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Haynes v. JP Morgan Chase Bank, N.A.

Court of Appeals of Texas, Ninth District, Beaumont

September 21, 2017

STONE HAYNES JR., Appellant
v.
JP MORGAN CHASE BANK, N.A. AND PLEASURE PIER HOMEOWNERS ASSOCIATION, Appellees

          Submitted on August 10, 2017

         On Appeal from the 58th District Court Jefferson County, Texas Trial Cause No. A-198, 593

          Before Kreger, Horton, and Johnson, JJ.

          MEMORANDUM OPINION

          LEANNE JOHNSON Justice

         This is an appeal by Appellant, Stone Haynes Jr. (Haynes or Appellant), from the trial court's orders granting summary judgments to Appellees, JP Morgan Chase Bank, N.A. (Chase), and Pleasure Pier Homeowners Association (HOA) (collectively Appellees). Haynes filed a pro se "Application for Temporary Restraining Order and Original Petition for Declaratory Judgment" (Original Petition) on June 7, 2016. On June 21, 2016, Haynes filed a pro se "Application for Temporary Injunction and 1st Petition for Declaratory Judgment" (Amended Petition), wherein Haynes alleged that in 2006 he purchased property located at 1310 Central, Beaumont, Texas, (Central Property), and in 2007 he also purchased certain condominium property located at 560 Pleasure Pier Blvd., Port Arthur, Texas (Condo Property). Chase and the HOA are named as defendants in the Amended Petition. Haynes alleged that Chase financed the purchase of each property and that Chase had caused the properties to be posted for foreclosure. Haynes further alleged that the HOA has erroneously foreclosed on the Condo Property. Haynes alleged that he was entitled to a temporary injunction and declaratory judgment against Chase and the HOA because the foreclosures by Chase and the HOA were wrongful. Chase filed an answer on June 30, 2016, and the HOA filed its answer on July 1, 2016.

         Chase filed a Traditional Motion for Summary Judgment on November 1, 2016, and the HOA filed a Motion for Summary Judgment[1] on November 14, 2016. Haynes filed Plaintiff's Response to Defendant's Traditional Motion for Summary Judgment wherein he stated he was responding to the motion filed by Chase. In his response, Haynes challenged foreclosure by Chase and by the HOA, and he included an argument about the "legal status" of Texas Regional Acceptance Company, LLC (TRAC), which Haynes alleged was the record owner of the Condo Property. The trial court granted both motions for summary judgment, entering an Order Granting JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A.'s Traditional Motion for Summary Judgment and a separate Summary Judgment in Favor of Pleasure Pier Homeowners Association. In its order granting Chase's motion, the court also ordered that

. . . any and [all] accelerations of the Central Property Note and the Pleasure Island Note prior to March 16, 2016 were timely abandoned, such that no acceleration prior to March 16, 2016 is effective to accrue a cause of action for purposes of the four year statute of limitations for foreclosure[.]

         The trial court did not specify the basis for granting summary judgment for the HOA. Haynes filed a notice of appeal.

         It is undisputed that Haynes secured a loan for the purchase of the Central Property in December of 2006, and it was secured by a Deed of Trust. The summary judgment evidence also reflects that Haynes secured a loan for the purchase of the Condo Property in March of 2007, and it was also secured by a Deed of Trust. Both deeds of trust were later assigned to Chase.

         In its motion for summary judgment, Chase alleged that over the years, it accelerated the notes on both properties and also sent notices of rescission. As to the Central Property, Chase sent Notices of Acceleration to Haynes in December of 2009, and June of 2010. On August 15, 2013, Chase sent Haynes a "Rescission of Acceleration of Loan Maturity" as to "the notice of acceleration dated 07/13/2012 and all prior notices of acceleration." On December 9, 2013, Chase sent another Notice of Acceleration. On February 27, 2014, Chase executed and recorded a "Rescission and Abandonment of Acceleration" purporting to abandon and rescind notices of acceleration "made prior to the date of execution of this document." In June of 2015, July of 2015, and January of 2016, Chase sent Haynes four additional Notices of Acceleration. On March 16, 2016, Chase sent a "Rescission of Acceleration" for the "notice of acceleration dated January 21, 2016, and all prior notices of acceleration." Finally, on April 21, 2016, Chase sent another Notice of Acceleration.

         As to the Condo Property, Chase sent a Notice of Acceleration in November of 2010 and July of 2012. In February of 2014, Chase executed and recorded a "Rescission and Abandonment of Acceleration" as to accelerations made prior thereto. In July and September of 2015, and in February of 2016, Chase sent additional notices of acceleration. On March 16, 2016, Chase sent a "Rescission of Acceleration" as to "the notice of acceleration dated February 2, 2016 and all prior notices of acceleration." According to Chase, there was a typographical error in the March 16th rescission which left the February 3, 2016 Notice of Acceleration in place.

         Issues on Appeal

         Haynes argues on appeal that the trial court erred in granting the summary judgments for Chase and the HOA because "[t]he statute of limitations forecloses the rights of JP Morgan Chase and Pleasure Pier. Tex[.] Civ. Prac[.] & Rem. Code Sec. 16.035." Haynes argues that their liens are null and void under Section 16.035(e). According to Haynes, "JP Chase's actions in abandoning the acceleration did not toll limitations." Haynes contends that Chase could not "unilaterally" rescind the prior notices of foreclosure and notices of acceleration and therefore the foreclosure was time barred. Chase argues that it was well within its four-year statute of limitations when it sought to foreclose on the lien on the property. Haynes also argues that as to the HOA "the foreclosure was invalid because ...


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