from the United States District Court for the Northern
District of Texas
JOLLY, SMITH and GRAVES, Circuit Judges.
appeal concerns an attempted mortgage foreclosure sale of
property located in Grand Prairie, Texas, by Deutsche Bank
National Trust Company ("Deutsche Bank"), Ocwen
Loan Servicing, LLC ("Ocwen"), and Power Default
Services ("Power Default"). Regina Foster appeals
the district court's denial of her motion for remand
based on its finding that Power Default, a non-diverse
defendant and substitute trustee for the attempted
foreclosure, was improperly joined in the proceeding because
the foreclosure did not take place. Foster also appeals the
district court's grant of summary judgment in favor of
the defendants-appellees. Finding no error, we AFFIRM.
September 2004, Regina Foster's then-husband, Carlos
Foster, executed a promissory note to finance the purchase of
a house in Grand Prairie, Texas. Regina Foster was not listed
as an obligor on the promissory note. She is, however, listed
as a co-borrower with Carlos on a deed of trust, which was
executed on the same day as the promissory note. Regina later
filed for divorce. During the divorce proceedings, the state
court issued a temporary order awarding exclusive use of the
Grand Prairie property to Regina.
defaulted on the loan and, after receiving notification,
failed to cure the default. In 2014, Power Default sent a
Notice of Acceleration and Notice of Substitute Trustee Sale
to the Grand Prairie home address, where Regina received the
notices. The trustee sale notice listed Ocwen as the mortgage
servicer and Deutsche Bank as the mortgagee. Power Default
was the substitute trustee. The foreclosure sale was
scheduled for May 6, 2014.
5, 2014, Regina Foster filed her original petition in the
Judicial District Court in Tarrant County, Texas, alleging
wrongful foreclosure and requesting a temporary restraining
order and injunctive relief and, in the alternative, a
reformation of the deed of trust. She also alleged that she
did not receive proper notice of the foreclosure sale and
that she was not given an opportunity to cure the default.
The state court then issued a temporary restraining order,
putting a halt to the foreclosure sale. Ocwen did not pursue
the foreclosure sale on May 6, 2014. Defendants Deutsche Bank
and Ocwen removed the case to federal court on the basis of
diversity jurisdiction, notwithstanding Power Default's
involvement as a non-diverse defendant. In their Notice of
Removal, Deutsche Bank and Ocwen argued that Power Default
was improperly joined for the sole purpose of defeating
diversity. The federal district court concluded that removal
was proper and dismissed all claims against Power Default
in February 2016, the district court granted summary judgment
in favor of defendants Deutsche Bank and Ocwen and dismissed
with prejudice the claims in Foster's second amended
petition, including: a claim of attempt to wrongfully
foreclose on the property, a claim that the defendants
violated Texas Property Code § 51.002(b),  a claim that the deed of trust failed to
create a valid lien upon the property, a request for
permanent injunctive relief, and a request for reformation of
the deed of trust.
district court observed that it was undisputed that no
foreclosure sale had taken place and that Foster still
resided on the property. Because no foreclosure occurred, the
district court rejected Foster's claims for attempted
wrongful foreclosure and violation of § 51.002(b).
Further, the court found that the reasons Foster provided to
support her invalid lien claim-that her name was misspelled
as "Reeba Nqchael Howell Foster" on the deed of
trust and that the document number was incorrectly given as
Dallas County Document
3088999 on the Notice of Substitute Trustee Sale-did not
support a finding "that these discrepancies have caused
her any confusion or harm." Because Foster's
substantive claims failed on the merits, the district court
denied her request for a permanent injunction. Foster's
request for reformation of the deed of trust was likewise
denied because she failed to demonstrate why such reformation
then filed a Motion for Reconsideration and, in the
alternative, urged the district court to refer her case to
the bankruptcy court. The court reasoned that Foster's
legal claims arose after she filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy
in 2012 and therefore were not part of the bankruptcy estate;
thus, there was no basis on which to refer the case to the
bankruptcy court. The district court denied both requests.
Foster timely appealed.
review a district court's denial of a motion to remand de
novo, applying the same standard as the district court.
Allen v. R&H Oil & Gas Co., 63 F.3d 1326,
1336 (5th Cir. 1995). Grants or denials of summary judgment
likewise receive de novo review. LeMaire v. Louisiana
Dep't of Transp. & Dev., 480 F.3d 383, 386 (5th
Cir. 2007). Summary judgment is appropriate when "there
is no genuine dispute as to any ...