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Bank of America, N.A. v. SFR Investments Pool 1, LLC

United States District Court, D. Nevada

March 19, 2019

BANK OF AMERICA, N.A., Plaintiff,
v.
SFR INVESTMENTS POOL 1, LLC; and WHITE LAKE RANCH ASSOCIATION, Defendants. SFR INVESTMENTS POOL 1, LLC, Counterclaimant/Cross-Claimant,
v.
BANK OF AMERICA, N.A.; JAIME A. VALDIVIA, an individual; NARCIZA M. IGLESIAS, an individual; VICTOR BERNAL-ANGUIANO, an individual, Counter-Defendant/Cross-Defendants.

          ORDER

          MIRANDA M. DU UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.

         I. SUMMARY

         This dispute arises from the foreclosure sale (“HOA Sale”) of real property located at 20942 White Rock Drive, Reno, NV, 89506; Parcel No. 556-063-01 (“Property”) to satisfy a homeowners' association lien. (See, e.g., 61 (First Amended Complaint (“FAC”) at 2; 109 at 2.) Two motions are currently pending before the Court. In the first motion, Crossclaimant/Counter-Claimant SFR Investments Pool 1, LLC (“SFR”) moves for summary judgment on its counterclaims for declaratory relief/quiet title and injunction (ECF No. 63 at 17-18) and on all claims Plaintiff/Counter-Defendant Plaintiff Bank of America, N.A.'s (“BANA”) asserts (ECF No. 61). (ECF No. 109 at 2.) In the second motion, BANA seeks partial summary judgment on its quiet title/declaratory relief claim and all counterclaims SFR asserts. (ECF No. 110 at 1.) For the following reasons, the Court grants SFR's motion and denies BANA's motion.[1]

         II. BACKGROUND

         The following facts are undisputed unless otherwise indicated.[2]

         Jaime A. Valdivia, Narciza M. Iglesias, and Victor Bernal-Anguiano (“Borrowers”) financed the purchase of the Property within the HOA with a $210, 585 loan (“Loan”) in 2008. (ECF No. 110-1 at 3.) The Loan was secured by a first deed of trust (“DOT”). (See id.) The DOT was first assigned to BANA in 2009 via merger with BAC Home Loans Servicing, LP FKA Countrywide Home Loans Servicing, LP. (ECF No. 110-3 at 2-4; see also ECF No. 110 at 3 n.2.) BANA is also the current beneficiary under the DOT, as of July 2017. (ECF No. 110-3 at 10-11.)

         The Borrowers failed to pay HOA assessments, and the HOA recorded the following notices through its agents, Gayle A. Kern, Ltd. d/b/a Kern & Associates, Ltd. (“Kern”) and Phil Frink & Associates, Inc. (“Frink”): (1) notice of delinquent assessment lien on January 21, 2011 (ECF No. 110-4); and (2) notice of default and election to sell on April 19, 2011 (ECF No. 110-5).

         On September 18, 2012, BANA's agent (the law firm of Miles, Bauer, Bergstrom & Winters, LLP (“Miles Bauer”)) sent a letter to Frink asking it to identify the superpriority amount of the HOA lien.[3] (ECF No. 110-6 at 3, 5-6, 9.) Frink did not respond. (Id. at 3; ECF No. 110 at 8.)

         The HOA then proceeded with its HOA Sale. The HOA recorded a notice of HOA Sale on October 2, 2012. (ECF No. 110-7.) The HOA purchased the Property at its own HOA Sale on November 14, 2012, for $600. (ECF No. 110-8.) In April 2014, the HOA sold the Property to SFR. (ECF Nos. 110-9, 110-12.)

         In its FAC, BANA asserts the following claims: (1) quiet title/declaratory judgment against all Defendants; (2) breach of NRS § 116.1113 against the HOA; (3) wrongful foreclosure against the HOA; and (4) injunctive relief against SFR. (ECF No. 61 at 7-15.) In the prayer for relief, BANA primarily requests an order declaring SFR took the Property subject to BANA's DOT. (Id. at 16.) SFR asserts counterclaims for declaratory relief/quiet title and injunction. (ECF No. 63 at 17-18.)

         III. LEGAL STANDARD

         “The purpose of summary judgment is to avoid unnecessary trials when there is no dispute as to the facts before the court.” Nw. Motorcycle Ass'n v. U.S. Dep't of Agric., 18 F.3d 1468, 1471 (9th Cir. 1994). Summary judgment is appropriate when the pleadings, the discovery and disclosure materials on file, and any affidavits “show that there is no genuine issue as to any material fact and that the moving party is entitled to a judgment as a matter of law.” Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 322 (1986). An issue is “genuine” if there is a sufficient evidentiary basis on which a reasonable fact-finder could find for the nonmoving party and a dispute is “material” if it could affect the outcome of the suit under the governing law. Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 248 (1986).

         The moving party bears the burden of showing that there are no genuine issues of material fact. Zoslaw v. MCA Distrib. Corp., 693 F.2d 870, 883 (9th Cir. 1982). Once the moving party satisfies Rule 56's requirements, the burden shifts to the party resisting the motion to “set forth specific facts showing that there is a genuine issue for trial.” Anderson, 477 U.S. at 256. The nonmoving party “may not rely on denials in the pleadings but must produce specific evidence, through affidavits or admissible discovery material, to show that the dispute exists, ” Bhan v. NME Hosps., Inc., 929 F.2d 1404, 1409 (9th Cir. 1991), and “must do more than simply show that there is some metaphysical doubt as to the material facts.” Orr v. Bank of Am., NT & SA, 285 F.3d 764, 783 (9th Cir. 2002) (quoting Matsushita Elec. Indus. Co. v. Zenith Radio Corp., 475 U.S. 574, 586 (1986)). “The mere existence of a scintilla of evidence in support of the plaintiff's position will be insufficient.” Anderson, 477 U.S. at 252. Moreover, a court views all facts and draws all inferences in the light most favorable to the nonmoving party. Kaiser Cement Corp. v. Fischbach & Moore, Inc., 793 F.2d 1100, 1103 (9th Cir. 1986).

         Further, “when parties submit cross-motions for summary judgment, ‘[e]ach motion must be considered on its own merits.'” Fair Hous. Council of Riverside Cty., Inc. v. Riverside Two, 249 F.3d 1132, 1136 (9th Cir. 2001) (citations omitted) (quoting William W. Schwarzer, et al., The Analysis and Decision of Summary Judgment Motions, 139 F.R.D. 441, 499 (Feb. 1992)). “In fulfilling its duty to review each cross-motion separately, the court must review the evidence submitted in support of each cross-motion.” Id.

         IV. ...


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