No Evidence? No Problem! Court Takes Judicial Notice of Property Records to Dismiss Based on Mootness

Courtney D. Alsobrook v. MTGLQ Investors, LP
Dallas Court of Appeals, No. 05-20-00400-CV (October 26, 2021)
Justices Myers, Partida-Kipness (Opinion, linked here), and Garcia
    Alsobrook stopped making mortgage payments on her house, and MTGLQ, the mortgagee, gave notice that it planned to foreclose. Alsobrook obtained a temporary restraining order stopping the foreclosure sale, but she never obtained a temporary or permanent injunction stopping future foreclosure proceedings. The trial court eventually granted MGTLQ’s motion for summary judgment. Alsobrook appealed.

        In its response brief on appeal, MTGLQ argued the appeal was moot because Alsobrook’s property had been sold at a foreclosure sale after the trial court entered judgment. But MTGLQ did not file a copy of the foreclosure sale deed or any other tangible proof of the sale. Nevertheless, the Court explained that it had the power to take judicial notice, for the first time on appeal, of facts that are a matter of public record and not subject to reasonable dispute.

        Rockwall County Central Appraisal District’s online records showed that the house was conveyed away from Alsobrook by foreclosure sale and identified someone other than Alsobrook as the current owner. Therefore, the Court took judicial notice of the sale. Because the property at issue had been sold, the Court held Alsobrook’s case had become moot and dismissed the appeal without considering the merits.
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