NATIONSTAR MORTGAGE, LLC, A DELAWARE LIMITED LIABILITY COMPANY, Appellant,
SFR INVESTMENTS POOL 1, LLC, A NEVADA LIMITED LIABILITY COMPANY, Respondent.
from a district court order granting a motion for summary
judgment in a quiet title action. Eighth Judicial District
Court, Clark County; Michael Villani, Judge.
Lemons, Grundy & Eisenberg and Robert L. Eisenberg, Reno;
Akerman LLP and Darren T. Brenner, Allison R. Schmidt, and
Ariel E. Stern, Las Vegas, for Appellant.
Gilbert Ebron and Jacqueline A. Gilbert, Howard C. Rim, and
Zachary D. Clayton, Las Vegas, for Respondent.
Fennemore Craig P.C. and Leslie L. Bryan-Hart and John D.
Tennert, Reno; Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer LLP and
Michael A.F. Johnson, Washington, D.C., for Amicus Curiae.
THE COURT EN BANC.
Mae and Freddie Mac are government-sponsored entities that
purchase and securitize residential mortgages. On September
6, 2008, the Director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency
(FHFA) placed Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac (hereinafter, the
regulated entities) into conservatorships. As conservator,
the FHFA is authorized to take over and preserve the assets
of the regulated entities. Under federal law, when the FHFA
is acting as conservator, its property is not subject to
"levy, attachment, garnishment, foreclosure, or
sale" without its consent, "nor shall any
involuntary lien attach" to the property. 12 U.S.C.
§ 4617(j)(3) (2012) (hereinafter, the Federal
appeal, we must determine whether the servicer of a loan
owned by a regulated entity has standing to assert the
Federal Foreclosure Bar in a quiet title action. We answer in
the affirmative. Because the district court did not determine
whether a regulated entity owned the loan in this matter, we
reverse the district court's order and remand the matter
for further proceedings consistent with this opinion.
AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY
Ignacio Gutierrez took out a $271, 638 loan with lender KB
Home Mortgage Company (KB) to purchase property located in
Henderson, Nevada. KB's loan was secured by a deed of
trust on the property, and the property was governed by a
homeowners' association's (HOA) covenants,
conditions, and restrictions. The deed of trust designated
Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems, Inc. (MERS) as a
beneficiary and as a nominee for KB and KB's successors
and assigns. Subsequently, MERS assigned the deed of trust to
nonparty Bank of America, N.A, who then assigned the deed of
trust to appellant Nationstar Mortgage, LLC (Nationstar).
Gutierrez failed to pay his HOA dues, and the HOA foreclosed
on the property. Respondent SFR Investments Pool 1, LLC (SFR)
purchased the property at the foreclosure sale for $11, 000.
Gutierrez filed suit against SFR, and SFR filed a third-party
complaint against Nationstar. However, the district court
ultimately dismissed Gutierrez's action after Gutierrez
stipulated that his interest in the property was extinguished
by the foreclosure sale, and that he would not contest the
validity of the foreclosure deed.
SFR and Nationstar filed motions for summary judgment on
SFR's third-party complaint. SFR argued, among other
things, that Nationstar's security interest was
extinguished by the foreclosure sale pursuant to this
court's decision in SFR Investments Pool 1, LLC v.
U.S. Bank, N.A., 130 Nev., Adv. Op. 75, 334 P.3d 408
(2014). Nationstar argued that its security interest survived
the sale pursuant to the Federal Foreclosure Bar.
Specifically, Nationstar claimed (1) Freddie Mac had
purchased the loan, (2) the FHFA had placed Freddie Mac under
conservatorship prior to the HOA's sale, (3) the
FHFA's property was not subject to foreclosure or sale
without its consent pursuant to the Federal Foreclosure Bar,
(4) the FHFA had issued a statement on its website declaring
that it had not consented to the extinguishment of any
Freddie Mac lien or other property interest in connection
with HOA foreclosures, and (5) the Federal Foreclosure Bar
therefore preempted NRS Chapter 116 to the extent state law
would have extinguished the FHFA's security interest.
district court acknowledged that there was "a dispute as
to whether Freddie Mac or [the] FHFA [had] an interest in the
Deed of Trust"; however, the district court declined to
address this factual dispute because it believed Nationstar
lacked standing to assert the Federal Foreclosure Bar on
behalf of Freddie Mac or the FHFA. Given that decision and
because neither Freddie Mac nor the FHFA were parties to the
action, the district court declined to address whether the
Federal Foreclosure Bar preempted NRS Chapter 116. Therefore,
the district court denied ...