Monday, January 24, 2011
The most viewed business article today on the Boston Herald website examines the next foreclosure-mess case coming to the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts and its impact on the title marketability of foreclosed homes there. Francis Bevilacqua paid for a property in Haverhill, Mass. pursuant to a foreclosure on a mortgage in a securitized trust supervised by U.S. Bancorp. Judge Keith Long of the Massachusetts Land Court found that Bevilacqua had no title to the property because the foreclosure was invalid. In its recent decision in U.S Bank v. Ibanez (see my earlier post), the SJC upheld another Judge Long decision finding a completed U.S. Bank foreclosure to be invalid.
According to an attorney quoted about the foreclosure buyer's predicament, even should he lose on appeal, Mr. Bevilacaqua may be able to take advantage of a color-of-title-shortcut adverse possession statute and obtain valid title in as little as three years. (To think, I was concerned that nonjudicial foreclosures and botched mortgage securitizations might combine to create serious, widespread title problems.) Stay tuned, the SJC will hear the case in April.