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Valerie A. Thompson v. Hsbc Bank

March 27, 2012

VALERIE A. THOMPSON, PLAINTIFF,
v.
HSBC BANK, USA, N.A., DEFENDANT.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Paul L. Friedman United States District Judge

OPINION

This matter is before the Court on the motion of defendant, HSBC Bank, USA, N.A., to dismiss the amended complaint of pro se plaintiff Valerie A. Thompson under Rule 8 and Rule 12(b)(6) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. Upon consideration of the parties' papers, the relevant legal authorities, and the entire record in this case, the Court will grant HSBC's motion to dismiss.*fn1

I. BACKGROUND

Valerie A. Thompson, proceeding pro se, has filed this lawsuit against HSBC Bank USA, N.A. She alleges that HSBC owes her $382,500 plus interest and damages. See Am. Compl. ¶¶ 6, 12. Although the basis of that allegation is not entirely clear from the face of Ms. Thompson's amended complaint, it appears that ultimately this case arises out of a mortgage loan, executed in July of 2005, that Ms. Thompson secured against her residential property.

Ms. Thompson attached to her amended complaint various exhibits, including, among other things, the Note and Deed of Trust on her 2005 residential mortgage loan, with a loan reference number of 691004832. See Am. Compl., Ex. E, Note at 1, July 19, 2005; Am. Compl., Ex. F, Deed of Trust at 1, July 19, 2005. As set forth in the Note and Deed of Trust, on July 19, 2005 Ms. Thompson borrowed $382,500 from Option One Mortgage Corporation by a mortgage loan secured against her residential property, located at 4512 13th Street N.W. in the District of Columbia. See Note at 1-2; Deed of Trust at 1-7. According to the terms of that loan, Ms. Thompson agreed to repay the $382,500 with interest. See Note at 1; Deed of Trust at 1. As HSBC explains, Ms. Thompson's loan with Option One subsequently was securitized and placed into a trust for which HSBC is the trustee. See Mot. at 2 n.2.

By June 11, 2010, Ms. Thompson allegedly defaulted on her mortgage loan and received a notice of foreclosure sale on her property. See Am. Compl., Ex. B, Notice of Foreclosure Sale of Real Property or Condominium Unit at 1-2, June 11, 2010. Two weeks later, on June 24, 2010, Ms. Thompson filed a lawsuit in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia, naming as the defendant the foreclosure trustee who initiated the foreclosure proceedings. See Dkt. No. 3 at 2-5, Docket of Proceedings in Thompson v. Beirman, Civil Action No. 10-4715 (D.C. Super. Ct.). On October 15, 2010, that complaint was dismissed with leave to amend, see id. at 3, and on November 12, 2010, Ms. Thompson filed an amended verified complaint against HSBC. See id. at 2; see also Mot. at 1-2. On December 7, 2010, HSBC removed the case to this Court under 28 U.S.C. § 1441. See Notice at 1-2; see also Mot. at 1-2.

In her amended complaint, Ms. Thompson alleges that on July 19, 2005 she executed a "NOTE SECURED BY DEED OF TRUST," Am. Compl. ¶ 6, and cites a loan reference number of 691004832, id. ¶ 15 - the same loan reference number on the Note and Deed of Trust attached as exhibits to her amended complaint. See Note at 1; Deed of Trust at 1. Notwithstanding the text of the Note and Deed of Trust, however, Ms. Thompson alleges that the Note did not in fact represent a loan of money to her. See Am. Compl. ¶ 6. Instead, Ms. Thompson alleges that the Note constituted a transfer of $382,500 from Ms. Thompson to HSBC - that is, she alleges that she is the lender and HSBC is the borrower. See id.

Ms. Thompson alleges that the Note is "an asset-based negotiable instrument" that conferred a monetary benefit upon HSBC. Am. Compl. ¶ 15. As Ms. Thompson describes it, she deposited $382,000 with HSBC, id. ¶ 6, and HSBC since has unlawfully taken, retained, and used her Note without ever paying for it. See id. ¶ 15. Consequently, in this lawsuit Ms. Thompson seeks to recover the value of her mortgage plus interest and damages from HSBC. See id. ¶¶ 12, 19, 25. She makes three claims against the bank in her amended complaint: (1) a claim for "money lent," id. ¶¶ 11-13; (2) a claim for breach of contract, id. ¶¶ 14-20; and (3) a claim for violation of the Truth in Lending Act ("TILA"), 15 U.S.C. § 1601 et seq. Am. Compl. ¶¶ 21-26.

Regarding her claim for "money lent," Ms. Thompson makes the following assertion:

Defendant owes Plaintiff for the Note, i.e., $382,500.00, plus interest for the use of Plaintiff's money, plus damages consisting of all sums Plaintiff erroneously paid Defendant for Plaintiff's lending Defendant Plaintiff's money, plus other compensatory damages as the court may decide, plus reasonable attorney's fees.

Am. Compl. ¶ 12.

As for the second claim, Ms. Thompson alleges that HSBC breached its contract with her by "taking, retaining, and using [her] Note, an asset-based negotiable instrument, and never paying for use of [the] Note," which, she contends, was the source of funds for her loan.

Id. ¶ 15. She further alleges that she owes HSBC no debt, "since [HSBC] made [her] no loan[.]" Id. ¶ 16.

In her final claim, Ms. Thompson alleges that HSBC violated the TILA because HSBC did not disclose to her that she is "the actual lender" who owes nothing to HSBC, and that HSBC owes Ms. Thompson for its use of her Note. Id. ΒΆ 23. Because of this alleged violation, Ms. Thompson declares that the "note and mortgage agreements . . . are null and void on the basis of ...


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