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Alexander Cherian v. Countywide Home Loans

November 20, 2012

ALEXANDER CHERIAN, PLAINTIFF,
v.
COUNTYWIDE HOME LOANS, INC., NATIONAL TITLE INSURANCE A NEW YORK CORPORATION, DBA AMERICA'S WHOLESALE LENDER;
MORTGAGE ELECTRONIC REGISTRATION SYSTEMS, INC., A DELAWARE CORPORATION; FIDELITY NATIONAL TITLE INSURANCE CO., A CALIFORNIA CORPORATION; CITIMORTGAGE, INC., A NEW YORK CORPORATION; BAC HOME LOAN SERVICING LP, A TEXAS LIMITED PARTNERSHIP; US BANK NATIONAL ASSOCIATION, AS TRUSTEE FOR THE HOLDERS OF THE CMLTI 2006-AR5 TRUST FUND, MORTGAGE PASS-THROUGH CERTIFICATES SERIES 2006-AR5; RECONTRUST COMPANY, N.A.; NORTHWEST TITLE, LLC DBA NTL LLC A WASHINGTON CORPORATION; FIRST AMERICAN TITLE COMPANY, INC., AN IDAHO CORPORATION, BANK OF AMERICA N.A., A DELAWARE CORPORATION, AND JOHN DOES 1 THROUGH 10, DEFENDANTS.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: B. Lynn Winmill Chief Judge United States District Court

MEMORANDUM DECISION AND ORDER

INTRODUCTION

The Court has before it Defendant CitiMortgage, Inc.'s Motion to Dismiss (Dkt. 31). For the reasons set forth below, the Court will grant the motion to dismiss.

BACKGROUND*fn1

In April 2006, Plaintiff Alexander Cherian obtained a refinance mortgage loan in the amount of $895,000 through Defendant Countrywide Home Loans, Inc. The loan was secured by a Deed of Trust to the residential real property in favor of Countrywide, dba America's Wholesale Lender. The Deed of Trust designated Fidelity National Title Insurance Company as trustee, and Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems, Inc. (MERS) as the beneficiary.

On August 10, 2011, MERS assigned its interest in the Deed of Trust to Defendant U.S. Bank National Association. This assignment was recorded in Blaine County on August 15, 2011, as Instrument No. 589766. Months later, on December 6, 2011, ReconTrust Company, N.A. was appointed successor trustee. The Appointment was recorded on December 19, 2011.

In January 2010, Cherian stopped making his monthly loan payment, defaulting on his loan obligation. Almost two years later, after the loan was transferred to U.S. Bank and ReconTrust was appointed successor trustee, a Notice of Default was recorded on December 16, 2011. At the time the Notice of Default was recorded, Cherian was $127,000 behind on his loan payments. The original Notice of Trustee's Sale, dated December 22, 2011, showed the foreclosure sale was scheduled to take place on April 30, 2012.

Now Cherian claims that he does not know who owns the underlying Note and Deed of Trust and contends that none of the Defendants has any "right, estate, title, lien, or interest . . . in or to the Property" Compl. ¶14, Dkt. 6-1. Cherian alleges that the following issues somehow deprived Defendants, including CitiMortgage, of any valid interest in the property: (1) defects in the execution and transfers of the Note and Deed of Trust and in the recording of title and assignment documents; (2) the splitting of the Note and Deed of Trust; (3) securitization of the Note; (4) satisfaction of the Note by third parties; and (5) violations of the Idaho Code, the ICPA, the FDCPA, and TILA.

On January 23, 2012, Cherian filed his original complaint in state court. Cherian filed an amended complaint on February 2, 2012. The Amended Complaint was removed to this Court on March 6, 2012. A little over a month later, on April 16, Plaintiff filed a motion to file a second amended complaint. The Court denied this motion. In the same order denying the motion to amend, the Court granted a motion to dismiss all of the defendants but CitiMortgage, which did not join the motion to dismiss. Now CitiMortgage moves to dismiss the Amended Complaint.

LEGAL STANDARD

Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 8(a)(2) requires only "a short and plain statement of the claim showing that the pleader is entitled to relief," in order to "give the defendant fair notice of what the . . . claim is and the grounds upon which it rests." Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007). While a complaint attacked by a Rule 12(b)(6) motion to dismiss "does not need detailed factual allegations," it must set forth "more than labels and conclusions, and a formulaic recitation of the elements of a cause of action will not do." Id. at 555.

In a more recent case, the Supreme Court identified two "working principles" that underlie Twombly. See Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 129 S.Ct. 1937, 1949 (2009). First, the tenet that a court must accept as true all of the allegations contained in a complaint is inapplicable to legal conclusions. Id. "Rule 8 marks a notable and generous departure from the hyper-technical, code-pleading regime of a prior era, but it does not unlock the doors of discovery for a plaintiff armed with nothing more than conclusions." Id. at 1950. Second, only a complaint that states a plausible claim for relief survives a motion to dismiss. Id. "Determining whether a complaint states a plausible claim for relief will . . . be a context-specific task that requires the reviewing court to draw on its judicial experience and common sense." Id.

Under Rule 12(b)(6), the Court may consider matters that are subject to judicial notice. Mullis v. United States Bank, 828 F.2d 1385, 1388 (9th Cir. 1987). The Court may take judicial notice "of the records of state agencies and other undisputed matters of public record" without transforming the motions to dismiss into motions for summary judgment. Disabled Rights Action Comm. v. Las Vegas Events, Inc., 375 F.3d 861, 866 (9th Cir. 2004). The Court may also examine documents referred to in the complaint, although not attached thereto, ...


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