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Jersey Architectural Door & Supply, Inc. v. Aeroplate Corp.

United States District Court, E.D. California

November 18, 2019

JERSEY ARCHITECTURAL DOOR & SUPPLY, INC., Plaintiff,
v.
AEROPLATE CORP. and RONALD D. PATTERSON, Defendants.

          ORDER DISCHARGING ORDER TO SHOW CAUSE (ECF NOS. 45, 46)

         On November 13, 2019, this Court issued an order to show cause (ECF No. 45), requiring Plaintiff, Jersey Architectural Door & Supply, Inc., to show cause for failing to comply with the Court's orders requiring Plaintiff to file a response to Aeroplate Corp.'s objections to the scope of documents Aeroplate was required to bring to a judgement debtor examination hearing (ECF Nos. 43, 44).

         On November 14, 2019, Plaintiff emailed its response to the Court. The Court directed the Clerk of Court to file that response. (ECF No. 46.)

         As discussed below, the Court finds that Plaintiff has failed to provide an adequate justification for its failure to comply with the Court's orders. Nonetheless, the Court declines to impose sanctions at this time, and discharges the order to show cause, but cautions Plaintiff that any future violations of the Court's orders, or failures to comply with Court procedures and rules, will be met with less tolerance and could result in the imposition of sanctions, including the dismissal of this case.

         I. BACKGROUND

         Plaintiff initiated this action on July 29, 2013, when it registered a foreign judgment. (ECF No. 1.) On August 21, 2019, Plaintiff filed an application for an order requiring defendant and judgment debtor Aeroplate Corp. to appear for a judgment debtor examination. (ECF No. 36.) The Court granted the application and entered an order on August 28, 2019, requiring Aeroplate to appear for a judgment debtor examination hearing on September 27, 2019, and to bring certain documents to that hearing. (ECF No. 38.)

         On September 18, 2019, Aeroplate filed objections to the scope of the documents it was required to bring to the hearing. (ECF No. 41.) On that same date, Plaintiff contacted the Court and requested that the judgment debtor examination hearing be continued to allow both Plaintiff and Aeroplate additional time to prepare for the hearing. (ECF No. 40.) The Court granted the request and continued the hearing to November 15, 2019. (Id.) The Court also directed Plaintiff to file a response, no later than October 4, 2019, to Aeroplate's objections. (ECF No. 42.)

         On October 4, 2019, Plaintiff again contacted the Court and requested that the deadline for Plaintiff to file its response to Aeroplate's objections be extended to October 31, 2019. Plaintiff represented to the Court that the extension of time was needed to allow Plaintiff to review the voluminous documents Aeroplate had provided and continued to provide to Plaintiff, and also because the parties were meeting and conferring in an effort to settle the matter, which would render a judgment debtor examination unnecessary. (ECF No. 43.) The Court granted the requested extension of the deadline, to October 31, 2019, for Plaintiff to file its response to Aeroplate's objections. (Id.) The deadline of October 31, 2019, passed and Plaintiff did not file a response to Aeroplate's objections as ordered by the Court.

         On November 5, 2019, the Court vacated the judgment debtor examination hearing that was set for November 15, 2019, and ordered Plaintiff to file, no later than November 8, 2019, its response to Aeroplate's objections or a notice that the case had settled. (ECF No. 44.) The November 8, 2019, deadline passed, and Plaintiff failed to file a response to Aeroplate's objections or notice that the case has settled. Plaintiff thus again failed to comply with the Court's orders.

         On November 13, 2019, the Court issued an Order to Show Cause (“OSC”), ordering Plaintiff, Jersey Architectural Door & Supply, Inc., to show cause why sanctions, up to and including dismissal of this case, should not be issued for failure to comply with the Court's orders and for Plaintiff's failure to prosecute this case. (ECF No. 45.) Plaintiff was ordered to file a written response to the OSC no later than November 20, 2019. (Id.)

         On November 14, 2019, Plaintiff sent via email to the Court's courtroom deputy a letter responding to the OSC. This letter states:

Dear Judge Grosjean:
This responds to the Order To Show Cause issued on November 13, 2019. No. response to the objections asserted by Aeroplate was provided because the parties have been in settlement negotiations and had agreed to an open ended extension of time to respond while final details were hammered out.
Please be advised that a settlement has been reached. We are working on the paperwork. The settlement contemplates a payment plan. The judgment will not be deemed satisfied until payment, in good and sufficient funds, is received in full.
I apologize to the court for any inconvenience caused and ask that this case remain open until the judgment is deemed satisfied. We will then file appropriate documents with the court confirming satisfaction of the judgment. Please let me know if you need ...

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