United States District Court, D. Maryland
LIPTON HOLLANDER UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
4, 2018, this Court entered a Memorandum (ECF 17) and Order
(ECF 18) (collectively, the "Dismissal Order"),
dismissing a bankruptcy appeal filed by appellant Joshua
Reynolds, who is self-represented. The instant Memorandum
resolves Reynolds' "Motion to Vacate Judgment"
(ECF 22) (the "Motion"), filed on June 5, 2018. The
Motion is predicated on Rule 60 of the Federal Rules of Civil
Procedure, which governs relief from a judgment or order of a
district court. However, as explained, infra, I
shall construe the Motion as a motion for rehearing under
Rule 8022 of the Federal Rules of Bankruptcy Procedure.
Maryland Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation
("DLLR"), appellee, filed an opposition to the
Motion (ECF 23), supported by a memorandum of law (ECF 23-1)
(collectively, the "Opposition") and an exhibit.
ECF 23-2. However, "unless the district court or BAP
[Bankruptcy Appellate Panel] requests, no response to a
motion for rehearing is permitted." Fed.R.Bankr.P.
8022(a)(3). No. reply was filed.
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). However, "[o]ral argument is not
permitted" for a motion for rehearing. Fed.R.Bankr.P.
reasons that follow, I shall deny the Motion.
exclusive avenue for post-judgment reconsideration of a
district court's decision in a bankruptcy appeal is
Fed.R.Bankr.P. 8022, not Fed.R.Civ.P. 60. Rule 8022,
previously known as Rule 8015, provides: "Unless the
time is shortened or extended by order or local rule, any
motion for rehearing by the district court or BAP must be
filed within 14 days after entry of judgment on
knowledge, the Fourth Circuit has not considered in a
reported opinion the interplay between Rule 60 and Rule 8022.
But, it appears that every reported federal appellate
decision to have done so has concluded that Bankruptcy Rule
8022 '"provides the sole mechanism for filing a
motion for rehearing' from a final order of the district
court sitting in [its] capacity" as a bankruptcy
appellate court. In re Bli Farms, P'ship, 465
F.3d 654, 658 (6th Cir. 2006) (quoting In re Butler,
Inc., 2 F.3d 154, 155 (5th Cir. 1993)) (some internal
quotation marks and citations omitted). Therefore,
"irrespective of how parties characterize their motions
for reconsideration in bankruptcy appeals," such motions
should be considered under Rule 8022. English-Speaking
Union v. Johnson, 353 F.3d 1013, 1020 (D.C. Cir. 2004);
accord In re Minh Vu Hoang, 484 B.R. 87, 94 (D. Md.
2012) ("When the district court is acting as an
appellate court in a bankruptcy case, Rule 8015 provides the
sole mechanism for filing a motion for rehearing.");
In re Zegeye, Civ. No. DKC-04-1387, 2005 WL 544763,
at *1 (D. Md. Mar. 4, 2005).
Rule 8022, "rehearing" is a term of art that is
analogous to "reconsideration." Cf. In re
Zegeye, No. 2004-1387, 2005 WL 544763, at *2 (D. Md.
Mar. 4, 2005) ("[For motions for rehearing, ] [a]t least
two courts have applied the test traditionally used to
evaluate motions for reconsideration"); id. at
*1 (quoting 10 Collier on Bankr.P 8015.01 (15 ed. rev. 2004)
(stating that the purpose of Rule 8022 "is to provide
recourse to a party who, after a district court or bankruptcy
appellate panel has decided an appeal, 'believes that the
appellate tribunal has overlooked or misapprehended some
point of law or fact.'"). A motion for rehearing may
be properly filed and considered even if the district court
did not previously hold a hearing on the appeal.
follows that Reynold's Motion is properly considered
under Rule 8022. And, under that rule, it is untimely. The
Motion was filed 32 days after the Dismissal Order was
entered. But, under Rule 8022, a motion must be filed within
14 days after such an order. Cf In re Guerrero, 599
Fed.Appx. 137, 139 (5th Cir. 2015) ("[I]t could not have
been a timely motion for rehearing because Federal Rule of
Bankruptcy Procedure 8022 provides a fourteen-day period for
filing and Satterwhite filed his motions twenty-eight days
after the district court entered its final
I have no discretion to extend the filing period, sua
sponte. Fed. R. Bankr. P. 9006(b)(1) provides:
[W]hen an act is required or allowed to be done at or within
a specified period by these rules or by a notice given
thereunder or by order of court, the court for cause shown
may at any time in its discretion (1) with or without motion
or notice order the period enlarged if the request therefor
is made before the expiration of the period originally
prescribed or as extended by a previous order or (2) on
motion made after the expiration of the specified period
permit the act to be done where the failure to act was the
result of excusable neglect.
first basis for an extension is unavailable, as the period
for Reynolds to file his motion expired on May 18, 2018. The
second basis is also unavailable, because "after the
expiration of the specified period," I may only extend
the period "on motion made" and appellant has not
moved for an extension. Id.; see also