Rule 62 Motion to Stay Does Not Suspend Time for Appeal

Following the entry of final judgment in a wrongful death action, the defendant filed two post-judgment motions, neither of which suspended the 42 day period for filing a notice of appeal. ARAP 4(a). The Rule 62 motion to stay in which the defendant requested time to consider filing a Rule 59 motion did not satisfy the requirements of ARAP 4(a)(3). Although the Court, “looks to the essence of a motion, not necessarily to its title, to determine how the motion is to be considered under the Alabama Rules of Civil Procedure . . ., [c]onsistent with Rule 4(a)(3), Ala. R. App. P., the Committee Comments on 1973 Adoption of Rule 62 plainly state that the stay provided for in the rule ‘does not affect appealability of the judgment nor prevent the time for appeal from running.’” Graves v. Golthy, No. 1070422 (Ala. April 17, 2009).

ARAP 4(a) provides that post-judgment motions under Rules 50, 52, 55 or 59 of the Alabama Rules of Civil Procedure suspend the time for filling a notice of appeal. The defendant’s second post-judgment motion, a Rule 60 motion, did not affect the time for appeal both because it was not one of the motions that ARAP 4(a)(3) references and because the defendant filed the Rule 60 motion more than 30 days after the entry of final judgment.