Articles

Rhode Island Superior Court Affirms MERS’ Authority

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

CONTACT: Jason Lobo
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Reston, Virginia, June 26, 2012—MERSCORP Holdings, Inc. today announced a decision from the Rhode Island Superior Court upholding the right of Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems, Inc. (MERS) to assign interests in mortgages. The Court also ruled that plaintiffs have no standing to challenge mortgage assignments where they are also not parties to the assignment.

In his June 19th decision in Rosano v. MERS, Justice Allen P. Rubine dismissed the plaintiff’s complaint of wrongful foreclosure.

Justice Rubine noted “the clear and unambiguous language of the Mortgage instrument” that describes MERS’ role and authority as mortgagee when dismissing the plaintiff’s allegation that MERS’ mortgage assignment was invalid. “Plaintiff’s averments further overlook the previous holdings of this Court that MERS may assign the Mortgage interest,” he wrote. “Accordingly, MERS has the authority under Rhode Island law to assign the Mortgage interest as mortgagee.”

In response to the plaintiff’s assertion that the MERS signatory lacked the requisite authority to execute the assignment on behalf of MERS, Justice Rubine noted that “It is well established that [Plaintiff] does not have standing to challenge the validity of the assignment or transfer of the Mortgage interest, to which []he [is] a stranger.”

“MERS authority as mortgagee is plainly written in the standard document that borrowers sign at closing,” said Janis L. Smith, MERSCORP Holdings Vice President of Corporate Communications. “Justice Rubine here in Rosano and Justice Silverstein in Rutter have made it clear that these challenges are baseless.”

For descriptions of cases and other materials pertaining to MERS’ business model and role in U.S. housing, please visit www.mersinc.org.

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MERSCORP Holdings, Inc. is a privately held corporation that owns and manages the MERS® System and all other MERS® products. It is a member-based organization made up of thousands of lenders, servicers, sub-servicers, investors and government institutions. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems, Inc. (MERS) serves as the mortgagee in the land records for loans registered on the MERS® System, and is a nominee (or agent) for the owner of the promissory note. The MERS® System is a national electronic database that tracks changes in mortgage servicing and beneficial ownership interests in residential mortgage loans on behalf of its members.