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The purpose of using their name was to provide window dressing: a big name like HSBC is more likely to be taken seriously than some unknown title agent, which is why in the non-judicial states that ALWAYS have a substitution of trustee.ALCS has benefited from the opportunity to meticulously choose its team members who share our core beliefs in a dedication to client service through quality, cost effective and highly responsive service.Most of our consultants and staff have come from industry leading administration providers, giving ALCS a breadth of knowledge, experience and capability in both bankruptcy and class action administration.If you’re wondering why I’m telling you about an 11-year old ruling involving a defunct communications satellite, it’s because the IBJ Schroeder opinion is sure to be invoked by Bank of New York Mellon, the trustee of those Countrywide mortgage-backed securities, as well as the 22 Countrywide MBS investors represented by Gibbs & Bruns as they appeal last week’s decision by U. District Judge William Pauley III of Manhattan federal court.In holding that the federal courts have jurisdiction over Bank of America’s proposed .5 billion settlement, Pauley took issue with BNY Mellon’s use of an Article 77 proceeding to get the deal approved.The investment contract, BNY Mellon said, governs the trustee’s responsibilities.
Standard securitization contracts, known as pooling and servicing agreements, say the indentured trustee serves a ministerial function, mostly making revenue distributions to investors.
Pauley cited Judge Learned Hand — who sat on the same court a century ago — to conclude that indentured trustees can’t evade a duty of loyalty to beneficiaries just because their responsibilities are defined by a contract.
BNY Mellon had asserted its only duty to act in good faith came from the Countrywide pooling and servicing agreements.
Pauley considered the question in the context of determining whether the proposed Bof A settlement falls into an exception to federal court jurisdiction in the Class Action Fairness Act.
But his reasoning, of course, can be cited in other contexts.
American Legal Claim Services, LLC (ALCS) was founded by seasoned legal administration consultants that have specialized in both the Bankruptcy and Class Action markets, as an answer to the need for a sophisticated claims and noticing services provider dedicated to the middle market.