Nationstar Mortgage LLC v. Aurora Canyon Homeowners Association et al

Filing 109

ORDER that this action is temporarily stayed until resolution of the certified question in Nev. S. Ct. Case No. 72931. ECF No. 85 SFR's Motion for Partial Summary Judgment is denied. ECF Nos. 86 , 95 and 98 Motions for Summary Judgment are denied without prejudice. Signed by Judge Miranda M. Du on 1/5/2018. (Copies have been distributed pursuant to the NEF - LH)

Download PDF
1 2 3 4 5 6 UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT 7 DISTRICT OF NEVADA 8 *** 9 NATIONSTAR MORTGAGE, LLC, 10 Plaintiff, 13 14 ORDER v. 11 12 Case No. 2:15-cv-01308-MMD-NJK AURORA CANYON HOMEOWNERS ASSOCIATION; SFR INVESTMENTS POOL 1, LLC; DOE INDIVIDUALS I-X, inclusive, and ROE CORPORATIONS I-X, inclusive, Defendants. 15 16 17 I. SUMMARY 18 This case arises out of a homeowner association’s (“HOA”) foreclosure and 19 involves the notice provisions applicable to foreclosure sales under Nevada Revised 20 Statutes (“NRS”) Chapter 116. Currently there is a federal-state split in the interpretation 21 and effect of the notice provisions found at the pre-2015 version of NRS Chapter 116. 22 However, a question regarding the applicable notice provisions was recently certified to 23 the Nevada Supreme Court, asking whether the notice provisions found at NRS § 107.090 24 were incorporated by reference into the pre-2015 version of NRS § 116.31168. Defendant 25 SFR Investments Pool 1, LLC (“SFR”) contends that Plaintiff Nationstar Mortgage’s 26 (“Nationstar”) predecessors in interest received notice of the HOA’s foreclosure sale. (See 27 ECF No. 86 at 6.) Accordingly, this Court sua sponte stays this action in its entirety until 28 the Nevada Supreme Court resolves the certified question. 1 II. SFR’S MOTION FOR PARTIAL SUMMARY JUDGMENT (ECF No. 85) 2 Defendant SFR Investments Pool 1, LLC (“SFR”) argues that, in the wake of 3 Bourne Valley, NRS Chapter 116’s notice scheme returns to that of the 1991 version of 4 the statute and thereby eliminates any constitutional problems. (ECF No. 85 at 5-6.) This 5 Court has already addressed the issue of whether it should analyze the facts of a 6 particular case under the notice provisions of the 1991 version of NRS Chapter 116 and 7 declined to do so. See U.S. Bank Nat’l Ass’n v. Thunder Props. Inc., No 3:15-cv-00328- 8 MMD-WGC, 2017 WL 4102464, *3 (D. Nev. Sept. 14, 2017). Accordingly, the Court 9 denies SFR’s Motion for Partial Summary Judgment. 10 III. STAY OF ENTIRE PROCEEDINGS 11 A district court has discretionary power to stay proceedings in its own court. Landis 12 v. N. Am. Co., 299 U.S. 248, 254-55 (1936). “A trial court may, with propriety, find it is 13 efficient for its own docket and the fairest course for the parties to enter a stay of an action 14 before it, pending resolution of independent proceedings which bear upon the case.” 15 Leyva v. Certified Grocers of Cal., Ltd., 593 F.2d 857, 863 (9th Cir. 1979). In deciding 16 whether to grant a stay, courts should consider “the possible damage which may result 17 from the granting of a stay, the hardship or inequity which a party may suffer in being 18 required to go forward, and the orderly course of justice measured in terms of the 19 simplifying or complicating of issues, proof, and questions of law which could be expected 20 to result from a stay.” Lockyer v. Mirant Corp., 398 F.3d 1098, 1110 (9th Cir. 2005) 21 (quoting Landis, 299 U.S. at 268). Courts should also consider “the judicial resources that 22 would be saved by avoiding duplicative litigation.” Pate v. DePuy Orthopaedics, Inc., No. 23 2:12-cv-01168-MMD-CWH, 2012 WL 3532780, at *2 (D. Nev. Aug. 14, 2012) (quoting 24 Rivers v. Walt Disney Co., 980 F. Supp. 1358, 1360 (C.D. Cal. 1997)). 25 The Court finds that significant judicial resources will be saved if the Court refrains 26 from issuing a decision in this case until the Nevada Supreme Court determines whether 27 NRS § 116.31168 incorporates the notice provisions of NRS § 107.090 in Nev. S. Ct. 28 Case No. 72931. NRS §§ 116.31168 and 107.090 prescribe two fundamentally different 2 1 notice mechanisms. The first requires lenders to affirmatively request notice of 2 foreclosure sales from HOAs. The second requires HOAs to notify lenders as a matter of 3 course, regardless of whether a request was made. 4 The Ninth Circuit recently held the first mechanism facially unconstitutional 5 because it impermissibly shifts the burden to lenders in violation of their procedural due 6 process rights. Bourne Valley Court Tr. v. Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., 832 F.3d 1154, 1156 7 (9th Cir. 2016), cert. denied, 137 S. Ct. 2296 (2017). NRS § 107.090 seems to ameliorate 8 this burden-shifting problem by requiring the HOAs to provide notice to lenders absent 9 any request from lenders for notice; however, the Ninth Circuit has held that NRS § 10 107.090 is not incorporated in NRS § 116.31168. Id. at 1159. If it were, the Ninth Circuit 11 reasoned, the opt-in notice scheme would be superfluous. Id. 12 The question of whether NRS § 116.31168 incorporates NRS § 107.090 is now 13 pending before the Nevada Supreme Court in Case No. 72931. Moreover, that court has 14 hinted it will answer the question in the affirmative. See Nationstar Mortg., LLC v. Saticoy 15 Bay LLC Series 227 Shadow Canyon, 405 P.3d 641, 648 n.11 (Nev. 2017). If the Nevada 16 Supreme Court holds that NRS § 107.090 is incorporated, then a factual question would 17 arise in this case: did the HOA provide notice to the lender consistent with NRS § 18 107.090? As the law stands currently, it is irrelevant whether the HOA provided notice to 19 the lender—foreclosure sales conducted pursuant to Chapter 116 could not have satisfied 20 the lenders’ constitutional due process rights. See, e.g., U.S. Bank, N.A. v. Emerald Ridge 21 Landscape Maint. Ass’n, No. 2:15-cv-00117-MMD-PAL, 2017 WL 4386967, at *3 (D. Nev. 22 Sept. 29, 2017). But if NRS § 116.31168 incorporated NRS § 107.090, then some 23 foreclosure sales may have satisfied constitutional due process requirements (i.e., those 24 in which HOAs gave lenders notice consistent with NRS § 107.090). SFR contends that 25 Nationstar’s predecessors in interest received such notice in this case. (See ECF No. 86 26 at 6.) 27 The parties may be concerned that a stay will be prejudicial to them. However, any 28 damage to the parties from a stay will be outweighed by the fees that all parties will surely 3 1 incur from continued litigation—a decision in the proceedings before the Nevada 2 Supreme Court could moot a decision by this Court. Until there is finality on the issue of 3 whether NRS § 116.31168 incorporates NRS § 107.090, a stay will benefit the parties 4 and conserve judicial resources. 5 IV. CONCLUSION 6 It is therefore ordered that this action is temporarily stayed until resolution of the 7 certified question in Nev. S. Ct. Case No. 72931. The stay will be lifted upon such 8 resolution. The parties must file a status report within five (5) days from such resolution. 9 It is further ordered that SFR’s Motion for Partial Summary Judgment (ECF No. 10 85) is denied. 11 It is further ordered that all remaining motions (ECF Nos. 86, 95, 98) are denied 12 without prejudice and may be refiled within thirty (30) days from the date the stay in this 13 case is lifted. 14 DATED THIS 5th day of January 2018. 15 16 MIRANDA M. DU UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 4

Disclaimer: Justia Dockets & Filings provides public litigation records from the federal appellate and district courts. These filings and docket sheets should not be considered findings of fact or liability, nor do they necessarily reflect the view of Justia.

Why Is My Information Online?