United States District Court, E.D. Wisconsin
ORDER GRANTING MOTION FOR EXTENSION OF TIME AND
DENYING MOTION FOR DEFAULT AND DEFAULT JUDGMENT
WILLIAM C. GRIESBACH, CHIEF JUDGE
11, 2016, Defendants Ideya, LLC and Fabrizio Alfier filed a
motion for an extension of time to answer, move or otherwise
response to Plaintiff’s patent infringement complaint.
Plaintiff and Defendant Cimolai Technology S.p.A., an Italian
corporation, are competitors in the mobile marine and
industrial lifting equipment markets, and Ideya and Alfier
act as Cimolai’s sales agents in the United States.
and Alfier requested an approximately one-month extension of
time, from May 11, 2016 to June 13, 2016, and in the
alternative, an extension of the deadline to conform to the
deadline for Cimolai’s initial pleading following
service on it through the Hague Service Convention. In the
motion Ideya and Alfier acknowledged Ideya’s answer was
due May 11, 2016, but because the initial attempt at service
on Alfier was defective (Alfier supposedly did not receive a
summons with the complaint) Defendants claim Alfier’s
answer was due May 21, 2016. ECF No. 8, ¶¶ 1-2.
following day, May 12, 2016, Plaintiff promptly responded to
the motion for an extension of time to answer first with a
motion for entry of default and motion for default judgment
against Ideya and Alfier. Plaintiff denies Alfier did not
receive a summons and requests the Clerk’s entry of
default pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 55(a) and
a court order granting default judgment against Ideya and
Alfier pursuant to Rule 55(b). Regarding Ideya and
Alfier’s pending motion for an extension of time,
Plaintiff states "they merely moved for an extension of
time to answer and filed a disclosure statement, which
neither of [sic] prevent entry of default, " Br. at 4,
ECF No. 11. Plaintiff cites United States v. 51 Pieces of
Real Property, 17 F.3d 1306, 1314 (10th Cir. 1994) for
this proposition, but that case is not relevant. In any
event, Plaintiff also noted it would respond to the extension
request in a separate filing. Br. at 4 n.1. Plaintiff also
filed a status report May 13, 2016 stating that Cimolai was
properly served pursuant to the Hague Convention and Rule 4
on May 12, 2016. ECF No. 13. Cimolai’s answer would be
due June 2, 2016.
1, 2016, Plaintiff responded to the motion for an extension
of time with its brief in opposition, arguing there is no
good cause for granting Ideya and Alfier’s extension.
Specifically, Plaintiff argues the deliberate decision not to
file an answer, and instead to move for an extension of time,
is a litigation strategy that cannot serve as good cause for
next day, June 2, 2016, all three defendants answered the
complaint. ECF Nos. 18-20. On June 6, 2016, Defendants filed
a response to Plaintiff’s motion for default and
default judgment. Defendants argue Plaintiff has not been
prejudiced in any way given that all defendants responded by
the deadline for Cimolai’s answer. Defendants also note
Ideya and Alfier acted in good faith by seeking
Plaintiff’s agreement to a routine extension of the
deadline and only moving for the extension when the extension
request was refused. Br. in Opp. at 4, ECF No. 24.
motion for an extension of time will be granted. Where a
request for an extension of time is made on or before a
deadline, the court may extend such deadline for good cause
and without the need to find excusable neglect on behalf of
the party who has requested more time. Fed.R.Civ.P. 6(b).
Such extensions should be liberally granted absent a showing
of bad faith on the part of the movant or undue prejudice to
other parties in the action. Ahanchian v. Xenon Pictures,
Inc., 624 F.3d 1253, 1258-59 (9th Cir. 2010); 4B Wright,
Miller & Kane, Fed. Prac. & Proc.: Civil 3d § 1165
(1998). The very fact that defendants Ideya and Alfier filed
a motion for an extension of time shows they were acting in
good faith and attempting to comply with the rules. And
obviously, there is no prejudice to the plaintiff, since it
had not even completed service on the remaining defendant.
Indeed, it is the rare case where a request for a short
extension of time to answer or otherwise respond to a
complaint is even opposed, especially in a multi-party case
where other parties have not yet even been served. Moreover,
because the Seventh Circuit favors rulings on the merits over
default judgments, and because Cimolai has timely answered
the complaint and Plaintiff’s claims against all
defendants are based on common allegations relating to a
single group of products, the Court would not grant default
judgment against Ideya and Alfier in any event. See VHC,
Inc. v. University of Wisconsin Hosp. and Clinics, No.
13-C-92, 2013 WL 4027495, at *1-2 (E.D. Wis. Aug. 7, 2013)
(citing Frow v. De La Vega, 82 U.S. 552, 554
(1872)); 10A Wright, Miller & Kane, Fed. Prac. & Proc.: Civil
3d § 2690 (1998).
motion (ECF No. 8) is GRANTED and Plaintiff’s ...