ANDERSON, Circuit Judge:
Over seventeen years ago, in September 1969, Cavalier Bag Company, Inc. merged into E.T. Barwick Industries, a subsidiary of the Barwick Corporation. Various members of the Osterneck family, plaintiffs in this action, were, at that time, owners of Cavalier. Pursuant to the merger, the Osternecks exchanged their stock in Cavalier for Barwick Industries stock.
Sometime later the Osternecks became aware of allegedly fraudulent misrepresentations made to them in order to secure their approval of the merger. Specifically, they came to believe that Barwick Industries' financial statements for the two years preceding the merger misrepresented the company's financial condition. Consequently, on September 4, 1975, the Osternecks began this action alleging violations of §§ 10(b) and 20 of the Securities Act of 1934 (15 U.S.C. §§ 78j(b), 78t), Rule 10(b)(5) thereunder (17 C.F.R. § 240.10b-5) and the common law of Georgia.
Besides Barwick Industries, the Osternecks named as defendants several other individuals and organizations. Of these only four remain parties to this appeal: E.T. Barwick, B.A. Talley, and M.E. Kellar,
Following almost ten years of discovery, this case finally went to trial in October, 1984. After three and a half months of testimony, the jury returned a verdict against defendants Barwick Industries, M.E. Kellar, and B.A. Talley in the amount of $2,632,234 as compensatory damages for violations of federal securities law and Georgia state common law. Judgment was entered in favor of E & W and E.T. Barwick, individually. Subsequently, the district court awarded the Osternecks prejudgment interest on their federal securities claim in the amount of $945,512.85. These consolidated appeals ensued.
Tangled procedural maneuvering has created three separate appellate cases. For clarity's sake we briefly characterize them here: Case No. 85-8165 involves the Osternecks' appeal from all judgments rendered against them and includes the cross-appeals of most of the defendants. Case No. 85-8593 involves only the appeal by Barwick Industries, E.T. Barwick, Talley and Kellar and the Osternecks' cross-appeal against those parties. Case No. 85-8523 is an appeal by E & W from the district court's denial of expert fees in E & W's bill of costs.
As an initial matter, we confront several difficult jurisdictional questions. These difficulties arise out of the complicated procedural maneuvering which occurred following the initial entry of judgment against defendants Barwick Industries, Kellar and Talley. This first judgment for over two and a half million dollars was entered on January 30, 1985. At that time the Osternecks moved orally for the award of prejudgment interest. On February 11, 1985, the Osternecks filed a written motion for prejudgment interest. During March 1985, the various parties filed notices of appeal and cross-appeal challenging the January 30, 1985 judgment, including the Osternecks' March 1, 1985 notice of appeal.
A. Case Nos. 85-8165 & 85-8593
These cases raise two interrelated jurisdictional issues. First, we must examine
It is settled law that a notice of appeal filed while a motion to alter or amend the judgment under Rule 59(e) is pending can have no effect. See Fed.R.App.P. 4(a)(4);
Our conclusion that a motion for prejudgment interest is a Rule 59(e) motion is influenced by several factors. First and foremost amongst these is the settled treatment of such motions by the other circuit courts of appeal. They have uniformly concluded that a motion for discretionary prejudgment interest must be filed pursuant to Rule 59(e). See Stern v. Shouldice, 706 F.2d 742, 746-47 (6th Cir.), cert. denied, 464 U.S. 993, 104 S.Ct. 487, 78 L.Ed.2d 683 (1983); Goodman v. Heublein, Inc., 682 F.2d 44, 45-47 (2d Cir.1982); Scola v. Boat Frances, R., Inc., 618 F.2d 147, 152-54 (1st Cir.1980).
This result may be easily explained. The discretionary award of prejudgment interest requires the district court to substantively reconsider its original judgment. This is precisely the sort of alteration or amendment contemplated by Rule 59(e). Such substantive modifications must be sought within ten days of the entry of
The Osternecks argue, however, that their motion is not within the scope of Rule 59(e) because it addresses an issue collateral to the main cause of action. As support for this proposition, they cite White v. New Hampshire Dep't of Employment Security, 455 U.S. 445, 102 S.Ct. 1162, 71 L.Ed.2d 325 (1982), in which the Supreme Court held that a post-judgment motion for an award of attorney's fees under 42 U.S.C. § 1988 was not governed by Rule 59(e).
Reliance upon White is misplaced. In White, the Court noted that an award of attorney's fees under § 1988 is "uniquely separable" from the main cause of action and, "`does not imply a change in the judgment.'" Id. at 452, 102 S.Ct. at 1166 (quoting Knighton v. Watkins, 616 F.2d 795, 797 (5th Cir.1980)). Our circuit has interpreted this to mean that Rule 59(e) applies only when a motion seeks reconsideration of substantive issues resolved in the judgment and not when a motion raises exclusively collateral questions regarding what is due because of the judgment. See Lucas v. Florida Power & Light Co., 729 F.2d 1300, 1301 (11th Cir.1984). Thus, we have even concluded that the issue of attorney's fees is not always collateral to the action. When the liability for the award arises from a substantive contractual obligation and is "an integral part of the merits of the case" and therefore "`compensation for the injury giving rise to an action,'" a motion for the inclusion of attorney's fees is a Rule 59(e) motion and tolls the time period for appeal. C.I.T. Corp. v. Nelson, 743 F.2d 774, 775 (11th Cir.1984) (quoting White, 455 U.S. at 452, 102 S.Ct. at 1166-67); accord Beckwith Machinery Co. v. Travelers Indemnity Co., 815 F.2d 286 (3d Cir.1987). But see Exchange Nat'l Bank v. Daniels, 763 F.2d 286, 292-94 (7th Cir.1985).
It cannot be doubted that prejudgment interest is compensation which directly stems from the injury giving rise to the action. Norte & Co. v. Huffines, 416 F.2d 1189, 1191 (2d Cir.1969), cert. denied, 397 U.S. 989, 90 S.Ct. 1121, 25 L.Ed.2d 396 (1970). Thus, a motion to award prejudgment interest requests a substantive alteration of a court's judgment and must be made pursuant to Rule 59(e). Hence, in the instant case, the district court's judgment was not made final until the entry of its amended judgment on July 9, 1985, and
In order to avoid the effects of this ruling, the Osternecks argue that their original notices of appeal and cross-appeal filed in March are, nonetheless, effective because they fall within the scope of two special exceptions which validate premature notices of appeal. First, they argue that an interlocutory appeal from a nonfinal decision may, nonetheless, be treated as an appeal from a final order if the nonfinal judgment has subsequently been finalized. See Jetco Electronic Industries, Inc. v. Gardiner, 473 F.2d 1228, 1231 (5th Cir.1973);
As a final argument, the Osternecks contend that they fall within the "unique circumstances" exception to the timely appeal requirement. This exception, developed by the Supreme Court in Thompson v. Immigration & Naturalization Service, 375 U.S. 384 (1964) (per curiam), commands that an appellate court "should hear an appeal even though it is not timely, if the appellant reasonably relied on an erroneous statement of the district court that the appeal ... was timely, and the appeal would have been timely if the district court had been correct." Marane, Inc. v. McDonald's Corp., 755 F.2d 106, 111 n. 2 (7th Cir.1985) (citation omitted).
The Osternecks contend that they have relied upon several actions of the district court which indicated that the January 30, 1985 judgment was final and appealable. These include the district court's subsequent orders granting E & W's bill of costs, denying E.T. Barwick's motion for an extension of time to file its bill of costs, and denying E.T. Barwick Industries' motion to stay the execution of the January 30 judgment. In addition, the clerk of the district court required the Osternecks to pay an additional filing fee for their notice of cross-appeal filed after the district court's July 9 amended judgment. The Osternecks argue that this requirement indicates that the clerk did not treat the Osternecks' motion for prejudgment interest as a motion under Rule 59. Had the clerk believed that a Rule 59 motion had been made he would have acted pursuant to Fed.R.App.P. 4(a)(4) which provides that no additional fees shall be required for a second notice of appeal filed after a Rule 59 motion has been ruled upon. Finally, the Osternecks contend that they relied upon this court's failure to originally notify them that jurisdiction was questionable.
For the foregoing reasons, we conclude that we do not have jurisdiction to hear the appeal in Case No. 85-8165 (i.e., the Osternecks' March 1, 1985 appeal and the defendants' cross-appeals during March 1985). That appeal is accordingly ordered dismissed.
Having concluded that all of the notices of appeal filed prior to the district court's amended judgment on July 9, 1985 are ineffective, we must next determine the efficacy of the Osternecks' subsequent notice of cross-appeal filed on July 31, 1985. The Osternecks contend that, even though their appeal in Case No. 85-8165 may be dismissed, all the issues they seek to litigate in that appeal are preserved for litigation in Case No. 85-8593 by their July 31 notice. By its terms, however, this notice of cross-appeal does not expressly raise any issues for appeal against E & W. E & W contends that the failure to name them in the notice of appeal renders the notice ineffective insofar as it seeks to raise any issues on appeal against E & W. We agree.
The general rule in this circuit is that an appellate court has jurisdiction to review only those judgments, orders or portions thereof which are specified in an appellant's notice of appeal. See Pitney Bowes, Inc. v. Mestre, 701 F.2d 1365, 1374-75 (11th Cir.), cert. denied, 464 U.S. 893, 104 S.Ct. 239, 78 L.Ed.2d 230 (1983); Fed.R.App.P. 3(c) (requiring that a notice of appeal "designate the judgment, order or part thereof appealed from"). But see Lynn v. Sheet Metal Workers, 804 F.2d 1472, 1481 (9th Cir.1986). Although we generally construe a notice of appeal liberally, we will not expand it to include judgments and orders not specified unless the overriding intent to appeal these orders is readily apparent on the face of the notice.
We conclude that an analogous rule should apply when an appellant expressly names some of his opponents but fails to include other opposing parties within the notice of appeal. See Elfman Motors, Inc. v. Chrysler Corp., 567 F.2d 1252 (3d Cir.1977) (denying appellate jurisdiction with respect to defendants not named in notice of appeal); Parrish v. Board of Commissioners, 505 F.2d 12, 15-16 (5th Cir.1974) (notice naming appellants "PARRISH, ET AL., Plaintiffs" sufficient to demonstrate that all plaintiffs intended to appeal), vacated, 509 F.2d 540, reh'g en banc, 524 F.2d 98 (1975), on remand, 533 F.2d 942, 945 (1976) (deeming issue mooted by filing of curative notice of appeal). Since the text of the Osternecks' July 31, 1985 notice, see supra note 3, expressly preserves an appeal against Barwick, Barwick Industries, Talley and Kellar, we must, by inference, conclude that the Osternecks chose to forego any appeal against E & W.
Moreover, to now permit the Osternecks to use their July 31 notice as a vehicle for an appeal against E & W would unfairly prejudice E & W. No doubt relying upon the Osternecks' failure to appeal the judgment in its favor, E & W has foregone any cross-appeal it might have had. A cross-appeal, had one been filed, could have raised many of the issues which we will address in connection with Case No. 85-8593. Indeed, when the Osternecks had earlier appeared to perfect an appeal against E & W by their March 1 notice of appeal, E & W promptly filed a notice of cross-appeal on March 15. Thus, it is evident that E & W has reasonably relied upon the fact that the Osternecks did not name them in their July 31 notice. To allow the Osternecks to now use that notice to raise an appeal against E & W would be inequitable. Consequently, the issues the Osternecks seek to litigate against E & W are not preserved in Case No. 85-8593.
As our discussion makes plain, however, we do have jurisdiction over Case No. 85-8593, because the notices of appeal were filed after the district court entered its final judgment. The scope of these notices expressly embraces the appeals by Barwick Industries, E.T. Barwick, Talley and Kellar as well as the Osternecks' July 31, 1985 cross-appeal against those parties. Talley and Kellar have argued that the Osternecks' second notice specified only that portion of the final judgment relating to prejudgment interest and thus did not raise against them any issues other than the propriety of the prejudgment interest award expressly mentioned in the notice. We need not address this argument, however, because in this appeal against Talley and Kellar, the Osternecks have briefed only the prejudgment issue and have, consequently, abandoned any other assignments of error against Talley and Kellar. Harris v. Plastics Manufacturing Co., 617 F.2d 438, 440 (5th Cir.1980). All parties agree that the July 31, 1985 notice was sufficient to permit the Osternecks to appeal from the district court's order which awarded prejudgment interest only on the federal securities claim and reduced by two-thirds the amount of interest requested by the Osternecks. Thus, all issues raised by the Osternecks in case No. 85-8593 against Talley and Kellar are properly before us, as well as the issues raised by the Talley and Kellar appeals, and we have jurisdiction to hear the case.
B. Case No. 85-8523
This case presents a slightly different issue of appellate jurisdiction. On May 22,
Though orders awarding or denying costs are not ordinarily appealable, Newton v. Consolidated Gas Co., 265 U.S. 78, 82-83, 44 S.Ct. 481, 482-83, 68 L.Ed. 909 (1924), when the refusal to tax an item of cost is not based upon an exercise of discretion but rather upon a district court's conclusion that it lacked the power to tax costs that order is appealable. See McWilliams Dredging Co. v. Department of Highways, 187 F.2d 61 (5th Cir.1951). Moreover, it is evident that an appeal respecting costs is an appeal of a collateral matter which does not seek reconsideration of substantive issues before the court. Lucas, 729 F.2d at 1301. Thus, our analysis above suggests that E & W's appeal is of a collateral matter and that a request for costs is not a motion under Rule 59(e).
This, however, does not dispose of the question. Simply because an order, such as an order taxing costs, is generally appealable it does not follow that any particular order is appealable. In this case, the order appealed from was entered prior to the district court's final disposition of all substantive issues in the case. This exactly reverses the typical procedure contemplated by Fed.R.Civ.P. 58, which provides that "[e]ntry of the judgment shall not be delayed for the taxing of costs."
By statutory authority, this court has jurisdiction only of appeals from final decisions of the district courts. 28 U.S.C. § 1291.
Nor can E & W seek to avoid the finality rule by application of the Cohen doctrine. See Cohen v. Beneficial Industrial Loan Corp., 337 U.S. 541, 69 S.Ct. 1221, 93 L.Ed. 1528 (1949) (permitting appeal of certain nonfinal collateral issues). In the first place, it is not at all apparent that the Cohen doctrine can ever apply to notices of appeal filed during the pendency of a Rule 59 motion, such as the Osternecks' motion for prejudgment interest in this case. By its very terms, Rule 4(a)(4) mandates that "the time for appeal for all parties" shall run from the entry of an order granting or denying a Rule 59 motion. Fed.R.App.P. 4(a)(4) (emphasis supplied). Thus, one might conclude that the express terms of Rule 4(a)(4) render any notice of appeal filed during the pendency of a Rule 59 motion a nullity, no matter what that notice's otherwise appealable character.
For the foregoing reasons we conclude that the appeal in Case No. 85-8523 must be dismissed for want of jurisdiction because it is an appeal from a nonfinal order of the district court.
II. CASE NO. 85-8593 — THE MERITS
Having concluded that we have jurisdiction only to determine the merits of Case No. 85-8593, we now turn our attention to the issues presented in that case. No. 85-8593 involves the issues raised by Talley and Kellar in their appeals,
On appeal, Talley argues: (1) that the district court improperly charged the jury with a four-year statute of limitations for the federal securities law claims; (2) that consequently, since prejudgment interest is not available under Georgia law, the award of prejudgment interest made by the district court under the federal securities law must be vacated; (3) that the district court improperly imposed upon him the burden of rebutting the Osternecks' bill of costs; and (4) that the district court erred in allowing his codefendants to cross-examine him when he testified at trial.
Appellant Kellar raises the following issues: (1) that the district court improperly charged a four-year statute of limitations on the federal securities claims; (2) that the district court erred in concluding that fraudulent concealment by third parties would toll the running of the federal securities statute of limitations against him; (3) that there was insufficient evidence to support a judgment that he was liable to the Osternecks on the federal securities claims; and (4) that there was insufficient evidence of scienter to support a judgment against him on the state common law fraud claims.
In reply the Osternecks contend: (1) that Talley and Kellar have waived their right to assign as error the district court's instruction to the jury applying the four-year statute of limitations to the federal securities claim; (2) that any error in charging the jury on the federal securities statute of
A. Statute of Limitations for the Federal Securities Claim
Talley and Kellar assert that the district court committed several errors in determining the statute of limitations applicable to the Osternecks' federal securities claims. If Talley and Kellar had been successful in bringing themselves within the protection of the statute of limitations, thus barring the federal securities claims, the award of prejudgment interest would have to be vacated, since prejudgment interest is not available on the state law claims in this particular case. See infra, note 24.
The federal securities laws do not provide a specific statute of limitations for private rights of action asserted under §§ 10(b), 20 and Rule 10b-5. Thus, federal courts are required to borrow the most appropriate statute of limitations from the forum state. Ernst & Ernst v. Hochfelder, 425 U.S. 185, 210 n. 29, 96 S.Ct. 1375, 1389 n. 29, 47 L.Ed.2d 668 (1976); Friedlander v. Troutman, Sanders, Lockerman & Ashmore, 788 F.2d 1500, 1502 (11th Cir.1986).
In this case, the district court originally concluded that the two-year statute of limitations provision of Georgia's Securities Act was applicable. See Osterneck v. E.T. Barwick Industries, Inc., 79 F.R.D. 47, 50-51 (N.D.Ga.1978) (applying Ga.Code Ann. § 97-114 (1973)).
This instruction also had the effect of tolling the statute of limitations. Even under a four-year statute of limitations, the Osternecks might have been required to begin litigation by September 1973 — 4 years after the 1969 merger. The court's instruction permitted the jury to conclude that the suit was timely, however, if they found that the Osternecks did not know and through due diligence could not have known of the existence of their cause of action before September 4, 1971 — the date four years before they filed suit.
Appellants Talley and Kellar now seek a new trial, arguing first that a two-year statute of limitations should properly have been charged to the jury. Because Talley and Kellar failed to object to the jury charge as required by Fed.R.Civ.P. 51, our review is restricted to one of plain error. Since we conclude that the district court's charge was not plainly erroneous, we reject the appellants' assertion that a new trial is necessary.
The law in this circuit is clear. Pursuant to Fed.R.Civ.P. 51, one who wishes to challenge on appeal a district court's instruction to the jury on the
In the instant case, both Talley and Kellar failed to object to the district court's statute of limitations charge. Indeed, they were not even represented at trial having, by their own stipulation, been excused from attending the lengthy proceedings. Thus, though their codefendants E & W and E.T. Barwick did object to the jury instruction, Talley and Kellar did not adopt these objections. Consequently, they have failed to preserve the issue for review on appeal unless the instruction was plainly erroneous.
Nor will it do for Talley and Kellar to argue that the district court's decision permitting them to be absent from trial somehow excuses them from their obligations pursuant to Rule 51. This would create the perverse result of according greater lenity to those who do not appear at trial than to those who do appear but merely neglect to adopt the objections of their codefendants.
Moreover, both Talley and Kellar were fully aware that the district court was reconsidering its earlier determination to charge a two-year statute of limitations. They were both served with voluminous memoranda on the subject submitted by the Osternecks and E & W, yet neither offered any reply of their own.
In the circumstances of this case, we cannot conclude that the trial court was plainly erroneous in charging the jury as it did. As the Supreme Court has recognized, a "court's interpretation of the contours of [an area of legal uncertainty] hardly could give rise to plain judicial error [when] those contours are ... in a state of evolving definition and uncertainty." City of Newport v. Fact Concerts, Inc., 453 U.S. 247, 256, 101 S.Ct. 2748, 2754, 69 L.Ed.2d 616 (1981); see also Barnett, 707 F.2d at 1581 n. 18; Black v. Stephens, 662 F.2d 181, 184 n. 1 (3d Cir.1981), cert. denied, 455 U.S. 1008, 102 S.Ct. 1646, 71 L.Ed.2d 876 (1982).
It was not until several months later that the Supreme Court, in Wilson v. Garcia, 471 U.S. 261, 105 S.Ct. 1938, 85 L.Ed.2d 254 (1985), revised the method by which courts should choose the appropriate statute of limitations to borrow and determined that lower courts must analyze the question on a statute-by-statute basis. Moreover, it was not until May 1986, over one year later, that this court first had occasion to apply the Wilson standard to a case involving the appropriate statute of limitations to be borrowed for federal securities claims. In Friedlander, 788 F.2d at 1507-09, we concluded that for all federal securities cases the appropriate statute of limitations to borrow is that of the Georgia Securities Act. Thus, though Friedlander now makes clear that the district court should properly have charged a two-year statute of limitations (since that is now and was in 1969 the statute of limitations in the Georgia Securities Act), we cannot say that the court's erroneous four-year charge was plain judicial error.
Kellar also argues that the district court erred in instructing the jury that the statute of limitations was tolled until such time as the Osternecks knew or through due diligence should have known of the existence of their cause of action. This instruction, Kellar contends, improperly allowed the fraudulent concealment of third parties, such as Talley and Barwick Industries, to
Kellar, however, is mistaken.
B. Other Federal Issues
Several other issues pertaining to the federal securities judgment have been raised by the parties. First, appellant Kellar contends that there was insufficient evidence to support the judgment against him. After carefully reviewing the record, we conclude that there was sufficient credible evidence of Kellar's direct liability to allow a jury to enter judgment against him,
Appellant Talley raises two additional issues on appeal: (1) whether the district court improperly shifted to him the burden of rebutting the Osternecks' bill of costs; and (2) whether the district court erred in permitting his codefendants to cross-examine him at trial. We have closely examined these questions and find that the assignments of error are without merit and warrant no discussion.
The final federal issue posed is the Osternecks' contention that the district court
In its second exercise of discretion, the district court then determined that its initial interest award of some 2.8 million dollars should be reduced by two-thirds. This reduction reflected the district court's conclusion that: (1) an interest award in excess of the principal sum would be punitive; and (2) that a substantial portion of the delay in bringing this suit to a conclusion could be attributed either to actions the plaintiffs had taken or to delays inherent in the federal judicial system. Thus, the district court concluded that the defendants, having been responsible for no more than one-third of the delay in bringing this suit to trial, were responsible for only one-third of the prejudgment interest which might be awarded. Consequently, the district court awarded prejudgment interest on the federal securities claim in the amount of $945,512.85. The Osternecks challenge only this second exercise of discretion.
It is clear that whether "pre-judgment interest should be awarded on a damage recovery in a [federal securities] action is a question of fairness resting within the District Court's sound discretion." Wolf v. Frank, 477 F.2d 467, 479 (5th Cir.), cert. denied, 414 U.S. 975, 94 S.Ct. 287, 38 L.Ed.2d 218 (1973). Moreover, in awarding prejudgment interest, the district court must insure that the award is not punitive in nature. Norte & Co. v. Huffines, 416 F.2d 1189, 1191-92 (2d Cir.1969), cert. denied, 397 U.S. 989, 90 S.Ct. 1121, 25 L.Ed.2d 396 (1970). Finally, because the award of prejudgment interest is compensatory rather than punitive, the award must be "tempered by an assessment of the equities." Id. at 1191. It is apparent to us that the factors relied upon by the district court are precisely the sorts of equitable considerations which should be evaluated in making a prejudgment interest award. Therefore, we cannot conclude that the district court abused its discretion in awarding the Osternecks only $945,512.85 in prejudgment interest.
For the reasons stated in the foregoing analysis, the federal securities judgment in the amount of $2,632,234 entered in favor of the plaintiffs and against Barwick Industries, Kellar and Talley with prejudgment interest in the amount of $945,512.85 is, in all respects, affirmed.
In sum, the appeals in Case Nos. 85-8165 and 85-8523 are DISMISSED for want of appellate jurisdiction. The judgment in Case No. 85-8593 is AFFIRMED.
AFFIRMED in part, and appeals DISMISSED in part.
Record on Appeal, vol. 24, Tab 511.
28 U.S.C. § 1291.