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United States v. Cogan

United States District Court, D. Nevada

September 12, 2014



LLOYD D. GEORGE, District Judge.

The plaintiff, United States of America, moves for summary judgment (#7) on its two counts alleging that the defendant, Jeffrey Cogan, has defaulted on student loans. The Court notified Cogan (#9), who has appeared pro se, that a motion for summary judgment had been filed, of the requirements of Rule 56 in opposing such a motion, and that a failure to oppose the motion could result in the granting of the motion, if the motion had merit. Cogan has not opposed the motion, thereby indicating his consent to the granting of the motion, should the Court determine that it has merit. See, Local Rule 7-2(d).

Motion for Summary Judgment

In considering a motion for summary judgment, the court performs "the threshold inquiry of determining whether there is the need for a trial-whether, in other words, there are any genuine factual issues that properly can be resolved only by a finder of fact because they may reasonably be resolved in favor of either party." Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 250 (1986); United States v. Arango, 670 F.3d 988, 992 (9th Cir. 2012). To succeed on a motion for summary judgment, the moving party must show (1) the lack of a genuine issue of any material fact, and (2) that the court may grant judgment as a matter of law. Fed. R. Civ. Pro. 56(c); Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 322 (1986); Arango, 670 F.3d at 992.

A material fact is one required to prove a basic element of a claim. Anderson, 477 U.S. at 248. The failure to show a fact essential to one element, however, "necessarily renders all other facts immaterial." Celotex, 477 U.S. at 323. Additionally, "[t]he mere existence of a scintilla of evidence in support of the plaintiff's position will be insufficient." United States v. $133, 420.00 in U.S. Currency, 672 F.3d 629, 638 (9th Cir. 2012) (quoting Anderson, 477 U.S. at 252).

"[T]he plain language of Rule 56(c) mandates the entry of summary judgment, after adequate time for discovery and upon motion, against a party who fails to make a showing sufficient to establish the existence of an element essential to that party's case, and on which that party will bear the burden of proof at trial." Celotex, 477 U.S. at 322. "Of course, a party seeking summary judgment always bears the initial responsibility of informing the district court of the basis for its motion, and identifying those portions of the pleadings, depositions, answers to interrogatories, and admissions on file, together with the affidavits, if any, ' which it believes demonstrate the absence of a genuine issue of material fact." Id., at 323. As such, when the non-moving party bears the initial burden of proving, at trial, the claim or defense that the motion for summary judgment places in issue, the moving party can meet its initial burden on summary judgment "by showing'-that is, pointing out to the district court-that there is an absence of evidence to support the nonmoving party's case." Id., at 325. Conversely, when the burden of proof at trial rests on the party moving for summary judgment, then in moving for summary judgment the party must establish each element of its case.

Once the moving party meets its initial burden on summary judgment, the nonmoving party must submit facts showing a genuine issue of material fact. Fed. R. Civ. Pro. 56(e); Nissan Fire & Marine Ins. Co. v. Fritz Companies, Inc., 210 F.3d 1099, 1103 (9th Cir. 2000). As summary judgment allows a court "to isolate and dispose of factually unsupported claims or defenses, " Celotex, 477 U.S. at 323-24, the court construes the evidence before it "in the light most favorable to the opposing party." Adickes v. S. H. Kress & Co., 398 U.S. 144, 157 (1970). The allegations or denials of a pleading, however, will not defeat a well-founded motion. Fed. R. Civ. Pro. 56(e); Matsushita Elec. Indus. Co. v. Zenith Radio Corp., 475 U.S. 574, 586-87 (1986). That is, the opposing party cannot "rest upon the mere allegations or denials of [its] pleading' but must instead produce evidence that sets forth specific facts showing that there is a genuine issue for trial.'" Estate of Tucker v. Interscope Records, 515 F.3d 1019, 1030 (9th Cir. 2008) (quoting Fed. R. Civ. Pro. 56(e)).

Statement of Undisputed Facts

A. The Perkins Loans

1. On or about October 6, 1988, December 11, 1988, March 28, 1989, September 20, 1989, December 22, 1989, and April 16, 1990, Defendant executed promissory notes to secure student loans totaling $2400.00 from University of the Pacific, Stockton, California. (Ex. A attached hereto, pp. US1 (Certificate of Indebtedness, stated under penalty of perjury), U.S. 10-21 (notes).)
2. The loan obligations described in paragraph 6 were made under Title IVE of the Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended, 20 U.S.C. ยง 1087aa et seq., and 34 C.F.R. Part 674. (Id.)
3. Defendant defaulted on these student loans on August 15, 1996. (Ex. A, P. US1.)
4. As of June 23, 2011, Cogan owed principal on these loans in the amount of $1, 531.21, plus accrued interest of $1, 058.28, with interest continuing to accrue at the amount of $0.21 per day since that time. (Ex. A, p. US1.) In the 930 days between June 23, 2011, and January 8, 2014, an additional $195.30 in ...

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