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Supreme Court of Rhode Island Upholds the MERS Business Model and MERS Authority to Assign Mortgages

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

CONTACT: Janis Smith
Phone: 703-738-0230
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Reston, Virginia, December 30, 2013—MERSCORP Holdings, Inc. today announced that the Supreme Court of Rhode Island held in pdf Mruk vs. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems, Inc., (MERS) et al. (56 KB)  that MERS’ business model with MERS holding legal title to the mortgage as the nominee for the owner of the note is consistent with Rhode Island law.

Relying on the Court’s decision earlier this year in pdf Bucci v. Lehman Brothers Bank, FSB (54 KB) , the Court in the Mruk case finds that MERS can transfer legal title by an assignment of the mortgage. The Court noted that the “[P]laintiff’s argument that MERS could not have transferred legal title to its assignee because it was not the holder of the note is unavailing.”

While the Court affirmed the dismissal of the plaintiff’s complaint finding that MERS has the authority to assign the mortgage lien and that the MERS assignment in this case was valid, the Court states that “homeowners in Rhode Island have standing to challenge the assignment of mortgages on their homes to the extent necessary to contest the foreclosing entity’s authority to foreclose.”

“The ruling by the Court affirms that MERS, as mortgagee, is the holder of legal title to the mortgage and does have the authority to make assignments.” said MERSCORP Holdings Vice President for Corporate Communications, Janis Smith. “This ruling may result in Rhode Island homeowners challenging MERS assignments in their foreclosures cases, but we expect the results to be similar to the outcome here that the assignments will be upheld as valid.”

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.

 

 

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