Whitney Bank v. Stubbs et al
ORDER denying 14 Motion to Stay, as set out. Parties are ordered to meet and file their report of parties on or before 1/4/2012.. Signed by Judge Kristi K. DuBose on 12/20/2011. (cmj)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF ALABAMA
CHARLES ANTHONY STUBBS and
CIVIL ACTION NO. 11-0528-KD-N
This action is before the Court on defendants Charles Anthony Stubbs and Beverly Stubbs’
motion to stay (Doc. 14) and the response in opposition filed by plaintiff Whitney Bank (Doc. 20).
Upon consideration, and for the reasons set forth herein, the motion is DENIED. The deadline for
the report of parties’ planning meeting has already passed. Therefore, the parties are ordered to
meet and file their report on or before January 4, 2012.
The Stubbs entered into a preconstruction purchase agreement to purchase a condominium
and boat slip in a marina. They financed this purchase with a loan from Whitney Bank. The
condominium was built but not the boat slip and marina. The Stubbs and other property owners
sued the developers in the Circuit Court of Baldwin County, Alabama and the case went to
arbitration. The arbitrator’s award rescinded the purchase agreements and demanded the developer
refund the purchase price. The Circuit Court affirmed the award and entered final judgment in
October 2011. Based on this award and judgment, the Stubbs anticipate that they will fulfill the
loan commitment to Whitney Bank.
The Stubbs argue that “[b]urdening this Court with the present action results . . . in an
inefficient use of judicial resources” and that “[t]he interests of all parties are best served by staying
the present action until the underlying litigation in Baldwin County, Alabama, is resolved.” (Doc.
14, p. 2). Whitney Bank argues that payment of the “arbitrator’s award may result in available
funds” for the Stubbs to pay the debt, but that does not resolve the issues before this Court: The
Stubbs’ liability on the loan, their counter-claims against Whitney, and their third party complaint
against the loan officer. (Doc. 20).
The Stubbs do not identify the theory of law upon which they base their motion. They
provide no legal argument but instead make only a conclusory statement that this Court should stay
this action “until the underlying litigation is resolved” on basis of judicial economy and the interests
of the parties. At best guess, the Stubbs might be making an argument under Colorado River Water
Conservation District v. United States, 424 U.S. 800, 96 S.Ct. 1236 (1976) (explaining that when
other principles of abstention are not met, abstention may be in order upon consideration of “’(w)ise
judicial administration, giving regard to conservation of judicial resources and comprehensive
disposition of litigation.’”) quoting Kerotest Mfg. Co. v. C-O-Two Fire Equipment Co., 342 U.S.
180, 183, 72 S.Ct. 219, 221 (1952), or perhaps under Moses H. Cone Memorial Hospital v.
Mercury Construction Corp., 460 U.S. 1, 103 S. Ct. 927 (1983) which among other elements for
abstention, added the consideration of whether the rights of the parties would be adequately
protected in the state forum.
However, the Court will not engage in further speculation as to the Stubbs’ legal theory and
will not make their argument for them. Moreover, as Whitney Bank points out, delay of the
litigation is not in its best interests since different claims against different parties are pending in this
Court. Also, the Stubbs state that a final judgment has been entered against the developer in the
Circuit Court of Baldwin, County. Thus, the underlying action appears to have been resolved.
DONE and ORDERED this 20th day of December, 2011.
s / Kristi K. DuBose
KRISTI K. DuBOSE
UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
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