United States District Court, N.D. Texas, Dallas Division
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
J. BOYLE UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
the Court is the United States of America's Motion for
Default Judgment. Doc. 8. For the reasons that follow, the
Motion is GRANTED.
United States of America (the Government) originally filed
this lawsuit against Defendant Shannon A. Bishop on March 24,
2017. Doc. 1, Compl. The Government alleges that Defendant
has defaulted on student loan payments and is therefore
indebted to the United States for the principal and interest
on those loans. See Id. Defendant was served with
the summons and complaint on March 28, 2017. Doc. 5,
Affidavit of Service. Despite having been served, Defendant
neither submitted an answer nor otherwise made an appearance
in this case.
the Government requested an entry of default as to Defendant
on April 24, 2017, which the Clerk of Court entered the same
day. Docs. 6, Request for Clerk to Issue Entry of Default; 7,
Entry of Default. One day later, the Government filed the
present Motion for Default Judgment against Defendant to
recover the amount due on Defendant's loans, as well as
pre- and post-judgment interest. To date, Defendant has not
made an appearance in this case.
of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure authorizes the Court
to enter a default judgment against a defendant who has
failed to plead or otherwise defend upon motion of the
plaintiff. Fed.R.Civ.P. 55(a)-(b). That said,
“[d]efault judgments are a drastic remedy, not favored
by the Federal Rules and resorted to by courts only in
extreme situations.” Sun Bank of Ocala v. Pelican
Homestead & Sav. Ass'n, 874 F.2d 274, 276 (5th
Cir. 1989). A party is not entitled to a default judgment
merely because the defendant is technically in default.
Ganther v. Ingle, 75 F.3d 207, 212 (5th Cir. 1996).
“Rather, a default judgment is generally committed to
the discretion of the district court.” United
States v. 1998 Freightliner Vin #: 1FUYCZYB3WP886986,
548 F.Supp.2d 381, 384 (W.D. Tex. 2008) (citing Mason v.
Lister, 562 F.2d 343, 345 (5th Cir. 1977)).
determining whether a default judgment should be entered
against a defendant, courts have developed a three-part
analysis. See, e.g., 1998 Freightliner
Vin #: 1FUYCZYB3WP886986, 548 F.Supp.2d at 384. First,
courts consider whether the entry of default judgment is
procedurally warranted. See Lindsey v. Prive Corp.,
161 F.3d 886, 893 (5th Cir. 1998). The factors relevant to
this inquiry include:
 whether material issues of fact exist;  whether there
has been substantial prejudice;  whether the grounds for
default are clearly established; [4 ]whether the default was
caused by a good faith mistake or excusable neglect;  the
harshness of a default judgment; and  whether the court
would think itself obliged to set aside the default on the
courts assess the substantive merits of the plaintiff's
claims and determine whether there is a sufficient basis in
the pleadings for the judgment. See Nishimatsu Constr.
Co., Ltd. v. Hous. Nat'l Bank, 515 F.2d 1200, 1206
(5th Cir. 1975) (noting that “default is not treated as
an absolute confession by the defendant of his liability and
of the plaintiff's right to recover.”). In doing
so, courts are to assume that due to its default, the
defendant admits all well-pleaded facts in the
plaintiff's complaint. Id. However,
“defendant is not held to admit facts that are not-well
pleaded or to admit conclusions of law.” Id.
courts determine what form of relief, if any, the plaintiff
should receive. See, e.g., 1998 Freightliner Vin #:
1FUYCZYB3WP886986, 548 F.Supp.2d at 384. Normally,
damages are not to be awarded without a hearing or a
demonstration by detailed affidavits establishing the
necessary facts. See United Artists Corp. v.
Freeman, 605 F.2d 854, 857 (5th Cir. 1979). But if the
amount of damages can be determined with mathematical
calculation by reference to the pleadings and supporting
documents, a hearing is unnecessary. James v. Frame,
6 F.3d 307, 310 (5th Cir. 1993).
the three-part analysis detailed above, the Court concludes
that the Government is entitled to a default judgment on its