Argued January 6, 2015
Approved for Publication March 17, 2015.
On appeal from the Superior Court of New Jersey, Chancery Division, Middlesex County, Docket Nos. F-30990-10 (A-5225-12) and F-21231-13 (A-2109-13) and Monmouth County, Docket No. F-26278-10 (A-1893-13).
Philip R. Kaufman argued the cause for appellants.
Anthony B. Vignuolo argued the cause for respondent ( Borrus, Goldin, Foley, Vignuolo, Hyman & Stahl, P.C., attorneys; Mr. Vignuolo and Anthony T. Betta, on the brief).
Before Judges FISHER, NUGENT and MANAHAN. The opinion of the court was delivered by FISHER, P.J.A.D.
[440 N.J.Super. 119] OPINION
In these three appeals of orders entered in three separate foreclosure actions, we consider, among other things, the impact caused by the plaintiff-lender having first sought and obtained a [440 N.J.Super. 120] money judgment in the Law Division -- before seeking foreclosure -- for the purpose of determining whether plaintiff has been fully compensated. Because we can draw no certain conclusions from the convoluted and unsettled factual record, we remand.
The record generated in these cases reveals that between September 2007 and July 2009, plaintiff Brunswick Bank & Trust made five construction and development loans to defendants Heln Management, LLC, and Affiliated Building Corp., that were guaranteed by Jeffrey Miller, a principal of both entities, and his daughter Melanie Miller. Each loan was secured by a mortgage on one of four properties, which we will refer to as Matthew Manor, Beacon Hill, Loren Terrace and Baldwin Street. A table identifying the five loans is set forth below.
In May 2010, plaintiff filed a complaint in the Law Division against Heln, Affiliated, and the two guarantors, on four of the five loans. On August 18, 2010, the Clerk of the Court entered a default judgment in favor of plaintiff and against Heln for [440 N.J.Super. 121] $1,884,141.84, against Affiliated for $175,000, and against the guarantors for the entire amount of the indebtedness, $2,059,141.84. The judgment also declared that plaintiff was entitled to " post-judgment interest" and an attorney fee.
After filing the Law Division complaint, but a few months before default judgment was entered, plaintiff commenced three foreclosure actions; a fourth was filed three years later. Specifically, plaintiff filed a complaint in Monmouth County on May 10, 2010, against Heln seeking foreclosure on Beacon Hill, and two foreclosure complaints in Middlesex County on June 8, 2010 -- one against Heln seeking foreclosure on ...