United States District Court, D. Minnesota
REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION
BRISBOIS UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
matter came before the undersigned United States Magistrate
Judge pursuant to an order of referral, [Docket No. 103],
made in accordance with the provisions of 28 U.S.C. §
636(b)(1)(B), and upon Defendants William J. Mooney and Joni
T. Mooney's joint Motion for Summary Judgment, [Docket
No. 83]. The undersigned held a Hearing on the motion on
October 5, 2017, after which the Motion was taken under
advisement. (See, Minute Entry, [Docket No. 111]).
reasons set forth below, the undersigned recommends that
Defendants William J. Mooney and Joni T. Mooney's Motion
for Summary Judgment, [Docket No. 83], be
BACKGROUND AND STATEMENT OF ALLEGED FACTS
28, 2016, the United States of America (“the United
States”) initiated the present action by filing its
Complaint seeking to “reduce federal tax and penalty
assessments to judgment and enforce federal tax liens on
property located in this district.” (Compl., [Docket
No. 1]). The United States alleges that, for the period from
2002 to 2014, there are outstanding tax assessments and
penalty assessments against Defendant William J. Mooney and
Defendant Joni T. Mooney (collectively, “the Mooney
Defendants”). (Id. at ¶¶ 6-8,
12-17). The United States also seeks to enforce federal tax
liens on property which it alleges the Mooney Defendants
acquired by deed in February 1982, and thereafter, conveyed
in November 2004, to Defendant Harbor Holdings, Mid-Atlantic
Trustees and Administrators (“Harbor Holdings”)
as part of an abusive tax promotion. (Id. at
¶¶ 18-25). The United States alleges that despite
the quitclaim deed transferring title to the property to
Harbor Holdings, the Mooney Defendants have continued to
enjoy the benefits of the property, they pay all of the costs
associated with the property, and they are named as insureds
on the current homeowners insurance for the property.
(Id. at ¶¶ 31-33). Thus, the United States
asserts that the federal tax liens against the Mooney
Defendants should attach to and be enforced against this
property. (Id. at ¶¶ 33-37).
February 2, 2017, the United States filed an Application for
Entry of Default as to Harbor Holdings, [Docket No. 48], and
on February 6, 2017, the Clerk of Court entered Default
against Harbor Holdings, [Docket No. 50].
February 15, 2017, the Mooney Defendants filed a Motion for
Dismissal with Prejudice, [Docket No. 51], which was referred
to this Court for Report and Recommendation by United States
District Judge Susan Richard Nelson. ([Docket No. 60]). The
Mooney Defendants argued that the case against them should be
dismissed for lack of subject matter jurisdiction pursuant to
Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(1); for lack of
personal jurisdiction pursuant to Rule 12(b)(2); for
insufficient process and insufficient service of process upon
Harbor Holdings pursuant to Rules 12(b)(4) and (5); and for
failure to join Harbor Holdings pursuant to Rule 12(b)(7).
(Report and Rec., [Docket No. 74], 5).
1, 2017, this Court issued its Report and Recommendation
recommending denial of the Mooney Defendants' Motion for
Dismissal with Prejudice in its entirety. (Id. at
15). The Mooney Defendants filed Objections to the Report and
Recommendation, [Docket No. 75], and on May 31, 2017, Judge
Nelson overruled the Objections, adopted the Report and
Recommendation, and denied the Mooney Defendants' Motion
for Dismissal. (Order, [Docket No. 78]).
August 22, 2017, the Mooney Defendants filed the present
Motion for Summary Judgment with Prejudice, [Docket No. 83].
In the accompanying Memorandum of Law in support of their
Motion, the Mooney Defendants again argue that this Court
lacks subject matter jurisdiction to hear this case; they are
state citizens; they have not consented to the present case;
the United States Attorney prosecuting this case has no power
to do so; the United States Attorney has failed to respond to
certain requests made by the Mooney Defendants and this
failure proves that there is no debt at issue; no liens can
be enforced because certain documentation is not on file with
the Morrison County Recorder's Office; and the claims in
this case are barred by the applicable statute of
limitations. (Mem. in Supp., [Docket No. 84], 1-15). In the
days following, the Mooney Defendants also filed with the
Court multiple affidavits purportedly in support of their
Motion. (See, [Dockets No. 90-101, 104-05]).
September 12, 2017, the United States filed its Memorandum in
Opposition to the Motion for Summary Judgment, [Docket No.
107]. The United States argues that this Court should deny
the Mooney Defendants' Motion for Summary Judgment
because they have completely failed to show that there is no
genuine dispute of material fact and that they would
therefore be entitled to judgment as a matter of law. (Mem.
in Supp., [Docket No. 107], 2). Rather, the United States
contends that the Mooney Defendants' arguments are
frivolous and, even when construed liberally, have no merit.
(Id. at 3-13).
September 22, 2017, the Mooney Defendants filed their reply
(entitled an “Answer and Objection”) to the
Memorandum in Opposition, [Docket No. 109].
Nelson referred the Motion to the Undersigned for Report and
Recommendation. ([Docket No. 13]). The Undersigned held a
Hearing on the Motion for Summary Judgment on October 5,
2017, after which the Motion was taken under advisement.
(See, Minute Entry, [Docket No. 111]).
THE MOONEY DEFENDANTS' MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT,
[Docket No. 83]
Standards of Review
judgment is appropriate “if the movant shows that there
is no genuine dispute as to any material fact and the movant
is entitled to judgment as a matter of
law.”'” Riddle v. Riepe, 866 F.3d
943, 946 (8th Cir. 2017) (citation omitted). The moving party
bears the burden to meet this standard. Nat'l Credit
Union Admin. Bd. v. CUMIS Ins. Society, Inc., 241
F.Supp.3d 934, 938 (D. Minn. 2017). In considering a motion
for summary judgment, “[t]he Court must view the
evidence and the inferences that may reasonably be drawn from
the evidence in the light most favorable to the nonmoving
forth above, the Mooney Defendants raise multiple issues in
the Motion for Summary Judgment presently before the Court.
(See, generally, Mem. in Supp., ...