Elliott v. Golston et al
ORDER DENYING MOTION FOR RELIEF FROM FINAL JUDGMENT 56 . Signed by Judge Thomas L. Parker on 2/17/2021. (kll)
Case 2:19-cv-02767-TLP-tmp Document 103 Filed 02/17/21 Page 1 of 3
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE WESTERN DISTRICT OF TENNESSEE
T.C. TYRA ELLIOTT,
L GOLSTON, Shelby County Sheriff, SGT
CUNNINGHAM, DEPUTY MOORE, and
ORDER DENYING MOTION FOR RELIEF FROM FINAL JUDGMENT
Plaintiff moves for relief from final judgment under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure
60(b)(3). (ECF No. 56.) Defendant James Franklin responded in opposition. (ECF No. 57.)
And Plaintiff replied. (ECF No. 60.) For the reasons below, the Court DENIES Plaintiff’s
For background, Plaintiff sued Defendant James Franklin, who is a child support
magistrate judge in Shelby County, Tennessee. (ECF No. 30 at PageID 97.) Chief Magistrate
Judge Pham recommended that this Court dismiss Defendant Franklin as a defendant in this case.
(See id.) The Magistrate Court gave two reasons: (1) Plaintiff did not allege that Defendant
Franklin committed any unconstitutional behavior, and (2) Defendant Franklin enjoys absolute
judicial immunity from claims for money damages. (Id. at PageID 98.) This Court agreed and
adopted the Magistrate Court’s Report and Recommendation. (Id. at PageID 99–100.) And so,
Case 2:19-cv-02767-TLP-tmp Document 103 Filed 02/17/21 Page 2 of 3
this Court dismissed Defendant Franklin from this matter with prejudice and entered judgment.
(ECF Nos. 30, 31, & 33.)
Plaintiff now requests relief from “final” judgment stating, “James Franklin . . . presented
himself as a[n] Appointed Magistrate of the Courts when indeed he is only a Title iv d
administrative referee.” (ECF No. 56 at PageID 175.) Defendant Franklin opposes Plaintiff’s
motion, explaining that relief from final judgment is inappropriate here, since the Court has not
entered a final judgment. (ECF No. 57.) And for the reasons below, the Court agrees with
For starters, Plaintiff moves under Fed. R. Civ. P. 60(b)(3), which states, “[o]n motion
and just terms, the court may relieve a party . . . from a final judgment, order, or proceeding for
fraud, misrepresentation, or misconduct by an opposing party.”
Plaintiff’s problem is that Rule 60 refers to “final” judgments—not interlocutory
judgments. See Fed. R. Civ. P. 60(b) Commentary (“Rule 60(b) provides a mechanism for a
party to obtain relief from a final judgment . . . It does not apply to interlocutory judgments.”).
And a final judgment ends all claims against all parties. In re Fifth Third Early Access Cash
Advance Litigation, 925 F.3d 265, 273 (6th Cir. 2019) (“For the most part, a district court’s
decision counts as final only if it takes care of all claims and all parties in the case.”) (quoting
Adler v. Elk Glenn, LLC, 758 F.3d 737, 739 (6th Cir. 2014) (Sutton, J., concurring) (internal
quotation marks omitted)). This Court has not entered final judgment in this matter, because
there are remaining parties and claims.
In an earlier motion, Plaintiff moved under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 54 requesting
this Court to direct final judgment against Defendant Franklin. (ECF No. 43.) This Court denied
that request. (ECF No. 69.) And so, Plaintiff’s Rule 60 motion is, at best, premature.
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And yet, even if the Court were to consider the merits of Plaintiff’s motion, the Court
would still deny it. To explain, Plaintiff claims that Judge Franklin committed fraud by wrongly
presenting himself as a magistrate judge. (ECF No. 56 at PageID 175.) Plaintiff’s argument has
no merit, as Defendant Franklin is, in fact, considered a child support magistrate judge in
Tennessee. 1 The Court therefore finds that Defendant Franklin has not committed fraud.
To conclude, the Court DENIES Plaintiff’s motion for relief from final judgment,
because it is untimely and has no merit.
SO ORDERED, this 17th day of February, 2021.
s/Thomas L. Parker
THOMAS L. PARKER
UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
See http://tncourts.gov/courts/judges/james-franklin (referring to James Franklin as “Child
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