United States District Court, D. New Hampshire
Lewis B. Sykes, Jr.
RBS Citizens, N.A., Bank of America, N.A., Bank of New York Mellon, CCO Mortgage Corporation, Federal National Mortgage Association, and Citibank N.A. Opinion No. 2017 DNH 062
DiClerico, Jr. United States District Judge
B. Sykes, Jr. brought suit in state court against RBS
Citizens, N.A.; CCO Mortgage Corporation; Federal National
Mortgage Association; Bank of America, N.A.; Bank of New York
Mellon; and Citibank, N.A., alleging claims arising from the
defendants' involvement in the foreclosure sale of his
home in 2009. Bank of America removed the case to this court.
The court granted the defendants' motion for summary
judgment on November 20, 2015, and denied Sykes's motion
for a default judgment against Citibank, N.A. on February 23,
2016. Judgment was entered in favor of the defendants the
was represented by counsel from the beginning of the case and
until counsel withdrew in December of 2014. Thereafter, Sykes
proceeded pro se through the entry of judgment in February of
2016. Sykes is now represented by new counsel and has filed a
motion for relief from judgment pursuant to Federal Rule
of Civil Procedure 60(b)(3). The defendants, other than
Citibank, N.A., object to the motion.
requests oral argument on his motion. Under the local rules
in this district, the court decides motions without oral
argument unless a party provides a written statement
“outlining the reasons why oral argument may provide
assistance to the court.” LR 7.1(d). Sykes did not
provide any reason to support his request. Therefore, the
request for oral argument is denied.
motion and just terms, the court may relieve a party or its
legal representative from a final judgment, order, or
proceeding for . . . fraud (whether previously called
intrinsic or extrinsic), misrepresentation, or misconduct by
an opposing party . . . .” Fed. R. Civ. P.
60(b)(3). The burden is on the moving party to show
fraud, misrepresentation, or misconduct by clear and
convincing evidence. Giroux v. Federal Nat'l Mortg.
Ass'n, 810 F.3d 103, 107-08 (1st Cir. 2016). In
addition, the moving party must show that the fraud,
misrepresentation, or misconduct substantially interfered
with his ability to prepare his case. Fontanilas-Lopez v.
Morell Bauza Cartagena & Dapena, LLC, 832 F.3d 50, 63
(1st Cir. 2016).
claims were resolved on summary judgment in favor of the
defendants because the claims were barred by the governing
statutes of limitations. In support of his motion to set
aside the judgment, Sykes charges that the defendants falsely
represented that the entity which held his mortgage note and
foreclosed on the property was Federal National Mortgage
Association (“Fannie Mae”). Sykes asserts that
the entity that held his note and foreclosed was actually a
Delaware corporation, Federal National Mortgage Association,
Inc., (“Delaware corporation”), citing the
foreclosure deed for his property as proof of the
misrepresentation. Sykes states that the Delaware corporation
was used “as part of some intentional scheme to avoid
payment of the New Hampshire state Tax Stamps both in this
foreclosure and in several other foreclosures throughout the
state.” Document no. 168, ¶ 6.
contends that the defendants' alleged misrepresentation
of the entity that held his mortgage note and foreclosed on
his property “had a material effect upon the outcome of
this case” because the Delaware corporation had its
charter revoked in 2004, making it a void corporation.
Because of that status, Sykes argues, the foreclosure sale is
void. He further asserts that “[t]here is no statute of
limitations to quiet title against a transferee of title from
such a nullity.” Sykes represents that he did not know
of the Delaware corporation “scheme” until after
August of 2016.
defendants object to the motion to set aside judgment.
National Mortgage Association, known as Fannie Mae, is
“a Government-sponsored private corporation” that
was originally chartered in 1938. 12 U.S.C. §§
1716b & 1717; Lightfoot v. Cendant Mortg. Corp.,
137 S.Ct. 553, 556-57 (2017) (explaining history of Fannie
Mae); Perry Capital LLC v. Mnuchin, 848 F.3d 1072,
1080-81 (D.C. Cir. 2017) (same). Pursuant to 12 C.F.R. §
1239.3(b)(ii), Fannie Mae has “elect[ed] to follow the
corporate governance and indemnification practices and
procedures set forth in . . . [t]he Delaware General
Corporation Law.” See Fannie Mae Bylaws, Art. 1, Sec.
1.05. The Federal Housing Finance Authority has been the
conservator of Fannie Mae since July of 2008. See
Fairholme Funds, Inc. v. United States, __F.
App'x __, 2017 WL 991077, at *1 (Fed. Cir. Mar. 14,
2017); Perry Capital, 848 F.3d at 1080-81.
only proof Sykes offers that the Delaware corporation, rather
than Fannie Mae, held the note on his property and conducted
the foreclosure sale is the foreclosure deed for his
property. The deed states: “Federal National Mortgage
Association, an association duly established under the laws
of the State of Delaware and having a usual place of business
at P.O. Box 650043, Dallas, TX, 75265-0043, holder of the
following mortgage given by: Lewis B. Sykes and Dorothy W.
Sykes . . . .” The foreclosure deed also states Fannie
Mae granted “that portion of the Premises conveyed by
said Mortgage and described more particularly in Exhibit
‘A'” to The Bank of New York Mellon, as
Trustee for CWHEQ Revolving Home Equity Loan Trust, Series
2007-C of 1 Wall Street, New York.
does not explain why he believes the foreclosure deed shows
that the holder of his note and the foreclosing entity was
the Delaware corporation rather than Fannie Mae. In its
objection, Fannie Mae states that the statement in the
foreclosure deed that Fannie Mae is an association
established under Delaware law was an error and does not mean
that Fannie Mae is a Delaware corporation. The filings in a
different case, which ...