Keybank National Association v. The “Atchafalaya”

In Admiralty Practice, Judicial Sales on (Updated )

This was a motion to intervene and to set aside an in rem judgment and order for sale. The intervenor was Dragage Verreault (“DV”), the plaintiff in another action who had a claim against the same vessel. The plaintiff in this action, Keybank, had been advised of the other action. Keybank obtained a judgment in this action on consent and provided DV with a copy of that judgment. Keybank later brought a motion for sale which DV attempted to delay but because DV did not obtain intervenor status its requests were refused and the order for sale was granted. DV then brought this application. The Court held first that DV as an arresting party had an interest in the ship and was entitled to intervene. The Court further held that the judgment should be set aside, primarily on the grounds that Keybank ought to have given DV prior notice of its application for judgment. With respect to setting aside the order for sale, the Court said that this should be determined by the justice who ordered the sale.