United States District Court, N.D. California
ORDER GRANTING DEFENDANTS' MOTION FOR SUMMARY
JUDGMENT AND DENYING FARRELL'S CROSS-MOTION FOR SUMMARY
JUDGMENT RE: DKT. NOS. 77, 78
NATHANAEL M. COUSINS, United States Magistrate Judge
unfair debt collection case, defendants Boeing Employees
Credit Union and Moore Brewer & Wolfe move for summary
judgment, and plaintiff Daniel Farrell filed a cross-motion
for summary judgment. The parties filed a Joint Stipulation
setting forth the three questions the Court was to answer at
summary judgment. Because the Court finds in favor of Boeing
and Moore on each of these questions, the Court GRANTS
defendants' motion for summary judgment, and DENIES
Farrell's cross-motion for summary judgment.
Joint Stipulation, the parties stipulated to the following
case arises from a motor vehicle financing agreement Farrell
failed to maintain. Dkt. No. 76 at 1 (Joint Stipulation
Regarding Facts; and, Questions of Law). Boeing filed a
complaint on or about May 28, 2010, in California state
court, for breach of the retail installment contract.
Id. at 2. Moore, Boeing's attorney, succeeded in
obtaining a default judgment against Farrell, who did not
respond to the complaint, for both physical repossession of
the motor vehicle at issue and the full amount on the
contract. Id. On behalf of Boeing, Moore recorded an
Abstract of Judgment. Id. Farrell's car was
repossessed on June 8, 2011. Id.
2012, Farrell moved to Indiana, and Moore, on behalf of
Boeing, obtained an earnings withholding order, which was
submitted to the Defense Financing and Accounting Service
(DFAS) of the United States Government pursuant to 5 U.S.C.
§ 5520a. Id. at 3. Through DFAS, Moore and
Boeing garnished Farrell's wages. Id. When
Farrell moved to Texas in September 2014, DFAS continued to
garnish his wages there. That garnishment went on until
November 2015. Id. The California judgment was not
domesticated in Indiana or Texas. Id.
filed his complaint in Monterey County Superior Court on
April 11, 2016. Dkt. No. 1 at 1. Boeing and Moore removed the
case to federal court on May 19, 2016. Id. Boeing
and Moore subsequently filed multiple motions to dismiss
portions of the complaint. Dkt. Nos. 14, 39, 56. The result
of these motions was the amendment of the Fair Credit
Reporting Act claim and the ultimate dismissal of
Farrell's IIED claim. Farrell filed a second amended
complaint on November 16, 2016. Dkt. No. 55. The parties
filed a Joint Stipulation of Facts and Questions of Law with
the Court, which the Court granted. Dkt. No. 76. The parties
set forth three questions for the Court to decide on at
summary judgment, and stipulated that if Farrell prevailed,
the case would go forward to trial, but if defendants
prevailed, this case would be dismissed in its entirety as a
matter of law. Id. at 4-5. The parties subsequently
filed the cross-motions for summary judgment. The Court will
discuss each of the three questions below.
parties consented to the jurisdiction of a magistrate judge
under 28 U.S.C. § 636(c). Dkt. Nos. 10, 18.
judgment may be granted only when, drawing all inferences and
resolving all doubts in favor of the nonmoving party, there
is no genuine dispute as to any material fact. Fed.R.Civ.P.
56(a); Tolan v. Cotton, 134 S.Ct. 1861, 1863 (2014);
Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 322 (1986).
A fact is material when, under governing substantive law, it
could affect the outcome of the case. Anderson v. Liberty
Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 248 (1986). A dispute about a
material fact is genuine if “the evidence is such that
a reasonable jury could return a verdict for the nonmoving
party.” Id. Bald assertions that genuine
issues of material fact exist are insufficient. Galen v.
Cnty. of L.A., 477 F.3d 652, 658 (9th Cir. 2007).
moving party bears the burden of identifying those portions
of the pleadings, discovery, and affidavits that demonstrate
the absence of a genuine issue of material fact.
Celotex, 477 U.S. at 323. Once the moving party
meets its initial burden, the nonmoving party must go beyond
the pleadings, and, by its own affidavits or discovery, set
forth specific facts showing that a genuine issue of fact
exists for trial. Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(c); Barthelemy v. Air
Lines Pilots Ass'n, 897 F.2d 999, 1004 (9th Cir.
1990) (citing Steckl v. Motorola, Inc., 703 F.2d
392, 393 (9th Cir. 1983)). All justifiable inferences,
however, must be drawn in the light most favorable to the
nonmoving party. Tolan, 134 S.Ct. at 1863 (citing
Liberty Lobby, 477 U.S. at 255).