United States District Court, M.D. Florida, Fort Myers Division
DALLAS WITTGENFELD and DANIEL A. BERNATH, Plaintiffs,
ROBERT LOCKETT, DIANE SHIPLEY, DON SHIPLEY and EXTREME SEAL ADVENTURES, Defendants.
McCOY UNITED STATE? MAGISTRATE JUDGE
cause comes before the Court on Plaintiffs' Motion for
Entry of Clerk's Default (Doc. 26) filed on March 24,
2017. Plaintiffs contend that Defendants Diane Shipley, Don
Shipley, and Extreme Seal Adventures have been served and
have failed to plead or otherwise defend this case.
(Id. at 1-2). Plaintiffs request entry of a
clerk's default against Diane Shipley, Don Shipley, and
Extreme Seal Adventures. (Id.).
to Fed.R.Civ.P. 55(a), “[w]hen a party against whom a
judgment for affirmative relief is sought has failed to plead
or otherwise defend, and that failure is shown by affidavit
or otherwise, the clerk must enter the party's
default.” Prior to directing the Clerk to enter a
default, however, the Court must first determine whether
Plaintiffs properly effectuated service of process. See
Chambers v. Halsted Fin. Servs., LLC,
2:13-cv-809-FTM-38, 2014 WL 3721209, at *1 (M.D. Fla. July
28, 2014). Plaintiffs have the burden of establishing
effective service of process. See Zamperla, Inc. v.
S.B.F. S.R.L, No. 6:13-cv-1811-Orl-37KRS, 2014 WL
1400641, at *1 (M.D. Fla. Apr. 10, 2014).
for individuals is governed by Fed.R.Civ.P. 4(e). The Rule
[A]n individual . . . may be served in a judicial district of
the United States by:
(1) following state law for serving a summons in an action
brought in courts of general jurisdiction in the state where
the district court is located or where service is made; or
(2) doing any of the following:
(A) delivering a copy of the summons and of the complaint to
the individual personally;
(B) leaving a copy of each at the individual's dwelling
or usual place of abode with someone of suitable age and
discretion who resides there; or
(C) delivering a copy of each to an agent authorized by
appointment or by law to receive service of process.
Fed. R. Civ. P. 4(e).
Fed.R.Civ.P. 4(h) governs service of business entities. The
Rule states that an entity must be served:
(1) in a judicial district of the United States:
(A) in the manner prescribed by Rule 4(e)(1) for serving an