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Lawson v. Ocwen Loan Servicing, LLC

United States District Court, N.D. Georgia, Atlanta Division

March 2, 2015

LENOR H. LAWSON, Plaintiff,
v.
OCWEN LOAN SERVICING, LLC, individually, as successor to LITTON LOAN SERVICING LP, and as servicer for DEUTSCHE BANK NATIONAL TRUST COMPANY, AS TRUSTEE FOR GSAMP TRUST 2005-NC1, Defendant.

OPINION AND ORDER

WILLIAM S. DUFFEY, Jr., District Judge.

This matter is before the Court on Defendant Ocwen Loan Servicing, LLC's ("Defendant" or "OLS") Motion to Dismiss [3] Plaintiff Lenor H. Lawson's ("Plaintiff" or "Lawson") Complaint [1.1 at 2-27]. Also before the Court is Plaintiff's Motion to Remand [7].

I. BACKGROUND

On November 17, 2004, Plaintiff obtained a loan in the amount of $216, 000, from New Century Mortgage Corporation ("New Century"). (Compl. ¶ 15).[1] Repayment of the loan was secured by a deed (the "Security Deed") to real property located at 4804 Candy Cove, Lithonia, Georgia (the "Property"). (Id. at ¶¶ 14-15 & Ex. A [1.1 at 30-49]). Under the terms of the Security Deed, Plaintiff "grant[ed] and convey[ed] to [New Century] and [New Century's] successors and assigns, with power of sale, the [Property]." (Security Deed at 3).

On November 27, 2004, New Century assigned its rights under the Security Deed ("First Assignment") to "Deutsche Bank National Trust Company as trustee under the Pooling and Servicing Agreement dated February[2] 2005, GSAMP Trust 2005-NC1." (Compl. ¶ 18 & Ex. B [1.1 at 57-60]).

On September 1, 2011, OLS became Plaintiff's loan servicer. (Compl. ¶ 11; see also [8.1] at 1).

On January 8, 2013, New Century executed a Corrective Assignment (together with the First Assignment, the "Assignments") to "correct the notary section and the assignees [sic] name, on [the First Assignment]." (Def's Mot. to Dismiss at Ex. E [3.6]).[3] The Corrective Assignment states that the assignee is "Deutsche Bank National Trust Company, as Trustee for GSAMP Trust 2005-NC1" ("Deutsche Bank").

On February 25, 2014, Weissman Nowack Curry & Wilco, P.C. ("WNCW") sent Plaintiff a letter stating that the unpaid balance on her loan is $290, 074.99 and that the debt is owed to Deutsche Bank. (Compl. ¶ 42 & Ex. G [1.1 at 88-89]).

Also on February 25, 2014, WNCW sent Plaintiff a Notice of Foreclosure Sale (the "Notice"). ([1.1 at 90-95]). The Notice states that, as of May 12, 2011, Plaintiff had defaulted on her loan obligations, that Deutsche Bank will conduct a foreclosure sale of the Property on the first Tuesday in April, 2014, and that Defendant has the full authority to negotiate, amend, and modify all terms of Plaintiff's mortgage. ([1.1 at 90-95]). The Notice states that it "is being sent by [WNCW] for OLS, the entity with authority on behalf of [Deutsche Bank], " and that the Notice is being sent to Plaintiff on behalf of [Deutsche Bank] in order to comply with Georgia statutory foreclosure law requirements." ([1.1 at 94]).

On March 31, 2014, Plaintiff, proceeding pro se, filed her Complaint in the Superior Court of Gwinnett County, Georgia, asserting a variety of claims against Defendant, her loan servicer, based on perceived defects in the Assignments and the transfer of Plaintiff's mortgage. Plaintiff asserts claims for: (1) "lack of standing;" (2) fraud in the concealment; (3) fraud in the inducement; (4) slander of title; (5) demand for accounting; and (6) declaratory judgment.

On April 30, 2014, Defendant removed the Gwinnett County Action to this Court based on diversity of citizenship. (Notice of Removal [1]). Defendant, a limited liability company, asserts that its sole member is Ocwen Loan Servicing, Inc., a corporation incorporated in, and with its principal place of business in, the U.S. Virgin Islands. Defendant alleges that it is therefore a citizen of the U.S. Virgin Islands, and that complete diversity exists among the parties because Plaintiff is a citizen of Georgia. Defendant also asserts that the amount in controversy exceeds $75, 000 because Plaintiff challenges Defendant's authority to foreclose on the Property, which is currently valued at $107, 600.

On May 7, 2014, Defendant moved to dismiss Plaintiff's Complaint.

On May 29, 2014, Plaintiff filed her Motion to Remand, arguing that complete diversity does not exist because Defendant is a citizen of Georgia. Plaintiff claims that "Defendant is attempting to mislead the Court by using the address of its parent company, knowing that it filed a Certificate of Authority to Transact Business on May 16, 2002...." (Mot. to Remand at 2).

The Court first considers Plaintiff's Motion to Remand.

II. DISCUSSION

A. Plaintiff's Motion ...


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