District Court Recognized Validity of MERS’ Assignment and its Signing Officers
Reston, Virginia, October 3, 2016 – (RealEstateRama) — MERSCORP Holdings, Inc. today announced that the United States District Court for the District of Maryland granted Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems, Inc’s (“MERS”) motion to dismiss a complaint that the court noted was “difficult to decipher” and a “variation on a form complaint circulated on the internet.”
In pdf Danso v. Ocwen Loan Servicing, LLC, (282 KB) the Plaintiff challenged MERS’ assignment of his deed of trust, alleging that MERS was not authorized to transfer its rights under the deed of trust, and further, that the assignment was invalid because the individual who signed it on behalf of MERS fraudulently held himself out as an assistant secretary of MERS.
The United States District Judge Paula Xinis upheld MERS’ assignment commenting that “[s]ince MERS’s founding, ‘borrowers who have defaulted on their loan obligations have attempted, without success, to attack the validity of their mortgage obligations based on the involvement of MERS.’” See: pdf Dauenhauer (282 KB) . Specifically, Judge Xinis found that “[n]othing in the deed of trust prohibits MERS from assigning its rights. To the contrary, the Deed of Trust allows MERS to exercise any right held by the Lender under the security interest, including assigning the Deed of Trust …”
Judge Xinis also found nothing improper about MERS’ practice of appointing officers of its members to be officers of MERS with authority to execute specific documents, including assignments, on MERS’ behalf. She noted that “[c]ourts have held that this practice does not give rise to a legally cognizable claim.” See: pdf Culhane (115 KB) .
“We are pleased with the decision by the United States District Court in Maryland,” said MERSCORP Holdings Vice President for Corporate Communications, Janis Smith. “It reinforces that MERS has legal authority to act on behalf of the lender to execute an assignment and it shows the validity of MERS’ practice of appointing officers of its members to be officers of MERS.”
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. Users of the MERS® System include 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.
CONTACT: Janis Smith
Email: janiss (at) mersinc (dot) org