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Lewis v. Caliber Home Loans Inc.

United States District Court, D. Utah

January 18, 2018

BRIAN K. LEWIS and MARIDETH LEWIS, Plaintiffs,
v.
CALIBER HOME LOANS, INC., a foreign corporation; and LSF9 MASTER PARTICIPATION TRUST, Defendants.

          MEMORANDUM DECISION AND ORDER

          DALE A. KIMBALL, United States District Judge

         District Judge Dale A. Kimball This matter is before the court on Defendants Caliber Home Loans, Inc., and LSF9 Master Participation Trust (collectively “Defendants”) motion for summary judgment. On January 16, 2018, the court held a hearing on the motion. At the hearing, the Plaintiffs Brian K. Lewis and Marideth Lewis were represented by James A. Sorenson and the Defendants were represented by Keith S. Anderson and Heidi G. Goebel. The court took the motion under advisement. Based on the briefing filed by the parties and the law and facts relevant to the pending motion, the court issues the following Memorandum Decision and Order GRANTING the Defendants' Motion for Summary Judgment.

         BACKGROUND

         On January 11, 2008, Chris B. Adams executed a promissory note (“Note”) in favor of Taylor, Bean & Whitaker Mortgage Corp. in the principal sum of Two-Hundred Thirty Five Thousand Dollars ($235, 000.000). The Borrower also executed a deed of trust securing the Note.

         The Note was assigned multiple times and the Note is now serviced by Caliber Home Loans. The original Borrower also assigned his or her interest and obligations of the Note to Brian K. Lewis and Marideth Lewis.

         On September 1, 2009, the original Borrower defaulted on the loan. On March 16, 2010, the Borrower filed a Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Petition. On April 12, 2010, the Lender recorded a Notice of Default in the Office of the Recorder of Juab County, Utah.

         On or about May 1, 2014, the Lender filed a Notice of Rescission of the Notice of Default and Election to Sell Under Deed of Trust, rescinding, cancelling, and withdrawing the April 12, 2010 Notice of Default that was recorded in the Office of the Recorder in Juab County, Utah. On the very same day as the cancellation was recorded, the Lender filed a new Notice of Default and reaccelerated the debt.

         On or about July 26, 2016, the Defendant posted an Amended Notice to Conduct a Trustee's Sale of the Property on September 15, 2016. On or about July 27, 2017, an Assignment of Deed of Trust from Nationstar Mortgage, LLC to U.S. Bank Trust (LSF9 Master Participation Trust) was recorded in the Office of the Recorder of Juab County, Utah. The Plaintiffs bring this action seeking a declaratory judgment for quiet title to the property asserting that the statute of limitations has expired for collecting on the Note.

         LEGAL STANDARD

         The court grants summary judgment when “the movant shows 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). The court “view[s] the evidence and make[s] all reasonable inferences in the light most favorable to the nonmoving party.” N. Natural Gas Co. v. Nash Oil & Gas, Inc., 526 F.3d 626, 629 (10th Cir. 2008).

         DISCUSSION

         Plaintiffs assert that they are entitled to a declaratory judgment granting them quiet title to the residence because the statute of limitations for collecting on the mortgage has expired. The Defendants filed this motion for summary judgment asserting that the Plaintiffs failed to state a claim because the statute of limitations has not yet expired.

         The current version of Utah Code Annotated Section 57-1-34, which went into effect on May 10, 2016, provides that “[a] person shall, within the period prescribed by law for the commencement of an action on an obligation secured by a trust deed: (1) commence an action to foreclose the trust deed; or (2) file for record a notice of default under Section 57-1-24.” Under the pre-May 10, 2016 version of Utah Code Annotated Section 57-1-34, “[t]he Trustee's sale of property under a trust deed, or an action to foreclose a trust deed as provided by law for the foreclosure of mortgages on real property shall be commenced, within the period prescribed by law for the commencement of an action on the obligation secured by the trust deed.”

         In this action, the parties dispute which “period prescribed by law, ” i.e. statute of limitation, applies to Defendant's proposed foreclosure of Plaintiffs' property. Plaintiffs assert that the six-year statute of limitation under Utah Code Annotated Section 78B-2-309 for an action on a written agreement should ...


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