United States District Court, M.D. Florida, Fort Myers Division
OPINION AND ORDER
E. STEELE SENIOR UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
matter comes before the Court on third-party plaintiff Target
Corporation's Motion for Default Judgment Against
Prestige Facilities Services Group, Inc. (Doc. #31) filed on
December 18, 2017. No response has been filed by either
third-party defendant, and the time to respond has expired.
2, 2017, defendant Target Corporation (Target) removed a suit
filed by Capital Solutions Bancorp LLC (Capital) from Lee
County Circuit Court to federal court. Target filed an Answer
(Doc. #9), and on June 23, 2017, Target filed a Third-Party
Complaint (Doc. #15) against Prestige Facilities Services
Group, Inc. (Prestige) and Giuseppe Tromba (or Joe Tromba).
Capital and Target reached a settlement, and the original
Complaint was dismissed with prejudice. Only the third party
complaint remains before the Court.
October 13, 2017, the Court ordered the Answer (Doc. #22)
filed by Tromba on behalf of himself and Prestige stricken,
and directed Tromba to file an amended answer on only his own
behalf, and for Prestige to file an amended answer only
through counsel. (Doc. #25.) Defendant Giuseppe Tromba filed
an Amended Answer (Doc. #27) on his own behalf, however
Prestige did not file an appearance or amended answer through
counsel. Consequently, Target moved for and was granted a
default against Prestige. (Docs. ## 28-29.) On December 6,
2017, a Clerk's Entry of Default (Doc. #30) was issued,
and Target now seeks a default judgment against Prestige
under Fed.R.Civ.P. 55(a).
Third Party Complaint
is deemed to have admitted only the well-pled factual
allegations in the Third-party Complaint, which are as
follows: Target contracted with Prestige Facilities Services
Group, Inc. (Prestige) to construct gender-neutral bathrooms
in its Minnesota stores pursuant to a Program Agreement for
Goods and Services (Program Agreement). Pursuant to the
Program Agreement, among other things Prestige was required
to pay all subcontractors hired, to take no action to cause a
lien to be filed against Target or any Target asset, to
ensure that no liens were filed against any Target property
for services performed or materials provided, and to take
prompt action to release any lien filed against Target.
alleges that Prestige hired a number of subcontractors.
Target paid Prestige all amounts due under the Program
Agreement, however Prestige failed to pay the subcontractors.
Pursuant to a Minnesota Statute, liens attached to
Target's real property when the subcontractors were not
paid. Target alleges that Prestige breached its obligations
under the Program Agreement by failing to pay the
subcontractors, and causing the liens on Target's
property to exist.
Target's knowledge, Prestige entered into an Accounts
Receivable Purchase Agreement with Capital Solutions Bancorp,
LLC (Capital), and assigned its accounts receivable from
Target to Capital. Target inquired as to whether Capital was
indeed entitled to the payments, to which Prestige replied in
the negative, stating that Capital did not represent the
company in any capacity and payments should still be made to
Prestige. Joe Tromba responded that Capital was making false
representations regarding the relationship which did not
exist. As a result, Target made payments totaling $577, 732
to Prestige, for which they were sued by Capital for failure
to pay under the assignment.
asserts a breach of the Program Agreement (Doc. #15-1, Exh.
A), which is attached to the Third-Party Complaint,
intentional misrepresentation, and negligent
misrepresentation against Prestige. The Declaration of Joel
Peters (Doc. #31-1, Exh. 1), an employee of Target, provides
a break down of the amounts paid to Capital and each of the
alleged subcontractors. Attached to the Declaration are the
invoices for the payments. Target seeks a total of $577, 000
in damages based on the payments it made.
defendant defaults, it is “deemed to admit the
plaintiff's well-pleaded allegations of facts, ”
but not conclusions of law or facts not well-pleaded.
Surtain v. Hamlin Terrace Foundation, 789 F.3d 1239,
1245 (11th Cir. 2015). To warrant a default judgment, the
facts alleged in the pleadings must provide a sufficient
basis for judgment. Id. (quoting Nishimatsu
Const. Co., Ltd. V. Houston Nat'l Bank, 515 F.2d
1200, 1206 (5th Cir. 1975)). The sufficiency standard is that
“necessary to survive a motion to dismiss for failure
to state a claim.” Id.
Count I, ...