Fraud And Motions For Summary Of Judgment
Motions for a Summary Of Judgment (MSJs) are pleadings which (usually) judgment creditors (or their attorneys) ask a court to save themselves and the court money and time. An example of where a MSJ would be requested, is if a judgment creditor sued a defendant for fraud and proved the fraudulent activity in court to get a final judgment; and then their debtor filed for bankruptcy protection. A MSJ (Motion for Summary Judgment) could be requested in the debtor’s bankruptcy proceeding, to attempt to have that judgment ruled nondischargeable; without needing to again prove their debtor’s fraudulent actions again. The majority of bankruptcy judges are not easily persuaded, so the judgment creditor’s workload is usually heavy.
My articles are my opinions and are not, legal advice. I am a judgment broker, and not an attorney. If you want a strategy to use or legal advice, you should retain a lawyer. Motions For Summary of Judgment are covered by the F.R.C.P. (The Federal Rules Of Civil Procedure), rule 56. Judgment creditors must show proof of why MSJs should be approved. Rule #56 states the motion for a summary judgments should be granted if “the depositions, pleadings, answers to interrogatories, and admissions on file, along with the affidavits, if any, show that there isn’t any genuine issue about any material fact and that the moving party is entitled to a judgment as a matter of law”.
To win a fraud-related MSJ dischargeability action in bankruptcy court, you need to already have adjudication (a decision) from a civil court judgment, for the judgment debtor’s non-dischargeable conduct. You are then allowed to claim issue preclusion (collateral estoppel) to avoid retrying the issues again. What counts is the cause of action listed inside your complaint in the state court judgment, and what was the basis for the awarded damages in the judgment. The conduct must be deemed nondischargeable, pursuant to U.S.C. 523(a)(2)(A) and/or 523(a)(6).
A default judgment are occasionally a problem in bankruptcy courts. Many frauds do not answer lawsuits for reasons that include there is no court related discovery, they will not need to pay for lawyers; they are aware that a default judgment are usually easier to vacate, appeal, and domesticate; and a default judgment causes additional costs for the plaintiff in bankruptcy courts.
Certain bankruptcy courts may provide an extra chance to debtors with default judgments against them, to let them contest any issues which caused their default judgment. This may happen even though that default wasn’t caused by the plaintiff, and the debtor had their opportunity to appear in court, and chose to squander their chance to defend themselves. A few interesting motion for a summary judgment court cases are:
Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 324 (1986), “A party seeking summary judgment always bears the initial responsibility of informing the court of the basis for its motion, and identifying those portions of the pleadings, depositions, answers to interrogatories, and admissions on file, together with the affidavits, if any, which it believes demonstrate the absence of a genuine issue of material fact”. Also the plaintiff “bears the initial responsibility of informing the court of the basis for its motion”.
C.A.R. Transportation Brokerage Co. v. Darden Restaurants, Inc., 213 F.3d 474, 480 (9th Cir. 2000), “When the party moving for summary judgment would bear the burden of proof at trial, it must come forward with evidence which would entitle it to a directed verdict if the evidence was uncontroverted at trial”.
Countrywide Home Loans, Inc. v. U.S., 2007 WL 87827 at 7 (E.D. Cal. 2007), “When the moving party has the burden of proof at trial, that party needs to carry its initial burden at summary judgment by presenting evidence affirmatively showing, for all essential elements of their case, that no reasonable jury could find for the non-moving party”.