Dauval v. Potter
ORDER. Appellee's "Motion to Dismiss Appeal" (Doc. 2) is denied. Appellees Linda Potter and The Northern Trust Company will file their briefs on or before June 21, 2023. See Order for details. Signed by Judge Thomas P. Barber on 5/22/2023. (EKB)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
MIDDLE DISTRICT OF FLORIDA
Case No. 8:22-cv-2945-TPB
Bankr. Case No. 8:20-bk-02284-CPM
Adv. Proc. No. 8:22-ap-0022-CPM
LINDA A. POTTER,
ORDER DENYING MOTION TO DISMISS APPEAL
This matter is before the Court on Appellee Linda A. Potter’s “Motion to
Dismiss Appeal.” (Doc. 2). Appellant Richard Dauval filed a memorandum in
opposition to the motion on January 26, 2023. (Doc. 11).
Appellee argues that the judgment appealed from is not an appealable partial
final judgment because the bankruptcy court in directing entry of judgment did not
expressly track the language of Fed. R. Civ. P. 54(b) (incorporated by Bankruptcy
Rule 7054). Accordingly, she asserts, the Court lacks jurisdiction over the appeal.
The Court rejects this argument. The final judgment of dismissal as to Appellee
represented an end to judicial labor and left nothing more for the bankruptcy court
to do with respect to Appellant’s claims against Appellee. While not tracking the
language of Rule 54(b), the bankruptcy court by citing the rule and directing entry
of judgment demonstrated an “unmistakable intent” to enter partial final judgment
Page 1 of 3
under that rule. See Mitchell v. Vill. Capital & Inv., LLC, No. 21-12627, 2022 WL
3099263, at *3 (11th Cir. Aug. 4, 2022); Kelly v. Lee's Old Fashioned Hamburgers,
Inc., 908 F.2d 1218, 1220 (5th Cir. 1990) (en banc); see also E.E.O.C. v. Delta Air
Lines, Inc., 578 F.2d 115, 116 (5th Cir. 1978).
Furthermore, “the reasons for the entry of the judgment are obvious and
remand to the [bankruptcy] court would result only in unnecessary delay in the
appeal process.” Mitchell, 2022 WL 3099263, at * 3. The adversary proceeding
seeks to invalidate a settlement agreement entered into by the defendants, which
include Appellee. It manifestly serves the interests of judicial economy to
determine whether the bankruptcy court has jurisdiction as to Appellee before the
adversary proceeding (which has been abated) moves forward to a conclusion.
Accordingly, Appellee’s motion to dismiss the appeal is denied.
As the appeal of the bankruptcy court’s order dismissing Appellee and the
appeal of the bankruptcy court’s separate order dismissing defendant The Northern
Trust Company from the adversary proceeding have been consolidated for all
purposes, Northern Trust need not file a motion to intervene. See (Docs. 13; 14).
Appellant represents that his arguments on appeal as to Northern Trust would be
virtually identical to those raised in his brief as to Appellee Potter. Accordingly,
Appellant need not file another brief addressing Northern Trust. Appellees Potter
and Northern Trust are directed to file their respective briefs addressing
Appellant’s arguments on the merits on or before June 21, 2023.
Accordingly, it is
Page 2 of 3
ORDERED, ADJUDGED, and DECREED:
1. Appellee’s “Motion to Dismiss Appeal” (Doc. 2) is DENIED.
2. Appellees Linda A. Potter and The Northern Trust Company will file their
briefs on or before June 21, 2023.
DONE and ORDERED in Chambers, in Tampa, Florida, this 22d day of
UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
Page 3 of 3
Disclaimer: Justia Dockets & Filings provides public litigation records from the federal appellate and district courts. These filings and docket sheets should not be considered findings of fact or liability, nor do they necessarily reflect the view of Justia.
Why Is My Information Online?