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In re Distribution of Proceeds from Sheriff’s Sale of Premises 250 Bell Road, Lower Merion Township, Montgomery County

Superior Court of Pennsylvania
345 A.2d 921 (1975)


Facts

John E. Jennings and Helen M. Jennings owned property in Montgomery County, Pennsylvania. Equitable Life Assurance foreclosed a first mortgage on the property on February 20, 1974, and the property was sold at a sheriff’s foreclosure sale on the same day. After the sale occurred, $66,679.50 remained available to be distributed to creditors. The sheriff posted a proposed schedule of distribution that omitted a judgment obtained by Boenning and Scattergood, Inc. (Boenning) (plaintiff), because the judgment had not been recorded. Sometime after Boenning obtained the judgment, but before the sheriff’s sale, John McCoy (defendant) loaned money and took a mortgage on the property. McCoy was aware of Boenning’s unrecorded judgment. The McCoy mortgage was recorded. Subsequently, Margolies (defendant) and Jay Vending Company (Jay) (defendant) loaned money and took mortgages on the property. Neither Margolies nor Jay knew about the Boenning judgment. The Margolies and Jay mortgages also were recorded. Boenning brought a claim to obtain an order declaring priority status for the Boenning lien of judgment. The trial court ruled in Boenning’s favor. The court resolved the circuitous liens by using the temporal priority rule of first in time, first in right. McCoy, Margolies, and Jay appealed the ruling, claiming that the subsequent liens took priority over Boenning’s unrecorded judgment lien.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Price, J.)

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