A motion to vacate a judgment under Rule 60(b)(6) in United States District Court is the topic of this blog post. Rule 60(b)(6) (Rule 60) states that a Court can vacate a judgment for any other reason that justifies relief. This motion can also be filed in United States Bankruptcy Court under the provisions of Federal Rule of Bankruptcy Procedure 9024.
A motion to vacate a judgment under Rule 60(b)(6) is harder to obtain than motions filed under clauses 1-5 of Rule 60(b) in that the Courts have ruled that this motion can only be granted in extraordinary circumstances to prevent a manifest injustice. However if used in the right situations this motion makes sense particularly situations where the facts of the case do not meet the requirements of clauses 1-5 of Rule 60(b) even though extraordinary circumstances exist.
Rule 60 states in pertinent part that “(b) Grounds for Relief from a Final Judgment, Order, or Proceeding. On motion and just terms, the court may relieve a party or its legal representative from a final judgment, order, or proceeding for the following reasons: (6) any other reason that justifies relief.”
And Rule 60 also states that “(c) Timing and Effect of the Motion. (1) Timing. A motion under Rule 60(b) must be made within a reasonable time—and for reasons (1), (2), and (3) no more than a year after the entry of the judgment or order or the date of the proceeding.”
The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals as well as other Circuit Courts have stated that there is no strict time limitation on filing a motion to vacate a judgment under clause (6) of Rule 60(b) although in my personal opinion any party should file their motion as soon as possible after they have knowledge that a default judgment has been entered against them as the motion must be made within a reasonable time.
In discussing Rule 60 the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeal has stated that this rule, like all the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, “is to be liberally construed to effectuate the general purpose of seeing that cases are tried on the merits.” Rodgers v. Watt, 722 F.2d 456, 459 (9th Cir. 1983) (internal citations omitted.)
See also Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 1, “The Federal Rules should be construed and administered to secure the just, speedy, and inexpensive determination of every action and proceeding.”
Attorneys or parties in civil litigation in United States District Court who wish to view a portion of an 11 page sample motion to vacate judgment under Rule 60(b)(6) that includes brief instructions, a memorandum of points and authorities with citations to case law and statutory authority, sample declaration and proof of service by mail sold by the author can see below.
The author of this blog post, Stan Burman, is an entrepreneur and freelance paralegal that has worked in California and Federal litigation since 1995 and has created over 300 sample legal documents for California and Federal litigation. If you are in need of assistance with any California or Federal litigation matters, Mr. Burman is available on a freelance basis. Mr. Burman may be contacted by e-mail at DivParalgl@yahoo.com for more information. He accepts payments through PayPal which means that you can pay using most credit or debit cards.
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Please note that the author of this blog post, Stan Burman is NOT an attorney and as such is unable to provide any specific legal advice. The author is NOT engaged in providing any legal, financial, or other professional services, and any information contained in this blog post is NOT intended to constitute legal advice.
The materials and information contained in this blog post have been prepared by Stan Burman for informational purposes only and are not legal advice. Transmission of the information contained in this blog post is not intended to create, and receipt does not constitute, any business relationship between the author and any readers. Readers should not act upon this information without seeking professional counsel.