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RLP-Vervain Court, LLC v. DHI Mortgage Company, Ltd.

United States District Court, D. Nevada

March 21, 2018

RLP-VERVAIN COURT, LLC, a Nevada series limited liability company of the container RED LIZARD PRODUCTIONS, LLC under NRS § 86.296, Plaintiff,
DHI MORTGAGE COMPANY, LTD., a Texas limited partnership; WELLS FARGO BANK, N.A., a national association; FORT APACHE SQUARE HOMEOWNERS ASSOCIATION, a Nevada domestic nonprofit corporation; MTC FINANCIAL INC., a California corporation; REPUBLIC SILVER STATE DISPOSAL, INC., a Nevada corporation; JOSEPH A. NEWELL, an individual; DOES I through X; and ROE CORPORATIONS I through X, inclusive, Defendants.


          Gloria M. Navarro, United States District Court Chief Judge

         Pending before the Court is the Motion for Summary Judgment, (ECF No. 77), filed by Defendant Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. (“Wells Fargo”). Plaintiff RLP-Vervain Court, LLC (“Plaintiff”) filed a Response, (ECF No. 80), and Wells Fargo filed a Reply, (ECF No. 86).

         Also pending before the Court is the Motion for Summary Judgment, (ECF No. 78), filed by Plaintiff. Wells Fargo filed a Response, (ECF No. 85), and Plaintiff failed to file a reply. For the reasons set forth herein, Wells Fargo's Motion is GRANTED, and Plaintiff's motion is DENIED.[1]

         I. BACKGROUND

         The present action arises from the non-judicial foreclosure of the real property located at 9253 Vervain Court, Las Vegas, Nevada 89149 (“the Property”). On April 26, 2007, Defendant Joseph A. Newell obtained a loan in the amount of $193, 848.00 from DHI Mortgage Company, Ltd. (“Lender”), and Mortgage Electronic Registration System (“MERS”) that was secured by a Deed of Trust on the Property. (Deed of Trust, Ex. 2 to Wells Fargo's Mot. for Summ. J. (“MSJ”), ECF No. 77-2).[2] Federal Housing Finance Agency (“Freddie Mac”) purchased the loan on June 12, 2007, and has owned it ever since. (See Fed. Home Loan Mort. Corp. Decl., Ex. 3 to Wells Fargo's MSJ ¶ 5, ECF No. 77-3).

         On March 9, 2012, MERS, as nominee for Lender's successors and assigns, assigned the Deed of Trust to Wells Fargo. (Ex. 4 to Wells Fargo's MSJ, ECF No. 77-4). On November 14, 2011, Alessi & Koenig, LLC (“A&K”), trustee for Fort Apache Square Homeowners Association (“HOA”), recorded a Notice of Delinquent Assessment Lien against the Property. (Ex. 2 to Pl.'s MSJ, ECF No. 78-2). On May 4, 2012, the HOA recorded a notice of default and election to sell, and on November 5, 2012, the HOA recorded a notice of trustee's sale. (Wells Fargo's MSJ 7:17-19).

         On December 5, 2012, the HOA sold the property to Red Lizard Productions, LLC (“RLP”) for $5, 300, which was recorded on December 7, 2012. (Pl.'s MSJ 2:20-24). RLP transferred the Property to Plaintiff on March 7, 2013. (Wells Fargo's MSJ 7:24-25).

         In the Complaint, Plaintiff asserts the following causes of action: (1) quiet title with a requested remedy of declaratory relief and (2) injunctive relief. (Ex. 1 to Pet. for Removal (“Compl.”) ¶¶ 34-55, ECF No. 1-1).


         The Federal Rules of Civil Procedure provide for summary adjudication 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). Material facts are those that may affect the outcome of the case. See Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 248 (1986). A dispute as to a material fact is genuine if there is sufficient evidence for a reasonable jury to return a verdict for the nonmoving party. See Id. “Summary judgment is inappropriate if reasonable jurors, drawing all inferences in favor of the nonmoving party, could return a verdict in the nonmoving party's favor.” Diaz v. Eagle Produce Ltd. P'ship, 521 F.3d 1201, 1207 (9th Cir. 2008) (citing United States v. Shumway, 199 F.3d 1093, 1103-04 (9th Cir. 1999)). 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).

         In determining summary judgment, a 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. In 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.” C.A.R. Transp. Brokerage Co. v. Darden Rests., Inc., 213 F.3d 474, 480 (9th Cir. 2000) (citations omitted). In contrast, when the nonmoving 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 nonmoving party's case; or (2) by demonstrating that the nonmoving 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 nonmoving 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, 631 (9th Cir. 1987). In other words, the nonmoving party cannot avoid summary judgment by relying solely on conclusory allegations that are unsupported by factual data. See Taylor v. List, 880 F.2d 1040, 1045 (9th Cir. 1989). Instead, the opposition must go beyond the assertions and allegations of the pleadings and set forth specific facts by producing competent evidence that shows a genuine issue for trial. See Celotex Corp., 477 U.S. at 324.

         At summary judgment, a court's function is not to weigh the evidence and determine the truth but to determine whether there is a genuine issue for trial. See Anderson, 477 U.S. at 249. The evidence of the nonmovant is “to be believed, and all justifiable inferences are to be drawn in his favor.” Id. at 255. But if the evidence of the nonmoving party is merely colorable or is not significantly probative, summary judgment may be granted. See Id. at 249-50.

         III. ...

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