United States District Court, D. Idaho
CONSTANCE R. RAFFERTY, Plaintiff,
KEYPOINT GOVERNMENT SOLUTIONS, INC., a Delaware corporation; and JOINT TECHNICAL SERVICES, LLC, a New Mexico limited liability company, Defendants.
MEMORANDUM DECISION AND ORDER
Lynn Winmill Chief Judge
the Court is Defendant Joint Technical Services, LLC's
(“JTS”) Motion to Set Aside Clerk's Entry of
Default. Dkt. 12. For the reasons explained below, the Court
will grant the motion.
Constance Rafferty sued defendants on May 20, 2016. See
Compl., Dkt. 1. She filed an amended complaint on August
15, 2016, and served defendant JTS with a copy of the amended
complaint the next day, August 16, 2016. See Am.
Compl., Dkt. 4; Affidavit of Service, Dkt. 5-1.
JTS did not timely respond, and on September 27, 2016, the
Court Clerk entered the company's default. See
Dkt. 10. Shortly after the Clerk entered JTS's default,
JTS filed the pending motion to set aside the default.
See Oct. 6, 2016 Mot., Dkt. 12. Plaintiff opposes
the motion, contending that JTS has not adequately explained
its failure to timely respond. See Opp., Dkt.23.
details surrounding the service of the complaint on JTS, and
JTS's appearance before this Court, are as follows: JTS
is a New Mexico limited liability company. It has designated
Corporation Service Company (CSC) as its registered agent for
service of process in Idaho. On August 16, 2016,
plaintiff's process server hand delivered a copy of the
complaint and summons to Megan Dickson of CSC at an address
in Boise, Idaho. See Aff. of Service, Dkt. 5-1.
does not dispute the August 16, 2016 service, but Virginia
Buckmelter, a managing member of JTS, says she did not become
aware of this lawsuit until September 23, 2016. See
Buckmelter Dec., Dkt. 12-1, ¶¶ 3-4 (“The
Notice of Process form indicated that Corporation Service
Company was served on August 16, 2016, but I had no notice of
the Rafferty case until September 23, 2016.”).
Buckmelter says she received a Federal Express package on
September 23, 2016, but she does not provide further detail.
JTS concludes that CSC must have slipped up in transmitting a
copy of the complaint to JTS management. In any event,
Buckmelter quickly retained an attorney for JTS and the
company promptly filed a motion to set aside the entry of
default. See Moody Dec., Dkt, 12-2, ¶ 4. JTS
says it is ready to file a response and litigate this matter
if given the chance.
objects to relief from entry of default. She says JTS failed
to provide enough detail to qualify for such relief. More
specifically, Rafferty says JTS should answer (or provide
more detailed answers) to these questions:
(1) What happened between August 16, 2016, the date plaintiff
served the complaint on JTS's registered agent, and
September 23, 2016, the date JTS's managing member
Buckmelter says she was made aware of the case?
(2) Why was Buckmelter provided with physical copies via
FedEx as opposed to electronic copies, given that CSC's
website indicates it provides same-day electronic delivery?
(3) Who sent the FedEx package to Buckmelter?
(4) Why was that FedEx package routed through Tennessee?
reasons explained below, the Court believes JTS has provided
sufficient information to qualify for relief from default,
despite not providing the sort of detail plaintiff has