Proceeding To Enforce Judgment - Subject-Matter Jurisdiction - Filing Fee


Rowland v. Tucker, et al., [Ms. 2170928, Mar. 8, 2019] __ So. 3d __ (Ala. Civ. App. 2019). This unanimous decision by Judge Edwards dismisses Rowland’s appeal from a November 16, 2017, order of the Madison Circuit Court enforcing a May 1, 2008, judgment.

The court concluded that the circuit court never acquired subject-matter jurisdiction because although “a trial court has ‘residual jurisdiction’ to ‘take any steps that are necessary to enforce its judgment,’ Ex parte Caremark Rx, LLC, 229 So. 3d 751, 757 (Ala. 2017), ... the present case does not concern whether the May 2008 judgment can or should be enforced. Instead, the trustee sought to enforce deed restrictions and to assert a nuisance claim for the purposes of obtaining injunctive relief against Rowland.” Ms. *25. Citing Ex parte Caremark, the court noted that “‘[a] court cannot broaden by mere declaration the residual jurisdiction it necessarily holds to allow it to interpret or enforce its judgments.’” Ms. *26.

Because the trustees did not pay a filing fee in connection with the enforcement motion, the order purporting to enforce the 2008 judgment was void. Ms. *23, citing Ex parte Carter, 807 So. 2d 534, 536 (Ala. 2001) (payment of filing fee jurisdictional).

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