Law Suits & Courts

Two More Rulings Confirm MERS' Right to Foreclose

Posted on Thursday, March 17, 2011

Two more rulings have defended the right of Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) to foreclose on behalf of lenders.
A case in New Hampshire and another in California affirmed the right of the company to act as a nominee on behalf of its members and foreclose on properties.
In his decision in the New Hampshire case of Powers v. Aurora Loan Services, Judge John P. Arnold ruled in favor of Aurora and upheld MERS’ authority to transfer its interest in the mortgage.
“MERS’ status as nominee allows it to perform its core function of facilitating the tracking of mortgages.” wrote Judge Arnold. “Contrary to Plaintiff’s assertions…the use of MERS as nominee is in and of itself neither fraudulent nor wrong.”
In California, Judge Steven Denton ruled in favor of Countrywide in the case of Gomes v. Countrywide. The judge found that the language in the deed of trust gives MERS the authority to initiate non-judicial foreclosures, and that the borrower agrees, when signing the deed of trust, that MERS has the right to foreclose.
“The California decision validates the MERS process and procedures that we’ve used in non-judicial states for many years,” said Karmela Lejarde, spokesperson for MERS. “This decision, combined with a variety of other recent decisions in state and federal courts, confirms the legality of MERS role in the mortgage and helps to provide further clarity for all parties engaged in the foreclosure process.”
In recent weeks, courts in Massachusetts and Kansas have also upheld the standing of MERS in foreclosure cases, although a New York court ruled MERS cannot act on behalf of lenders.
By: Joy Leopold, DSNEWS

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