News & Noteworthy

Case Development - Bruce Bronster, Rob Wilk and Team Secure Win for Client in New York State Supreme Court Case of First Impression
MARCH 20, 2013

Bruce Bronster (Partner, New York), Rob Wilk (Associate, New York) and team, including Matt Friedenberg (Associate, New York) and Mike Resnikoff (Special Counsel, New York), representing one of the largest U.S. mortgage loan servicers, completed a heavily contested mortgage foreclosure action, using "first impression" arguments to win a Motion to confirm the proceedings.

This high profile New York State Supreme Court case was referred to Windels Marx to complete the foreclosure of the mortgage on Long Island property, after the mortgage and the Judgment of Foreclosure was first vacated by an order of the trial court judge, and then reinstated pursuant to an appellate court order. We represented the mortgage holder in the foreclosure sale proceedings, and then made a Motion to confirm the Referee's Report of Sale and enter a money judgment for the deficiency.

This is noteworthy because, as the defendant asserted in opposition, an affirmation recently required by the state court administration's office, to verify the regularity of the foreclosure proceedings and the accuracy of the documents filed in the action, was not filed in this case. We argued in reply that "the integrity of the underlying mortgage foreclosure action, including the foreclosure Judgment, had been vetted in the crucible of contested proceedings, both in the Supreme Court, and in the Appellate Division, wherein both sides were represented by counsel," and that this met the purpose of the affirmation "required" by the court administrator's office.

We also urged the court to follow a non-binding decision of another trial court judge which held that the court administration office's affirmation "requirement" was "not a permissible exercise of the rule making authority vested in the chief administrator of the courts," and that the powers delegated to the chief administrator are limited to the efficient and orderly transaction of business in the trial courts, not to the creation of substantive or procedural requirements affecting parties to a case.

The judge, without revealing which arguments formed the basis of his decision, issued an order granting the Motion, confirming the Report of Sale, and directing entry of a deficiency judgment exceeding $282,000.00.

Learn more about our Mortgage Foreclosure work.

Windels Marx helps you harness opportunity and mitigate risk with a team that provides your business with the service, quality and value essential to a trusted relationship.