District Court Rejects Sanctions Against Lawyer Because Sanctions Won’t Deter Future Misconduct

Segura v. Federal National Mortgage Association, Dist. Court, Minnesota 2013 – Google Scholar.

An attorney, William B. Butler, is noted for foreclosure defense. He is also noted for alleging, again and again, certain defenses that have been rejected by the courts, such as the defense that the bank cannot prove that it has custody of the original note and other similar defenses.

In this case, the court dismissed the complaint with prejudice but declined to sanction Butler. The court reasoned as follows:

Since deterrence is the primary purpose of Rule 11 sanctions and Mr. Butler has been undeterred by the issuance of sanctions, the goal of deterrence “is not served by piling sanctions on Butler, especially when they appear to have little deterrent effect at this time.” Order of 9/5/13 at 11, Murphy v. Aurora Loan Services, LLC, 11-CV-2750 (ADM/JJK) [Doc. No. 185]. Accordingly, while this Court appreciates the seriousness of Defendants’ motion and does not condone the conduct at issue, the Court declines to award sanctions in this matter and denies Defendants’ request.”

This is an unusual rationale for denying a sanctions motion – sanctions don’t work so the court won’t bother with sanctions. I predict an appeal.

Edward X. Clinton, Jr.


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