United States District Court, E.D. Michigan, Southern Division
ORDER REGARDING PLAINTIFF'S MOTION FOR DEFAULT
JUDGMENT AND SETTING AN EVIDENTIARY HEARING TO DETERMINE
DAMAGES [ECF NO. 138]
Victoria A. Roberts United States District Court Judge.
the Court is Plaintiff Howard Pittman's Motion for
Default Judgment as to iServe Servicing, Inc. Pittman seeks
to collect damages arising from iServe's alleged
violation of the Fair Credit Reporting Act,
(“FCRA”) 15 U.S.C. § 1681 et seq.
is entitled to a default judgment. However, because the Court
cannot determine the damages from the motion papers and
exhibits with reasonable certainty, the Court will hold an
evidentiary hearing on damages on February 24,
2020 at 3:00PM.
November 11, 2014, Pittman filed an amended complaint against
several defendants including iServe Servicing, Inc. The
complaint arises from Pittman's borrowing of funds to
purchase a home in August 2008. Pittman purchased the home
with funds borrowed from Citicorp Trust Bank and secured a
mortgage on the property. iServe serviced the loan originally
and granted Pittman a loan modification around December 2011.
Pittman says he paid his mortgage timely. On May 31, 2012,
iServe told Pittman that the servicing on his loan was
“assigned, sold, or transferred, ” to BSI
Financial Services, Inc., another Defendant in this case.
2014, Pittman says he learned that BSI and iServe were
reporting his mortgage payments as past due. He disputes
these reports and says they were made in violation of the
Fair Credit Reporting Act.
actively participated in this case until February 2018. On
December 18, 2018, Magistrate Judge Stephanie Dawkins Davis
scheduled a settlement conference. The order required that
the conference be attended by trial counsel and an authorized
representative of each party, unless expressly excused by the
Court. The order cautioned “[f]ailure to produce the
appropriate person(s) at the conference may result in an
award of costs and attorney fees incurred by the other
parties in connection with the conference and/or other
sanctions against the noncomplying party and/or
counsel.” [ECF No. 125, PageID.2746].
company representative for iServe appeared at the settlement
conference. However, Pittman's counsel certifies in his
motion that he spoke with iServe's then-counsel of record
during the settlement conference. He says iServe's
counsel stated iServe was closing its business, would not
oppose this motion, and that he would be withdrawing as
iServe's counsel. iServe's counsel withdrew on
February 1, 2019.
Clerk of the Court entered default against iServe on November
5, 2019. [ECF No. 137].
judgments are governed by Fed.R.Civ.P. 55. Pursuant to Rule
55(b), the Court may enter a judgment of default against a
defendant who fails to plead or otherwise defend against an
action. To obtain a judgment by default, the moving party
must first request for the Clerk of the Court to enter a
default under Fed.R.Civ.P. 55(a). Shepard Claims Serv.
Inc. v. Williams Darrah & Assoc., 796 F.2d 190, 193
(6th Cir. 1986).
entry of a default, all well-pled allegations of the
plaintiff's complaint are deemed admitted. Ford Motor
Co. v. Cross, 441 F.Supp.2d 837, 846 (E.D. Mich. Jun. 9,
2006) (citing Visioneering Construction v. U.S. Fidelity
and Guaranty, 661 F.2d 119, 124 (6th Cir. 1981)). A
default judgment on well-pled allegations only establishes a
defendant's liability; the plaintiff must still establish
the extent of damages. RQSI Global Asset Allocation
Master Fund, Ltd. v. APERCU International PR LLC, 2019
WL 1922052, at *4 (internal citations omitted).