Rule 54(b) Certification


Richardson v. Chambless, [Ms. 1170263, June 15, 2018] __ So. 3d __ (Ala. 2018). This unanimous panel decision by Justice Bryan dismisses the plaintiff’s appeal from a summary judgment dismissing the plaintiff’s fraudulent transfer claim against Rosemarie Chambless. Plaintiff predicated his alleged creditor status on a claim for damages against Rosemarie’s husband arising from a faulty home inspection. Ms. *2. The Jefferson Circuit Court granted the wife’s motion for summary judgment on the fraudulent transfer claim and certified the order as final under Rule 54(b). The claims against the husband for the faulty inspection remained pending in the circuit court.

The Supreme Court raised ex mero motu the jurisdictional question presented by the propriety of the 54(b) certification. The Court dismissed the appeal because developments in the circuit court, namely a judgment in favor of the husband on the claim for faulty inspection, would moot the fraudulent transfer claim which was the subject of the instant appeal. Ms. *9. This case is the latest in a line of cases in which the Supreme Court has found a trial court exceeded its discretion in issuing a Rule 54(b) certification.

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