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Capps v. FIA Card Services

October 4, 2010

DAVID F. CAPPS, PLAINTIFF-APPELLANT,
v.
FIA CARD SERVICES, N.A., FNA MBNA AMERICA BANK, N.A., DEFENDANT-RESPONDENT.



Appeal from the District Court of the Second Judicial District of the State of Idaho, in and for Idaho County. The Hon. John H. Bradbury, District Judge.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Eismann, Chief Justice.

2010 Opinion No. 102

The judgment of the district court is affirmed.

This is an appeal from a summary judgment for the amount owing on a credit card account. We affirm the judgment of the district court.

I. FACTS AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY

David F. Capps (Cardholder) entered into a credit card agreement with MBNA America Bank, N.A. (Bank), whereby it agreed to extend a revolving line of credit to Cardholder for cash advances of goods and services. Bank is now known as FIA Card Services, N.A. Cardholder did not make payments due under the credit card agreement, and Bank obtained an arbitration award against him in the sum of $15,448.35. He then commenced this action against Bank contending that there was no agreement to arbitrate and that by obtaining the arbitration award Bank committed fraud, negligence, and a violation of Cardholder‟s civil rights, all entitling him to damages in the sum of $25,000. Bank answered and counterclaimed, seeking a judgment in the amount of the arbitration award either by judicially confirming the award or by awarding damages for breach of the credit card agreement or of an account stated.

On May 19, 2008, Bank filed a motion for summary judgment on its damages claims. It supported the motion by an affidavit of an agent for Bank who stated that Bank had advanced the payment of goods and services on behalf of Cardholder, that Bank had sent Cardholder monthly statements indicating the account balance due and owing, that as of July 2005 the amount owing was $12,459.74, and that there have been no payments since December 6, 2004. Attached to the affidavit were true and correct copies of statements for the months of July through November 2002, December 2003, January through December 2004, and January through July 2005. The last statement showed a balance due of $12,459.74. Based upon this affidavit and Cardholder‟s failure to respond to requests for admissions, Bank contended that it was entitled to summary judgment for breach of contract under the original credit card agreement and for breach of contract under an account stated based upon Cardholder‟s failure to object to the monthly credit card statements.

In response, Cardholder filed a document listing various grounds upon which he opposed Bank‟s motion for summary judgment. Attached to that document was Cardholder‟s affidavit, to which he had attached: (a) an unsigned affidavit of his expert; (b) a copy of a prospectus and prospectus supplement (Prospectus), both dated October 2005, which he stated were attached to a document entitled "MBNA Credit Card Master Note Trust" that he had printed from an internet website maintained by the Securities and Exchange Commission; and (c) a document entitled "Second Amended Restated Pooling and Servicing Agreement" (Pooling Agreement) that Cardholder stated he had obtained during discovery in another lawsuit. Cardholder contended that the Pooling Agreement showed that Bank had transferred all of its interest in its credit card account with Cardholder and it was therefore not the real party in interest.

Cardholder also filed a motion to permit him to amend his discovery responses so that Bank‟s requests for admissions would not be deemed admitted due to Cardholder‟s failure to respond. The district court granted that motion, and Cardholder then filed responses to the discovery.

Bank‟s motion for summary judgment was heard on June 26, 2008. In its decision granting the motion for summary judgment, the district court held that the documents attached to Cardholder‟s affidavit were inadmissible and that his various defenses were therefore unsupported by any evidence. The court then granted Bank‟s motion for summary judgment.

On August 5, 2008, Cardholder filed a motion for reconsideration which he supported by his affidavit, to which were attached two letters he had sent disputing or questioning the amount owing. He also filed a motion for a continuance to obtain affidavits to establish his defenses. About a month later, Cardholder filed a supplemental motion to continue, a motion to admit the Pooling Agreement pursuant to Idaho Rule of Evidence 1004(3), and a motion to vacate the summary judgment on the grounds that Bank had failed to produce the Pooling Agreement and that Idaho Rule of Evidence 1008(c) created a jury issue as to whether the copy of the Pooling Agreement submitted by Cardholder correctly reflected the contents of the original.

On August 14, 2008, Bank filed a motion to dismiss Cardholder‟s claims that were based upon the arbitration award. It contended that there was no need to seek judicial confirmation of that award after the court had granted Bank‟s motion for summary judgment and that Cardholder had not suffered any damages from the existence of the award because it could be enforced only if it was judicially confirmed.

The district court granted Cardholder‟s motion for reconsideration to the extent that its grant of Bank‟s motion for summary judgment was based upon the breach of an account stated. The court held that the letters attached to Cardholder‟s affidavit created a genuine issue of material fact as to whether he had agreed to an amount owing. The district court denied Cardholder‟s motion for a continuance, holding that the motion was untimely because it was not made prior to the granting of Bank‟s motion for summary judgment. It also dismissed Cardholder‟s claims against Bank, holding that Cardholder had not suffered any injury from the arbitration award where it had not been judicially confirmed. Cardholder also filed a motion to show cause seeking to have Bank held in contempt for allegedly violating a discovery order, but the court refused to do so because the issue was moot. The court entered judgment in favor of Bank against Cardholder in the amount of $19,844.24 for damages, attorney fees, and court costs, and Cardholder timely appealed.

II. ISSUES ON APPEAL

A. Did the district court err in holding that Bank was the real party in interest?

B. Did the district court err in granting Bank‟s motion for ...


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