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Debra J. King v. Capitol Commerce Mortgage Co.

August 5, 2011

DEBRA J. KING,
PLAINTIFF,
v.
CAPITOL COMMERCE MORTGAGE CO., A CALIFORNIA CORPORATION, ET AL., DEFENDANTS.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Morrison C. England, Jr. United States District Judge

MEMORANDUM AND ORDER

Through this action, Plaintiff Debra King ("Plaintiff") seeks redress from Defendants Capitol Commerce Mortgage, C.C.M.C. Company, Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems, Inc. ("MERS"), ReconTrust Company, BAC Home Loans Servicing, and Land Safe Title of California (collectively, "Defendants") based on alleged violations of the Home Ownership Equity Protection Act, the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act, the Truth in Lending Act, the Fair Credit Reporting Act, and civil statutes of the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act.

Plaintiff also seeks redress for multiple claims brought under California state law. Presently before the Court is a Motion to Dismiss by Defendants MERS, ReconTrust Company, BAC Home Loans, and LandSafe Title of California (ECF No. 7) for failure to state a claim upon which relief may be granted, pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6).*fn1 Defendants' Motion was filed on May 26, 2011. Plaintiff filed a timely opposition to Defendants' Motion to Dismiss on June 30, 2011. (ECF No. 8). For the reasons set forth below, Defendants' Motion to Dismiss is granted.*fn2

BACKGROUND*fn3

Plaintiff purchased a home and financed it through a mortgage loan obtained on or around March 22, 2003, from Defendant Capitol Commerce Mortgage Company. The loan was secured by property located in Meadow Vista, California. At some point, Plaintiff attempted, and failed, to obtain a loan modification. A Notice of Default was placed on the property in December 2010. In March 2011, Defendant ReconTrust filed a Notice of Trustee Sale. Foreclosure commenced in May 2011.

STANDARD

On a motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6), all allegations of material fact must be accepted as true and construed in the light most favorable to the nonmoving party. Cahill v. Liberty Mut. Ins. Co., 80 F.3d 336, 337-38 (9th Cir. 1996). Rule 8(a)(2) requires only "a short and plain statement of the claim showing that the pleader is entitled to relief" in order to "give the defendant fair notice of what the [...] claim is and the grounds upon which it rests." Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007) (quoting Conley v. Gibson, 355 U.S. 41, 47 (1957)). A complaint attacked by a Rule 12(b)(6) motion to dismiss does not require detailed factual allegations. However, "a plaintiff's obligation to provide the grounds of his entitlement to relief requires more than labels and conclusions, and a formulaic recitation of the elements of a cause of action will not do."

Id. (internal citations and quotations omitted). A court is not required to accept as true a "legal conclusion couched as a factual allegation." Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 129 S. Ct. 1937, 1950 (2009) (quoting Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555). "Factual allegations must be enough to raise a right to relief above the speculative level." Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555 (citing 5 Charles Alan Wright & Arthur R. Miller, Federal Practice and Procedure § 1216 (3d ed. 2004) (stating that the pleading must contain something more than "a statement of facts that merely creates a suspicion [of] a legally cognizable right of action.")).

Furthermore, "Rule 8(a)(2)...requires a showing, rather than a blanket assertion, of entitlement to relief." Twombly, 550 U.S. at 556 n.3 (internal citations and quotations omitted). Thus, "[w]ithout some factual allegation in the complaint, it is hard to see how a claimant could satisfy the requirements of providing not only 'fair notice' of the nature of the claim, but also 'grounds' on which the claim rests." Id. (citing 5 Charles Alan Wright & Arthur R. Miller, supra, at § 1202). A pleading must contain "only enough facts to state a claim to relief that is plausible on its face." Id. at 570. If the "plaintiffs... have not nudged their claims across the line from conceivable to plausible, their complaint must be dismissed." Id. However, "[a] well-pleaded complaint may proceed even if it strikes a savvy judge that actual proof of those facts is improbable, and 'that a recovery is very remote and unlikely.'" Id. at 556 (quoting Scheuer v. Rhodes, 416 U.S. 232, 236 (1974)).

A court granting a motion to dismiss a complaint must then decide whether to grant leave to amend. Leave to amend should be "freely given" where there is no "undue delay, bad faith or dilatory motive on the part of the movant,...undue prejudice to the opposing party by virtue of allowance of the amendment, [or] futility of the amendment...." Foman v. Davis, 371 U.S. 178, 182 (1962); Eminence Capital, LLC v. Aspeon, Inc., 316 F.3d 1048, 1052 (9th Cir. 2003) (listing the Foman factors as those to be considered when deciding whether to grant leave to amend). Not all of these factors merit equal weight. Rather, "the consideration of prejudice to the opposing party...carries the greatest weight."

Id. (citing DCD Programs, Ltd. v. Leighton, 833 F.2d 183, 185 (9th Cir. 1987). Dismissal without leave to amend is proper only if it is clear that "the complaint could not be saved by any amendment." Intri-Plex Techs. v. Crest Group, Inc., 499 F.3d 1048, 1056 (9th Cir. 2007) (citing In re Daou Sys., Inc., 411 F.3d 1006, 1013 (9th Cir. 2005); Ascon Props., Inc. v. Mobil Oil Co., 866 F.2d 1149, 1160 (9th Cir. 1989) ("Leave need not be granted where the amendment of the complaint...constitutes an exercise in futility....")).

ANALYSIS

Plaintiff alleges violations of state and federal law and requests relief accordingly. The issue before the Court is not the substance of these various claims, but whether Plaintiff has pled sufficient facts as a general matter. While the complaint does not need detailed factual ...


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