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Powell v. Morgan Property Solutions, Inc.

United States District Court, M.D. Florida, Orlando Division

July 23, 2018

BRIAN M. POWELL and TIFFANY POWELL, Plaintiffs,
v.
MORGAN PROPERTY SOLUTIONS, INC., Defendant.

          ORDER

          KARLA R. SPAULDING UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE.

         This cause came on for consideration without oral argument on the following motion filed herein:

MOTION: PLAINTIFF'S MOTION FOR ENTRY OF CLERK'S
DEFAULT AGAINST MORGAN PROPERTY SOLUTIONS INC. (Doc. No. 19)
FILED:July 19, 2018

         With this motion, Plaintiffs ask that the Court enter a Clerk's default against Defendant. Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 55(a) provides, “When 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.” Before a Clerk's default can be entered against a defendant, the Court must determine that the defendant was properly served. See United States v. Donald, No. 3:09-cv-147-J-32HTS, 2009 WL 1810357, at *1 (M.D. Fla. June 24, 2009) (citations omitted).

         Here, Defendant, Morgan Property Solutions, Inc., is a corporation. Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 4(h) provides that a corporation may be served in a judicial district of the United States:

         (1) by delivering a copy of the summons and complaint to “an officer, a managing or general agent, or any other agent authorized by appointment or by law to received service of process and-if the agent is one authorized by statute and the statute so requires-by also mailing a copy of each to the defendant”; or (2) by following state law for making service in the state where the district court is located or where service is made. Fed.R.Civ.P. 4(h)(1)-(2) (incorporating Fed.R.Civ.P. 4(e)(1)).

         In this case, the summons was directed to an address in Florida, and the United States Marshals Service's (“USMS”) Process Receipt and Return form indicates that service was made in Florida. Florida Statutes § 48.081 provides:

(1) Process against any private corporation, domestic or foreign, may be served:
(a) On the president or vice president, or other head of the corporation;
(b) In the absence of any person described in paragraph (a), on the cashier, treasurer, secretary, or general manager;
(c) In the absence of any person described in paragraph (a) or paragraph (b), on any director; or
(d) In the absence of any person described in paragraph (a), paragraph (b), or paragraph (c), on any officer or business ...

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