Appeals Court of Massachusetts Finds in MERS’ Favor
MERS held Legal Interest so Assignment is Valid
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: Janis Smith
Reston, Virginia, April 17, 2015—MERSCORP Holdings, Inc. today announced the Appeals Court of Massachusetts found in favor of Mortgage Electronic Registration System, Inc. (MERS) and upheld the validity of its assignment of a mortgage.
In pdf Hoyt v. BAC Home Loan Servicing, L.P. (254 KB) , the borrowers challenged the lower court’s finding that MERS’ assignment was valid.
In its opinion, the Appeals Court confirmed that the legal interest in a mortgage may be separated from the beneficial interest in the debt it secures under Massachusetts law. It went on to find that MERS’ assignment was valid and conveyed the legal interest in the mortgage to the foreclosing entity because MERS held the record legal interest in the mortgage when it executed the assignment.
In addition, the Appeals Court found that the foreclosing entity, as assignee of the mortgage, had the right to foreclose because at the time that this foreclosure was initiated, there was no requirement that the foreclosing entity also hold the note. Moreover, the Appeals Court held that the lower court did not err in finding that the borrowers lacked standing to challenge the assignment.
“MERS has legal authority to execute mortgage assignments,” said MERSCORP Holdings Vice President for Corporate Communications, Janis Smith. “This authority is granted by plain language in the mortgage document signed at closing by the borrower.”
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.