State ex rel. First State Bank v. Hon. F. Jane Hustead (Signed Opinion)Annotate this Case
Petitioner, a bank, filed suit against Respondent seeking the outstanding balance remaining on a loan it made to him in 2012. Rather than litigate the matter, Respondent entered into an “Agreed Order Confessing Judgment” with the Bank for the full amount. The circuit court entered the order and dismissed the matter. Thereafter, the Bank’s vice president, who also arranged Respondent’s loan, pleaded guilty to bank fraud. Respondent subsequently filed a motion for relief from the confessed judgment pursuant to W. Va. R. Civ. P. 60(b), claiming that after he learned of the vice president’s conviction, he suspected there were improprieties regarding his loan. The circuit court concluded that relief from judgment was justified, finding that the circumstances surrounding the loan made the loan questionable and that a decision on the merits was favored. Petitioner subsequently filed this action seeking a writ of prohibition asking the Supreme Court to prevent the circuit court from enforcing its order granting Respondent’s motion for relief from judgment. The Supreme Court denied the writ, holding that the circuit court did not abuse its discretion in granting Respondent’s motion to vacate the judgment.