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Monterossas v. Superior Court (PNC Bank, N.A.)

California Court of Appeals, Third District, Sacramento

June 12, 2015

MICHAEL MONTEROSSA et al., Petitioners,
v.
THE SUPERIOR COURT OF SACRAMENTO COUNTY, Respondent. PNC BANK, N.A., et al., Real Parties in Interest.

ORIGINAL PROCEEDING in mandate. Super. Ct. No. 34-2014-00162063-CU-OR-GDS Steven H. Rodda, Judge.

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[Copyrighted Material Omitted]

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COUNSEL

United Law Center, Stephen J. Foondos and Danny A. Barak for Petitioners.

No appearance for Respondent.

LeClairRyan, Peter J. VanZandt and Lindsey S. Libed for Real Party in Interest PNC Bank, a division of PNC Bank, N.A.

No appearance for Real Party in Interest Quality Loan Service Corporation.

OPINION

BUTZ, Acting P.J.

In 2012, new legislation imposed specific limitations regarding the nonjudicial foreclosure of owner-occupied residential real property.[1] Among other things, the statutory scheme provides that a court may award reasonable attorney fees and costs to the “prevailing borrower, ” indicating: “A borrower shall be deemed to have prevailed for purposes of this subdivision if the borrower obtained injunctive relief or was awarded damages pursuant to this section.” (Civ. Code, § 2924.12, subd. (i).)[2] In this case, the respondent superior court concluded the petitioners were not prevailing borrowers because they obtained only a preliminary, rather than permanent, injunction. The court erred. We hold that a borrower who obtains a preliminary injunction enjoining, pursuant to section 2924.12, the trustee’s sale of his or her home is a “prevailing borrower” within the meaning of the statute.

FACTUAL AND PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND

On April 16, 2014, petitioners Michael Monterossa and Cheranne Nobis filed an ex parte application for a temporary restraining order (TRO) and request for issuance of an order to show cause regarding a preliminary injunction, seeking to prevent the trustee’s sale of their Folsom residence, then scheduled for April 21, 2014. Simultaneously, petitioners filed a civil complaint against real parties in interest. On April 17, the respondent superior court issued an order granting the TRO, enjoining real parties in interest from

Page 750

conducting the trustee’s sale pending a May 8, 2014 hearing on petitioners’ motion for ...


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