We are pleased to share a recent decision of a case handled by Friedman Vartolo, LLP. In Countrywide Bank, FSB. v. Charan Jit Singh, et al; Appellate Division 2nd Judicial Department, 2016-05663 -6/5/19; Supreme Index 28609/08. In an action to foreclose a mortgage, nonparty Christiana Trust, as assignee of the plaintiff, Countrywide Bank, FSB, appealed from an order of the Supreme Court, Queens County, dated February 23, 2016. The order, insofar as appealed from, denied those branches of the plaintiff’s motion which were to vacate an order of dismissal and to restore the action to the active calendar.
At oral argument, we articulated the arguments presented in Plaintiff`s brief, namely that the lower court should have exercised its equitable power and vacate the dismissal order because Defendant consented to judgment in a so-ordered stipulation, balance of the equities, and the context surrounding the delay (i.e., the legislation that passed in the months and years following commencement). Thereafter, opposing counsel argued the points contained in his opposition brief, highlighting the 4-year period that the case was dormant (2011-2015) with prior counsel. The Court found that equity and justice require vacatur of the dismissal order in the interest of justice and that the Court improperly applied AO 548/10 retroactively, erred in denying the plaintiff’s’ motion for summary judgment pursuant to a so ordered stipulation. AO 548/10 had not been promulgated at the time that plaintiff’s motion was filed, and by the legislations language, could be updated at the next motion. However, the Court found that given the delays in proceeding on the matter, plaintiff was not entitled to any interest accrued after July 8, 2009, 30 days after the so ordered stipulation. While the action was restored with the limitation of recovering the principal balance on the loan and interest accrued through July 8, 2009, the asset was saved.
A great job by Oran Schwager, Esq. of our firm! For more information regarding this case, please contact Deborah Gallo, Director of Operations at [email protected]