Shelby County, AL v. Owens et al
MEMORANDUM OPINION. Signed by Judge L Scott Coogler on 5/30/2013. (KAM, )
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE NORTHERN DISTRICT OF ALABAMA
WILLIAM T. OWENS; HEALTHSOUTH
CORPORATION; EQUIVEST FINANCIAL,
LLC; UNITED STATES OF AMERICA;
NORTH SHELBY LIBRARY; and HIGHLAND )
LAKES RESIDENTIAL ASSOCIATION, INC., )
2013 May-30 PM 04:35
U.S. DISTRICT COURT
N.D. OF ALABAMA
SHELBY COUNTY, ALABAMA,
CASE NO. 2:12-cv-00058-JEO
MEMORANDUM OF OPINION
In this interpleader action removed from Alabama state court, plaintiff Shelby
County, Alabama (the “County”) seeks a determination of the respective interests of the
United States, and several other parties to $279,000, representing the excess funds from
a tax sale of real property owned by Defendant William T. Owens. On January 15, 2013, the
United States filed a motion for partial summary judgment, seeking to establish priority
over the County, Owens, and Defendants HealthSouth Corporation (“HealthSouth”) and
the North Shelby Library (the “Library”). (Doc.1 35). On April 16, 2013, the magistrate
judge entered a report recommending that the United States’s motion be granted. (Doc.
References herein to “Doc(s). __” are to the document numbers assigned by the Clerk of
the Court to the pleadings, motions, and other materials in the court file, as reflected on the
39). No objections were filed. Since the expiration of the objection period, the United
States and the two other Defendants, Equivest Financial, LLC (“Equivest”) and Highland
Lakes Residential Association (“Highland Lakes”), have filed a joint motion to direct the
clerk of the court to distribute the interpled funds. (Doc. 40). Pursuant to that joint
motion, Equivest states that it will withdraw its claim to the funds, while Highland Lakes
would be entitled to recover $5,000 from the funds while the the United States would be
entitled to the entire balance, including any accrued interest. (Id.) No opposition has been
filed to that motion, either.
Having carefully reviewed and considered de novo all the materials in the court file,
including the report and recommendation, the court is of the opinion that the magistrate
judge’s report (Doc. 39) is due to be and is hereby ADOPTED and his recommendation is
ACCEPTED. Accordingly, the United States’s motion for partial summary judgment
(Doc. 35) is due to be GRANTED.
Likewise, the Court concludes that the joint motion filed by the United States,
Equivest, and Highland Lakes seeking an order directing disbursement of the funds (Doc.
40) is also due to be GRANTED, except to the extent that the motion fails to acknowledge
the court’s right to retain an administration fee for handling the registry funds. See 28
U.S.C. § 1914; Judicial Conf. Sched. of Fees, Dist. Court Misc. Fee Sched. ¶ 12; Registry
Fund Fees–Item 13, 56 Fed. Reg. 56,356 (Nov. 4, 1991). An appropriate final judgment will
Done this 30th day of May 2013.
L. Scott Coogler
United States District Judge
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