Servicing Guide

Published September 9, 2020

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How should foreclosure proceedings be conducted when the servicer is the mortgagee of record?

When the servicer is the mortgagee of record for a mortgage loan, the jurisdiction in which the security property is located will affect how the foreclosure proceedings are conducted or initiated.

In most states, the law firm must initiate the proceedings in the servicer's name when the servicer is the mortgagee of record or in the participating lender's name when the servicer is not the mortgagee of record for a participation pool mortgage loan. The law firm must subsequently have title vested in Fannie Mae's name in a manner that will not result in the imposition of a transfer tax.

The servicer and the law firm must determine the most appropriate method to use in each jurisdiction.

In any state or jurisdiction in which the foreclosure proceedings must be conducted in Fannie Mae’s name to prevent the imposition of a transfer tax (such as Rhode Island; New Hampshire; Maine; or Orleans Parish, Louisiana), an assignment of the mortgage or deed of trust to Fannie Mae must be prepared and recorded in a timely manner to avoid any delays in the initiation of the foreclosure proceedings. If the servicer believes that a foreclosure proceeding must be conducted in Fannie Mae’s name in any other jurisdiction to prevent the imposition of a transfer tax, the servicer must contact Fannie Mae’s Legal department (see F-4-03, List of Contacts) for permission to do so.

When a document custodian has custody of an original unrecorded assignment of the mortgage to Fannie Mae, the servicer may either

  • request return of that document so it can be recorded, or

  • prepare a new assignment if doing so will expedite the process.

Once the assignment to Fannie Mae has been recorded, the foreclosure proceedings must be conducted in Fannie Mae’s name.

For more information please see: E-3.2-09: Conducting Foreclosure Proceedings 

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If you have additional questions, Fannie Mae customers can visit Ask Poli to get information from other Fannie Mae published sources.

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