Enforcement Proceedings Do Not Disturb the Finality of Judgment

A judgment does not lack finality simply because a trial court labels the judgment nonfinal. Trial court proceedings to enforce a judgment do not “disturb the finality of judgment.” Measures taken to enforce a judgment do not become “a vehicle to extend indefinitely the life of the lawsuit.”  Thus, in Faith Properties, L. L. C. v. First Commercial Bank, No. 1061149 (Ala. January 11, 2008), the Alabama Supreme Court found that in a breach of contract action, the trial court lacked jurisdiction to entertain a fraudulent conveyance claim in an amended complaint that the original plaintiff filed against a third party defendant six months after the final summary judgment in the contract action because the post-judgment enforcement proceedings in the contract action between the original parties did not open the door to attempts to add new parties or claims to the lawsuit, even if those parties or claims would have aided in the enforcement of the final judgment.  The Court declared the judgment on the third-party claim void and dismissed the appeal from the judgment; “a void judgment will not support an appeal.”