United States District Court, W.D. Louisiana, Shreveport Division
WILLA HOBBY, ET AL.
HORNSBY MAGISTRATE JUDGE
MAURICE HICKS, JR., CHIEF JUDGE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
Plaintiffs, Wal-Mart Louisiana, LLC, Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.
and Willa Hobby's (collectively “Wal-Mart”)
Motion for Leave to Appeal, and/or Motion for Certification
of Direct Appeal to the United States Fifth Circuit Court of
Appeals and for a Stay of All Proceedings Pursuant to 28
U.S.C. § 158 (Record Document 1) is
DENIED. Based on the Court's
aforementioned ruling, Defendant, Tobin Parker's
(“Parker”) Motions to Dismiss Appeal (Record
Documents 2 and 16) are now MOOT.
AND PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND
factual background of this matter has been set forth in the
bankruptcy court's June 19, 2017 “Order Denying
Motion for Judgment on the Pleadings.” Neither party
has objected to the facts as set forth by the bankruptcy
court, therefore, in order to give contextual basis to those
facts and in the interests of creating a complete record,
this Court will adopt the factual background as set forth by
the bankruptcy court in its Order, as set forth herein below:
initiated this adversary proceeding on March 21, 2017.
Wal-Mart is seeking a declaratory judgment against Parker,
who is the debtor in the underlying bankruptcy case. Wal-Mart
is seeking an order prohibiting Parker from continuing a
personal injury lawsuit against it. Wal-Mart argues that
Parker should be judicially estopped from continuing the
personal injury lawsuit because he failed to amend his
bankruptcy schedules to disclose the lawsuit.
filed his Chapter 13 bankruptcy case on February 27, 2009. In
his original bankruptcy schedules, he disclosed that he had
no contingent or unliquidated claims, which would include a
personal injury lawsuit (No. 09-10637, ECF No. 1, pg. 11).
Parker never amended his bankruptcy schedules. Parker's
Chapter 13 plan was confirmed on July 1, 2009. Parker later
modified his plan on January 25, 2010, which was approved on
March 3, 2010. It is important to note that Parker's
initial counsel in the bankruptcy case was Michael Rennix
(“Rennix”), who has since been disbarred from the
practice of law.
to the parties' joint pre-trial statement (ECF No. 13),
the following facts are not in dispute:
or about December 18, 2010, Parker, who was employed by
Coca-Cola Refreshments USA, Inc. was involved in an accident
at a Wal-Mart store in Many, Louisiana.
Parker retained the Jack Bailey Law Corporation to represent
him in connection with these injuries, and on December 16,
2011, he filed the lawsuit in state court captioned Tobin
Parker v. Walmart of Louisiana, LLC, Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.
and Willa Hobby (“Wal-Mart lawsuit”).
December 18, 2012, Wal-Mart took Parker's deposition, and
the Wal-Mart lawsuit was discussed.
March 15, 2013, the Jack Bailey Law Corporation sent a letter
to then-Chapter 13 Trustee Lucy G. Sikes
(“Sikes”) and Rennix informing them of the
May 17, 2013, Sikes sent an acknowledgment letter to the Jack
Bailey Law Corporation, Rennix, and Parker. In that letter,
Sikes acknowledged the lawsuit had been disclosed to her and
asked the parties to keep her office advised as to the status
of the case.
Rennix never responded to the letters or any other inquiries
into the matter, and never amended the defendant's