March 31, 2011

Several states are emerging as battleground jurisdictions as myriad new foreclosures are being filed and initiated, and in view of the lack of decisional law from these jurisdictions relating to MERS and securitization issues. We have received many new inquiries from Tennessee, Colorado, Oregon, Washington, and Hawaii where borrowers have been attempting, unsuccessfully, to defend the foreclosure actions by themselves, which we always advise is a disaster waiting to happen. This is especially true where there is a lack of applicable case law on the issues. In fact, a number of our recent new cases are “cleanup” cases where we have had to completely amend a pro se court filing in order to properly frame the issues and have the pleading comply with local procedural requirements. 

At his second Management Conference this week in New Jersey, Jeff Barnes, Esq. and his local counsel have advised the Chancery Judges of the stall, delay, and obstructive tactics of the New Jersey foreclosure mills, which repeatedly engage in “robo-denials” of Requests for Admissions (even as to matters which are apparent by nature of the Plaintiff being the alleged “trustee” of a securitized mortgage loan trust); meritless objections to the production of securitization and trust documents; and refusals to comply with court orders compelling such documents.

In a recent exchange of correspondence between his Firm and the Palm Beach County, Florida Circuit Court, the now infamous David J. Stern has advised the Court that his Firm is in the process of withdrawing from representing the foreclosing Plaintiff in over 100,000 foreclosure cases filed by his Firm. The Court denied Stern’s request for “more time” to have the withdrawals processed (as Stern complained of a severe reduction in staff, etc.), and advised Stern that if the Plaintiff fails to appear for a Case Management Conference that the action runs the risk of being dismissed.

Kudos and bravo to the Palm Beach Circuit Court for telling Stern and his former clients that the Court will not tolerate any further clogging of its dockets and delay caused by Stern’s filing of so many foreclosures, a great many of which, based on matters revealed by the Florida Attorney General’s investigation and trial court rulings as to the misconduct of Stern’s Firm, were probably filed with phony or fraudulent documents. Jeff Barnes, Esq. has filed Motions for Attorneys’ Fees in Stern cases which have been dismissed pursuant to recent Florida case law which permits such requests to be made after either a voluntary or involuntary dismissal of a foreclosure case.

Jeff Barnes, Esq.,