Superior Court of Pennsylvania Affirms Trial Court’s Granting Summary Judgment in Action to Quiet Title Where Subsurface Rights Were Extinguished After Tax Sale

The Superior Court of Pennsylvania recently held that a 1902 tax sale extinguished a party’s subsurface gas, oil, and mineral rights.  See Woodhouse Hunting Club, Inc., v. William Hoyt, et. al., J-A26044-17 (Sup. Ct. Pa. Feb. 2, 2018).  This case involved an action to quiet title of the subsurface oil and gas rights to a tract of land (the “Property”).  In 1891, the Hoyt family acquired title to the Property and subsequently conveyed it to Union Tanning Company, but reserved ownership of the gas, oil, and mineral rights and created a subsurface estate in favor of the Hoyts, their heirs, and assigns. 

Washington D.C. Appellate Court Holds Foreclosure of Condominium Lien Extinguished First Mortgage Despite Condominium Association’s Representations to the Contrary

The District of Columbia Court of Appeals recently held that a condominium’s foreclosure of a “super-priority” condominium lien extinguished an otherwise first-priority mortgage on the property, despite the fact that the association’s notice of sale and deed to the third-party purchaser stated that the sale was “subject to” the mortgage.  See Liu v. U.S. Bank Nat’l Ass’n, 2018 WL 1095503 (D.C. Mar. 1, 2018).

Eighth Circuit Holds Borrowers’ Acknowledgment of Receipt of TILA Disclosure Defeated Their TILA Claim

In a decision approved for publication, the United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit recently affirmed the district court’s decision granting a lender’s motion for summary judgment and holding that the borrowers’ signed acknowledgement that they had received the requisite number of Truth in Lending Act (“TILA”) disclosures created a rebuttable presumption that the borrowers could not overcome.

Second Circuit Holds Garnishees’ Settlement Agreement Violated Restraining Notices Despite Being Approved by State Court

The United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit recently affirmed a district court’s holding that third-party garnishees violated restraining notices by disbursing monies pursuant to a settlement agreement approved by the state court.  See CSX Transp., Inc. v. Island Rail  Terminal, Inc., 879 F.3d 462 (2d Cir. 2018).  The underlying breach of contract suit arose out of Island Rail Terminal, Inc.’s (“Island Rail”) 2012 purchase of substantially all of the assets of Emjay Environmental Recycling, Ltd. (“Emjay”). 

United States District Court for the District of Maryland Grants Defendant’s Motion to Dismiss For Class Action Kickback Scheme Based On Statute Of Limitations

The United States District Court for the District of Maryland recently held that Plaintiffs’ purported class action claim alleging a kickback scheme against Bank of America, N.A. (“BOA”) was barred by the statute of limitations because Plaintiffs did not meet the requirements for equitable tolling.  See Dobbins v. Bank of Am., N.A., 2018 WL 620456 (D.Md. Jan. 30, 2018). 

Eighth Circuit Holds Exclusion 3(a) May Bar Title Insurance Claim Regarding Mechanics’ Liens, Even if the Insured Lender’s Conduct Was Not Intentional

In a published opinion, the United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit recently held, among other things, that a title insurance company may deny coverage of an insured lender’s claim relating to mechanics’ liens under Exclusion 3(a) of the title insurance policy, even if the insured lender’s conduct was not intentional. See Captiva Lake Investments, LLC v. Fid. Nat'l Title Ins. Co., 2018 WL 1076745 (8th Cir. Feb. 28, 2018). In the case, a lender loaned over $21 million to a developer and purchased a title insurance policy to protect its security interest. 

New Jersey Appellate Court Holds Trial Court Must Determine Fair Market Value Credit of Foreclosed Properties to Ensure Lender Did Not Receive a Windfall

In a decision approved for publication, New Jersey’s Appellate Division recently remanded an action to the Chancery Division in order to determine whether a lender improperly collected more than one-hundred percent of the debts owed to it.  See Brunswick Bank & Tr. v. Heln Mgmt. LLC, 2018 WL 987809 (N.J. Super. Ct. App. Div. Feb. 21, 2018).

Pennsylvania Appellate Court Affirms Order Granting of Summary Judgment to Title Insurer Based on Survey Exception

The Superior Court of Pennsylvania recently affirmed a trial court’s order granting a title insurance company summary judgment based on a defect that a survey of the premises would have shown.  See Kreider v. Correia, 2018 WL 359285 (Pa. Super. Ct. Jan. 11, 2018).  In the case, the plaintiff insured purchased a property after the lender had obtained it via a foreclosure (the “Property”).

New Jersey District Court Finds Defendants Liable to Title Insurance Company for Conversion, But Factual Issues Preclude Summary Judgment on Fraud Claim

In an action by plaintiff title insurance company against defendants for claims of fraud and conversion arising out of defendants’ sale of their house and the use of the proceeds thereafter, the United States District Court for the District of New Jersey granted in part plaintiff’s motion for summary judgment as to the conversion claim, but denied the motion with respect to the fraud claim, acknowledging that plaintiff has put forward circumstantial evidence that the husband committed fraud but ultimately determining that there remains genuine issues of fact.