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Trustees of the Ibew/Neca Sound and Communications Health and v. Plaintiffs

October 31, 2012

TRUSTEES OF THE IBEW/NECA SOUND AND COMMUNICATIONS HEALTH AND WELFARE TRUST, IBEW NINTH DISTRICT PENSION TRUST, NORTHERN CALIFORNIA JOINT APPRENTICESHIP AND TRAINING TRUST, NORTHERN CALIFORNIA LABOR MANAGEMENT COOPERATION TRUST, AND THE NATIONAL ELECTRICAL BENEFIT TRUST,
v.
PLAINTIFFS, HALL-MARK SERVICES, INC., A CORPORATION, AND GARY MOODY, AN INDIVIDUAL D.B.A. HALL-MARK ELECTRICAL SERVICE, DEFENDANTS.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Edward J. Davila United States District Judge

ORDER GRANTING MOTION FOR DEFAULT JUDGMENT [Re: Docket No. 14]

In this ERISA enforcement action, Plaintiffs Trustees of the IBEW/NECA Sound and Communications Health and Welfare Trust, IBEW Ninth District Pension Trust, Northern 22 California Joint Apprenticeship and Training Trust, Northern California Labor Management 23 Cooperation Trust, and the National Electrical Benefit Trust ("Plaintiffs") move for an entry of 24 default judgment against Defendant Hall-Mark Services, Inc. ("Hall Mark") and Gary Moody 25 ("Moody") (collectively "Defendant"). Having reviewed Plaintiffs' submissions, the Court finds 26 this matter appropriate for decision without oral argument. See Civil L.R. 7--1(b). For the following 27 reasons, the motion is GRANTED. 28

Trust, Northern California Labor Management Cooperation Trust, and the National Electrical 5 Benefit Trust (collectively "Trusts"). The Trusts are multi-employer employee benefit plans as 6 defined in the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 ("ERISA"). See 29 U.S.C. 7 § 1002(3), (37); 29 U.S.C. § 1132(d)(1); Compl. ¶ 3, Docket Item No. 1. Under the terms of the 8 collective bargaining agreement ("CBA") the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers 9

The Trustees to the Funds have the authority and duty to administer the Funds, which includes the

collection of unpaid employer contributions and related losses. Id.

Plaintiffs have alleged that Defendants agreed to be bound to the terms and conditions of

13 the CBA. Id. ¶¶ 6--7; Id. Ex. A. As such, the agreement required Defendants to make specific 14 payment contributions into the Trusts. Id. The agreement also provides that employers who fail to

I. BACKGROUND

Plaintiffs are trustees of the IBEW/NECA Sound and Communications Health and Welfare

Trust, IBEW Ninth District Pension Trust, Northern California Joint Apprenticeship and Training 4

("IBEW") enters into with its employers, the employers must make contributions to the Trusts. Id. 10

make timely contributions into the Trust Funds are liable for unpaid contributions, interest, 16 liquidated damages, and attorneys' fees and costs. Id. ¶ 13. Plaintiffs allege that Defendants failed 17 to make certain payments during a period between August and December 2011. Id. ¶ 12. 18

2012, Plaintiffs filed this Motion for Default Judgment. See Docket Item No. 14. 21 22

25 against a defendant who has failed to plead or otherwise defend an action. "The district court's 26 decision whether to enter default judgment is a discretionary one." Aldabe v. Aldabe, 616 F.2d 27

1089, 1092 (9th Cir. 1980). The Ninth Circuit has provided seven factors for consideration by the

Plaintiffs filed this action on March 12, 2012. See id. Pursuant to Plaintiffs' request, the

Clerk entered Defendants' default on June 15, 2012. See Docket Item No. 12. On October 11, 20

II. DISCUSSION

A. Legal Standard

Pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 55(b), the Court may enter default judgment district court in exercising its discretion to enter default judgment: (1) the possibility of prejudice to 2 the plaintiff; (2) the merits of plaintiff's substantive claim; (3) the sufficiency of the complaint; (4) 3 the sum of money at stake in the action; (5) the possibility of dispute concerning material facts; (6) 4 whether default was due to excusable neglect; and (7) the strong policy underlying the Federal 5

72 (9th Cir. 1986). When assessing these factors, all factual allegations in the complaint are taken 7 as true, except those with regard to damages. Televideo Sys., Inc. v. Heidenthal, 826 F.2d 915, 8

Rules of Civil Procedure favoring decisions on the merits. Eitel v. McCool, 782 F.2d 1470, 1471-- 6

917--18 (9th Cir. 1987). 9 10

Courts have an affirmative duty to examine their own jurisdiction-both subject matter and

personal jurisdiction-when entry of judgment is sought against a party in ...


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