United States District Court, D. Maryland
Lipton Hollander United States District Judge
bankruptcy matter is before the Court on an appeal filed by
Joshua Reynolds, who is self-represented. See ECF 1
(Notice of Appeal); 28 U.S.C. § 158(a)(1). Reynolds, who
was the debtor in a related Chapter 7 bankruptcy case,
appeals an order of the United States Bankruptcy Court for
the District of Maryland ("Bankruptcy Court"),
granting summary judgment in an adversary proceeding in favor
of plaintiff, the Maryland Department of Labor, Licensing and
Regulation ("DLLR"), and against Reynolds,
defendant. ECF 1-1 (Order of October 13, 2017). The Order
entered judgment in favor of DLLR in the total amount of $7,
208.71. Id. Moreover, the Bankruptcy Court concluded
that Reynolds's debt to DLLR was
appeal, Reynolds raises three issues: (1) the Bankruptcy
Court's hearing on the Motion for Summary Judgment was
"not relevant to the Dischargeability of the Debt";
(2) the "Ruling" of the Bankruptcy Court failed to
"meet the legal standard" for summary judgment
under Fed.R.Civ.P. 56; and (3) by granting summary judgment,
the Bankruptcy Court effectively denied Reynolds his
"14th Amendment right to a trial." ECF
4-1 (Reynolds's Statement of the Issues); see
also ECF 7 (Reynolds's Brief).
filed a "Designation of Record" (ECF 8), consisting
of fifteen exhibits. It also filed a brief. ECF 10. Reynolds
filed a response brief. See ECF 13.
also moved to dismiss the appeal (ECF 5, "Motion")
on the ground that Reynolds, the appellant, failed to file a
designation of the record. Reynolds opposes the Motion. ECF
12 ("Opposition"). DLLR has not filed a reply and
the time to do so has expired. See Local Rule
hearing is necessary to resolve the Motion or the appeal.
See Local Rule 105.6. The Court is mindful of its
obligation to construe liberally the pleadings of a pro se
litigant, which are "held to less stringent standards
than formal pleadings drafted by lawyers." Erickson
v. Pardus, 551 U.S. 89, 94 (2007); see also White v.
White, 886 F.2d 721, 722-23 (4th Cir. 1989).
exercise of my discretion, I shall deny the Motion. However,
I shall affirm the Bankruptcy Court.
Bankr. P. 8009(a)(1)(A) states, id: "The
appellant must file with the bankruptcy clerk and serve on
the appellee a designation of the items to be included in the
record on appeal[.]" And, Fed.R.Bankr.P.
8OO9(a)(1)(B)(i) states, id: "The appellant
must file and serve the designation . . . within 14 days
after (i) the appellant's notice of appeal as of right
becomes effective[.]" Moreover, "[i]f the appellant
intends to argue on appeal that a finding or conclusion is
unsupported by the evidence or is contrary to the evidence,
the appellant must include in the record a transcript of all
relevant testimony and copies of all relevant exhibits."
recent case of In re Echeverry, ___F. App'x___,
2018 WL 509307, at *1 (11th Cir. 2018), the Eleventh Circuit
stated: "To challenge a finding or conclusion as
unsupported by, or contrary to the evidence, the appellant
must designate the transcript of any relevant testimony or
exhibits as a part of the record on appeal" under
Fed.R.Bankr.P. 8009(a)(1)(A) and Fed.R.Bankr.P. 8009(b)(5).
See also In re Downs, 614 Fed.Appx. 855, 856 (7th
Cir. 2015) ("A district court has discretion to dismiss
an appeal from the bankruptcy court if the appellant
disregards procedural rules."); In re Dunlap,
16-cv-37, 2017 WL 374915, at *3 (W.D. N.C. Jan. 5, 2017)
("[B]y failing to adequately designate [the issues on
appeal under Fed.R.Bankr.P. 8009(a)(1)(A)] . . . there is not
an issue on appeal for this Court to review and the appeal
will be dismissed."); LaBarre v. Ulrich,
cv-15-1959, 2016 WL 927140, at *2 (D. Ariz. Mar. 11, 2016)
("The Court concludes that the appeal should be
dismissed. . ., Debtors have failed to secure transmission of
the record of appeal to the Court despite the bankruptcy
court's having notified them of this deficiency.");
Galasso v. Imes, A-15-CA-578-SS, 2015 WL 6443135, at
*5 (W.D. Tex. Oct. 22, 2015) ("Dismissal of the appeal
may be appropriate where the record does not disclose the
factual or legal basis of the bankruptcy court's
decision, and the appellant has failed to provide the
reviewing court with key portions of the record.")
noted his appeal on October 26, 2017. As DLLR points out,
pursuant to Fed.R.Bankr.P. 8009(a)(1)(A), Reynolds "was
required to file with the bankruptcy court and serve on the
appellee a designation of the items to be included in the
record on appeal", and he was to do so within fourteen
days "after the notice of appeal" was filed in this
Court. ECF 5, ¶¶ 1-2.
Opposition, Reynolds states, inter alia, that he
"has filed all documents in a timely" manner.
Id. at 1. However, Reynolds never filed a
designation of items to be included in the record on appeal.
See Docket. Therefore, by Order of April 12, 2018 (ECF
15), I directed Reynolds to file a designation of items to be
included in the record on appeal, due by April 30, 2018.
Id. at 2. In doing so, I extended the time for
Reynolds to provide the required designation to the clerk of
the Bankruptcy Court and to appellee.
2, 2018, the Clerk of this Court docketed
"Appellant's Designation of Items To Be Included In
The Record On Appeal, " which is dated April 27, 2018.
See ECF 16. Even assuming it was timely filed, it
merely lists items Reynolds would like the Court to review on
appeal. Some of the items are already in the record; others
are not. Notably, Reynolds has not provided a
"transcript of all relevant testimony and copies of all
relevant exhibits", as required by Fed.R.Bankr.P.
8009(b)(5). Nor is it this Court's responsibility to
scour the docket of the Bankruptcy Court to locate all of the
documents listed by Reynolds on the designation. ...