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WALTERS v. COX, 342 F.Supp.2d 670


In order to grant Plaintiff the relief that he seeks, this Court would have to alter or amend the order of the Eaton County Circuit Court. Under the Rooker-Feldman doctrine, only the United States Supreme Court has jurisdiction to review a state court decision. In Rooker v. Fidelity Trust Co., 263 U.S. 413, 416, 44 S.Ct. 149,68 L.Ed. 362 (1923), the Supreme Court, in reviewing an attempt to seek relief from a state court judgment, stated that "no court of the United States other than this court could entertain a proceeding to reverse or modify the [state court] judgment." In District of Columbia Court of Appeals v. Feldman, 460 U.S. 462, 476, 103 S.Ct. 1303, 75 L.Ed.2d 206 (1983), the Supreme Court further . reaffirmed that "the United States District Court is without authority to review final determinations of the District of Columbia Court of Appeals in judicial proceedings." The doctrine prevents both a direct attack of the substance of a state court decision and a challenge to the procedures used by the state court in arriving at its decision. Anderson v. Charter Township of Ypsilanti, 266 F.3d 487,493 (6th Cir.2001).

The Rooker-Feldman doctrine finds its roots in the Full Faith and Credit Clause of the Constitution

which provides:

Full Faith and Credit shall be given in each State to the public Acts, Records, and judicial

Proceedings ofevery other State. And the Congress may by general Laws prescribe the Manner in which such Acts, Records and Proceedings shall be proved, and the Effect thereof.

U.S. Const. Art. IV, § 1. The Full Faith and Credit Clause has been codified by Congress in the full

faith and credit statute, 28 U.S.c. § 1738 which reads:

Such Acts, records and judicial proceedings or copies thereof, so authenticated, shall have the same full faith and credit in every court within the United States and its Territories and Possessions as they have by law or usage in the courts of such State, Territory or Possession from which they are taken. 28 U.S.c. § 1738. In Kremerv. Chemical Construction Corp., 456 U.S. 461, 466,102 S.Ct. 1883,72 L.Ed.2d 262 (1982), the Supreme Court reaffirmed that "[s]ection 1738 requires federal courts to give the same preclusive effect to state court judgments that those judgments would be given in the courts of the State from which the judgments emerged."

Federal courts are also required to give full faith and credit to state judgments even where those judgments are challenged under 42 U.S.C. § 1983. In Allen v. McCurry, 449 U.S. 90, 101 S.Ct. 411, 66 L.Ed.2d 308 (1980), the Supreme Court noted that "the legislative history of § 1983 does not in any clear way suggest that Congress intended to repeal or restrict the traditional doctrines of preclusion .... " Allen, 449 U.S. at 98, 101 S.Ct.

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411. In this case, the state court rendered a decision, although incorrectly, finding that Plaintiffs pension checks could be redirected to his prisoner account. In accordance with the Rooker-Feldman doctrine and 28 U.S.C. § 1738, this Court must respect, albeit reluctantly, the incorrect judgment of the state court.

Plaintiffs proper recourse would have been to appeal that decision in the Michigan courts and if still

dissatisfied, appeal to the United States Supreme Court.

The only remaining question is whether this Court can hear Plaintiff's constitutional due process

claim which he apparently failed to raise in the state court. The Allen Court did not decide whether the preclusive effect of a state-court judgment does not apply to a federal issue that a § 1983 litigant could have raised but did not raise in his earlier state-court proceedings. In Migra v. Warren City School Dist.

Bd Of Edu., 465 U.S. 75, 104 S.Ct. 892, 79 L.Ed.2d 56 (1984), the Supreme Court addressed this specific issue. There, the petitioner urged the Court to interpret the interplay of § 1738 and § 1983 in such a way as to accord state-court judgments preclusive effect in § 1983 suits only as to issues actually litigated in state court. The Court rejected petitioner's argument and held that "petitioner's state-court judgment in this [§ 1983] litigation has the same claim preclusive effect in federal court that the judgment would have in the [ ] state courts." Migra, 465 U.S. at 85, 104 S.Ct. 892. Therefore, under Migra, this Court must determine whether Plaintiff's due process claim, although not raised in the state court, would have been precluded from judicial review under Michigan's doctrine of res judicata.

Generally, the doctrine of res judicata, or claim preclusion, bars a subsequent action between the

same parties when the evidence or essential facts are identical. Michigan has adopted a broad application .of the doctrine of res judicata which bars not only claims actually litigated in the prior action, but all claims arising out of the same transaction that the parties, exercising reasonable diligence, could have raised in the prior action but did not. Limbach v. Oakland County Road Commission, 226 Mich.App. 389, 396,573 N.W.2d 336 (1997). Application of the doctrine of res judicata requires that (1) the first action be decided on its merits, (2) the matter being litigated in the second case was or could have been resolved in the first case, and (3) both actions involved the same parties or their privies. ABB Paint Finishing, Inc.v. National Union Fire Ins., 223 Mich.App. 559, 562, 567 N.W.2d 456 (1997). "The test for determining whether two claims are identical for res judicata purposes is whether the same facts or evidence are essential to the maintenance of the two claims," Huggett v. Dep't of Natural Resources, 232 Mich.App. 188, 197,590 N.W.2d 747 (1998), not whether the grounds asserted for relief are the same. Jones v. State Farm Mut. Auto. Ins. Co., 202 Mich.App. 393, 401, 509 N.W.2d 829 (1993), mod'f on other grounds, Patterson v. Kleiman, 447 Mich. 429, 433 n. 3, 526 N.W.2d 879 (1994).

Applying Michigan's doctrine of res judicata, Plaintiffs due process claim is also barred from this Court's review for the following reasons. First, the facts underlying both Plaintiffs ERISA and due process claims arise from the same transaction, that is, the Eaton County Circuit Court's order redirecting of Plaintiffs pension benefit checks. Plaintiff's due process claim is based on his inability to participate in the judicial proceeding. Thus, the ERISA claim gave rise to the due process claim such that the same facts and evidence are essential to both claims. And although Plaintiff's due process claim was

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not actually litigated in the state court, he could have raised this claim in the Michigan Court of Appeals. The fact that Plaintiff may still be able to raise his due process claim before the Michigan courts does not alter the conclusion that this Court is barred from reviewing his due process claim. As previously pointed out, the test is not whether the claim raised in the second case was actually litigated, but rather whether the matter could have been resolved in the first case. Undisputably, Plaintiff could have raised his due process claim arising from his ERISA claim before the Michigan Court of Appeals. As such, this Court must respect as final the state court judgment as to both Plaintiff's ERISA and due process claims.


[Lawmen: 3388] Larry Becraft on "How to Know the Law"]

Most attorneys have access to on-line law databases where they can get annotated laws – statutory law plus rulings regarding them. Law students outside a college environment have to pay dearly for such access and can seldom afford it. Larry Becraft, in answer to my encouragement, explains a good source for data. See below, and note that we now have fully searchable statutes at large on-line. Nobody has any excuse for swallowing patriot myths about the law when they can read it for themselves. – many explanations and articles about organic, statutory, and common law. See what the References section has:


Local Collections & Directories To open Library links click here

1. HTML Version Liberty Library of Constitutional Classicsclick here

2. HTML Version U.S. National Militia Directoryclick here to open

3. HTML Version U.S. Citizen Crime Prevention & Law Enforcement Directoryclick here

4. HTML Version Talk/News Radio & TV Directory click here

5. HTML Version Libraries Online — Links to online library catalogs and here

6. HTML Version Primary Sources — Extensive collection of links and documents from Rick Gardiner's site. click here

7. HTML Version Religious Scriptures Online — Links to the writings of the world's major religions. click here

8. HTML Version Prime Reading — Recommended here

9. HTML Version Text Version Zipped WP Version Reading List #1click here

10. HTML Version Reading List #2 click here

Encyclopedias, Dictionaries and Thesauri

1. HTML Version or Menu Bouvier Law Dictionary. Also available as two self-extracting executables: Part 1 and Part 2, or two zip files: Part 1 and Part here

2. PDF Version Black's Law Dictionary, 2nd Ed. 1910. 291.8MB. click here

3. HTML Version or Menu Wikipedia Articles of Interest. Check these for fidelity to their here

4. Remote Link - HTML Legal Dictionary — One of the FreeDictionary here

5. Remote Link - HTML Legal Dictionaries Free and Online — Collection of here

6. Remote Link - HTML Dictionary — Find definitions of legal here

7. Remote Link - HTML The Language Bin: On-line Dictionary — Single query form searches multiple online dictionaries.

8. Remote Link - HTML — Gateway to multiple online here

9. Remote Link - HTML The Century Dictionary — Most comprehensive of the online dictionaries, with more than 500,000 here

10. Remote Link - HTML Merriam-Webster Unabridged Dictionary — Online edition of their printed here

11. Remote Link - HTML Online Dictionary from — Makes use of multiple print here

12. Remote Link - HTML Ahoi! — Online dictionaries & online here

13. Remote Link - HTML Your Dictionary — Combines dictionary and thesaurus here

14. Remote Link - HTML Webster Dictionary — Another online here

15. Remote Link - HTML Dictionary of Difficult Words — Focus on words that are obscure or difficult to here

16. Remote Link - HTML Hypertext Webster Interface — This has a mirror site. click here

17. Remote Link - HTML HyperDictionary — Interesting implementation, worthy of a here

18. Remote Link - HTML 1913 Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary — >From the U. of Chicago ARTFL here

19. Remote Link - HTML Roget's Thesaurus — Online reference of synonyms and related here

20. Remote Link - HTML Encyclopedia Britannica — Another way to access the online edition of this important here

21. Remote Link - HTML Encyclopedia Britannica, 11th Edition — Complete online version of the last public domain edition, and arguably one of the here

22. Remote Link - HTML Grolier Multimedia Encyclopedia Online — Usage charge on this standard here

23. Remote Link - HTML World Book Online — Usage charge on this encylopedia, mainly directed at younger here

24. Remote Link - HTML — Usage charge on this encylopedia, but has many short articles that are here

25. Remote Link - HTML The Encyclopedia Mythica — Compendium of mythology, legends, and here

26. Remote Link - HTML — Links to all kinds of reference sites and here

27. Remote Link - HTML — Links to all kinds of reference sites and here

28. Remote Link - HTML Librarians' Index to the Internet — Large searchable link collection oriented toward library here

29. Remote Link - HTML Research Libraries Group — System for sharing of resources among here

30. Remote Link - HTML ProQuest — Formerly University Microfilms. Source for documents on microfilm and here

31. Remote Link - HTML English-Greek, Greek-English Online Dictionary — Find Greek terms for English here

32. Graphic Image Greek Ligatures — Tables of ancient and medieval character combinations and abbreviations, useful for rendering manuscripts into Greek here

33. Remote Link - HTML Latin Dictionary and Grammar Aid — Check the correctness of your here

Documentation & Data

1. HTML Version Word Version Text Version Zipped WP Version Robert's Rules of Order Revised — Online version of 1915 edition. Essential manual for parliamentarians of deliberative assemblies. The HTML files can also be downloaded all at once in a Zip archive for local use on your here

o HTML Version Translations — Collection of RROR in other here

2. HTML Version Parliamentary Procedure — Links to resources on making decisions in deliberative here

3. Remote Link - HTML The On-Line Books Page — Archive at the U. of here

4. Remote Link - HTML Evans Digital Edition — Plan to eventually put online images of every printed work from 1639 through 1800.

5. Remote Link - HTML Hypertext on American History — >From the colonial period to modern here

6. Remote Link - HTML History of Economics Services — E-texts on here

7. Remote Link - HTML Center for the Study of the Great Ideas — >From the editors of The Great Books of the Western here

8. Remote Link - HTML Index of Dictionaries on the WWW — Links to every known here

9. Remote Link - HTML Questia — Large collection of online books, but only viewable one page at at here

10. Remote Link - HTML The Latin Library — The Latin classics in Latin.

11. Remote Link - HTML Office of Population Research — Comprehensive data on population growth, distribution, and factors affecting birth and death here

12. Remote Link - HTML Intelligence & CounterIntelligence — Extensive collection of links on intelligence and counterintelligence here

Government & Law

1. Remote Link - HTML The Annotated Constitution — GPO, CRS [ASCII, PDF], 2444p. Project of the Congressional Research Service (CRS) and Government Printing Office (GPO). Annotated references to Supreme Court decisions arranged by provision and amendment. Acrobat reader needed for PDF files can be downloaded from here. Some very large here

2. Remote Link - HTML The U.S. Constitution Annotated — Findlaw rendition. Links to case files on their here

3. Remote Link - HTML Library of Congressclick here

1. Remote Link - HTML A Century Of Lawmaking: 1774-1837click here

1. Remote Link - HTML Annals of Congress — Record of debates 1789-1824, which offer the most insight into original understanding of the here

4. Local Link - HTML U.S. Statutes at Large, complete collection, 1789-2007, with selections for tax statutes of here

5. Local Link - HTML U.S. Code, partial collection, 1926click here

6. Remote Link - HTML United States Code (USC) — Cornell University renditionclick here

See especially the following:

1. Remote Link - HTML 12 USC 95 — Emergency Rule click here

2. Remote Link - HTML 18 USC 241 — Conspiracy Against Rights click here

3. Remote Link - HTML 18 USC 242 — Deprivation of Rights under Color of Law click here

4. Remote Link - HTML 18 USC 921 — Firearms, Definitions click here

5. Remote Link - HTML 18 USC 922 — Firearms, Unlawful Acts click here

6. Remote Link - HTML 18 USC 2382 — Misprision of Treason click here

7. Remote Link - HTML 18 USC Ch.211 — Jurisdiction and Venue click here

8. Remote Link - HTML 18 USC Ch.215 — Grand Jury click here

9. Remote Link - HTML 42 USC 1983 — Civil action for deprivation of rights click here

7. Remote Link - HTML United States Code — Searchable tool provided by GPO. click here

8. Remote Link - HTML Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) — Searchable tool provided by GPO. click here

9. Remote Link - HTML GPO eCFR Search Engine — More powerful, beta version, may not return all results of a search on the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR). See Search Tips for here

10. Remote Link - HTML Office of the Law Revision Counsel, U.S. House of Representatives — These are the people who are restating the Statutes at Large (SAL) into the United States Code (USC), some of which have been re-enacted as statutes and some of which have not, so it requires some research to determine which are statutes and which are only "evidence" of the statutes. The USC is not to be confused with the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR), or with various government forms and instruction books, which are a product of the various executive branch agencies, allegedly based on the statutes or codes, but sometimes extending and deviating from them in significant ways. The application of provisions of the CFR to any but government employees or contractors, or to visitors to government facilities or users of government proprietary assets, is unconstitutional exercise of the legislative power by the executive branch agency. For more on this see the Borlase Guide. click here

11. Adobe PDF Internal Revenue Code — 26 USC, as of January 1, here

12. Remote Link - HTML Uniform Commercial Code (UCC) click here

13. HTML Version Text Version Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ) — Local copy as of 1997 June here

14. Remote Link - HTML US Supreme Court Cases & Opinions — Comprehensive free archive from click here

15. Remote Link - HTML FindLaw — Comprehensive archive of legal resources, including U.S. Supreme Court decisions. click here

16. Remote Link - HTML Legal Information Institute — Cornell archive of legal resources, including U.S. Supreme Court decisions not included in the Findlaw collection. click here

1. Remote Link - HTML Decisions by Justice — U.S. Supreme Court justices in alphabetical order, with links to the decisions they signed. click here

17. Remote Link - HTML vLex — Comprehensive archive of legal resources, both U.S. and foreign. click here

18. Remote Link - HTML Supreme Court of the United States — Rules and status of here

19. Remote Link - HTML Oyez — Multimedia archive of the U.S. Supreme here

20. Remote Link - HTML Federal Judicial Center — Collection of publications, such as litigation manuals. click here

21. Remote Link - HTML Public Access to Court Electronic Records (PACER) — Electronic public access service that allows users to obtain case and docket information from Federal Appellate, District and Bankruptcy courts, and from the U.S. Party/Case Index. A small fee is charged for time or pages accessed. click here

22. Remote Link - HTML U.S. Federal Circuit Courts — Starting with map of U.S. showing which states are in which circuit, at Georgetown U. School of Law, with links to here

23. HTML Version Landmark Supreme Court Decisions — Local archive, with commentaries on the rulings and the here

24. Remote Link - HTML USSC+ — Database of matters related to the U.S. Supreme Court.

25. Remote Link - HTML United States Attorneys' Manual — Useful reading for anyone who may have to go against them. click here

26. Remote Link - HTML Brief Reporter — Extensive online collection of legal briefs on many topics. click here

27. Remote Link - HTML CaseStream — Information of federal cases, active and inactive, civil, criminal, and bankruptcy. click here

28. Remote Link - HTML Avalon Project at Yale Law School — Documents in law, history and diplomacy. click here

29. Remote Link - HTML The Founders' Constitution — Online documentation from the University of Chicago. click here

30. Remote Link - HTML Bluebook: A Uniform System of Citation — Rules of typography and formatting of legal writings. They are planning an online edition. click here

31. Remote Link - HTML MegaLaw — Extensive legal links and research here

32. Remote Link - HTML Jurisdictionary® — Pre-trial here

33. Remote Link - HTML Zimmerman's Research Guide — Legal research here

34. Remote Link - HTML Directory of Pro Bono Programs — Provided by American Bar Association.

35. Remote Link - HTML Big Class Action/Civil Rights — Contact service for pending and proposed here

36. Remote Link - HTML Ancient Legal Sourcebook — Collection of documents and links at Fordham here

37. Remote Link - HTML Medieval Legal Sourcebook — Collection of documents and links at Fordham here

38. Remote Link - HTML Model Editions Partnership — Links to collections and standards for marking up online documents.

39. Remote Link - HTML GovBot — Search engine for U.S. government sites and resources.

40. Remote Link - HTML U.S. Federal Government Agencies Directory — Provided by Louisiana State University Library click here

41. Remote Link - HTML Internet Law Library — Now hosted by LawGuru. click here

42. Remote Link - HTML Law & Politics — Extensive collection of links to resources of all kinds. click here

43. Remote Link - HTML Winservices Legal Research Links — Directory and links to many legal references and other resources.

44. Remote Link - HTML Rominger Legal — Links to all kinds of legal here

45. Remote Link - HTML Substantive Law on the WWW — Randy Singer's collection of links to statutes and caselaw, federal, state, and international.

46. Remote Link - HTML Georgia State University Law Index — Many links to online legal resources. click here

47. Remote Link - HTML The 'Lectric Law Library — Great resource of legal reference materials for lawyers and here

1. HTML Version or Menu Remote Link - HTML How To Shepardize — Manual for finding cites to legal cases. click here

48. Remote Link - HTML Federal Web Locator — Maintained by the Villanova Center for Information Law and Policy. click here

49. Remote Link - HTML Fedworld — Index of U.S. government online information click here

50. Remote Link - HTML Official US Executive Branch Web Sites — Gateway to Executive Branch. click here

51. Remote Link - HTML Federal Register — Proposed regulations posted here. click here

52. Remote Link - HTML — Gateway to the Administrative State. Start here to try to stop further usurpations. click here

53. Remote Link - HTML National Archives and Records Adminstration — Archive of all kinds of interesting information, including the Federal Register and various images of important documents, such as the Charters of Freedom. click here

54. Remote Link - HTML Congressional Record Online — So far only goes back to 1995.

55. Remote Link - HTML National Constitution Center — Museum devoted to constitutional here

56. Remote Link - HTML Government Information Awareness — Emerging site at here

57. Remote Link - HTML Bill of Rights Institute — Education resources on the here

58. Remote Link - HTML Federal Judiciary — Clearinghouse of information on U.S. federal courts and news about here

59. Remote Link - HTML Federal Bureau of Investigation — Has status of popular here

60. Remote Link - HTML Central Intelligence Agency — Archive of useful facts of all kinds.

61. Remote Link - HTML Department of State — Archive of international news and here

62. Remote Link - HTML U.S. Information Service — Used to be the USIA. Operates VoA. Much useful information.

63. Remote Link - HTML Department of the Treasury — Archive of information about here

1. Remote Link - HTML Economic and trade sanctions against targeted foreign nations — Listing of those currently in here

64. Remote Link - HTML Internal Revenue Service — Tax info, but can you cite this in your defense if it's wrong? click here

65. Remote Link - HTML Census Bureau — All their data available here

66. Remote Link - HTML Stat-USA — Huge databank of statistical data of all here

67. Remote Link - HTML U.S. Government WWW Servers

68. Remote Link - HTML Comprehensive Annual Financial Reports CAFRs) — In case you thought we live in a free enterprise economy.

69. Remote Link - HTML U.S. Government gopher list

70. Remote Link - HTML NASIRE U.S. state information directory

71. Remote Link - HTML Thomson's Compilation of the British Statutes in Force in the State of Florida — This mostly handwritten compilation is the most complete collection of British colonial laws.

72. Remote Link - HTML Openlaw — An experiment in crafting legal argument in an open here

73. Remote Link - HTML — Online Continuing Legal Education (CLE). Focus on Texas, but useful for lawyers and laypersons generally.


1. Remote Link - HTML Thomas: Legislative Information on the Internet — U.S. House and Senate activity.

2. Remote Link - HTML Congressional Directory — Members of U.S. Congress with contact information and committee membership.

3. Remote Link - HTML U.S. House of Representatives Web page — Legislation, members, committees and organizations.

4. Remote Link - HTML U.S. Senate Web Page — Legislation, members, committees and organizations.

5. Remote Link - HTML U.S. Congressional E-Mail Directory

6. Remote Link - HTML Almanac of American Politics — Online version of this standard reference work. Contains information on members of the U.S. Congress and the states and districts they represent.

7. Remote Link - HTML National Political Index — Comprehensive directory of all things political.

8. Remote Link - HTML Congress Action — Provides up-to-date information on what is going on in Congress that may require citizen action.

9. Remote Link - HTML Time's Congressional Vote Database

10. Remote Link - HTML Political Resource

11. Remote Link - HTML All Things Political

12. Remote Link - HTML Policy Experts — Directory of individuals and organizations published by the Heritage Foundation.

13. Remote Link - HTML Project Vote Smart

14. Remote Link - HTML Republican Internet Directory — Archive of links to all kinds of sites related to the GOP and conservatism, including email addresses of national and state Republican elected officials.

15. Remote Link - HTML National Budget Simulation — So you think it's so easy to balance the budget and reduce the national debt? This game lets you try your hand at it.

16. Remote Link - HTML Krieble Institute USA — Conducts monthly conferences on political methods. Persons can interact via satellite or via the Internet with RealAudio.


1. Remote Link - HTML American Memory Collection — A project of the Library of Congress.

2. Remote Link - HTML Making of America — Collection of 19th century books and journals by Cornell University.

3. Remote Link - HTML American Revival — Collection by Micha Petty.

4. Remote Link - HTML Historical Text Archive — Collection by Don Mabry.

5. Remote Link - HTML — Particularly interesting for the constitutional issues raised.

6. Remote Link - HTML Amistad Research Center — Documents the 1839 slave rebellion aboard a slave ship, capture of the rebels in the United States, and their trials, which led to an appeal before theU.S. Supreme Court, where they won their freedom and return passage to Africa.


These links have been moved to the Citizen Action page.

Nations & International

1. Remote Link - HTML Display and use of the U.S. flag

2. Remote Link - HTML Flags of the World — Flags of almost every country and state, many organizations. GIF files.

3. Remote Link - HTML World Forum — Essays on globalist themes, but not much on constitutional legitimacy.


1. Remote Link - HTML PBS/WGBH-TV/Frontline — Much documentary material on Waco.

2. Remote Link - HTML C-SPAN — Coverage of constitutional processes and some issues.


1. HTML Version UFO-related On-line Sites — If there is something to it, and it is being covered up, it affects everything, including constitutional issues.


1. Remote Link - HTML FidoNet — Gateway to this interesting branch off the Internet.

2. Remote Link - HTML Internet Conference Calendar — Find the conferences you can attend.

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