United States District Court, E.D. Texas, Sherman Division
GILSTRAP UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
referred this case to Special Master Jason Searcy (Dkt. No.
34), the Court is now presented with the Special Master's
Report and Recommendation (Dkt. No. 35). The Court also
considers Mr. Searcy's Motion for Attorney's Fees
(Dkt. No. 36).
November 2013, Appellee 296 Southlake, Ltd.
(“Southlake”) hired BBL Builders, L.P.
(“BBL”) to serve as the general contractor on a
construction project. (Dkt. No. 20 at 5.)
October 14, 2016, BBL filed for bankruptcy under Chapter 11
of Title 11 of the Bankruptcy Code. (Id.) Shortly
thereafter, on November 3, 2016, Southlake filed a motion
seeking relief from the automatic stay relating to $166, 289
that was being held in an escrow account. (Id. at
5.) This motion was served on counsel for Shelter Products,
Inc. (“Shelter Products”) via the Bankruptcy
Clerk's electronic filing system. (Dkt. No. 35 at 2.)
is no evidence that any party, including Shelter Products,
timely objected to the motion to lift the stay.
(Id.) However, on November 21, 2016, after the time
for filing objections had passed, Shelter Products filed an
objection to Southlake's motion to lift the stay.
this untimely objection, the Bankruptcy Court granted
Southlake relief from the automatic stay on November 22,
2016. (Id.) Shelter Products then filed a Motion for
Reconsideration, urging the Bankruptcy Court to reconsider
its decision granting Southlake relief from the automatic
stay. (Id. at 2-3.) The Bankruptcy Court
subsequently denied this motion for reconsideration.
(Id. at 3.)
February 6, 2017, Shelter Products filed a notice of appeal.
(Dkt. No. 1.) In this notice, Shelter Products indicated that
it was appealing the order denying Shelter Product's
motion for reconsideration. (Id. at 1.)
15, 2017, the Bankruptcy Court dismissed the underlying
bankruptcy case. (Id.) No. appeal from the
dismissal order was filed, nor was a stay requested as to
such dismissal. (Id.)
January 29, 2018, having provided both Parties an opportunity
to be heard, this Court determined that the appointment of a
Special Master, Jason R. Searcy, would serve the ends of
justice and expedite resolution of this case. (Dkt. No. 34.)
Accordingly, Mr. Searcy was appointed Special Master.
March 6, 2018, Mr. Searcy submitted his Report and
Recommendation, concluding that the order denying Shelter
Product's motion for reconsideration should be affirmed.
(Dkt. No. 35 at 6.) Mr. Searcy further concluded that any
appeal from the underlying order granting Southlake relief
from the automatic stay should be dismissed as moot.
(Id.) Mr. Searcy also filed a Motion for
Attorney's Fees pursuant to the Court's Order
appointing him as Special Master. (Dkt. No. 36.)
March 15, 2018, Shelter Products filed its Objections to the
Special Master's Report and Fee Request (Dkt. No. 37).
March 23, 2018, the Court held a hearing to provide the
Parties an opportunity to be heard with respect to the