In JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A. v Caliguri, 36 N.Y.3d 953 (2020), the Court of Appeals recently clarified how a lender establishes standing in a foreclosure action.  Prior to this recent pronouncement, the standard set by that Court had been that a plaintiff evidences standing to foreclose by demonstrating that it possessed the original note agreement at commencement of the foreclosure action.  Aurora Loan Servs., LLC. v. Taylor, 25 N.Y.3d 355 (2015).  In Aurora, the lender demonstrated standing by averring, in an affidavit in support of a summary judgment motion, that it possessed the original note since prior to commencement, while attaching accompanying business records supporting such testimony, including the loan servicing agreement and records demonstrating that the note had been transferred to the plaintiff.  Id., at 356.  The Court in Aurora further held that a plaintiff need not demonstrate possession of the original mortgage at the time of commencement as the mortgage follows the note.  Nor was it necessary for a foreclosing plaintiff to detail how it came into possession of the original note, only to demonstrate possession of such at the time of commencement.
Continue Reading Recent Developments in Demonstrating Standing to Foreclose in New York as the Court of Appeals Weighs Back In

In a case of appellate first impression in New York, the Appellate Division, Second Department, held that a mortgagor cannot make a Real Property Actions and Proceedings Law (“RPAPL”) 1304 argument in opposition to a motion for Judgment of Foreclosure and Sale – even if that was pled as a defense in the mortgagor’s Answer – where the prior summary judgment motion was unopposed.

In Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. v. Harrigan,[1] after the lender commenced a foreclosure action in Suffolk County against the mortgagor, the mortgagor filed an Answer, containing an RPAPL 1304 compliance defense, specifically that a 90-day notice was not properly mailed.  The lender moved for summary judgment and the mortgagor failed to oppose that motion, apparently because of some unspecified law office failure.  Thereafter, the lender moved for Judgment of Foreclosure and Sale and the mortgagor cross-moved for vacatur of the summary judgment order and dismissal of the action based on the lender’s purported failure to demonstrate RPAPL 1304 compliance.Continue Reading RPAPL Arguments May be Waived: Case of Appellate First Impression