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CitiMortgage, Inc. v. Mission Hills Homeowners Association

United States District Court, D. Nevada

July 5, 2017



         Presently before the court is plaintiff CitiMortgage, Inc.'s (“CMI”) motion for summary judgment. (ECF No. 37). No responses were filed to this motion.

         Also before the court is defendant SFR Investments Pool 1, LLC's (“SFR”) motion to certify a question of law. (ECF No. 50). CMI filed a response (ECF No. 55), and SFR filed a reply (ECF No. 56).

         Also before the court is defendant SFR's motion for partial summary judgment. (ECF No. 58). No responses were filed to this motion.

         I. Introduction

         This case involves the HOA foreclosure sale of the real property at 2305 W. Horizon Ridge Parkway #3311, Henderson, Nevada. (ECF No. 1).

         On January 13, 2012, Mission Hills Homeowners Association (the “HOA”) recorded a notice of delinquent assessment (lien), indicating an outstanding liability of $4, 620.00. (ECF No. 37-1).

         On April 4, 2012, the deed of trust on the property, produced in relation to the original purchase loan, was assigned to CMI.[1] (Id.). Bank of America, N.A. as successor by merger to BAC Home Loans Servicing, LP (“BANA”) acted as servicer of the loan. (ECF No. 1).

         On May 8, 2012, the HOA recorded a notice of default and election to sell, indicating an amount of $5, 770.00. (ECF No. 37-1). Thereafter, on November 19, 2012, the HOA recorded a notice of trustee's sale, asserting a sum due of $8, 002.55. (Id.). Finally, the HOA's agent, Alessi & Koenig, recorded a trustee's deed upon sale on February 26, 2013, that recognized SFR's purchase of the property. (Id.).

         On February 24, 2016, CMI filed the underlying complaint in this case, alleging: (1) quiet title and declaratory judgment against all defendants; (2) breach of NRS 116.1113 against the HOA and Alessi; (3) wrongful foreclosure against the same; and (4) injunctive relief against SFR. (ECF No. 1).

         On May 25, 2016, SFR filed a counterclaim against CitiMortgage, Inc. requesting declaratory and injunctive relief in connection with a quiet title claim on the property (ECF No. 22).

         II. Legal Standard

         The Federal Rules of Civil Procedure allow summary judgment when the pleadings, depositions, answers to interrogatories, and admissions on file, together with the affidavits, if any, show that “there is no genuine dispute as to any material fact and the movant is entitled to judgment as a matter of law.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(a). A principal purpose of summary judgment is “to isolate and dispose of factually unsupported claims . . . .” Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 323- 24 (1986).

         For purposes of summary judgment, disputed factual issues should be construed in favor of the non-moving party. Lujan v. Nat'l Wildlife Fed., 497 U.S. 871, 888 (1990). However, to be entitled to a denial of summary judgment, the non-moving party must “set forth specific facts showing that there is a genuine issue for trial.” Id.

         In determining summary judgment, the court applies a burden-shifting analysis. “When the party moving for summary judgment would bear the burden of proof at trial, it must come forward with evidence which would entitle it to a directed verdict if the evidence went uncontroverted at trial.” C.A.R. Transp. Brokerage Co. v. Darden Rests., Inc., 213 F.3d 474, 480 (9th Cir. 2000). Moreover, “[i]n such a case, the moving party has the initial burden of establishing the absence of a genuine issue of fact on each issue material to its case.” Id.

         By contrast, when the non-moving party bears the burden of proving the claim or defense, the moving party can meet its burden in two ways: (1) by presenting evidence to negate an essential element of the non-moving party's case; or (2) by demonstrating that the non-moving party failed to make a showing sufficient to establish an element essential to that party's case on which that party will bear the burden of proof at trial. See Celotex Corp., 477 U.S. at 323-24. If the moving party fails to meet its initial burden, summary judgment must be denied and the court need not consider the non-moving party's evidence. See Adickes v. S.H. Kress & Co., 398 U.S. 144, 159- 60 (1970).

         If the moving party satisfies its initial burden, the burden then shifts to the opposing party to establish that a genuine issue of material fact exists. See Matsushita Elec. Indus. Co. v. Zenith Radio Corp., 475 U.S. 574, 586 (1986). To establish the existence of a factual dispute, the opposing party need not establish a material issue of fact conclusively in its favor. It is sufficient that “the claimed factual dispute be shown to require a jury or judge to resolve the parties' differing versions of the truth at trial.” T.W. Elec. Serv., Inc. v. Pac. Elec. Contractors Ass'n, 809 F.2d 626, 630 (9th Cir. 1987).

         III. Discussion

         As an initial matter, a failure to respond to a motion for summary judgment is not a sufficient condition for that motion's success. See LR 7-2(d); see also Heinemann v. Satterberg, 731 F.3d 914, 917-18 (9th Cir. 2013). A district court may grant an unopposed motion for summary judgment only if the movant's filings satisfy the summary judgment standard. See White v. Aramark, No. 14-55405, 2016 WL 6583620, at *1 (9th Cir. Nov. 7, 2016) (citing Henry v. Gill Indus., Inc., 983 F.2d 943, 950 (9th Cir. 1993)). The court proceeds accordingly.

         a. Plaintiff's NRS 116.1113 and wrongful foreclosure claims

         Subsection (1) of NRS 38.330 states that “[u]nless otherwise provided by an agreement of the parties, mediation must be completed within 60 days after the filing of the written claim.” Nev. Rev. Stat. § 38.330(1). However, while NRS 38.330(1) explains the procedure for mediation, NRS 38.310 is clear that no civil action may be commenced “unless the action has been submitted to mediation.” NRS 38.310. Specifically, NRS 38.330(1) offers in relevant part:

If the parties participate in mediation and an agreement is not obtained, any party may commence a civil action in the proper court concerning the claim that was submitted to mediation. Any complaint filed in such an action must contain a sworn statement indicating that the issues addressed in the complaint have been mediated pursuant to the ...

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