United States District Court, E.D. Michigan, Southern Division
PNC BANK, National Association, successor by merger to National City Bank, a national banking association, Plaintiff,
LEGAL ADVOCACY, P.C., a Michigan Professional Corporation, f/k/a NORMAN YATOOMA & ASSOCIATES, P.C. and NORMAN YATOOMA, Defendants.
OPINION AND ORDER (1) GRANTING PLAINTIFF’S
MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT [ECF NO. 63] AND (2) DENYING
DEFENDANTS’ MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT [ECF NO.
Honorable Linda V. Parker, Judge
September 9, 2016, Plaintiff PNC Bank brought this action
against Defendant Legal Advocacy, P.C., f/k/a Norman Yatooma
& Associates, P.C. and Defendant Norman A. Yatooma,
alleging breach of promissory note and breach of guaranty.
(Compl., ECF No. 1.) Presently before the Court are
Plaintiff’s and Defendants’ (collectively
“Parties”) cross-motions for summary judgment,
both filed on March 15, 2019. (ECF Nos. 63 & 64.) The
motions have been fully briefed. Finding the facts and legal
arguments sufficiently presented in the Parties’
briefs, the Court dispensed with oral argument pursuant to
Eastern District of Michigan Local Rule 7.1(f). For the
reasons that follow, the Court grants Plaintiff’s
motion, (Pl.’s Mot., ECF No. 63), and denies
Defendants’ motion, (Defs.’ Mot., ECF No. 64).
August 27, 2008, Plaintiff extended credit to Defendant Legal
Advocacy in the amount of $1, 500, 000, which was executed by
a Promissory Note (“Note”) and secured with a
Commercial Guaranty. (Pl.’s Mot., ECF Nos. 63-2, 63-4,
63-5.) Defendant Yatooma executed the Commercial Guaranty and
agreed to be financially responsible for the indebtedness of
Defendant Legal Advocacy. (Pl.’s Mot., ECF No. 63-4.)
The Note provided that payment would be due upon demand.
(Pl.’s Mot., ECF No. 63-2 at Pg. ID 720.)
early 2010, Plaintiff asked Defendants to sign new commercial
loan documents and submit past due financial reports by March
15, 2010. (Pl.’s Mot., ECF No. 63-7 at Pg. ID 763.)
Defendants did not do so. (Id.) On March 24, 2010,
Plaintiff noted in its internal database that Defendants
“defaulted” on their loan. (Defs.’ Mot.,
ECF No. 64-5; Defs.’ Resp., ECF No. 68 at Pg. ID 1068.)
April 30, 2010, Plaintiff sent Defendants a demand letter
(“Demand Letter #1). (Pl.’s Mot., ECF No. 63-7 at
Pg. ID 763.) The letter sought full payment of the debt by no
later than June 30, 2010. (Id.) Having received no
payment by that date, on July 8, 2010, Plaintiff sent
Defendants a second demand letter but to no avail.
(Defs.’ Mot., ECF No. 64-8.) From July 2010 to October
2010, the Parties exchanged several emails and letters
regarding the loan account. (Defs.’ Mot., ECF Nos.
64-9, 64-10, 64-11, 64-12, 64-13, 64-14, 64-15.)
from September 2008-the month after the loan’s
inception- through October 2010, Defendants consistently and
timely made “interest-only” payments.
(Pl.’s Mot., ECF No. 63-6.) These
“interest-only” payments include a $3, 550.37
payment on September 27, 2010 (the same day as the
“bill due” date) and a $3, 435.85 payment on
October 26, 2010 (one day before the “bill due”
date). (Id. at Pg. ID 756; Pl.’s Mot., ECF
Nos. 63-8, 63-9.)
September 9, 2016, Plaintiff brought this action, alleging
breach of promissory note and breach of guaranty.
response, Defendants filed a motion for summary judgment,
claiming Plaintiff’s claims are barred by the six-year
statute of limitations. (Defs.’ Mot., ECF No. 18 at Pg.
ID 166.) Plaintiff filed a cross-motion for summary judgment,
arguing that the claims were not time-barred. (Pl.’s
Reply, ECF No. 23 at 359.)
Court denied both motions on December 12, 2017, finding them
premature. (Order, ECF No. 24.) The Court noted that the
Parties had not yet engaged in discovery, which may reveal
whether the September 27, 2010 and October 26, 2010
“interest-only” payments revived the statute of
limitations. (Id. at Pg. ID 372-73.) The Court
provided the same reasoning in response to Plaintiff’s
motion for reconsideration. (Pl.’s Recons. Mot., ECF
No. 33; Order, ECF No. 43.) On March 15, 2019, following
discovery, the Parties again filed cross-motions for summary
judgment, proffering substantially the same arguments in
their respective briefs. (ECF Nos. 63 & 64.)
judgment pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 56 is
appropriate “if the movant shows that there is no
genuine dispute as to any material fact and the movant is
entitled to judgment as a matter of law.” Fed.R.Civ.P.
56(a). The central inquiry is “whether the evidence
presents a sufficient disagreement to require submission to a
jury or whether it is so one-sided that one party must
prevail as a matter of law.” Anderson v. Liberty
Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 251-52 (1986). After adequate
time for discovery and upon motion, Rule 56 mandates summary
judgment against a party who fails to establish the existence
of an element essential to that party’s case and on
which that party bears the burden of proof at trial.
Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 322 (1986).
movant has the initial burden of showing “the absence
of a genuine issue of material fact.” Id. at
323. Once the movant meets this burden, the “nonmoving
party must come forward with specific facts showing that
there is a genuine issue for trial.” Matsushita
Elec. Indus. Co. v. Zenith Radio Corp., 475 U.S. 574,
587 (1986) (internal quotation marks and citation omitted).
To demonstrate a genuine issue, the nonmoving party must
present sufficient evidence upon which a ...