Judge George N. Bowden of the Superior Court in Washington State ruled against Bank of America (BoA) in a foreclosure battle that ended with the nonjudicial foreclosure sale under the Deed of Trust Act (DTA). The sale was deemed void, and the court is setting the foreclosure aside.
In this case defended by StafneTrumbull law firm in Washington State, the homeowner won his house from BoA which is another major victory against the unethical and illegal foreclosures industry that has left millions of Americans homeless.
Bowden acknowledged that this case was like most; “convoluted in the minefield” that is the Mortgage Electronic Registration System (MERS) system.
Bradburn, the homeowner, was told by BoA “that he should stop making his mortgage payments so that he could qualify for refinancing.”
BoA ensured that this homeowner was in default of the mortgage by promising to refinance; then initiated litigation against the homeowner to retrieve the property for failure by Bradburn to remain current on his payments.
Bowden pointed out that the DTA “seems to contemplate a borrower and a lender with an independent trustee having the power to foreclose on the deed of trust in the event of default by the borrower. The lender would normally hold the underlying note and be the beneficiary of it. Here matters have been complicated by the sale of the underlying note from HomeStar Lending to Countrywide, which was later acquired by [BoA].”
Interestingly, Bowden stated that “Fidelity Title was identified as the trustee but then MERS was characterized as the beneficiary ‘as the nominee’ of the lender and their assigns. At summary judgment it was claimed that the note was ‘owned’ by Fannie Mae although it was ‘held’ by [BoA], which was then described as the ‘servicer’ of the note at the behest of Fannie Mae.”
The evidence presented by the homeowner showed that “MERS was never the owner or holder of the note.”