WILMINGTON SAVINGS FUND SOCIETY, FSB, d/b/a CHRISTIANA TRUST, not individually but as TRUSTEE FOR PREMIUM MORTGAGE ACQUISITION TRUST, Plaintiff
DOLLAR MORTGAGE CORPORATION, a CALIFORNIA CORPORATION, Defendant and MORTGAGE ELECTRONIC REGISTRATION SYSTEMS, INC., as Nominee for DOLLAR MORTGAGE CORPORATION, a CALIFORNIA CORPORATION, MARY MARSHALL and RICHARD MARSHALL, a/k/a RICHARD K. MARSHALL, CITIBANK FEDERAL SAVINGS BANK, ST. MARY'S REGIONAL MEDICAL CENTER, and ONEMAIN FINANCIAL, INC., f/k/a CITIFINANCIAL, INC, Parties-in-Interest
ORDER ON PLAINTIFF'S MOTION FOR QUIET TITLE,
DECLARATORY DEFAULT JUDGMENT, AND JUDGMENT ON THE
the court is plaintiff Wilmington Savings Fund Society, FSB,
d/b/a Christiana Trust, not individually but as Trustee for
Premium Mortgage Acquisition Trust's motion for quiet
title, declaratory default judgment, and judgment on the
pleadings. For the following reasons, plaintiff's motion
brings this declaratory judgment action against defendant
Dollar Mortgage Corporation, a California Corporation, and
parties-in-interest Mortgage Electronic Registrations, Inc.,
Mary Marshall and Richard Marshall, Citibank Federal Savings
Bank, St. Mary's Regional Credit Union, and OneMain
Financial, Inc. All parties were served with the complaint.
No party responded to the complaint.
motion to remove Mortgage Electronic Registrations, Inc. and
Citibank Federal Savings Bank as parties was denied.
Notwithstanding, Mortgage Electronic Registrations, Inc.,
Citibank Federal Savings Bank, and OneMain Financial, Inc.
were not served with plaintiff's motion for quiet title,
declaratory default judgment, and judgment on the pleadings.
(November 9, 2017 Certificate of Service.)
April 1, 2004, Mary Marshall and Richard Marshall executed
and delivered to defendant a promissory note in the amount of
$111, 250.00. (Pl.'s Ex. B.) To secure the note, the
Marshalls executed a mortgage deed on property located at 526
Plains Road, Harrison, Maine. (Pl.'s Ex. C.) The mortgage
was in favor of defendant. (Id.) Mortgage Electronic
Registrations, Inc. purported to assign the mortgage to
CitiMortgage, Inc. on December 10, 2012. (Pl.'s Ex. D.)
CitiMortgage, Inc. purported to assign the mortgage to
Premium Mortgage Credit Partners I Loan Acquisition, LP on
May 31, 2016. (Pl.'s Ex. E.) Premium Mortgage Credit
Partners I Loan Acquisition, LP purported to assign the
mortgage to plaintiff on July 20, 2016. (Pl.'s Ex. F.)
filed this declaratory judgment action on September 19, 2016.
Plaintiff requests that the court order a confirmatory
transfer of the mortgage to plaintiff and find specifically
that plaintiff is the owner of the property because it owns
both the note and the mortgage. (Compl. 5-6; Pl.'s Mot.
for Quiet Title, Declaratory Default Judgment, and Judgment
on the Pleadings 2-3.) Plaintiff filed its motion for a
default judgment and judgment on the pleadings on November
13, 2017. Neither defendant nor any party-in-interest
responded to plaintiff's motion, although, as noted,
three parties-in-interest were not served with the motion.
Declaratory Judgments Act empowers the court to "declare
rights, status and other legal relations" when doing so
will "terminate the controversy or remove an
uncertainty." 14 M.R.S. §§ 5953, 5957 (2015).
First, it is unclear whether there is a controversy
"between the litigants." Berry v. Daigle.
322 A.2d 320, 325 (Me. 1974).
"[w]hen declaratory relief is sought, all persons shall
be made parties who have or claim any interest which would be
affected by the declaration and no declaration shall
prejudice the rights of persons not parties to the
proceeding." 14 M.R.S. § 5963 (2015). CitiMortage,
Inc. and Premium Mortgage Credit Partners I Loan Acquisition,
LP are not parties to this action. See id, Bank of
Am., NA. v. Metro Mortg. Co.. No. RE-14-355, 2015 Me.
Super. LEXIS 14, at *3 (Jan. 29, 2015) (denying
plaintiff's request for default judgment in declaratory
judgment action in part because plaintiff had failed to join
necessary parties); Horton & McGehee, Maine Civil
Remedies § 3-3(d)(2) at 50 (4th ed. 2004) ("A
declaration of rights may properly be refused when persons
whose interests would be affected are not parties.").
a declaratory judgment as to whether plaintiff owns the
mortgage would not necessarily remove any uncertainty as to
ownership of the mortgage. See 14 M.R.S. § 5958
(2015); Bourgeois v. Sprague. 358 A.2d 521, 522 (Me.
1976) (M.R. Civ. P. 19 applies to declaratory judgment
actions); 2 Harvey, Maine Civil Practice § 19:1
at 558 (3d ed. 2011) (M.R. Civ. P. 19 protects parties by
ensuring issues will not be relitigated).
especially in matters involving mortgage foreclosure,
procedural rules must be followed. See JPMorgan Chase
Bank v. Harp. 2011 ME 5, ¶ 15, 10 A.3d 718. Rule
55(b)(2) authorizes the court to conduct a hearing if the
court deems it necessary and proper "to establish the
truth of any averment by evidence." M.R. Civ. P.
55(b)(2); (Pl.'s Compl. ¶¶ 11-13.)
quiet title actions are used to confirm legal title to real
estate. They are not used to adjudicate ownership interests
in mortgages. See United States Bank Trust v. Homeowners
Assistance Corp., No. ...