Judge Andrew Tarantino Jr.

Attorney Kirschenbaum previously moved to dismiss this action for improper service and lack of subject matter jurisdiction. The court ordered a document exchange and depositions to be completed by a certain date. It was informed at a compliance conference that Kirschenbaum failed to provide documents or appear for a deposition. The court set a final date for submission of all documents and completion of depositions. It was informed by Kirschenbaum’s counsel, who sought leave to be relieved as attorney of record, that Kirschenbaum would not be appearing before the court. The court found Kirschenbaum’s failure to adhere to the court’s orders was willful and contumacious, and could not be countenanced. It stated that while extreme, the sanction of striking an answer for a willful failure to abide by court orders was warranted. Therefore, the court sanctioned Kirschenbaum $5,000 for his willful and contumacious failure to comply with three court orders, ordering him to pay the money to plaintiff’s attorneys. Further, the court struck Kirschenbaum’s answer, holding him in default for failure to answer the complaint, or appear before the court.