United States District Court, E.D. Michigan, Southern Division
ORDER ADJOURNING HEARING, VACATING CLERK'S ENTRY
OF DEFAULT, DENYING WITHOUT PREJUDICE MOTION FOR DEFAULT
JUDGMENT, AND REQUIRING PROPER SERVICE
F. Cox United States District Court Judge
through counsel, on March 15, 2019, Plaintiff filed this
action against Defendant VI-LCP Novi Owner, LLC.
April 23, 2019, Plaintiff sought and obtained a Clerk's
Entry of Default against Defendant. (See ECF Nos. 4
pending before this Court is a Motion for Default Judgment
filed by Plaintiff. This Court scheduled that motion to be
heard on September 12, 2019.
reviewing the docket, this Court found that the only proof of
service in this case was that filed as ECF No. 3. That Proof
of Service states that VI-LCP Novi Owner, LLC was served in
the following manner:
A copy of the summons and complaint were served on March 18,
2019, to be [sic] registered agent of Bob Evans Restaurants,
LLC by certied [sic] mail pursuant to MCR 2.105(D)(1) and
Fed. R Civ. P. 4(e)(1).
(ECF No. 3).
on September 3, 2019, this Court ordered Plaintiff to
“SHOW CAUSE, in writing, no later than September 6,
2019, why the pending motion should not be denied for failure
to properly serve Defendant.” (ECF No. 12).
response, on September 4, 2019, Plaintiff's Counsel filed
another certificate of service on the docket (ECF No. 13).
This one states that VI-LCP Novi Owner, LLC was served in the
A copy of the summons and complaint were served on March 29,
2019, to be [sic] registered agent of VI LCP Novi Owner, LLC
by certied [sic] mail pursuant to MCR 2.105(D)(1) and Fed. R
Civ. P. 4(e)(1).
(Id.). On that same date, Plaintiff's Counsel
filed a response to the Show Cause Order stating that
“Defendant was properly served on March 29, 2019 at the
address of its registered agent” and stating that the
“correct Certificate of Service was electronically
filed using the ECF System on September 4, 2019. [ECF No.
13].” (ECF No. 14). Thus, Plaintiff contends that the
Defendant in this case was properly served by certified mail,
pursuant to MCR 2.105(D)(1).
Civ. P. 4(e)(1) provides that service may be effected
“pursuant to the law of the state in which the district
court is located, or in which service is effected . .
.” Service of process in Michigan is governed by MCR
2.105(D)(1), the rule upon which Plaintiff relies, provides
that service of process on a corporation may be made
by “serving a summons and a copy of the complaint on an
officer or the registered agent.” It is well
established, however, that the language of MCR 2.105(D)(1)
provides for personal service of the summons and
complaint on an individual officer or resident agent of the
Defendant is a private corporation. See 12 USC 1716b
(“Federal National Mortgage Association[ ] will be a
Government-sponsored private corporation ....”).
Plaintiff chose to serve process by mail on defendant's
CEO, a company “officer.” MCR 2.105(D)(1)
provides that service of process on a private corporation may
be completed by “serving a summons and a copy of the
complaint on an officer....” This ...