MERS Wins Federal Lawsuit in the Sixth Circuit
Reston, Virginia – April 18, 2013 – (RealEstateRama) — MERSCORP Holdings, Inc. today announced that a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit affirmed a lower court decision in favor of Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems, Inc.
(MERS) and three other defendants, dismissing the Plaintiff’s attempt to set aside a concluded foreclosure sale by alleging wrongful foreclosure and other claims.
In Conlin v. MERS et al., Circuit Judge Eric L. Clay, writing for the panel, agreed with the trial judge’s ruling, which held that “a non-party to an assignment may not challenge the assignment if the assignor [MERS] and assignee
[U.S. Bank] do not contest the document and act in accordance with it.”
The Plaintiff asserted a right to challenge the assignment, alleging he may be subject to double liability, but the appellate panel rejected that notion. Judge Clay, joined by Judges Boyce F. Martin, Jr. and Gilbert S. Merritt, ruled that the Plaintiff failed to demonstrate fraud or irregularity in connection with the foreclosure – a necessary condition under Michigan law to overcome a valid foreclosure sale after the six-month redemption period expired – and was incapable of showing how they were prejudiced by the Defendants’ activities.
“Even were the assignment from MERS to U.S. Bank invalid, thereby creating a defect in the foreclosure process under [Michigan law], Plaintiff has not shown that he was prejudiced,” Circuit Court Judge Clay wrote. “He has not shown [double liability]; he has not shown that he would have been in any better position to keep the property absent the defect; and he has not shown that he has been prejudiced in any other way.”
“The Sixth Circuit has made clear in these circumstances that, as non-parties to these contracts, borrowers lack standing to challenge these mortgage assignment transactions,” MERSCORP Holdings’ Director for Corporate Communications Jason Lobo said.
For descriptions of cases and other materials pertaining to MERS’ business model and role in U.S. housing, please visit www.mersinc.org.
MERSCORP Holdings, Inc. is a privately held corporation that owns and manages the MERS® System and all other MERS® products. It is a member-based organization made up of thousands of lenders, servicers, sub-servicers, investors and government institutions. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems, Inc. (MERS) serves as the mortgagee in the land records for loans registered on the MERS® System, and is a nominee (or agent) for the owner of the promissory note. The MERS® System is a national electronic database that tracks changes in mortgage servicing and beneficial ownership interests in residential mortgage loans on behalf of its members.