MERS and MERSCorp: What is it? NY Court tries to sort it out and misses the point.

Neil Garfield
Jul 6

DreamBuilder-Invs.-v.-Merscorp-Holdings-Inc

Bill Paatalo brought this case to my attention. Reading the entire case, one gets important clues on how to sue MERS and how to demand discovery from MERS either as a party or nonparty.

As with other “securitization” documents, the analysis requires observation and assessment of what is NOT included on the contract between an originator of a homeowner transaction and MERS.

There are two major points that the court failed to understand or that it elected to avoid. MERS is basically nothing and its use is at best optional even if there are clauses of exclusivity within the MERS-Member contract. It is an agent for the originator and it is not the actual lien holder — although in today’s world of pretending that a virtual loan account can be enforced without the existence of a real loan account — many courts, lawyers, and even homeowners have accepted the myth that MERS is actually in the transaction cycle in which the homeowner’s promise to make payment was issued.

First let us define the word “transaction” such that it reflects the meaning and intent of all statutes and case decisions that use the term. A common mistake is to characterize documents as a transaction.
Simple example: if I execute a document conveying ownership of the Bronx Zoo to you, that is not a transaction unless several conditions are also present. First I must own the Bronx Zoo, which I don’t. Second, there is no transaction unless there was payment or the conveyance can be shown to be a gift — which is impossible because I don’t really own the Zoo and therefore have no legal right coney ownership nor create the appearance of ownership for the grantee.

So in plain words, a transaction is only acceptable terms if there was an actual business transaction in which the subject was paid for and purchased by the grantee. Any conveyance that is subsequently used to assert ownership by a succession of grantees is a false document unless the grantee paid value for the underlying obligation (not the note or mortgage).

You can look this up under the laws of any jurisdiction: an assignment of mortgage that is not accompanied by a concurrent legal conveyance of the underlying obligation is a LEGAL NULLITY. While there are procedural tricks and presumptions that can be used to raise the assumption or legal presumption that the obligation was transferred, all of that can be rebutted and derailed by either showing there was no payment of value for the underlying obligation or by showing that the opposition cannot or will not corroborate the presumption that the underlying obligation as conveyed.

MERS is not in any transaction cycle. It even says so on its website. But that if that was not enough, there is no instance in the history of any of the MERS entities where MERS funded or received any money to or from any homeowner. Since it never acted within the transaction cycle it has no legal right to do anything. That didn’t stop the adhesion contract between the originator and MERS in which the originator agreed to use MERS procedures to create the fiction of MERS signing officers even if those officers were not officers and knew nothing about the transaction or even that their signature was being used.

MERS is ONLY a name that is a placeholder in the paper chain — which based upon the above — does not reflect any sale of any claimed loan account receivable. The ownership claim is based solely on the fact that MERS is named in a conveyance even though it has no legal, inherent or equitable right to receive such title to the mortgage or deed of trust. The use of MERS was intended to be part of a scheme that depends entirely upon false claims, erroneous presumptions of law, and obfuscation of real-world events — instead of the legal requirements that such documents be a memorialization of real-world events.

MERS is “appointed” as an agent for the originator who is required to be a MERS member in order to participate in the scheme that is entirely based upon false claims of sale and securitization of loan products.
The originator does not pay for such transactions, so there are no legal rights of the originator to do anything in connection with the lien that was filed and recorded. Only the owner of the unpaid loan account receivable has the right to do anything — if such an account exists. As I have stated in recent articles there can be little doubt that such accounts do not exist anywhere on the books and records of any company that claims, on its own, to be a creditor.

Instead, for 25 years, Wall Street has escaped prosecution for faking it. In court, we are presented with no direct statement that the named claimant owns anything. It is the lawyer who implies that the named Plaintiff owns a loan product and that therefore there exists an unpaid loan account receivable.

And instead of the requirement developed over centuries, the lawyer does NOT produce any record or accounting based upon the books and records of the implied creditor. We are presented instead with false documentation and circular logic.

I have reviewed (many thousands) where the currently implied creditor is claimed by counsel to be entitled to legal presumptions as to the ownership and existence of the underlying obligations and hence the note and mortgage. Where such claims are based upon the sale of the loan account and “Securitization” has there never been any evidence of an actual transaction in the real world other than false — frequently abandoned — assignments of mortgage or beneficial interest.

Instead of a proffer of the records of the named implied creditor as claimant, we are instead presented with a “Payment History” issued in the name of a company that is claimed to be a “servicer” but who neither receives nor distributes any money received from the homeowner. Like MERS, the “servicer” is just a placeholder — a front for FINTECH companies doing business on behalf of undisclosed investment banks.

The principal-agent relationship that is created on paper between the originator and MERS is also subterfuge.
Since the originator did not fund any transaction with the homeowner and instead allowed an undisclosed third party to fund the transaction (in exchange for undisclosed exorbitant fees) the agency of MERS is at best limited even if it is described as exclusive or mandatory.

If the originator never owned any loan account receivable on its own books and records or ceased such ownership contemporaneously with the origination, then it could not convey the essential element of any document that purportedly transferred, released, or appointed anyone to administer, collect or enforce the promise to of the homeowner to make a scheduled payment as set forth on the note.

The missing essential element — as required by statutory and common law — is a conveyance of the underlying obligation claimed to be in existence. There is never any such conveyance in the context of false claims of securitization because the grantor never owns any underlying obligations and therefore cannot create rights of ownership in the grantee.

No payment of any kind was ever made because none was due — i.e., the process of creating a virtual loan account (liberally called “securitization”) requires the elimination or retirement of any real entry creating an unpaid loan account receivable on the books and records of any company.

What is MERS?

What is MERS? MERS is the Mortgage Electronic Registration System and it is an electronic database that holds digitized mortgage loan documents. You can search the MERS Database here: The MERS Servicer ID to identify the servicer associated with a mortgage loan registered on the MERS System.

 

Bankers Association testified to THE FLORIDA SUPREME COURT (in CASE NO.: 09-1460) that the physical loan documents were deliberately destroyed to avoid any confusion upon their conversion to electronic files. CASE 09-1460 COMMENTS OF THE FLORIDA BANKERS ASSOCIATION

 

In other words, the Banksters deliberately destroyed the wet ink signature loan documents for millions of mortgages in MERS the Mortgage Electronic Registration System.

A Few Facts about MERS

  1. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) is incorporated within the State of Delaware.
  2. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) was first incorporated in Delaware in 1999.
  3. The total number of shares of common stock authorized by MERS’ articles of incorporation is 1,000.
  4. The total number of shares of Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) common stock actually issued is 1,000.
  5. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) is a wholly owned subsidiary of MERSCorp, Inc.
  6. MERS’ principal place of business at 1595 Spring Hill Road, Suite 310, Vienna, Virginia 22182
  7. MERS’ national data center is located in Plano, Texas.
  8. MERS’ serves as a “nominee” of mortgages and deeds of trust recorded in all fifty states.
  9. Over 50 million loans have been registered on the Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) system. (UPDATE 9/11/2011: 70 MILLION American Mortgages)
  10. MERS’ federal tax identification number is “541927784”.
  11. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) does not take applications for, underwrite or negotiate mortgage loans.
  12. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) does not make or originate mortgage loans to consumers.
  13. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) does not extend any credit to consumers.
  14. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) has no role in the origination or original funding of the mortgages or deeds of trust for which it serves as “nominee”.
  15. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) does not service mortgage loans.
  16. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) does not sell mortgage loans.
  17. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) is not an investor who acquires mortgage loans on the secondary market.
  18. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) does not ever receive or process mortgage applications.
  19. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) simply holds mortgage liens in a nominee capacity and through its electronic registry, tracks changes in the ownership of mortgage loans and servicing rights related thereto.
  20. MERS© System is not a vehicle for creating or transferring beneficial interests in mortgage loans.
  21. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) is not named as a beneficiary of the alleged promissory note.
  22. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) is never the owner of the promissory note for which it seeks foreclosure.
  23. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) has no legal or beneficial interest in the promissory note underlying the security instrument for which it serves as “nominee”.
  24. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) has no legal or beneficial interest in the loan instrument underlying the security instrument for which it serves as “nominee”
  25. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) has no legal or beneficial interest in the mortgage indebtedness underlying the security instrument for which it serves as “nominee”.
  26. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) has no interest at all in the promissory note evidencing the mortgage indebtedness.
  27. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS)is not a party to the alleged mortgage indebtedness underlying the security instrument for which it serves as “nominee”.
  28. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) has no financial or other interest in whether or not a mortgage loan is repaid.
  29. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) is not the owner of the promissory note secured by the mortgage and has no rights to the payments made by the debtor on such promissory note.
  30. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) does not make or acquire promissory notes or debt instruments of any nature and therefore cannot be said to be acquiring mortgage loans.
  31. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) has no interest in the notes secured by mortgages or the mortgage servicing rights related thereto.
  32. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) does not acquire any interest (legal or beneficial) in the loan instrument (i.e., the promissory note or other debt instrument).
  33. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) has no rights whatsoever to any payments made on account of such mortgage loans, to any servicing rights related to such mortgage loans, or to any mortgaged properties securing such mortgage loans.
  34. The note owner appoints MERS to be its agent to only hold the mortgage lien interest, not to hold any interest in the note.
  35. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) does not hold any interest (legal or beneficial) in the promissory notes that are secured by such mortgages or in any servicing rights associated with the mortgage loan.
  36. The debtor on the note owes no obligation to MERS and does not pay Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS)on the note.
  37. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) is not entitled to receive any of the payments associated with the alleged mortgage indebtedness.
  38. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) is not entitled to receive any of the interest revenue associated with mortgage indebtedness for which it serves as “nominee”.
  39. Interest revenue related to the mortgage indebtedness for which Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) serves as “nominee” is never reflected within MERS’ bookkeeping or accounting records nor does such interest influence MERS’ earnings.
  40. Mortgage indebtedness for which Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) serves as the serves as “nominee” is not reflected as an asset on MERS’ financial statements.
  41. Failure to collect the outstanding balance of a mortgage loan will not result in an accounting loss by Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS).
  42. When a foreclosure is completed, MERS never actually retains or enjoys the use of any of the proceeds from a sale of the foreclosed property, but rather would remit such proceeds to the true party at interest.
  43. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) is not actually at risk as to the payment or nonpayment of the mortgages or deeds of trust for which it serves as “nominee”.
  44. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) has no pecuniary interest in the promissory notes or the mortgage indebtedness for which it serves as “nominee”.
  45. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) is not personally aggrieved by any alleged default of a promissory note for which it serves as “nominee”.
  46. There exists no real controversy between MERS and any mortgagor alleged to be in default.
  47. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) has never suffered any injury by arising out of any alleged default of a promissory note for which it serves as “nominee”.
  48. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) holds the mortgage lien as nominee for the owner of the promissory note.
  49. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS), in a nominee capacity for lenders, merely acquires legal title to the security instrument (i.e., the deed of trust or mortgage that secures the loan).
  50. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) simply holds legal title to mortgages and deeds of trust as a nominee for the owner of the promissory note.
  51. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) immobilizes the mortgage lien while transfers of the promissory notes and servicing rights continue to occur.
  52. The investor continues to own and hold the promissory note, but under the MERS® System, the servicing entity only holds contractual servicing rights and MERS holds legal title to the mortgage as nominee for the benefit of the investor (or owner and holder of the note) and not for itself.
  53. In effect, the mortgage lien becomes immobilized by Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) continuing to hold the mortgage lien when the note is sold from one investor to another via an endorsement and delivery of the note or the transfer of servicing rights from one Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) member to another Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) member via a purchase and sale agreement which is a non-recordable contract right.
  54. Legal title to the mortgage or deed of trust remains in MERS after such transfers and is tracked by Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) in its electronic registry.
  55. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) holds legal title to the mortgage for the benefit of the owner of the note.
  56. The beneficial interest in the mortgage (or person or entity whose interest is secured by the mortgage) runs to the owner and holder of the promissory note and/or servicing rights thereunder.
  57. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) has no interest at all in the promissory note evidencing the mortgage loan.
  58. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) does not acquire an interest in promissory notes or debt instruments of any nature.
  59. The beneficial interest in the mortgage (or the person or entity whose interest is secured by the mortgage) runs to the owner and holder of the promissory note (NOT MERS).

Fraud Stoppers MERS wins in four Pennsylvania county lawsuits

MERS as Holder

  1. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) is never the holder of a promissory note in the ordinary course of business.
  2. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) is not a custodian of promissory notes underlying the security instrument for which it serves as “nominee”.
  3. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) does not even maintain copies of promissory notes underlying the security instrument for which it serves as “nominee”.
  4. Sometimes when an investor or servicer desires to foreclose, the servicer obtains the promissory note from the custodian holding the note on behalf of the mortgage investor and places that note in the hands of a servicer employee who has been appointed as an officer (vice president and assistant secretary) of MERS by corporate resolution.
  5. When a promissory note is placed in the hands of a servicer employee who is also an Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) officer, Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) asserts that this transfer of custody into the hands of this nominal officer (without any transfer of ownership or beneficial interest) renders Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) the holder.
  6. No consideration or compensation is exchanged between the owner of the promissory note and Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) in consideration of this transfer in custody.
  7. Even when the promissory note is physically placed in the hands of the servicer’s employee who is a nominal Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) officer, Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) has no actual authority to control the foreclosure or the legal actions undertaken in its name.
  8. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) will never willingly reveal the identity of the owner of the promissory note unless ordered to do so by the court.
  9. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) will never willingly reveal the identity of the prior holders of the promissory note unless ordered to do so by the court.
  10. Since the transfer in custody of the promissory note is not for consideration, this transfer of custody is not reflected in any contemporaneous accounting records.
  11. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS)is never a holder in due course when the transfer of custody occurs after default.
  12. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) is never the holder when the promissory note is shown to be lost or stolen.

 

MERS’ Role in Mortgage Servicing

  1. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) does not service mortgage loans.
  2. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) is not the owner of the servicing rights relating to the mortgage loan and Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) does not service loans.
  3. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) does not collect mortgage payments.
  4. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) does not hold escrows for taxes and insurance.
  5. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) does not provide any servicing functions on mortgage loans, whatsoever.
  6. Those rights are typically held by the servicer of the loan, who may or may not also be the holder of the note.

 

MERS’ Rights To Control the Foreclosure

  1. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) must all times comply with the instructions of the holder of the mortgage loan promissory notes.
  2. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) only acts when directed to by its members and for the sole benefit of the owners and holders of the promissory notes secured by the mortgage instruments naming Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) as nominee owner.
  3. MERS’ members employ and pay the attorneys bringing foreclosure actions in MERS’ name.

 

MERS’ Access To or Control over Records or Documents

  1. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) has never maintained archival copies of any mortgage application for which it serves as “nominee”.
  2. In its regular course of business, Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) as a corporation does not maintain physical possession or custody of promissory notes, deeds of trust or other mortgage security instruments on behalf of its principals.
  3. MERS as a corporation has no archive or repository of the promissory notes secured by deeds of trust or other mortgage security instruments for which it serves as nominee.
  4. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) as a corporation is not a custodian of the promissory notes secured by deeds of trust or other mortgage security instruments for which it serves as nominee.
  5. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) as a corporation has no archive or repository of the deeds of trust or other mortgage security instruments for which it serves as nominee.
  6. In its regular course of business, Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) as a corporation does not routinely receive or archive copies of the promissory notes secured by the mortgage security instruments for which it serves as nominee.
  7. In its regular course of business, Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) as a corporation does not routinely receive or archive copies of the mortgage security instruments for which it serves as nominee.
  8. Copies of the instruments attached to MERS’ petitions or complaints so not come from MERS’ corporate files or archives.
  9. In its regular course of business, Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) as a corporation does not input the promissory note or mortgage security instrument ownership registration data for new mortgages for which it serves as nominee, but rather the registration information for such mortgages are entered by the “member” mortgage lenders, investors and/or servicers originating, purchasing, and/or selling such mortgages or mortgage servicing rights.
  10. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) does not maintain a central corporate archive of demands, notices, claims, appointments, releases, assignments, or other files, documents and/or communications relating to collections efforts undertaken by Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) officers appointed by corporate resolution and acting under its authority.

 

Management and Supervision

  1. In preparing affidavits and certifications, officers of Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS), including Vice Presidents and Assistant Secretaries, making representations under MERS’ authority and on MERS’ behalf, are not primarily relying upon books of account, documents, records or files within MERS’ corporate supervision, custody or control.
  2. Officers of Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) preparing affidavits and certifications, including Vice Presidents and Assistant Secretaries, and otherwise making representations under MERS’ authority and on MERS’ behalf, do not routinely furnish copies of these affidavits or certifications to MERS for corporate retention or archival.
  3. Officers of Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) preparing affidavits and certifications, including Vice Presidents and Assistant Secretaries, and otherwise making representations under MERS’ authority and on MERS’ behalf are not working under the supervision or direction of senior Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) officers or employees, but rather are supervised by personnel employed by mortgage investors or mortgage servicers.

This should be a pretty good start for those of you faced with a foreclosure in which Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) is falsely asserting that it is the owner of the promissory note.  Whether Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) is or was ever the holder is a FACT QUESTION which can be determined only by ascertaining the chain of custody of the promissory note.  When the promissory note is lost, missing or stolen, Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) is NOT the holder.

By William A. Roper, Jr. Excerpted from the MSFraud Forum thread “Facts about MERS / MERS Unmasked”

Is Your MERS Mortgage Status Designated Inactive?

Many homeowners find out their existing mortgage is listed as “inactive.” An inactive status can refer to the transfer of their mortgage to another loan servicer, or to a few other factors as noted below.

The difference between having an inactive or an active MERS (Mortgage Electronic Registration System) loan may determine if the property owner has any improved or worsened home equity, or a truly saleable asset.

 

What is MERS?

MERS functions as a centralized electronic registry of mortgages, and it was supposed to track the ownership of these mortgages, which are typically sold multiple times during the loan’s life. MERS potentially affects upwards of 70 million residential mortgage loans nationwide, and almost completely crashed the U.S. housing market by itself because of so many problems with the packages.

MERS was created by lenders and title insurance companies, so it would be easier to transfer the beneficial interests to other secondary market lenders. Yet, some mortgages ended up significantly discounted due to packaging problems, which made them inactive.

Where’s the “IOU” for the mortgage debt?

 

The MERS Scandal

Missing documents, notary fraud, and “robo-signing” led the way.

There was a lot of chaos involved with MERS mortgage packets, which contained no original promissory notes (the “IOU” for the mortgage debt) in these same MERS files.

Knowledgeable homeowners were able to completely stop their home foreclosures by pointing out that the foreclosing entity, such as the mortgage servicing company, didn’t have a legal right to foreclose on their homes, since they didn’t have all of their valid mortgage paperwork in their files.

These questionable ownership interests in the mortgages led to foreclosure moratoriums, court settlements, and inactive statuses.

There were a large number of allegations of notary fraud in which real or fake notaries such as “Linda Green” were allegedly part of the massive “Robo-Signing Scandal” nationwide.

It has been suggested that promissory notes, deeds of trust or mortgages, and other loan or title documents were forged, left blank, or illegally assigned to numerous mortgage investors. Since MERS was set up to become as paperless, speedy, and efficient as possible, there was not enough third party oversight to check whether these documents were valid.

 

Questionable Beneficial Interests

“No Note = No Debt” became the mantra for homeowners who were in the midst of their own foreclosures due to the weaker U.S. economy. Some savvy property owners were able to legally void their existing mortgage debt altogether by proving that the foreclosing mortgage company had no valid beneficial interests in the existing mortgage, and thus had to legal right to collect any payments.

Other homeowners were able to show that their MERS files had fraudulent notary signatures signed on behalf of both owners and lenders, which moved their file designations over to “inactive” as well.

Mortgage lenders that have collapsed or imploded since the official start of the Credit Crisis back in 2007, such as Countrywide, Indy Mac, Lehman Brothers, World Savings, Downey Savings, and Washington Mutual still figuratively exist by way of their asset or beneficial interest transfers to the “strawman” named MERS.

MERS may pay no taxes or employ anyone. Without the proper assignment of these MERS mortgages, these same imploded mortgage companies’ loans could have ceased to exist.

 

The Shadow Inventory & MERS

Instead of upwards of 60 million residential MERS mortgages becoming inactive or possibly even completely voided and worthless, many of the largest banks and mortgage service companies worked closely with the U.S. government to create the National Mortgage Settlement in early 2012. This insanely small $25 billion settlement is but a mere fraction of the potentially trillions of dollars of MERS mortgages nationwide.

The National Mortgage Settlement of 2012 and MERS Scandal were two of the primary reasons why home listings nationally dropped dramatically.

There were potentially millions of Shadow Inventory homes (mortgage payments are more than 90 days late), which may not have valid promissory notes, or other mortgage or title instruments or documents, in the files. The lack of listed home inventory led to a rapid increase of home prices between 2011 and 2013 (also partly due to the record low mortgage rates).

 

The “Inactive” MERS Designation

An inactive MERS designation may relate to the loan having been refinanced or paid off, discounted, or completely voided due to the invalid mortgage documents in the file. Or, the mortgage loan was assigned out of the MERS system to a completely new mortgage servicing company.

A property owner with a MERS mortgage can find the status of their loan by searching for their 18-digit Mortgage Identification Number (MERS MIN). Then, the same person may search online for the MERS Servicer ID system in order to check the status of their mortgage.

Before attempting to pay off a MERS loan, it’s very important to find out if all of the mortgage payments have been properly applied to the account. The vast majority of MERS mortgages have been assigned to multiple mortgage investors over the years, so it is very important to check your own payment history over the years in order to determine if all of your payments have been credited to every mortgage servicing lender’s accounts.

It’s imperative that the owner pays off the correct amounts, which may mean more money back to the owner and much less money for the current mortgage loan servicer. As such, a little research and loan analysis by a property owner on their personal payment histories can save them a lot of money and headaches.

Here is some additional information on MERS:

 

Take action right now and get the FACTS and HELP that you need to gain the legal remedy that the law entitles you to, and that you deserve!

MERS Is Dead

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MERS Is Dead: Can Be Sued For Fraud: WA Supreme Court

Countdown to banks forcing Congress to protect MERS in 3,2,1…

State Court Ruling Deals Body Blow to MERS

(Reuters) – The highest court in the state of Washington recently ruled that a company that has foreclosed on millions of mortgages nationwide can be sued for fraud, a decision that could cause a new round of trouble for the nation’s banks.

The ruling is one of the first to allow consumers to seek damages from Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems, a company set up by the nation’s major banks, if they can prove they were harmed.

Legal experts said last month’s decision from the Washington Supreme Court could become a precedent for courts in other states. The case also endorsed the view of other state courts that MERS does not have the legal authority to foreclose on a home.

“This is a body blow,” said consumer law attorney Ira Rheingold. “Ultimately the MERS business model cannot work and should not work and needs to be changed.”

Banks set up MERS in the 1990s to help speed the process of packaging loans into mortgage-backed bonds by easing the process of transferring mortgages from one party to another. But ever since the housing crash, MERS has been besieged by litigation from state attorneys general, local government officials and homeowners who have challenged the company’s authority to pursue foreclosure actions.

A spokeswoman for MERS said the company is confident its role in the financial system will withstand legal challenges.

The Washington Supreme Court held that MERS’ business practices had the “capacity to deceive” a substantial portion of the public because MERS claimed it was the beneficiary of the mortgage when it was not.

This finding means that in actions where a bank used MERS to foreclose, the consumer can sue it for fraud. If the foreclosure can be challenged, MERS’ involvement would make repossession more complicated.

On top of that, virtually any foreclosed homeowner in the state in the past 15 years who feels they have been harmed in some way could file a consumer fraud suit.

“This may be the beginning of a trend,” says Elizabeth Renuart, a professor at Albany Law School focusing on consumer credit law.

The company’s history dates back to the 1990s, when banks began aggressively bundling home loans into mortgage-backed securities. The banks formed MERS to speed up the handling of all the paperwork associated with recording the filing of a deed and the subsequent inclusion of a mortgage in an entity that issues a mortgage-backed security.

MERS allowed the banks to save time and money because it permitted lenders to bypass the process of filing paperwork with the local recorder of deeds every time a mortgage was sold.

Instead, banks put MERS’ name on the deed. And when they bought and sold mortgages, they just recorded the transfer of ownership of the note in the MERS system.

The MERS’ database was supposed to keep track of where those loans went. The company’s motto: “Process loans, not paperwork.”

But the foreclosure crisis revealed major flaws with the MERS database.

The plaintiffs in the Washington case, homeowners Kristin Bain and Kevin Selkowitz, argued that the problems with the MERS database made it difficult, if not impossible; to determine who really owned their loan. It’s an argument that has been raised in numerous other lawsuits challenging the ability of MERS to foreclose on a home.

“It’s going to be very easy for consumers to say they were harmed because it’s inherently misleading,” says Geoff Walsh, an attorney with the National Consumer Law Center. If consumers can’t identify who owns their loan, then they don’t know whom to negotiate with, and can’t even be certain of the legitimacy of the foreclosure.

In a statement, MERS spokeswoman Janis Smith noted that banks stopped using MERS’ name to foreclose last year. She added that the opinion will “create confusion” for homeowners in the state of Washington while the trial courts consider its effect on pending cases.

Meanwhile, MERS is attempting to remake itself. The company has a new chief executive and a new branding campaign. In Washington D.C. federal lawmakers have recognized the need to create a national mortgage-recording database that would track all U.S. mortgages. MERS is lobbying to build it.

The case is Bain (Kristin), et al. v. Mortg. Elec. Registration Sys., et al., Washington Supreme Court, No. 86206-1.

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The information about Foreclosure law and other legal information provided on this website does not, and is not intended to, constitute legal advice; instead, all information, content, and materials available on this site are for general informational purposes only.  Information on this website may not constitute the most up-to-date legal or other information.  This website contains links to other third-party websites.  Such links are only for the convenience of the reader, user or browser; FRAUD STOPPERS and its members do not recommend or endorse the contents of the third-party sites.

Readers of this website should contact their attorney to obtain advice with respect to any particular legal matter.  No reader, user, or browser of this site should act or refrain from acting on the basis of information on this site without first seeking legal advice from counsel in the relevant jurisdiction.  Only your individual attorney can provide assurances that the information contained herein – and your interpretation of it – is applicable or appropriate to your particular situation.  Use of, and access to, this website or any of the links or resources contained within the site do not create an attorney-client relationship between the reader, user, or browser and website authors, contributors, contributing law firms, or committee members and their respective employers. This site provides “information” about the law and is only designed to help users safely cope with their own legal needs. But legal information is not the same as legal advice — the application of law to an individual’s specific circumstances.

The views expressed at, or through, this site are those of the individual authors writing in their individual capacities only – not those of their respective employers, FRAUD STOPPERS, or committee/task force as a whole.  All liability with respect to actions taken or not taken based on the contents of this site are hereby expressly disclaimed.  The content on this posting is provided “as is;” no representations are made that the content is error-free.

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