a marginal number of homeowners are affected, seemingly, the rest of the country simply falls asleep, chalking up the massive foreclosure market as a “numbers game”.  Investors came out of the woodwork, thinking they were getting a great deal, when in fact, 99% of all of the foreclosure actions conducted in this country are illegal.

The reason these foreclosures are illegal can be summed up in one word: securitization.

Most people that signed on to mortgage loans between 2003 and 2008 had no idea that they were going to be victimized by an entity called Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems, Inc. and its parent, now known as MERSCORP Holdings, Inc.  It has been communicated to me by numerous attorneys that the MERS® System was created specifically for the purposes of online digital transfers of promissory notes within the secondary mortgage market and that any claim by MERS that it has any part of “title” to your property is superfluous folly.  MERS and its parent have continuously fought that in courts across America.  It is impossible to see why a court system would give a for-profit private entity that is not in the business of lending money beneficial status.  Some states have figured that flaw out, too late to avoid creating conflicting case law.  If the states wanted to be smart about it, they would do what Oregon counties are doing, patterning their suits after Multnomah County’s case, which resulted in a $9-million settlement, something unheard of, unless you want to keep MERS and its hierarchy out of prison.  In my book, criminal RICO is afoot here and MERS has provided the platform for that to occur in the form of servicer fraud.  Servicer’s employees are allowed to robosign and backdate assignments, falsify authority and manufacture standing for lender’s who are not “the boss of the note” which is what, largely in part, makes these 99% of the foreclosures illegal.

On the backside of this equation, homeowners who are unwilling to challenge the beast are fleeing their homes in record numbers and the shadow inventory still continues to plague the real estate market.

But what of the homeowners?

As I have stated on this blog before (in previous posts), 75% of those being served with foreclosure notices vacate their properties within thirty (30) days of notice.  The other 20% of those vacate their homes after being made aware an issuance of a final judgment of foreclosure or notice of a sale date.  The 95% was ill prepared to retain counsel to even challenge their foreclosure and the greater majority never even showed up to court to contest their foreclosure (in mortgage states).  The banks know this.  It’s a numbers game.  The banks are at a financial advantage because they’ve made all their money off of interest earned (as do the servicers with all of their fees added into the mix) and the banks have a legal fund to fight with.  Bank of America is estimated to spend roughly $2-billion annually in legal fees, most of which goes to fighting homeowners just like you and I in court.  Whether or not Bank of America can actually prove it has standing to foreclose depends on how many assignments their servicing unit manufactures, because that’s exactly what they do when there’s a default (someone stops making their mortgage payments).

Of the 5% of the remaining homeowners, 3-4% of them duke it out in court.  The other 1-2% take “cash for keys” or negotiate a loan modification, albeit the party negotiating with them probably doesn’t have the right to enter into a loan modification agreement at all.  I would estimate that roughly less than 1/2-percent actually succeed in getting a loan mod at all.  Most of the major banks, who are monitoring and servicing their alleged secondary market REMICs, who have no skin in the game, would rather have your house than put up with giving you a loan mod.

Contrary to what the banks and the media would have you believe, only about 1% of the 95% of homeowners end up actually “homeless”.  Living in your vehicle also constitutes as being “homeless”, about as much as living in a tent city, illegally living in a storage unit or under a bridge or on a sidewalk.  These 1% are seen on street corners panhandling for money.  Surprisingly, there are also racketeers that panhandle to make their mortgage payments (or go party on their gains, which in my book is totally dishonest).  It’s hard to tell who’s who because they all dress the part and carry cardboard signs.

The other 94% are either living with family members or have become substandard renters while they attempt to regroup.  If bankruptcy was utilized to “buy time”, a negative credit score of about 450 points will tank the debtor’s ability to recover for at least 3 years.  My problem with helping out many of these homeowners in “short sale” position is that I am suspicious of the bank’s real interest in the property.  If I look in the county land records, what am I going to find?   No matter.   Short sales are preludes to foreclosures.   If I see a spate of short sales in any given market, foreclosures are about 90 days behind them.  Remember, the bank would rather have your house.  They have no skin in the game and the longer they stay “in the game”, the more potential there is to discover their misdeeds.  Their mission is to cash out and this is what has made them rich.

I have been getting numerous texts and emails from folks who have told me what they have done to survive a foreclosure.  Unlike me, who had a rental property I could move into when I did a strategic default on my primary residence in 2003 (and later sold it for a handsome profit, which turned into a scheme that made me mortgage free), most homeowners have no “end game”.   They made no plans. Most made no plans because they live from paycheck to paycheck.   I heard one investor say, “Working hard builds character.”  Well, that may be true but if there’s more month at the end of the money, character has no place in contingency planning.  People will do amazing things.

I beg to hear of your story on this post, as it will give inspiration to others who are faced with similar plights.  Please comment. 

I have also heard that people have utilized an outbuilding or barn, moved it onto a piece of vacant land (either one they owned or owner financed) and built a house out of it.  It’s primitive, but at least it’s a roof over your head.  So are mobile homes, if you can find them cheap enough.   I lived in one for 4 years and fixed it up so it didn’t even look like a mobile home inside.  I made a handsome profit selling it when I made my next move.  I am one of those that is not complacent.  No matter what happens, I am resolved and determined to bounce back.  I paid off the mobile home in one year and invested about $4500 fixing it up over time.  The owner of the land I bought was happy when I sold it because he got paid in full when he was facing a family medical crisis and needed the funds badly; so it was a “helping hand” to him.  At least I had clear title.

This is a problem for many homeowners because fighting a foreclosure means proving the title is jacked up.  This is no fun when you don’t know what you’re looking for.  This is why many homeowners don’t do what you’re doing and subscribe to this blog and do research into chain of title.  If everyone in America did the kind of research you and I do, we wouldn’t be in this mess in the first place.  This country’s economy would have bounced back on its own and we wouldn’t be depending on politicians to fix it for us.

We are in an upturn real estate market (in most of America) and this begs for opportunity.  I always like real estate investing because it means creating wealth through equity positioning.  If you are NOT in a position to give up, it would be better to rebound into another investment property as soon as possible, even if it’s owner financed.  This is why (in the book Clouded Titles) I talk about having garage sales and liquidating stuff on Craigslist and places like that, because “lightening the load” affords opportunity when downsizing.  This is part of the end game plan for most folks.  You may have some other ideas, which I welcome here, because I want to know what you did to survive a foreclosure.  So do my other readers.  Despite the setbacks you faced, try to have a happy holiday season.

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Filed under Financial Education, Op-Ed Piece

NINTH CIRCUIT APPEALS COURT CANCELS MERSCORP V. ROBINSON ORAL ARGUMENTS! UPDATE!

BREAKING NEWS — The U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals has just sent notice to all of the attorneys of its decision to cancel the hearings on December 8, 2016 in the matter of MERSCORP Holdings, Inc. et al v. Dan and Darla Robinson.  Here is the notice that attorney Al West just received from the Court:

***NOTE TO PUBLIC ACCESS USERS***

Judicial Conference of the United States policy permits attorneys of record and parties in a case (including pro se litigants) to receive one free electronic copy of all documents filed electronically, if receipt is required by law or directed by the filer. PACER access fees apply to all other users. To avoid later charges, download a copy of each document during this first viewing.

United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth CircuitNotice of Docket Activity

The following transaction was entered on 11/21/2016 at 1:05:28 PM PST and filed on 11/21/2016

Case Name: MERS, et al v. Daniel Robinson, et al
Case Number:   15-55347
Document(s): Document(s)

 

Docket Text:
Filed clerk order (Deputy Clerk: WL): The Court is of the opinion that the facts and legal arguments are adequately presented in the briefs and record and the decisional process would not be significantly aided by oral argument. Therefore, this matter is ordered submitted without oral argument on December 8, 2016, at Pasadena, California. Fed. R. App. P. 34(a)(2)(C). [10204835] (WL)

Notice will be electronically mailed to:

Mr. John Owen Campbell, Attorney
Honorable Philip S. Gutierrez, District Judge
Mr. John Owen Murrin, III
JoAnn T. Sandifer
Ms. Mary Kate Sullivan
USDC, Los Angeles
Al West

 

OP-ED — Now for the speculation as to why the 9th Circuit cancelled the hearings.  Here is some of the scuttlebutt floating around:

  1. “Someone got to the Chief Judge.”
  2. The Court was worried that the room would be packed full of cheering homeowners in favor of the Robinson’s and that this powder keg would bring crowd control issues the Court didn’t want to have to deal with.
  3. The political tide is shifting in favor of the banks with the election of the Donald.
  4. Ipsa Res Loquiteur.
  5. Certainly NOT because I was going to be there.
  6. MERS and MERSCORP own the Courts too!  (example: See Minnesota, “MERS Statute”)
  7. No matter what the 9th Circuit rules, they already know this case is going up to the United States Supreme Court.
  8. Rioting in the streets; protests in front of the 9th Circuit.
  9. Appellate Judges don’t want to hear the truth either.
  10. MERS attorneys were afraid that Al West was going to blow them out of the water … someone made a phone call.

Whatever the case, you can bet that both sides are going to wait the 4-6 months for the ruling.  Prep will start now in anticipation for taking whatever ruling the 9th Circuit issues up to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Calling all Superlawyers! 

Now’s your chance to shine!   Please email me at cloudedtitles@gmail.com if you’re interested in putting forth an amicus brief that further eviscerates the MERS business model!   If you have any dirt on the former AG (Holder), now’s the time to spill the beans on his allegiance to MERSCORP (his client at Covington & Burling) and the banks!  There are a lot of pissed off homeowners that aren’t going away any time soon … this case is being watched by the judiciary all across America!

FIRST UPDATE:

Here are comments from Fred Isaacs, an attorney with Jurisconsult, LLC in Lake Oswego, Oregon on the 9th Circuit’s decision NOT to hold oral arguments in the Robinson case: 

Speaking historically, it’s usually been a bad sign for an appellant to have a case submitted on the briefs — but as we both know, appellants always have an uphill battle in the appellate courts.  For the enumerated reasons set out below, this old historical rule may no longer mean much, if anything.  Moreover, it may be worth reminding the Robinsons what has been said about their appeal from the get-go.  You and I have consistently made clear to them that they have a viable appeal, but that simply means it has a fair chance of success; i.e., it’s not meritless, much less frivolous, but it does not mean it’s a slam-dunk win.  As you and I both know, only in 10-weights do the appellants have an edge over appellees; in all other appeals the appellees have the edge, and at best the Robinsons’ appeal is a 5-weight.  We have also been honest about telling them their chances of winning — at best one-in-three.  It might be worth reminding them that the odds were always against them, and nothing has changed on that front, oral argument or not.

Nevertheless, there are a few signs that might point to a little cautious optimism.

First, the appellate courts are hearing oral arguments less often than they did even five years ago.  This is largely a reflection of the fact that the number of appeals filed annually has more than tripled since the number of judges sitting on the Ninth Circuit was last increased — during the Carter administration.  In other words, the same number of judges are processing three times as many appeals: so, fewer cases get oral argument, and those that are argued get less time.  I myself am repeatedly seeing most 3-weights, and many 5-weights, being submitted on the briefs, something that just wasn’t done when I was with the Court.

Second, because more and more MERS cases are wending their ways through the federal courts, it is possible — indeed, likely — that the judges are aware of the factual and legal problems posed by these cases and may be looking to stem the tide by making a few definitive (?) rulings.  Oral argument isn’t necessary to do that.

Third, these MERS cases — despite their sometimes very ugly facts — really do present the courts with nearly pure questions of law.  Such appeals don’t need oral argument unless the Court is being asked to take a major step, e.g., overturn a long-standing law or declare something unconstitutional.  That isn’t our situation.

Fourth, most judges will admit — in private, anyway — that oral argument rarely changes their minds.

So, while I’m definitely not happy that this case is being submitted on the briefs, and I don’t view it as a good sign for us as the appellants, I’m not as pessimistic about our chances as I’d have been a few years ago.

Now that I read this back to myself, it may sound slightly dark, but I’d prefer to think it “realistic.”  I’d still put the odds at somewhere between 2:1 and 3:1 in favor of the appellees, but the fact that the case isn’t being argued doesn’t tip the scales any farther in their favor.

SECOND UPDATE! 

I made the previous comment that the judiciary across America was watching this case?  It appears (from one judge, who I am NOT going to name here because MERS reads these posts) who has researched PACER, the federal document custody and retrieval system), that something is “highly suspicious” with the cancellation of these hearings because upon this judge’s review of PACER, no actual “panel” was disclosed or appointed to hear the oral arguments that was cancelled in the first place!   My sources are checking further into this matter because for something like this to occur, because the Clerk of the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals released the Order canceling the hearings.  The chief judge is supposed to “sign off” on these documents, yet there is no signature of anyone in virtual authority doing this.  There is no indication as to who is actually reviewing these documents and there certainly isn’t any “person” of authority that has come forward to (other than the stated reason given) reveal why the cancellation came three weeks out and not just days prior to the oral arguments.

My sources also tell me that this case is a real “hot potato” for the 9th Circuit.  Most of the states (as I’ve previously cited) are split on what MERS can and cannot do.  This I know for sure (and it would surely follow that IF I were to author an amicus brief to the U. S. Supreme Court, based on my research) … there is NOTHING (as to specific language) in any deed of trust or mortgage that allows MERS to:

Assign a mortgage or deed of trust from Party A to Party B

The language contained ONLY in the first few pages of standard Uniform Fannie Mae/Freddie Mac Security Instruments relative to MERS says that MERS can only (a.) foreclose and sell the property (which it is NOT now doing because of all of the litigation it has had to defend for doing so); and (b.) release and cancel the Security Instrument.  There is NOTHING in the language of the contract that specifically says MERS can assign anything.

Get noticed of anything

If you look in Paragraph 15 of most standard Uniform Fannie Mae/Freddie Mac Security Instruments relative to MERS, the only parties entitled to “Notice” is the Lender and the Borrower.  This was succinctly pointed out in the Ditto decision in Tennessee, which you can refresh your memory on by reading here: MERS v DITTO_TN Supreme Court rules against MERS!

The other issue you have to also take into account is that MERS could have gone into state court to open up the Quiet Title Judgment that Al West secured for the Robinson’s, yet it did NOT exercise that right, probably because it didn’t have any idea that the case was ongoing.  The Shin case out of New York clearly noted that MERS is never aware of the transfer of any notes, so how then can it react and file lawsuits when it is not a party to the note?

Also to consider is the fact that if MERS wasn’t noticed doesn’t really mean anything.  If MERS WAS actually a named Defendant in the Quiet Title action, which in the Robinson case it was not, that would surely indicate that all claims MERS might have against the property are still on the table because MERS WASN’T NAMED!   MERS does not care about this fact however.  Nope.  Instead of leaving things status quo and biting the bullet on a case or two, MERS decided to jump into the fray and challenge a quiet title action by “forum shopping” (taking the case to federal court based on diversity jurisdiction and the value of the home, which exceeded $75,000, which must occur for diversity jurisdiction to be upheld) based on unproven harm to its business model.  At no time have I seen any proof of HOW MERS business model is harmed, with an exact dollar figure.

If MERS doesn’t suffer injury per Restatement of Mortgages, Third § 5.4, then what damage can be proven?

Enter: The MERS Rider

This 4-page Rider (attached here: mers_rider) is what is going to trap the homeowner in virtual hell.  I can tell you with a certainty that the title company will glaze over this document at the closing table (because the title companies ARE IN ON THE MERS SCHEME … and that’s exactly what it is, a scheme).  I have made numerous comments about this Rider in the past, which you can look up on this blog, so there is no need to waste your time restating everything again. Signing one of these will: (a.) bring title issues to your chain of title; and (b.) put you in proverbial legal hell if you ever stop making your mortgage payments!

If it was me, and I was handed this “Rider” at the closing table, I would get up and walk out of closing.  Knowing me, I’d get in trouble for giving the escrow agent a black eye for even pulling this document out of a file and insisting I sign it.  As pointed out in the Ditto decision, there is nothing stated past the first couple of pages of a mortgage or deed of trust that says (vaguely) what MERS is and what it’s entitled to do, because the framers of that document DON’T WANT YOU TO KNOW about MERS, so they bury it in the document.  That in of itself should sour your taste from borrowing money from mortgage companies … especially mortgage companies, who say they can get you low interest rates (I’ll bet you MERS is involved in it up to their necks).

My amicus brief

If I was able to get my amicus brief before the U. S. Supreme Court, you can bet I’d point out the research in both land record reports I issued.  While MERS put out a full-page ad in the Austin American-Statesman in the first instance, when the OSCEOLA COUNTY FORENSIC EXAMINATION came out, things got quiet in Reston, Virginia (probably because MERS’s attorneys told the MERSCORP hierarchy to “put a sock in it”, so as not to drag MERS into a perpetual criminal foray). There are a lot of things for the nation’s highest court to consider … and I can tell you, MERS and its parent will fight like hell to keep their “fatally flawed business model” alive at all costs.  How do I know this?

A federal court clerk (in charge of handling docketing for pro se litigants) in the 8th Circuit was fired for hiding and delaying the filing of one pro se litigant’s paperwork after two other employees witnessed a bribery of said clerk on the street corner by what the witnessing clerks described as a “Bank of America junior lawyer”.   This is corruption at its finest folks.  The federal judiciary should be concerned and should be more open about this type of behavior because America has already gotten a bad taste in its mouth of the “status quo” and voted for change. Our court system is the last resort of sanctity for fairness and equity and if that portion becomes corrupted, nothing else matters except Patrick Henry’s famous saying about “the blood of Patriots and Tyrants”.  As to this, I believe the judiciary is fully aware.

More to come as details unfold in this high-profile case!

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Filed under Breaking News, Op-Ed Piece

ROBINSON CASE GOES BEFORE THE U.S. 9TH CIRCUIT COURT OF APPEALS!

BREAKING NEWS

The case of MERSCORP Holdings, Inc. v. Daniel and Darla Robinson is headed for the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals.

Oral arguments are set to be heard on Thursday, December 8, 2016 in the Pasadena, California branch and California Attorney Al West, contributor to THE QUIET TITLE WAR MANUAL is now admitted to practice before the U.S. 9th Circuit and is slated to present the oral argument, at the insistence of the Robinsons.

If you are within traveling distance of the Pasadena, California branch, Al West has requested that you “pack the courtroom” for this event! 

There are several key issues here that are of national importance, which is what some judges are saying makes this case a national landmark case:

  1. where a federal judge has reversed a state judge’s ruling on a quiet title action, when the parties who claim an interest had a state court remedy to open up the judgment and challenge it and failed to exercise that right;
  2. where MERS and MERSCORP came in and accused the judge of being an “actor” in depriving MERS and MERSCORP of their civil rights; and
  3. where MERS and MERSCORP claimed they were entitled to notice, yet there is nothing in the Robinson’s Deed of Trust that entitles MERS to: (a.) notice rights; and (b.) assign any interest to anyone.

OP-ED —

It is unprecedented that a federal judge would reverse himself and undo a quiet title action.  Needless to say, word has it that when the state judge found out that he was accused of being an “actor” because he “colluded” and “conspired” with Al West and the Robinsons to obtain a quiet title judgment, he was pissed!  Frankly, I don’t blame him.  Every other state judge should be worried as well … if the 9th Circuit deems that the state judge conspired with Al West and the Robinsons and allows this to stand, then every state judge in America can be overturned for any ruling by a federal court, just because some “shell” entity (or anyone for that matter) can come in and tell the court that their civil rights were violated!

That would also mean that anyone doing a quiet title action might as well forget it, because MERS and MERSCORP do not care about your property rights or your contractual obligation to defend title.  They do not care if your chain of title has been trashed or compromised, impairing its vendibility.  We’ve heard state judges even say, “The only parties that get to quiet title are the banks!”  So you know that the entire system is slanted in their favor because: (a.) judges are drawing pensions which are vested in these RMBS REMICs; and (b.) judges in this country are “bought and paid for” and there are very few judges that are standing up for the homeowner.

The Robinson case could end up in front of the United States Supreme Court because the circuits are split on what MERS is and isn’t allowed to do within the parameters of a contract.  The states themselves are split on what MERS is and isn’t allowed to do within the parameters of a contract.  Here’s some examples:

On February 10, 2011, in the case In re Ferrell Agard, New York Bankruptcy Court Judge Robert Grossman eviscerated MERS’s agency relationship in a scathing 37-page opinion, in response to affidavits filed by then MERSCORP Secretary William Hultman, who intervened in the case, trying to make an argument bolstering MERS’s authority to be an nominee and thus, an assignor/assignee of mortgages.  Negating that argument, Grossman wrote:

“The Court recognizes that an adverse ruling regarding MERS’s authority to assign mortgages or act on behalf of its member/lenders could have a significant impact on MERS and upon the lenders which do business with MERS throughout the United States. However, the Court must resolve the instant matter by applying the laws as they exist today. It is up to the legislative branch, if it chooses, to amend the current statutes to confer upon MERS the requisite authority to assign mortgages under its current business practices. MERS and its partners made the decision to create and operate under a business model that was designed in large part to avoid the requirements of the traditional mortgage recording process. This Court does not accept the argument that because MERS may be involved with 50% of all residential mortgages in the country, that is reason enough for this Court to turn a blind eye to the fact that this process does not comply with the law.”

One month later (March 10, 2011), the Supreme Court of the State of New York, Appellate Division, Second Judicial Department (in the case of Bank of New York v. Silverberg, Case No. 2010-00131, Index No. 17464-08) issued an opinion and order that went solidly against MERS, to wit:

“This matter involves the enforcement of the rules that govern real property and whether such rules should be bent to accommodate a system that has taken on a life of its own. The issue presented on this appeal is whether a party has standing to commence a foreclosure action when that party’s assignor—in this case, Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems, Inc. (hereinafter MERS)—was listed in the underlying mortgage instruments as a nominee and mortgagee for the purpose of recording, but was never the actual holder or assignee of the underlying notes. We answer this question in the negative.”

That decision put New York State on the map against MERS in the appellate court level as well as in at least one bankruptcy court.  It should come as no surprise that Wells Fargo would later find itself in trouble with another bankruptcy court justice (Hon. Robert D. Drain) for using MERS in robosigning documents in favor of Wells Fargo, in an attempt to create fraudulent standing, based on a 150-page “foreclosure attorney manual”, instructing attorneys to simply contact Wells’s document manufacturing plant in Minnesota … and the folks there would just “make up an assignment out of thin air”, just for the purpose of proving up a proof of claim in bankruptcy court.  That case, In re Carrsow-Franklin, did not fair well for Wells Fargo when the debtor’s attorney, Linda Tirelli, exposed the attorney manual to the court.

 In Washington State, the decision in Kristin Bain v. Metropolitan Mortgage Group of August 16, 2012 rendered a ruling from that state’s Supreme Court (Case No. 86206-1, consolidated with 86207-9) that MERS was NOT a valid beneficiary under the Washington Deed of Trust Act.

Shortly after the Bain decision, the Oregon Supreme Court decided the same thing in Niday v. GMAC Mortgage LLC and Brandrup v. ReconTrust Company et al … and ruled MERS was not a valid beneficiary under the Oregon Deed of Trust Act. Shortly after the two Oregon decisions, the Montana Supreme Court decided that MERS did not have the authority (as a nominee) to appoint a Substitute Trustee in the Pilgeram v. Greenpoint Mortgage Funding, Inc. case.  These decisions were pointed out in the next paragraph.

On June 12, 2014, in a class-action lawsuit styled In re: Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems, Inc. (No. 11-17615), the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that a multi-district litigation panel set up in Arizona to look into the use of MERS in suspect fraudulent document manufacturing in a case in Arizona, reversing Count 1 of a federal appellate court ruling, wherein the Court opined (in 31 pages), the conflicts throughout the entire U.S. court system:

“There has been a wave of litigation in state and federal courts challenging various aspects of the MERS System. Almost all of the relevant law is state rather than federal. The results under state law have been inconsistent. See Weber, supra, at 246–56 (cataloguing the “schizophrenic position of state courts” on issues relating to the MERS System). Some state supreme courts have upheld the MERS System on issues ranging from foreclosure authority to recording requirements. See, e.g., Renshaw v. Mortg. Elec. Registration Sys., Inc., 315 P.3d 844, 846–47 (Idaho 2013) (holding that MERS may be a beneficiary as nominee for the lender, that assignments of the deed of trust between MERS members need not be recorded, that MERS was not liable to the borrower in negligence, and that the Idaho Consumer Protection Act did not provide a cause of action to the borrower); Jackson v. Mortg. Elec. Registration Sys., Inc., 770 N.W.2d 487, 501 (Minn. 2009) (holding that Minnesota law does not require recording of assignments of promissory notes among MERS members); Edelstein v. Bank of N.Y. Mellon, 286 P.3d 249, 252 (Nev. 2012) (stating that, although a split note and deed are not enforceable, under Nevada law “any split is cured when the promissory note and the deed of trust are reunified”); Bucci v. Lehman Bros. Bank, FSB, 68 A.3d 1069, 1081, 1083–89 (R.I. 2013) (holding that MERS had the contractual authority to invoke the power of sale and the right to foreclose and that Rhode Island law did not preclude foreclosure where the noteholder and the mortgagee were not the same entity).

Other state supreme courts have reached essentially opposite conclusions. See, e.g., Mortg. Elec. Registration Sys., Inc. v. Sw. Homes of Ark., 301 S.W.3d 1, 4 (Ark. 2009) (holding that, because MERS receives no payments on the debt, it is not the beneficiary, even though it is so designated in the deed of trust); Landmark Nat’l Bank v. Kesler, 216 P.3d 158, 166–67 (Kan. 2009) (“[I]n the event that a mortgage loan somehow separates interests of the note and the deed of trust, with the deed of trust lying with some independent entity, the mortgage may become unenforceable.”); Mortg. Elec. Registration Sys., Inc. v. Saunders, 2 A.3d 289, 297 (Me. 2010) (holding that MERS lacked standing to foreclose as the lender’s nominee); CPT Asset Backed Certificates, Series 2004-EC1 v. Cin Kham, 278 P.3d 586, 592–93 (Okla. 2012) (holding that the putative noteholder lacked standing to foreclose because MERS lacked authority to assign the note, though it arguably had authority to assign the mortgage); Brandrup v. ReconTrust Co., N.A., 303 P.3d 301, 304–05 (Or. 2013) (en banc) (holding that MERS was not the “beneficiary” of a deed of trust under the Oregon Trust Deed Act absent conveyance to MERS of the beneficial right to repayment, and that MERS could not hold or transfer legal title to the deed as the lender’s nominee); Bain v. Metro. Mortg. Grp., Inc., 285 P.3d 34 (Wash. 2012) (en banc) (holding that “MERS is an ineligible ‘“beneficiary” within the terms of the Washington Deed of Trust Act’ if it never held the promissory note or other debt instrument secured by the deed of trust,” and that “characterizing MERS as the beneficiary has the capacity to deceive” and may give rise to an action under the Consumer Protection Act); see also MERSCORP, Inc. v. Romaine, 861 N.E.2d 81, 88–89 (N.Y. 2006) (Kaye, C.J., dissenting in part) (identifying concerns with the MERS system and “at least a disparity between the relevant statute . . . and the burgeoning modern-day electronic mortgage industry”).

Federal courts, applying state law, have reached similarly disparate results. Compare, e.g., Montgomery Cnty., Pa. v. MERSCORP, Inc., 904 F. Supp. 2d 436, 441 (E.D. Pa. 2012) (applying Pennsylvania law and holding that the County’s allegations that MERS violated recording statutes by failing to record assignments stated a claim for relief), In re Thomas, 447 B.R. 402, 412 (Bankr. D. Mass. 2011) (applying Massachusetts law and holding that “[w]hile the assignment purports to assign both the mortgage and the note, MERS . . . was never the holder of the note, and therefore lacked the right to assign it. . . . MERS is never the owner of the obligation secured by the mortgage for which it is the mortgagee of record”), and In re Wilhelm, 407 B.R. 392, 404 (Bankr. D. Idaho 2009) (applying Idaho law and holding that MERS is not authorized “either expressly or by implication” to transfer notes as the “nominal beneficiary” of the lender), with Town of Johnston v. MERSCORP, Inc., 950 F. Supp. 2d 379, 384 (D.R.I. 2013) (holding Rhode Island law does not require recording of assignments among MERS members); DeFranceschi v. Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., 837 F. Supp. 2d 616, 623 (N.D. Tex. 2011) (granting summary judgment to defendants on plaintiffs’ claims that assignments by MERS were invalid and rendered foreclosure defective), and Moore v. McCalla Raymer, LLC, 916 F. Supp. 2d 1332, 1344–45 (N.D. Ga. 2013) (applying Georgia law and holding that, even assuming the plaintiff had standing to challenge the foreclosure on the theory that MERS assignments were invalid, that theory did not provide a basis for a wrongful foreclosure claim).”

The foregoing was used simply to illustrate the disparity in case law involving MERS, which is further reasoned as a necessity for the Robinson case to go to the nation’s highest court. The foregoing is also an understanding of what the 9th Circuit is thinking (and what MERS and its parent are up against) regarding said disparities.

A month after the 9th U.S. Circuit ruling, on July of 2014, in the Bank of America, N.A. v. Scott A. Greenleaf case, the Maine Supreme Court decided that MERS was a “mortgagee of record” and thus, was only allowed to assign that right, and no other, which brought foreclosures to a screeching halt (by roughly 65% according to attorney Tom Cox, who argued for Greenleaf).

In December of 2015, the Tennessee Supreme Court went further than any other Supreme Court in the U.S. in the case of Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems, Inc. v. Carlton J. Ditto, a pro se litigant who won rulings from the district, appellate and the Supremes … one of the only pro se litigants going up against MERS that I can find to accomplish such a feat.  In that ruling, which I have discussed extensively on this blog, MERS has no authority to do anything according to the Court’s opinion.

Many other states have sported decisions in favor of MERS because attorneys representing homeowners had no idea what they were getting themselves into, further allowing MERS to get its arguments admitted into the record without objection because these same attorneys had no concept of MERS’s business model.  Had these attorneys read Robert Janes’ “SHELL-GAME MERS, Contrived Confusion” BEFORE going into court, the outcomes may have been different!

My take on this … and I will be in court for the hearings on December 8th … is that no matter what this circuit decides, one or the other of these parties are going to take this up to “the big top”!  Once the U.S. Supreme Court decides whether our nation’s court systems should support a private entity, which I conclude were created to hide the misdeeds and snafus of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the sooner we can begin to identify and oust the legislators who put laws into place giving MERS credence anywhere in America.

The entire court system in America is at risk because of Robinson.  This author has is on good authority that the entire court system in the U.S. is watching this case with more than just simple interest.  The contract you sign at the closing table has everything to do with the arguments in this case, because a number of cases have been decided against MERS based on what the contract “didn’t say”.  I would opine MERS’s arguments are indeed “schizophrenic”, as the Tennessee Supremes ruled in Ditto.  We shall see.

 

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