Gagan, et al v. Sharar, et al, No. 2:1999cv01427 - Document 449 (D. Ariz. 2012)

Court Description: ORDER granting the 429 Request for Discovery re Kimberly Sullivan; such discovery shall be completed within ninety (90) days of the date of entry of this order and the court shall set a hearing date within two (2) weeks after completion of that discovery. Signed by Senior Judge Robert C Broomfield on 11/19/2012. (LFIG)
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Gagan, et al v. Sharar, et al 1 Doc. 449 WO 2 3 4 5 6 7 IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT 8 FOR THE DISTRICT OF ARIZONA 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 James L. Gagan, c/o David G. Bray Mariscal, Weeks, McIntyre Friedlander, P.A. 2901 N. Central Ave., Suite 200 Phoenix, AZ 85012, ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) Plaintiff/Judgment ) Creditor, ) ) vs. ) ) James A. Monroe ) 12880 East Mercer Lane ) Scottsdale, AZ 85259, ) ) Defendant/Judgment Debtor, ) ) Kim Sullivan a/k/a Kimberley ) Sullivan a/k/a Kim Monroe ) a/k/a Kimberley Monroe ) a/k/a/ Kimberley Martin ) a/k/a Kimberly Perry ) a/k/a Kimberley Pirtle ) a/k/a Kimberley Clark ) 12880 East Mercer Lane ) Scottsdale, AZ 85259, ) ) Garnishee Defendant. ) _____________________________) No. CIV 99-1427-PHX-RCB O R D E R 28 Dockets.Justia.com 1 Currently pending before the court is “Judgment 2 Creditor’s Request for Discovery Re: Kimberly Sullivan and 3 Request to Continue Conclusion of Hearing Scheduled to 4 Commence at 10:30 a.m. October 22, 2012" (Doc. 429) at 1:12- 5 16 (emphasis omitted). 6 L. Gagan, and garnishee/ defendant Sullivan each requested a 7 continuance, the court previously granted that relief. 8 (Doc. 431) at 2:9-12. 9 Sullivan time to respond, the court did not rule upon the Because the judgment creditor, James Ord. At that time, however, to allow Ms. 10 second aspect of the pending motion -– the judgment 11 creditor’s discovery request as to Ms. Sullivan. 12 same reason, the court also did not set a continuation date 13 for the previously scheduled October 22, 2012, hearing. 14 at 2:12-14. 15 For that Id. Garnishee/defendant Sullivan has not responded to 16 judgment creditor Gagan’s discovery request, and the time to 17 do so has long since passed. 18 below, the court finds that the judgment creditor’s request 19 for discovery pursuant to Fed.R.Civ.P. 69(a)(2) is warranted 20 and GRANTS such relief. 21 22 For the reasons set forth Background Since at least March, 1995, Mr. Gagan has been attempting 23 to enforce a roughly $1.7 million dollar judgment he obtained 24 against Mr. Monroe in the United States District Court for the 25 Northern District of Indiana. The court assumes familiarity 26 with Mr. Gagan’s prolonged, and to-date unsuccessful efforts, 27 to collect upon that judgment. The focus of Mr. Gagan’s 28 latest collection attempt is Mr. Monroe’s daughter, -2- 1 garnishee/defendant Sullivan. 2 Mr. Gagan is seeking discovery with respect to Ms. 3 Sullivan because he has a “good faith belief” that she 4 “possesses assets” of judgment debtor Monroe, “as well as 5 information responsive to the Writ of Garnishment that was 6 withheld.” Mot. (Doc. 429) at 4:2-3. That belief is based 7 upon the following. 8 As to Ms. Sullivan’s possible possession of Mr. Monroe’s 9 assets, Mr. Gagan believes that Mr. Monroe and his daughter, 10 Ms. Sullivan, have been living in the same residence “for 11 years where his personal possessions are stored.” 12 429) at 2:23-24. Mot. (Doc. Despite that, Mr. Gagan points out that in 13 her garnishment answer, she responded, “‘na’” to this 14 statement: “‘I was in possession of the following personal 15 property belonging to the Judgment Debtor.’” Id. at 2:24-3:1. 16 Mr. Gagan also is skeptical of Ms. Sullivan’s claim that she 17 has “‘no knowledge’” of various business entities established 18 by her father, Mr. Monroe. 19 See id. at 3:1-6. Mr. Gagan further points out that although during his 20 deposition Mr. Monroe testified that “he provided money to Ms. 21 Sullivan in the form of ‘rent[,]’” she 22 contrary. has indicated to the In particular, Ms. Sullivan previously testified 23 that “there have been ‘no transfers’ of ‘any monies and/or 24 property, real or personal’ to her by Defendant [Monroe] in 25 the past four (4) years.” Id. at 3:8-10. Mr. Gagan argues 26 that he is entitled to “explore Ms. Sullivan’s answers in a 27 deposition,” as to the foregoing. Id. at 3:10-11. And, “if 28 appropriate,” after the deposition, Mr. Gagan wants to serve -3- 1 Ms. Sullivan with a document production request. 2 Id. at 3:11. Lastly, Mr. Gagan wants unspecified discovery regarding 3 Ms. Sullivan’s “participation” in Latekedi Group, LLC, an 4 Arizona limited liability company, in which she is listed as a 5 “member,” and in Turtle Communications, Inc., a Texas 6 corporation, of which she is the president. Id. at 3:24; and 7 exhs. A (Doc. 429-1) at 2-3; and B (Doc. 429-1) at 5-6. 8 9 Discussion Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 69(a)(2) governs 10 discovery in judgment enforcement proceedings. That Rule 11 provides that a judgment creditor “may obtain discovery from 12 any person –- including the judgment debtor –- as provided in 13 these rules or by the procedure of the state where the court 14 is located.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 69(a)(2) (emphasis added). “This 15 rule entitles a judgment creditor to ‘a very thorough 16 examination of the judgment debtor.’” Internet Direct 17 Response, Inc. v. Buckley, 2010 WL 1752181, at *2 (C.D.Cal. 18 2010) (quoting Credit Lyonnais, S.A. v. SGC Intl, Inc., 160 19 F.3d 428, 430-31 (8th Cir. 1998) (quoting, in turn, Caisson 20 Corp. v. County West Bldg. Corp., 62 F.R.D. 331, 335 21 (E.D.Pa.1974)). That is because “[a] judgment creditor ‘must 22 be given the freedom to make a broad inquiry to discover 23 hidden or concealed assets of the judgment debtor.’” Sequoia 24 Prop. & Equip. Ltd. P’ship v. United States, 2002 WL 32388132, 25 at *3 (quoting, inter alia, Caisson Corp., 62 F.R.D. at 334). 26 “‘The scope of postjudgment discovery is very broad to permit 27 a judgment creditor to discover assets upon which execution 28 may be made.’” Id. (quoting Federal Deposit Ins. Corp. v. -4- 1 LeGrand, 43 F.3d 163, 172 (5th Cir. 1995)). Not only is the 2 scope of such discovery broad, but “[t]he presumption should 3 be in favor of full discovery of any matters arguably related 4 to the [creditors] efforts to trace [the debtor’s] assets and 5 otherwise to enforce the judgment.” Internet Direct, 2010 WL 6 1752181, at *2 (quoting Credit Lyonnais, 160 F.3d at 430-31). 7 In accordance with the foregoing principles, based upon 8 the record as presently constituted, and there being no 9 opposition from Ms. Sullivan, the court finds that the 10 information Mr. Gagan is seeking “is related to [his] efforts 11 to trace the defendant[] [judgment debtor’s] assets and 12 otherwise to enforce its judgment, and thus that its discovery 13 is appropriate.” See Mission Capital Works, Inc. v. SC 14 Restaurants, Inc., 2009 WL 4895315, at *2 (citing Credit 15 Lyonnaise, 160 F.3d at 431). The court therefore GRANTS Mr. 16 Gagan’s request to “undertake formal discovery with respect to 17 Ms. Sullivan’s garnishment answer and with regard to the 18 transfers, transactions, and relationships between and among 19 the Judgment Debtor and his daughter garnishee Kimberly 20 Sullivan[.]” Mot. (Doc. 429) at 4:6-8. 21 Accordingly, the court hereby: 22 (1) GRANTS the judgment creditor’s “Request for Discovery 23 Re: Kimberly Sullivan[;]” (Doc. 429); such discovery shall be 24 completed within ninety (90) days of the date of entry of this 25 order; and the court shall set a hearing date within two (2) 26 . . . 27 28 -5- 1 weeks after completion of that discovery. 2 DATED this 19th day of November, 2012. 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 copies to all counsel of record and garnishee/defendant Kim Sullivan pro se 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 -6-