complaint, plaintiff seeks to compel assignment of a mortgage
from defendant to plaintiff. Trial was held on January 10,
2019. For the following reasons, the court enters judgment in
favor of the defendant.
1, 2005, Todd Boulanger executed and delivered to Mortgage
Lenders Network USA, Inc. a promissory note in the amount of
$184, 000.00 (Pl.'s Ex. 1.) There are several
endorsements with the last endorsement from Countrywide Home
Loans, Inc. in blank. (Pl.'s Ex. 1.) Plaintiff presented
the original note for inspection at trial.
1, 2005, in order to secure the note, Todd and Belinda
Boulanger executed a mortgage deed on property located at 10
Stagecoach Lane, Windham, Maine 04062. (Pl.'s Ex. 3.) The
mortgage was recorded in the Cumberland County Register of
Deeds on June 2, 2005. (Pl.'s Ex. 3.) The mortgage was in
favor of Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems, Inc.
(MERS), as nominee for Mortgage Lenders Network USA, Inc.
(Pl.'s Ex. 3.)
August 26, 2011, MERS purported to assign the mortgage to
Bank of America, N.A. (Pl.'s Ex. 4.) On June 6, 2013,
Bank of America N.A. purported to assign the mortgage to
Green Tree Servicing LLC. (Pl.'s Ex. 5.) On September 18,
2015, Ditech Financial LLC, f/k/a/ Green Tree Servicing LLC,
purported to assign the mortgage to Federal National Mortgage
Association. (Pl.'s Exs. 6-7.) On September 19, 2016,
Federal National Mortgage Association purported to assign the
mortgage to plaintiff. (Pl.'s Ex. 8.)
filed this action on June 14, 2017. Defendant was served with
the complaint on June 27, 2017. Defendant did not respond.
Plaintiff requests that the court order that any interest in
the mortgage held by Mortgage Lenders Network USA, Inc. be
assigned to plaintiff. Plaintiff argues that it is the
equitable owner of the mortgage and, therefore, has the right
to compel an assignment of the mortgage. (Compl. ¶¶
9-10.) Plaintiff claims that any interest in the mortgage
held by defendant is held in trust for the benefit of
plaintiff, (Compl. ¶ 8.) Plaintiff submitted a trial
memorandum at trial.
cites a series of cases to support its argument that it is
the equitable owner of the mortgage. (Pl.'s Trial Memo): see
Averill v. Cone, 129 Me. 9.149 A. 297 (1930):
Dixon v. Dixon, 123 Me. 470, 124 A. 198 (1924);
Wyman v. Porter, 108 Me. 110, 79 A. 371 (1911);
Lord v. Crowell, 75 Me. 399 (1883): Jordon v.
Cheney, 74 Me. 359 (1883); Sawver v. Skowhegan,
57 Me. 500 (1868); Stewart v. Crosby, 50 Me. 130
(1863); Moore v. Ware, 38 Me. 496 (1854);
Johnson v. Candage, 31 Me. 28 (1849). More recently,
the Law Court has addressed the validity of mortgage
assignments from MERS. See Bank of Am., N.A. v.
Greenleaf, 2014 ME 89, 96 A.3d 700; see also Mort.
Elec. Registration Sys. v. Saunders, 2010 ME 79, 2 A.3d
Greenleaf, the Law Court held that MERS had the
right only to record the mortgage as the lender's nominee
and did not qualify as a mortgagee. Greenleaf, 2014
ME 89, ¶ 14, 96 A.3d 700. Any purported assignment of
MERS's rights is an assignment of the right to record
only and not an assignment of any other rights. Id.
at ¶¶ 15-16. In Greenleaf and in this
case, the record shows a series of assignments of the right
to record the mortgage and no more. Id. at ¶
17. As a result, the Greenleaf court concluded that
plaintiff lacked standing. Id.; see Homeward
Residential. Inc. v. Gregor, 2015 ME 108, ¶ 13, 122
A.3d 947 (discussing effect of financial services
industry's practice of securitization, "spawning a
byzantine mass of assignments, transfers, and
request to compel assignment is not granted. The assignment
is invalid because it follows a purported MERS assignment on
August 26, 2011. (See Pl.'s Ex, 4.)
Judgment is entered in favor of Defendant, Mortgage Lenders
Network USA, Inc., and against Plaintiff, MTGLQ Investors,