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Bank of New York Mellon v. Imagination North Landscape Maintenance Association

United States District Court, D. Nevada

March 27, 2019

THE BANK OF NEW YORK MELLON, FKA THE BANK OF NEW YORK as Trustee for the CERTIFICATEHOLDERS CWALT, INC. ALTERNATIVE LOAN TRUST 2005-J12 MORTGAGE PASS-THROUGH CERTIFICATES, SERIES 2005-J12, Plaintiffs,
v.
IMAGINATION NORTH LANDSCAPE MAINTENANCE ASSOCIATION; SFR INVESTMENTS POOL 1, LLC; and ALESSI & KOENIG, LLC, Defendants.

          ORDER

          MIRANDA M. DU, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE

         I. SUMMARY

         This dispute arises from the foreclosure sale of property to satisfy a homeowners' association lien. Before the Court are three motions: (1) Defendant SFR Investments Pool 1, LLC's (“SFR”) motion for summary judgment (ECF No. 117); (2) Plaintiff Bank of New York Mellon's (“BONY”) motion for partial summary judgment (ECF No. 118);[1] and (3) SFR's motion for Rule 56(d) relief (ECF No. 125). The Court has reviewed Counter/Cross-Claimant Julie A. Christensen's joinder to BONY's motion and reply (ECF Nos. 121, 132).[2]The Court also has reviewed the responses (ECF Nos. 122, 123, 124, 129) and replies (ECF Nos. 128, 130, 131) to the motions. The Court heard oral argument on these motions on March 25, 2019. (ECF No. 135.) For the following reasons, the Court denies BONY's motion for summary judgment, grants SFR's motion for summary judgment, and denies SFR's motion for Rule 56(d) relief as moot.

         II. BACKGROUND

         The following facts are undisputed unless otherwise indicated.

         Christensen purchased real property (“Property”) located within Imagination North Landscape Maintenance Association (“Imagination”) at 3136 Extravagant Avenue, North Las Vegas, Nevada 89031 on July 18, 2005. (ECF No. 118-1 at 2-4, 16.) The Borrower financed the purchase with a $223, 992 loan (“Loan”) evidenced by a note (“Note”) and secured by a first deed of trust (“DOT”). (Id. at 2.) The DOT was assigned to BONY in May 2011. (ECF No. 118-2 at 2.)[3]

         Imagination recorded the following notices through its agent Alessi & Koenig, LLC (“Alessi”): (1) notice of delinquent assessment on June 3, 2011 (ECF No. 118-3 at 2); (2) notice of default and election to sell on August 29, 2011 (ECF No. 118-4 at 2); and (3) notice of trustee's sale on March 20, 2012 (ECF No. 118-5 at 2).[4]

         Imagination foreclosed on the Property and sold it to SFR in July 2012 (“HOA Sale”) for $3, 300. (ECF No. 118-11 at 2.)

         BONY asserts the following claims in the Complaint: (1) quiet title/declaratory judgment against all Defendants; (2) breach of NRS § 116.1113 against Imagination and Alessi; (3) wrongful foreclosure against Imagination and Alessi; and (4) injunctive relief against SFR. (ECF No. 1 at 6-12.)

         SFR filed a counterclaim and crossclaim for quiet title/declaratory judgment and injunctive relief. (ECF No. 20 at 14-16.)

         Christensen filed the following counterclaims and crossclaims: (1) violation of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, 15 U.S.C. § 1692 et seq., against Alessi and the HOA; (2) wrongful foreclosure against Alessi and the HOA; (3) violation of Nevada Unfair Trade Practices Act, NRS § 598A.060(1)(a)(12), against Alessi, the HOA, and SFR; (4) false representation against Alessi, the HOA, and BONY; (5) breach of contract against the HOA; (6) crimes against property under NRS Ch. 205 against all Defendants; (7) negligence against Alessi; the HOA; Bank of America, N.A. (“BANA”); and BONY; (8) breach of contract/fiduciary duty against BANA and BONY; (9) slander of title/quiet title against Alessi, BONY, the HOA, and SFR; and (10) intentional infliction of emotional distress against Alessi and the HOA. (ECF No. 34 at 14-28.)

         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 there is no genuine issue as to any material fact and that the movant is entitled to judgment as a matter of law.” Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 330 (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, 248-49 (1986). Where reasonable minds could differ on the material facts at issue, however, summary judgment is not appropriate. See Id. at 250-51. “The amount of evidence necessary to raise a genuine issue of material fact is enough ‘to require a jury or judge to resolve the parties' differing versions of the truth at trial.'” Aydin Corp. v. Loral Corp., 718 F.2d 897, 902 (9th Cir. 1983) (quoting First Nat'l Bank v. Cities Serv. Co., 391 U.S. 253, 288-89 (1968)). In evaluating a summary judgment motion, a court views all facts and draws all inferences in the light most favorable to the nonmoving party. Kaiser Cement Corp. v. Fishbach & Moore, Inc., 793 F.2d 1100, 1103 (9th Cir. 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., 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.

         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. BONY'S MOTION FOR PARTIAL SUMMARY JUDGMENT (ECF NO. 118)

         BONY argues that it is entitled to summary judgment because (1) Imagination's lien lacked priority over the DOT (ECF No. 118 at 6-7); (2) Christensen discharged any superpriority lien when she tendered the superpriority amount (id. at 7-8); (3) the state statute (NRS ยง 116.3116) governing the HOA Sale is ...


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