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Aljawad v. Majeed

United States District Court, Third Circuit

December 4, 2013

SALAM ALJAWAD
v.
SALAM MAJEED, et al.

MEMORANDUM

EDMUND V. LUDWIG, District Judge.

This action arises from a failed business venture. Jurisdiction is diversity. 28 U.S.C. § 1331. According to the complaint, in May 2010, plaintiff Salam Aljawad and defendant Salam Majeed entered into a joint venture whereby they would install energy-saving devices (motion sensors) in hotel rooms in return for payments that they would share. Complaint, ¶ 8. On March 6, 2011, defendant Majeed, in an e-mail, advised plaintiff he would not continue with the joint venture. Id., ¶ 14. In the interim, defendant Majeed is alleged to have received approximately $72, 000 on account of work performed by the joint venture, which he deposited in his own accounts, or business accounts to which plaintiff did not have access, in violation of their agreement. Id., ¶ 15.

On June 27, 2011, plaintiff commenced this action against Majeed, Deborah Majeed, Bedhr Majeed and John Does defendants. All parties are pro se.[1] By letter dated October 11, 2011, plaintiff advised that the parties had entered into a settlement agreement. Doc. no. 8. The case was placed in suspense to permit the parties to implement the agreement. Doc. no. 7. When they failed to do so, plaintiff and Salam Majeed were ordered to submit evidence as to whether a settlement agreement had been reached and, if so, how it had been breached. October 10, 2012 order, doc. no. 21. Plaintiff and Salam Majeed made evidentiary submissions, doc. nos. 22 and 23. Based upon the evidence presented, judgment was entered in favor of plaintiff and against Salam Majeed in the amount of $24, 093.75. Doc. nos. 24, 25. Salam Majeed appealed, but the appeal was dismissed for lack of jurisdiction because the judgment did not dispose of all of the claims against all of the parties. Doc. no. 32. Accordingly, plaintiff was ordered to show cause why all claims against the remaining defendants should not be dismissed. Doc. no. 33.

In response, plaintiff submitted two letters. In the first, he acknowledged his acceptance of $26, 225 in settlement of the claims raised in the complaint, requested that the $24, 093.75 judgment be confirmed, and stated that he was willing to dismiss all claims against Deborah and Bedhr Majeed.[2] The second letter retracted plaintiff's agreement to dismiss the claims against Deborah and Bedhr Majeed and requested relief in addition to that provided in the earlier judgment.[3] For the following reasons, the claims against Deborah Majeed, Bedhr Majeed and the John Doe defendants will be dismissed, the judgment against Salam Majeed will be confirmed, and plaintiff's request for further relief will be denied.

THE SETTLEMENT AGREEMENT DOES NOT PROVIDE A BASIS FOR ENTRY OF JUDGMENT AGAINST DEBORAH OR BEDHR MAJEED

Plaintiff requests that the original judgment against Salam Majeed be confirmed, and that the judgment be entered against Deborah and Bedhr Majeed as well. The judgment against Salam Majeed is based on a finding that a settlement agreement was reached between plaintiff and Salam Majeed. The settlement agreement submitted by plaintiff in support of his request that the agreement be enforced embodies an agreement between plaintiff and Salam Majeed - but not the other defendants. Doc. no. 23. None of the evidence submitted by plaintiff in response to the court's October 10, 2012 order establishes that those defendants were party to the settlement agreement. Further, plaintiff did not submit any evidence in response to the court's more recent show cause order to establish that those defendants were party to the settlement agreement. There is no basis to bind any other party to the terms of that agreement. Accordingly, the judgment cannot be entered against Deborah or Bedhr Majeed.

THERE IS NO OTHER BASIS TO ENTER JUDGMENT AGAINST DEBORAH OR BEDHR MAJEED

The claims against defendants Deborah Majeed, Bedhr Majeed, and the John Doe defendants should have been dismissed at the time judgment was entered against Salam Majeed, because plaintiff did not submit any evidence as to their involvement in the conduct giving rise to the original claim, or as to their contribution to Majeed's failure to perform under the settlement agreement. Plaintiff did not submit any evidence of this nature in response to the more recent show cause order, either. Plaintiff's second August 2, 2013 letter requested that the claims against those defendants continue because of conduct in which Deborah Majeed is allegedly currently engaged. Doc. no. 35. Allegation of conduct in which a defendant is currently engaged does not provide an evidentiary basis for continuation of a claim premised on conduct that allegedly took place years ago, thus the allegations contained in the August 2, 2013 letter do not provide sufficient cause to continue the claims against Deborah Majeed and those claims will be dismissed. No allegations are made as to Bedhr Majeed in the August 2, 2013 letter, and the claims against him will be dismissed as well.[4]

The judgment against Salam Majeed in the amount of $24, 093.75 is confirmed for the reasons set forth in the January 30, 2013 memorandum. All remaining claims are dismissed.


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