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Bank of America, N.A. v. Edwards

Superior Court of Connecticut, Judicial District of Waterbury, Waterbury

October 14, 2015

Bank of America, N.A.
v.
Martin J. Edwards et al

MEMORANDUM OF DECISION RE DEFENDANTS' MOTION TO DISMISS

Mark H. Taylor, J.

I

BACKGROUND

The defendants have filed a Motion to Dismiss, asserting that the plaintiff is acting without standing in this foreclosure. The Motion to Dismiss appeared on the October 5, 2015 Short Calendar. Although the motion was marked " off, " the parties were present and agreed to be heard by the court. Upon consideration of the applicable law and relevant evidence presented by the parties, the motion is denied.

By way of general, procedural background, the defendants appeared in this matter as self-represented parties and answered the complaint with special defenses on February 28, 2014. Although the parties engaged in court monitored mediation for several months, settlement negotiations were terminated without resolution on November 25, 2014. The plaintiff subsequently filed a Motion for Summary Judgment on February 24, 2015, to which the defendants filed an objection on July 20, 2015. Thereafter, the defendant filed this superseding Motion to Dismiss on August 19, 2015, asserting that the plaintiff lacks standing and, therefore, the court lacks subject matter jurisdiction.

In their Motion to Dismiss, the defendants challenge the plaintiff's standing by stating that the plaintiff " cannot successfully demonstrate a specific, personal and legal interest in the subject matter of the challenged action." Insofar as the defendants assert that standing is a prerequisite to subject matter jurisdiction, they are correct. However, the plaintiff has sufficiently shown to the court that it is the holder of the defendant's mortgage note, along with the attendant right to foreclose the defendant's equitable right of redemption pursuant to the mortgage deed. Therefore, the court concludes that the plaintiff has standing in this action.

II

DISCUSSION OF APPLICABLE LAW AND FACTS

A

Standing

Our Supreme Court has often stated that " [s]tanding is the legal right to set judicial machinery in motion. One cannot rightfully invoke the jurisdiction of the court unless he or she has, in an individual or representative capacity, some real interest in the cause of action, or a legal or equitable right, title or interest in the subject matter of the controversy . . . When a party is found to lack standing, the court is consequently without subject matter jurisdiction to determine the cause." (Citations omitted; internal quotation marks omitted.) Equity One, Inc. v. Shivers, 310 Conn. 119, 74 A.3d 1225 (2013).

In Shivers, the Supreme Court specifically set forth the legal analysis applicable to standing in mortgage foreclosures, as follows: " Standing to enforce a promissory note is established by the provisions of the Uniform Commercial Code . . . See General Statutes § 42a-1-101 et seq. Under the Uniform Commercial Code, only a 'holder' of an instrument or someone who has the rights of a holder is entitled to enforce the instrument. General Statutes § 42a-3-301. The 'holder' is the person or entity in possession of the instrument if the instrument is payable to bearer. General Statutes § 42a-1-201(b)(21)(A). When an instrument is endorsed in blank, it 'becomes payable to bearer and may be negotiated by transfer of possession alone . . .' General Statutes § 42a-3-205(b) . . . In addition, General Statutes § 49-17 allows the holder of a note to foreclose on real property even if the mortgage has not been assigned to him . . . This court also has recently determined that a loan servicer for the owner of legal title to a note has standing in its own right to foreclose on the real property." Id. at 126-27.

B

The Mortgage Note


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