Federal Registration of Judgments Act Allows Execution Upon Foreign Judgment Although Suit on Judgment Is Time Barred in Registration State–Stanford v. Utley

Appellant obtained a money judgment against appellee in a Mississippi federal court and registered it the next day in a Missouri federal court, pursuant to section 1963 of Title 28 of the United States Code. Seven and one-half years later appellant gave notice in Missouri of his intention to take appellee’s deposition to discover assets in that state with which to satisfy the judgment. Appellee’s motion to prohibit the deposition was sustained on the ground that no execution could issue upon any assets uncovered, since under applicable Missouri law no action could be brought there on a Mississippi judgment more than seven years old; the necessity of a suit in Missouri to enforce the original judgment was not alleviated by the fact that it had been registered in Missouri within seven years of its rendition. On appeal, held, reversed. Although suit in Missouri on the Mississippi judgment would be time barred at present, appellant’s registration of his judgment in a Missouri federal court the day after its rendition in Mississippi was equivalent to his obtaining a Missouri judgment upon the Mississippi judgment on the date of registration; therefore, Missouri’s ten-year limit upon execution of judgments of its own courts is controlling.