Rule 60: Reopening Judgments

United States v. Beggerly
  • US brought action claiming it owned land in order to avoid paying private parties for land for creation of a national seashore.
  • Rule 60: allows one to be freed from a final judgment for a number of reasons, including newly discovered evidence, fraud, misrepresentation, a few other things: "any other reason justifying relief."
    • Does not limit power of court to entertain an independent action.
  • Is 2nd action in this case an independent action?
  • Reopening judgments and Rule 60 is reserved for cases of "grave miscarriages of justice" involving essentially intentional misconduct.
    • Rule 60(b)(3) itself mentions fraud: so why do some things fall outside the 1-year limit for reopening? Maybe just “egregious fraud”? Otherwise 1-year limitation?
  • BASICALLY very hard to re-open a judgment—might happen within 1 year, after that EXTREMELY DIFFICULT.
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