MERS Prevails in Two Federal Appeals Cases

Circuit Court Panel Concludes that “Recent Precedents Require a Quick Rejection”

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                                                                         

Jason Lobo
Phone: 703.652.1660
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Reston, Virginia, January 30, 2013— MERSCORP Holdings, Inc. today announced that a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit twice ruled this week in favor of Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems, Inc. (MERS) and other defendants, affirming lower court decisions that rejected Minnesota-based attorney William B. Butler’s arguments regarding the defendants’ right to foreclose. 

In Karnatcheva v. JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A. and Peterson v. CitiMortgage Inc., Butler represented groups of borrowers who, stating numerous claims, alleged their mortgages were invalid and the defendants lacked authority to foreclose. 

In Karnatcheva, Senior Circuit Court Judge Morris S. Arnold – joined by Judges Diana E. Murphy and Steven M. Colloton – affirmed a District Court ruling, which found the borrowers’ allegations “conclusory” and “unsupported by the facts.”  The panel rejected each claim, noting that the borrowers’ theories had previously been rejected by the Minnesota Supreme Court in Jackson v. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems, the Eighth Circuit and the U.S. District Court for the District of Minnesota.

In Peterson, the same three-judge appellate panel also found for MERS and the other defendants.  “This is the latest in a string of substantially similar cases brought recently in Minnesota,” Judge Arnold wrote.  Citing Butler v. Bank of America in which it characterized similar claims by Butler as “borderline frivolous,” the panel concluded that “recent precedents require a quick rejection of most of the claims advanced in this case.” 

“Mr. Butler argued myriad theories in virtually every Minnesota court, and he has consistently failed,” MERSCORP’s Director for Corporate Communications Jason Lobo said.  “He has led scores of struggling borrowers astray, been found to have abused the judicial process and has been sanctioned hundreds of thousands of dollars by the courts.”

For descriptions of cases and other materials pertaining to MERS’ business model and role in U.S. housing, please visit www.mersinc.org

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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.