Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Enterprise FM Trust v. Global Environmental Solutions Inc.

United States District Court, D. Maine

December 31, 2019

ENTERPRISE FM TRUST, Plaintiff,
v.
GLOBAL ENVIRONMENTAL SOLUTIONS, INC., Defendant

          RECOMMENDED DECISION ON MOTION FOR ENTRY OF DEFAULT JUDGMENT

          JOHN C. NIVISON, U.S. MAGISTRATE JUDGE

         When Defendant did not respond to Plaintiff's complaint in this matter, upon Plaintiff's request, the Court entered a default against Defendant on Plaintiff's complaint. (Order, ECF No. 8.) Plaintiff subsequently filed a Motion for Entry of Default Judgment. (Motion, ECF No. 10.)[1] Through the motion, Plaintiff asks the Court for the entry of a judgment in the amount of $505, 354.84 in damages, charges and interest, an award of $57, 576.50 in attorneys' fees, and an order directing Defendant to return vehicles it leased from Plaintiff.

         Following a review of the record and after consideration of Plaintiff's motion, I recommend the Court grant the motion and enter judgment against Defendant.

         Factual Background

         With the entry of default against Defendant, Plaintiff's allegations against Defendant are “taken as true and … considered established as a matter of law.” Libertad v. Sanchez, 215 F.3d 206, 208 (1st Cir. 2000) (quoting Brockton Sav. Bank v. Peat, Marwick, Mitchell & Co., 771 F.2d 5, 13 (1st Cir. 1985)); see also In re Home Rests., Inc., 285 F.3d 111, 114 (1st Cir. 2002) (a party “who defaults is taken to have conceded the truth of the factual allegations in the complaint as establishing the grounds for liability ….”).

         Plaintiff and Defendant entered into a Master Equity Lease Agreement effective December 6, 2012 (the Agreement). (Complaint ¶ 6, ECF No. 1.)[2] Under the Agreement, Defendant leased vehicles from Plaintiff. (Id. ¶ 7.) Defendant was obligated to pay rent for the vehicles. (Id. ¶ 9.) On or about April 23, 2019, Defendant's April rent check was returned for insufficient funds. (Id. ¶ 10.) Defendant failed to remedy the missed rent payment within ten days, as required by the Agreement, and thus defaulted under the terms of the Agreement. (Id. ¶¶11, 14.) Defendant has not paid rent on the vehicles since March 2019. (Declaration of Bryan Jurich ¶ 9, ECF No. 10-2.)

         The Agreement provides that in the event of Defendant's default, Plaintiff is entitled to terminate the Agreement and demand the return of the vehicles. (Complaint ¶ 16.) On May 7, 2019, Plaintiff terminated the Agreement and demanded the return of the vehicles. (Id. ¶ 17.)[3] Upon such demand, the terms of the Agreement required Defendant to return the vehicles to Plaintiff immediately. (Id. ¶ 16.) Defendant returned some of the leased vehicles to Plaintiff; seventeen vehicles remain unreturned. (Declaration of B. Jurich ¶ 8).

         The Agreement provides Plaintiff with the following remedies upon default:

14. DEFAULT; REMEDIES: . . . Upon the occurrence of any Event of Default, Lessor, without notice to Lessee, will have the right to exercise concurrently or separately (and without any election of remedies being deemed made), the following remedies: (a) Lessor may demand and receive immediate possession of any or all of the Vehicles from Lessee, without releasing Lessee from its obligations under this Agreement; if Lessee fails to surrender possession of the Vehicles to Lessor on default (or termination or expiration of the Term), Lessor, Servicer, any other agent of Lessor and any of Lessor's independent contractors shall have the right to enter upon any premises where the Vehicles may be located and to remove and repossess the Vehicles; (b) Lessor may enforce performance by Lessee of its obligations under this Agreement; (c) Lessor may recover damages and expenses sustained by Lessor, Servicer, any other agent of Lessor or any of their respective successors or assigns by reason of Lessee's default including, to the extent permitted by applicable law, all costs and expenses, including court costs and reasonable attorneys' fees and expenses, incurred by Lessor, Servicer, any other agent of Lessor or any of their respective successors or assigns in attempting or effecting enforcement of Lessor's rights under this Agreement (whether or not litigation is commenced) and/or in connection with bankruptcy or solvency proceedings; (d) upon written notice to Lessee, Lessor may terminate Lessee's rights under this Agreement; (e) with respect to each Vehicle, Lessor may recover from Lessee all amounts owed by Lessee under Sections 3(b) and 3(c) of this Agreement (and, if Lessor does not recover possession of a Vehicle, (i) the estimated wholesale value of such Vehicle for purposes of Section 3(c) shall be deemed to be $0.00 and (ii) the calculations described in the first two sentences of Section 3(c) shall be made without giving effect to clause (ii) in each such sentence); and/or (f) Lessor may exercise any other right or remedy which may be available to Lessor under the Uniform Commercial Code, any other applicable law or in equity. A termination of this Agreement shall occur only upon written notice by Lessor to Lessee. Any termination shall not affect Lessee's obligation to pay all amounts due for periods prior to the effective date of such termination of Lessee's obligation to pay any indemnities under this Agreement. All remedies of Lessor under this Agreement or at law or in equity are cumulative.

(Exhibit 1 to Complaint at 4-5, ECF No. 1-1.)

         Discussion

         As noted above, upon entry of default, the defaulted party concedes the well-pleaded facts in the complaint. See Quirindongo Pacheco v. Rolon Morales, 953 F.2d 15, 16 (1st Cir. 1992). Where, as here, the facts state an actionable claim, the defendant's liability is established at the time of default. See Hooper-Haas v. Ziegler Holdings, LLC, 690 F.3d 34, 41 (1st Cir. 2012); Brockton Sav. Bank v. Peat, Marwick, Mitchell & Co., 771 F.2d 5, 13 (1st Cir. 1985).[4] A defendant's default, however, does not establish the amount of damages owed to the plaintiff for purposes of default judgment. Pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 55(b)(2), a plaintiff seeking default judgment “must apply to the court” whenever the amount of damages claimed is not a “sum certain.” “Unless a claim is for a ‘sum certain' a court must consider proof of damages before entering final judgment.” CSXT Intermodal, Inc. v. Mercury Cartage, LLC, 271 F.R.D. 400, 401 (D. Me. 2010).

         Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 55(b)(2) provides in relevant part that a “court may conduct hearings …. when, to enter or effectuate judgment, it needs to … determine het amount of damages. Fed.R.Civ.P. 55(b)(2)(B). Plaintiff maintains the Court can enter default judgment without a hearing because the damages can be determined with certainty based on the current record.

         In support of its claim for damages, Plaintiff submitted the sworn declaration of Bryan Jurich, an Assistant Vice President for Enterprise Fleet Management, who, with the assistance of other individuals employed by Plaintiff, calculated the rent and other amounts owed by Defendant. (Declaration of B. Jurich ¶ 4.) Referencing the applicable terms of the parties' agreement, Mr. Jurich asserts that Defendant owes $505, 354.84 to Plaintiff in rental fees and interest on the arrears. (Id. ¶ 16.) The damages are itemized as follows: $120, 382.38 in past due rent and fees (Id. ¶ 11 & ECF No. 10-3); $73, 042.04 in additional rent (ECF No. 10-2 ¶ 12 & ECF No. 10-4);[5] $5, 539.49 in lease interest on the unreturned vehicles (ECF No. 10-2 ¶ 13 & ECF No. 10-4);[6] service charges totaling $6, 715.00 (ECF No. 10-2 ¶ 15 & ECF No. 10-4);[7] $257, 949.38 in other rent, described as the “Reduced Book Value” or “RBV, ” with respect to the unreturned vehicles (ECF No. ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.