Fifth Circuit Again Rules MERS is Beneficiary of Deed of Trust
Federal Court Affirms MERS’ Right to Assign its Interest
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: Janis Smith
Reston, Virginia, May 23, 2014—MERSCORP Holdings, Inc. today announced that a three-judge panel of the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit ruled in favor of BAC Home Loans Servicing, L.P. (BAC) and Fannie Mae, affirming a lower court’s decision dismissing claims of wrongful foreclosure.
In pdf Singha v. BAC Home Loans Servicing, L.P. (374 KB) , Chief Judge Carl E. Stewart and Judges Emilio M. Garza and Leslie H. Southwick upheld MERS’ role as the original beneficiary of a deed of trust and MERS’ authority to assign its interest in the deed of trust to BAC. BAC subsequently filed a foreclosure.
Citing pdf Martins v. BAC Home Loans Servicing, L.P. (102 KB) 722 F.3d 249 (5th Cir. 2013), the Court re-affirmed that “Texas recognizes assignment of mortgages through MERS and its equivalents as valid and enforceable,” and that MERS “may assign a deed of trust just as any other holder or beneficiary.” As the assignee of MERS, BAC had standing to foreclose.
The Court further held that the borrowers lacked standing to challenge the validity of the assignment of the deed of trust from MERS to BAC “because it does not clearly appear they were intended to be third-party beneficiaries of it.” See pdf Reinagel v. Deutsche Bank Nat’l Trust Co. , 735 F.3d 220 (5th Cir. 2013).
“The Court of Appeals’ ruling is consistent with other decisions validating MERS’ role as beneficiary under the deed of trust and its authority to execute assignments,” said MERSCORP Holdings Vice President for Corporate Communications, Janis Smith.
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. 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.