United States District Court, D. New Jersey
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
G. SHERIDAN, U.S.D.J.
matter comes before the court on Remi Capital, Inc. and Erik
A. Kaiser's (collectively "Defendants") motion
to declare the consent judgment satisfied pursuant to
Fed.R.Civ.P. 60(b)(5) and L. Civ. R. 79.3, or in the
alternative, to declare the consent judgment partially
satisfied, to compel Plaintiff to produce documents
reflecting all payments by any defendants and reflecting the
assignment of mortgages by Defendant Remi Capital, Inc., and
to calculate any amount that remains due under the consent
judgment. In response, Plaintiffs argue that the consent
judgment has not been satisfied.
parties entered into a consent judgment on September 1, 2010,
date for $ 1, 560, 430.24. (Consent Judgment, ECF No. 52).
The Consent Judgment is silent on any applicable interest
rate. (See Id. "It is on this 1st day of
September 2010 ORDERED that judgment is entered jointly and
severally against Defendants in the amount of $1, 560,
430.24"). Currently, the parties agree that the gross
amount collected on the consent judgment is $1, 526, 891.67.
(See Cert, of Eisman, ECF No. 76, at¶¶
8-9). Of that amount, Plaintiff Sovereign Bank, through its
assignee and successor in interest Jenzack Partners, LLC,
contends that only $1, 446, 721.92 of the net payment has
been applied to the consent judgment. Plaintiff argues that
$80, 169.75 must be deducted from the amount collected to
reimburse Plaintiff for expenses it advanced in connection
with the Receiver's Sale. (Id. at ¶¶
11-14). Specifically, Plaintiff argues that after a receiver
was appointed to, among other things, sell Defendant
Kaiser's Manhattan condominium, Jenzack advanced $80,
169.75 for expenses incurred by the Receiver in connection
with the Receiver's Sale. (Id. at ¶¶
further contends that Defendants owe an additional $937,
845.37, based on post-judgment interest that has accrued at
the rate of prime plus 6%, pursuant to the language of the
contracts underlying this case. (Id. at ¶ 15).
Plaintiff points to language in the Guaranty and Promissory
note underlying this action, which each state that the
interest rate to be applied to any judgment shall be six
percent (6%). (See Guaranty and Promissory Note, ECF
Nos. 76-2, 76-3).
response, Defendants argue that Kaiser has made payments
totaling $807, 554.33 and Co-Defendant REMI has paid at least
$719, 337.34, totaling $1, 526, 891.67. (Cert. Of Fiorenzo,
ECF No. 56, Ex. D). Defendants further contend that the $80,
169.75 should be credited against the Judgment, so that the
total owed on the judgment is $1, 526, 891.67, and not $1,
446, 721.92. Defendants also argue that, at the time of the
Pretrial Conference, the parties contemplated the sale of a
residential mortgage (the "Keller Loan") that, if
completed, would further reduce the amount remaining on the
Consent Judgment. Finally, Defendants argue that the judgment
is subject to the Federal Statutory Post-Judgment Interest
Rate, and not the purported 6% rate pursuant to the
reasons set forth below, this court finds the Federal
Statutory Post-Judgment Interest Rate applies, and that
Defendants may conduct discovery upon Plaintiff Sovereign
Bank to determine the status of any payments made by REMI,
including the status of the sale of the Keller Loan.
Rule of Civil Procedure 60 (b)(5) allows district courts to
"relieve a party ... from a final judgment, order, or
proceeding... [when] the judgment has been satisfied."
Under this rule, district courts may mark judgments as
partially satisfied. Savitsky v. Mazzella, 318
Fed.Appx. 131, 133 (3d Cir. 2009) (citing BUC Intern.
Corp. v. International Yacht Council Ltd., 517 F.3d
1271, 1274-75 (11th Cir. 2008)); see also Bd. of Trs. of
the Nat'l Elevator Indus. Health Ben. Plan v.
McLaughlin, No. 12-4322, 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 211027,
at *8 (D.N.J. Dec. 20, 2017).
The Federal Statutory Post-Judgment Interest Rate
consent judgment itself is silent as to post-judgment
interest rate. However, Plaintiffs interpret this silence to
mean the underlying contracts' 6% interest rate applies.
In response, Defendants argue that pursuant to 28 U.S.C.
§ 1961, the Federal Statutory Post-Judgment interest
interest shall be allowed on any money judgment in a civil
case recovered in a district court. . . Such interest shall
be calculated from the date of the entry of the judgment, at
a rate equal to the weekly average 1-year constant maturity
Treasury yield, as published by the Board of Governors of the
Federal Reserve System, for the calendar week preceding[.]
the date of the judgment. . . Interest shall be computed
daily to the date of payment. . . and shall be compounded
Defendants argue that the applicable interest rate, fixed by
the Federal Reserve Bank, is 0.26%. (See Fiorenzo
Cert. Ex. U (ECF No. 56-2, page 176)). Further, Defendants
argue the doctrine that obligations of contract merge into a
judgment applies: "When the plaintiff recovers a valid
and final personal judgment, his original claim is
extinguished and rights upon the judgment are substituted for
it. The plaintiffs original claim is said to be
'merged' in the judgment." Stendardo v. Fed.
Nat'l Mortg. Ass'n, 991 F.2d 1089, 1099 (3d Cir.
1993) (quoting Restatement (Second) of Judgments § 18
cmt. a (1982)).
support its argument that the Federal Statutory Post-Judgment
Interest Rate does not apply, plaintiff cites
Westinghouse Credit Corp. v. D'Urso, 371 F.3d
96, 101 (2d Cir. 2004), where the court determined that
"parties may by contract set a post-judgment rate at
which interest shall be payable." Westinghouse
Credit Corp., 371 F.3d at 101. However, the court also
explained that "[m]ost fundamentally, such contracts
must actually indicate the parties' intent to deviate
from § 1961 ... If parties want to override the general
rule on merger and specify a post-judgment interest rate,
they must express such intent through 'clear, unambiguous
and unequivocal' language." Id. at 102.
Plaintiff also cite Resolution Trust Corp. v. Kolea,
No. 90-6287, U.S. Dist. LEXIS 10653 (E.D.Pa July 25, 1995) to
support their contention that "parties are free to
stipulate a different [post-judgment interest] rate,
consistent with state usery and other applicable laws."
However, the court explained "[t]he calculation of
interest on the judgment ... is instead controlled by the
provisions made by the parties and approved by [the district
judge]" and not a contract previously entered into by
the parties. Id.
present, there is no "clear, unambiguous and
unequivocal" language in the consent judgment that
indicated the parties intent to deviate from § 1961. At
the time the consent judgment was entered, Plaintiff did not
request that the interest rate applicable to the consent
judgment be set at 6% pursuant to any underlying contract. On
its face, it is clear from the consent judgment that the
parties did not intend to deviate from § 1961. Further,
any original claims plaintiffs may have had merged into the
consent judgment. For ...