United States District Court, E.D. Washington
ORDER GRANTING UNITED STATES' MOTION FOR DEFAULT
AND SUMMARY JUDGMENT
ROSANNA MALOUF PETERSON UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
THE COURT, without oral argument, is a motion by the United
States for default judgment against Defendants Patrick Nolan,
Native Link, LLC (“Native Link”), and Native Link
Construction, LLC (“Native Link Construction”),
and for summary judgment against Defendant Melinda Ann Walk,
who represents that she is now known as Melinda Ann Thompson.
ECF No. 14. Ms. Thompson, the only Defendant to appear and
answer the complaint in this matter, did not respond to the
motion for default and summary judgment. Having reviewed the
United States' motion, supporting declarations, and the
remaining record, the Court finds that judgment shall be
entered for the United States against all Defendants for the
reasons that follow.
United States filed this action on November 30, 2016, to
recover funds that the United States guaranteed when
Defendants took out a loan for a maximum draw amount of $750,
000 in 2014 for their business ventures. See ECF No.
1 at 1- 2. The United States provided a ninety percent
guaranty for Defendants' loan to the lending bank.
Defendants Ms. Thompson and Mr. Nolan personally guaranteed
the loan. ECF No. 1-1 at 38-44.
the guaranty and the promissory note provided that the
borrowers agreed to pay, in the event of default and to the
extent permitted by law, “all expenses of collection,
enforcement or protection of [the lender's] rights and
remedies under” the documents relating to the debt. ECF
No. 1-1 at 43.
Thompson admitted in her answer, the parties defaulted on the
loan in or around October 2015. See ECF Nos. 1 at 6;
10 at 2; see also ECF No. 1-1 at 46, 54. After the
lender bank unsuccessfully tried to collect from Defendants,
the bank submitted a claim to the United States for the
guaranteed portion of the loan. The United States paid the
guaranty to the bank, and the bank assigned its rights in the
loan to the United States. ECF No. 1-1 at 53-56.
September 13, 2016, Defendants were indebted in the amount of
$351, 877.75 to the United States. ECF No. 5-1 at 1. In
January 2017, Defendants agreed to provide the chattel
securing the loan to the United States to sell at public
auction and apply the proceeds, less the auction costs, to
their debt. See ECF No. 5-1. After the United States
auctioned off the equipment, Defendants owed a balance of
$281, 843.14, as of February 13, 2018. ECF No. 16-2
(Certificate of Indebtedness).
Thompson answered the United States' complaint on January
26, 2018. In Ms. Thompson's answer, she agreed that she
had executed a promissory note, that she had personally
guaranteed the loan, and that Defendants had defaulted on
payments for the loan. ECF No. 10 at 2. Ms. Thompson disputes
the Government's allegation that she owes attorney's
may exercise its discretion to order default judgment
following the entry of default by the Clerk of the Court.
Fed.R.Civ.P. 55(b); see also Local Rule
(“LR”) 55.1; Aldabe v. Aldabe, 616 F.2d
1089, 1092 (9th Cir. 1980) (“The district court's
decision whether to enter a default judgment is a
Ninth Circuit has prescribed the following factors to guide
the district court's decision regarding the entry of a
default judgment: “(1) the possibility of prejudice to
the plaintiff, (2) the merits of plaintiff's substantive
claim, (3) the sufficiency of the complaint, (4) the sum of
money at stake in the action; (5) the possibility of a
dispute concerning material facts; (6) whether the default
was due to excusable neglect, and (7) the strong policy
underlying the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure favoring
decisions on the merits.” Eitel v. McCool, 782
F.2d 1470, 1471-72 (9th Cir. 1986).
the Clerk of Court enters default, the well-pleaded
allegations of the complaint, except those concerning
damages, are deemed true. Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(b)(6); see
TeleVideo Sys., Inc. v. Heidenthal, 826 F.2d 915, 917-18
(9th Cir. 1987). In conjunction with moving for default
judgment, Plaintiff must provide evidence of all damages
sought in the complaint, and the damages sought must not be
different in kind or exceed the amount demanded in the
pleadings. Fed.R.Civ.P. 54(c).
addition, the party seeking the entry of a default judgment
must file an affidavit setting forth: (1) whether the party
against whom judgment is sought is an infant or an
incompetent person, as required by Fed.R.Civ.P. Rule 55(b);
(2) that the Service members Civil Relief Act of 2003 does
not apply; (3) that written notice of the motion was served
on the defaulting party if the party appeared personally or
by a ...