Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Las Vegas Development Group, LLC v. 2014-IH Borrower, LP

United States District Court, D. Nevada

December 15, 2017

LAS VEGAS DEVELOPMENT GROUP, LLC, Plaintiff,
v.
2014-IH BORROWER, LP, et al., Defendants.

          ORDER INTERVENOR DEFENDANTS' MOTION TO LIFT STAY (ECF NO. 100) AND PLAINTIFF'S MOTION TO REMAND (ECF NO. 102)

          RICHARD F. BOULWARE, II UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.

         I. INTRODUCTION

         Before the Court comes Intervenor Defendant and Counter Claimant Federal Housing Finance Agency (“FHFA”), as Conservator for the Federal National Mortgage Association[1](“Fannie Mae”), Defendant 2014-I IH Borrower, L.P., and Defendant / Counter-Defendant Hidden Canyon Owners Association (collectively, “the Moving Parties”)'s Motion to Lift Stay (ECF No. 100), and Plaintiff Las Vegas Development Group (“LVDG”)'s Motion to Remand to State Court (ECF No. 102). For the reasons stated below, the Motion to Lift Stay is GRANTED, and the Motion to Remand to State Court is DENIED.

         II. BACKGROUND

         On January 1, 2015, LVDG filed a Complaint in the Eighth Judicial District Court against Republic Mortgage, Recontrust Company, N.A., Magdalena Manchester, Magdalena M. Manchester Revocable Trust, Fannie Mae, THR Nevada II, L.P., THR Property Borrower, L.P., THR Property Guarantor, L.P., THR Property Holdco, L.P., 2014-1 IH Property Holdco, L.P., 2014-1 IH Equity Owner, L.P., 2014-1 IH Borrower, L.P., Christina Trust, and Doe and Roe Corporation Defendants (collectively, “Defendants”), alleging various claims related to a parcel of real property sold at a non-judicial foreclosure sale. (ECF No. 1-1). Specifically, LVDG asserts seven causes of action: (1) Quiet Title, against all Defendants; (2) Unjust Enrichment, against Republic Mortgage, Recontrust, and Fannie Mae; (3) Equitable Mortgage, against Republic Mortgage and Former Owners; (4) Slander of Title, against all Defendants; (5) Conversion, against Republic Mortgage and Recontrust; (6) Equitable Relief and Wrongful Foreclosure; (7) Equitable relief and rescission. Defendant Fannie Mae filed a Petition for Removal on March 4, 2015. (ECF No. 1). Fannie Mae filed an Answer with Counterclaims on March 11, 2015. (ECF No. 4). In its Twelfth Affirmative Defense, Fannie Mae argued that LVDG's claim of title is barred by 12 U.S.C. § 4617(j)(3), “which precludes an HOA sale from extinguishing Fannie Mae's interest in the Property and preempts any state law to the contrary.” (ECF No. 4 at 21). Importantly, Fannie Mae also asserted a Counterclaim for quiet title or equivalent equitable relief to protect its property interests against the interests of LVDG and the HOA based upon an assertion of 12 U.S.C. § 4617(j)(3) - the “Federal Foreclosure Bar.” (ECF No. 4 at 25.)

         The Court held a hearing on several Motions for Summary Judgment on August 3, 2016. Those motions were denied. (ECF No. 88). On October 13, 2016, this Court held a hearing on a Motion to Stay the case, pending further developments in the Ninth Circuit case, Bourne Valley Court Tr. v. Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., 832 F.3d 1154, 1157-58 (9th Cir. 2016), r'hng denied (9th Cir. Nov. 4, 2016), cert. denied, 137 S.Ct. 2296 (2017).[2] The Court stated on the record that the case would be stayed. (ECF No. 97).

         A Motion to Lift the Stay and to enter a Scheduling Order was filed on January 18, 2017. (ECF No. 100). LVDG filed a Response and Partial Opposition to the Motion to Lift Stay on January 20, 2017. (ECF No. 101). On January 20, 2017, LVDG filed a Motion to Remand to State Court. (ECF No. 102). On January 24, 2017, 2014-1 IH Borrower, L.P., 2014-1 IH Equity Owner, L.P, THR Nevada, L.P., THR Property Borrower, L.P., THR Property Guarantor, L.P., THR Property Holdco, L.P., 2014-3 IH Property Holdco, L.P., and Christiana Trust (collectively, “Joining Defendants”) filed a Joinder to the Motion to Lift Stay. (ECF No. 103). The Moving Parties filed a Reply to the Motion to Lift Stay on January 27, 2017. (ECF No. 104). On February 3, 2017, FHFA and Fannie Mae filed a Response / Opposition to the Motion to Remand. (ECF No. 105). Joining Defendants filed a Joinder to the Response / Opposition to the Motion to Remand on February 6, 2017. (ECF No. 106). On February 10, 2017, LVDG filed a Reply to its Motion to Remand. (ECF No. 107). The Court held a hearing on September 19, 2017 on the Motion to Lift Stay and the Motion to Remand, and took the matter under submission. (ECF No. 110).

         III. LEGAL STANDARD

         A. Removal Jurisdiction

         28 U.S.C. § 1441(a) grants federal district courts jurisdiction over state court actions that originally could have been brought in federal court. “Removal and subject matter jurisdiction statutes are strictly construed, and a defendant seeking removal has the burden to establish that removal is proper and any doubt is resolved against removability.” Hawaii ex rel. Louie v. HSBC Bank Nevada, N.A., 761 F.3d 1027, 1034 (9th Cir. 2014) (citation and quotation marks omitted).

         B. Federal Question Jurisdiction

         A district court has “original jurisdiction of all civil actions arising under the Constitution, laws, or treaties of the United States.” 28 U.S.C. § 1331. An action “arises under” federal law when “federal law creates the cause of action.” Merrell Dow Pharm. Inc. v. Thompson, 478 U.S. 804, 808 (1986). But even where a claim finds its origins in state rather than federal law, the Supreme Court has identified a “special and small category” of cases in which federal question jurisdiction still exists. Empire Healthchoice Assurance, Inc., v. McVeigh, 547 U.S. 677, 699 (2006). Federal jurisdiction over a state law claim will lie if a federal issue is: (1) necessarily raised, (2) actually disputed, (3) substantial, and (4) capable of resolution in federal court without disrupting the federal-state balance approved by Congress. See Grable & Sons Metal Prods., Inc. v. Darue Eng'g & Mfg., 545 U.S. 308, 314 (2005) (explaining that the “the question is, does a state-law claim necessarily raise a stated federal issue, actually disputed and substantial, which a federal forum may entertain without disturbing any congressionally approved balance of federal and state judicial responsibilities.”). Grable does not provide a per se “test” for federal question jurisdiction. However, the presence of all four Grable factors suggests that federal jurisdiction is proper because there is a “serious federal interest in claiming the advantages thought to be inherent in a federal forum, ” which can be vindicated without disrupting Congress's intended division of labor between state and federal courts. Id. at 313 (citations omitted).

         IV. ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.