United States District Court, N.D. Iowa, Cedar Rapids Division
CEDAR RAPIDS ELECTRICAL APPRENTICESHIP TRAINING AND EDUCATIONAL TRUST, Plaintiff,
CHAD MICHAEL EHRET, Defendant.
R. READE, JUDGE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
matter before the court is Plaintiff Cedar Rapids Electrical
Apprenticeship Training and Educational Trust's Motion
for Default Judgment (“Motion”) (docket no. 8),
which Plaintiff filed on March 1, 2018.
January 3, 2018, Plaintiff filed a “Complaint for
Enforcement of an Arbitration Award”
(“Complaint”) (docket no. 1), requesting that the
court enforce an arbitration award under the Federal
Arbitration Act, 9 U.S.C. § 9. On January 26, 2018,
Defendant Chad Michael Ehret was personally served with a
copy of the Complaint. See Proof of Service (docket
no. 4). On February 20, 2018, Plaintiff filed an Application
for Entry of Default (docket no. 6) in light of
Defendant's failure to answer or otherwise respond to the
Complaint. On February 21, 2018, the Clerk of Court entered
default. See Default Entry (docket no. 7). On March
1, 2018, Plaintiff filed the Motion. Defendant has not filed
any responsive pleading.
was a participant in Plaintiff's apprenticeship training
program, which is an “employee welfare benefit
plan” under Section 3(1) of the Employee Retirement
Income Security Act, 29 U.S.C. § 1002(1). As part of the
program, Defendant executed three Scholarship Loan Agreements
and Promissory Notes (collectively, the
“Agreements”) (docket nos. 1-1 through 1-3), each
of which contained an arbitration provision. Defendant
subsequently failed to make the required payments as set
forth in the Agreements.
to the terms of the Agreements, Plaintiff initiated an
arbitration proceeding through the American Arbitration
Association. All parties had an opportunity to present
evidence during the arbitration proceedings; however,
Defendant did not appear personally or through a
representative and did not present a defense. On October 16,
2017, Arbitrator Norma Sutton issued an award in favor of
I find for [Plaintiff] in the total amount of $10, 420.00
(repayment obligation of $7, 250.01 (plus interest [at] 3.25%
from February 24, 2011 [through] August 21, 2013), plus costs
of $1, 332.00 and attorney fees of $1, 837.99).
The fees and expenses of the American Arbitration Association
totaling $750.00 and the compensation and expenses of the
Arbitrator totaling $1, 000.00 shall be born by [Defendant]
in accordance with the [Arbitration] Agreement. Therefore,
[Defendant] shall reimburse [Plaintiff] the additional sum of
Arbitration Award (docket no. 1-4) at 2.
Clerk of Court entered a default against Defendant pursuant
to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 55(a). “Entry of a
default under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 55(a) is not,
as such, entry of a judgment; it merely permits the plaintiff
to move for a default judgment under Rule 55(b)(2), assuming
that the default is not set aside under Rule 55(c).”
Inman v. Am. Home Furniture Placement, Inc., 120
F.3d 117, 118 ...