United States District Court, D. New Jersey, Camden Vicinage
PEDRO J. OLIVER, and MYRNA E. OLIVER, Plaintiffs,
BANK OF AMERICA, N.A., Defendant.
Pedro J. Oliver, Myrna E. Oliver, Atco, New Jersey, Pro Se Plaintiffs.
Jeffrey P. Catenacci, WINSTON & STRAWN LLP, Newark, New Jersey, Attorneys for Defendant.
RENÉE MARIE BUMB, District Judge.
This matter comes before the Court upon a motion by Defendant Bank of America, N.A. and its predecessor, Countrywide Bank FSB (hereinafter "Defendant"), to dismiss Plaintiffs' Complaint pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6). [Docket No. 5]. This Court previously granted this motion as unopposed [Docket No. 7] but later permitted the Plaintiffs to file late opposition papers and have the Motion to Dismiss reinstated [Docket No. 11]. For the reasons set forth below, the Defendant's motion shall be granted.
The Plaintiffs filed a Complaint in New Jersey Superior Court, Camden County, seeking to quiet title to real property located at 49 Oakton Drive, Atco, New Jersey ("the property"). That Complaint was timely removed to this Court by the Defendant on August 13, 2013. In the underlying Complaint, the Plaintiffs allege that the Defendant obtained an interest in the property via a "purported loan" which was "obtained by wrongful acts of fraud, fraudulent inducement, concealment and fraudulent misrepresentation." [Docket No. 1 at 16, ¶ 11].
The Plaintiffs aver that the Defendant never used "any of its own money to fund the promissory note instrument or the underlying purported loan, " [id. at ¶ 18], and "arbitrarily and discretely stole [the] promissory note, claimed it as its own, and converted the same to a negotiable instrument...." [Id. at ¶ 23]. Overall, because the Defendant is alleged to have procured signatures on the mortgage and promissory note on fraudulent grounds, the Plaintiffs contend that there is no lawful, binding contract between the parties. Id. at ¶ 25.
Based on these allegations, the Plaintiffs seek to quiet title to the property and request a "Non-Verification of Debt." In support of this request, Plaintiffs contend that the Defendant "cannot be a real party in interest authorized to enforce the security instrument pursuant to the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA)." Id. at ¶ 32.
To withstand a motion to dismiss under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6), "a complaint must contain sufficient factual matter, accepted as true, to state a claim to relief that is plausible on its face.'" Ashcroft v. Iqbal , 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009)(quoting Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly , 550 U.S. 544, 570 (2007)). "A claim has facial plausibility when the plaintiff pleads factual content that allows the court to draw the reasonable inference that the defendant is liable for the misconduct alleged." Id. at 678. "[A]n unadorned, the-defendant-unlawfully harmed-me accusation" does not suffice to survive a motion to dismiss. Id. at 678. "[A] plaintiff's obligation to provide the grounds' of his entitle[ment] to relief' requires more than labels and conclusions, and a formulaic recitation of the elements of a cause of action will not do." Twombly , 550 U.S. at 555 (quoting Papasan v. Allain , 478 U.S. 265, 286 (1986)). "Threadbare recitals of the elements of a cause of action, supported by mere conclusory statements, do not suffice." Iqbal , 556 U.S. at 678.
In reviewing a plaintiff's allegations, the district court "must accept as true all well-pled factual allegations as well as all reasonable inferences that can be drawn from them, and construe those allegations in the light most favorable to the plaintiff." Bistrian v. Levi , 696 F.3d 352, 358 n.1 (3d Cir. 2012). Only the allegations in the complaint, and "matters of public record, orders, exhibits attached to the complaint and items appearing in the record of the case" are taken into consideration. Oshiver v. Levin, Fishbein, Sedran & Berman , 38 F.3d 1380, 1384 n.2 (3d Cir. 1994)(citing Chester Cty. Intermediate Unit v. Pennsylvania Blue Shield , 896 F.2d 808, 812 (3d Cir. 1990)).