11th Circuit Blasts Lawyer’s Lawsuit Fighting Foreclosure as Frivolous ‘Garbage’

11th Circuit Blasts Lawyer’s ‘Shotgun’ Lawsuit as Frivolous ‘Garbage’

After granting multiple extensions to an Alabama lawyer fighting a foreclosure, a federal appeals panel was decidedly unimpressed when he said in oral arguments that their concerns about his “shotgun” complaints may be “an issue in federal court,” but they “are not disfavored in Alabama courts.”

Federal rulings have defined shotgun complaints as containing multiple counts, each incorporating by reference the preceding allegation with no clear cause of action asserted. They often assert those claims against multiple defendants without specifying which is responsible for each claim.

During oral arguments at the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit, Kenneth Lay of Birmingham’s Hood & Lay apparently declined to even defend his filings. He told the panel of Judges Gerald Tjoflat, Julie Carnes and Southern District of Florida Judge Beth Bloom, sitting by designation, that “I understand [the court’s] problem with shotgun pleadings, and I’m not gonna argue about that.”

In a blistering opinion, Tjoflat chided Lay for filing a clearly deficient complaint as part of a scheme “engineered to delay or prevent execution of a foreclosure judgment on a residence and the consequent eviction of its occupants.”

Lay “effectuated this scheme by filing a multi-count, incomprehensible complaint that flouted the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure and this circuit’s well-established precedent,” Tjoflat wrote.

In addition to upholding the trial judge’s dismissal of the case, Tjoflat said the frivolous filings constituted an abuse of judicial process and ordered Lay to show cause why he should not be ordered to pay the defendants’ double their costs for defending the appeal.

Lay did not respond to requests for comment.

The appellate defendants, Bank of New York Mellon, Specialized Loan Servicing and Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems, are represented by Birmingham lawyers Anna-Katherine Bowman and James Hill IV of Bradley Arant Boult Cummings and Matthew Mitchell and Ryan Hebson of Burr & Forman, who declined to comment.

As detailed in the appellate opinion and other filings, Lay represents Karun and Ursula Jackson of Daphne, Alabama, whose home was foreclosed in 2015 and sold to Mellon Bank in 2016.

That year Lay filed a 14-count complaint in Baldwin County Circuit Court asserting claims including wrongful foreclosure, fraud, negligence and violations of multiple federal lending laws.

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One Response to “11th Circuit Blasts Lawyer’s Lawsuit Fighting Foreclosure as Frivolous ‘Garbage’”
  1. Hammertime says:

    Bankster murderers row of BONY MERS SLS have no problems?

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