810.513.3044 PH

Kevin A. Lavalle

Specializing in Environmental Law and Real Property Law

Court of Appeals Declares Some Foreclosures Invalid

A recent decision by the Michigan Court of Appeals has the potential to set aside previously granted foreclosures. In the consolidated cases of Residential Funding Co., LLC, f/k/a Residential Funding Corp. v Saurman and Bank of New York Trust Co. v Messner, (hereinafter “Residential Funding Co.”) the court held that certain foreclosures instituted by Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems Inc. (“MERS”) were invalid. Continue reading

Michigan Ruling Restricting MERS Ability to Foreclose Given Retroactive Effect

The Michigan Court of Appeals ruled in Residential Funding Co, Inc. v Saurman, — NW2d —, 2011 WL 1516819 (Mich. App. April 21, 2011), that Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems, Inc. (MERS) could not utilize the foreclosure by advertisement statute when it did not own the underlying note. (See previous blog posting of May 4, 2011). In Richard v Schneiderman & Sherman, P.C., — N.W.2d —-, 2011 WL 3760862 (Mich.App. Continue reading

Michigan Supreme Court May Entertain Appeal of MERS Decision

The Michigan Supreme Court may weigh in on the question of whether Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems, Inc. (“MERS”) can use the foreclosure by advertisement statute. The Michigan Court of Appeals ruled in Residential Funding Co, Inc. v Saurman, — NW2d —, 2011 WL 1516819 (Mich. App. April 21, 2011), that MERS could not utilize the foreclosure by advertisement statute when it did not own the underlying note. Continue reading

Ramifications of Failure to Disclose Contamination

A recent Michigan Court of Appeals decision illustrates the ramifications of failure to fully disclose the presence of hazardous substances prior to the sale of real estate. The case of Alfieri v Bertorelli, — N.W.2d —-, 2011 WL 4949671 (Mich.App.) involved a condominium project built on a site previously used to manufacture pipe organs and picture frames. It also housed a cyanide based metal plating operation. Continue reading

MERS 1, Homeowners 0

In Residential Funding Co., LLC, f/k/a Residential Funding Corp. v Saurman, the Michigan Court of Appeals held that Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems Inc. (“MERS”) could not pursue foreclosures under Michigan’s foreclosure by advertisement statute and that certain foreclosures already obtained were invalid. MERS was created by the lending industry to make it easier to sell home loans to investors. Continue reading

RIP Michigan Economic Growth Authority Tax Credits

The Michigan Economic Growth Authority’s (MEGA) “flagship” program of offering tax credits to foster job creation ended its long run yesterday. Created in 1995, the MEGA tax credits were designed to attract and retain businesses in the State. Tax restructuring and creation of a new Corporate Income Tax sounded the death knell for the program. Continue reading

Reuse of Old Auto Plants Sites

If you have the chance, check out the article I wrote entitled “Questions Remain on Proposed Reuse of Old Auto Plant Sites” that appeared in the January 6, 2012 edition of the Flint Journal, p. A5.

Alfieri v Bertorelli Update

On January 10, 2012, the Court of Appeals entered an Order vacating its prior opinion of October 18, 2011. Accompanying the Order was a new opinion. That opinion is identical to the prior one with the exception of minor changes to the Court’s analysis on whether it was proper to provide a jury instruction on comparative fault. Continue reading