FDIC v. McFarland ( 2001 )

  •                      REVISED, MARCH 29, 2001
                          FOR THE FIFTH CIRCUIT
                              No. 99-30756
         TEXACO, INC.,
                                  Defendant - Third Party Plaintiff,
                                  Third Party Defendants - Appellees,
         DENNIS JOSLIN CO., L.L.C.,
                                  Movant - Appellant.
              Appeal from the United States District Court
                 For the Western District of Louisiana
                            February 28, 2001
    Before JOLLY, HIGGINBOTHAM, and EMILIO M. GARZA, Circuit Judges.
         This appeal turns in part on whether the Federal Deposit
    Insurance Corporation (FDIC) as receiver must abide by Louisiana
    reinscription rules to preserve its liens. The district court
    determined that the mortgage and assignment held by the assignee of
    the FDIC, the Dennis Joslin Company ("Joslin"), lost priority
    status because of the FDIC's failure to reinscribe the mortgage
    within the statutory period. The court found that two creditors,
    Bank One and David L. Jump, had valid liens that were senior to the
    FDIC's interest.
         In addition to its assertions based on Louisiana law, Joslin
    argues that the FDIC is not bound by reinscription requirements.
    The argument is that either the Financial Institutions Reform,
    Recovery, and Enforcement Act of 1989, FIRREA, or federal common
    law insulates the FDIC from state-law reinscription requirements.
    We are not persuaded and affirm this holding of the district court.
    We also conclude that Jump's lien was based on a judgment that was
    not final when registered. We reverse the district court's contrary
    holding and remand.
         On November 30, 1984, Rory S. McFarland pledged a note in the
    amount of $2.5 million to the Bank of Commerce of Shreveport,
    Louisiana.1   McFarland   secured   this   note   with   a   mineral   lease
    mortgage and assignment, an "assignment of runs," of his interest
           Although McFarland executed other mortgages in favor of the
    Bank of Commerce, none of these instruments is relevant to the
    instant appeal.
    in the oil, gas, and minerals produced from the mortgaged leasehold
    and mineral interests.2
         A casualty of the misfortunes that befell banking in the
    1980s, the Bank of Commerce failed in 1986. The FDIC was appointed
    receiver and took over the bank's assets, including the pledged
    1984 note and the assignment.3
         In August 1990, Bank One Equity Investment, Inc., formerly
    Premier Venture Capital Corporation, obtained judgment, "the Bank
    One judgment," against McFarland in Louisiana state court. Bank One
    recorded this judgment in various Louisiana parishes between March
    and August of 1991.
         On October 1, 1991, David L. Jump obtained a judgment against
    McFarland, "the Jump judgment," in the United States District Court
    for the Western District of Colorado. Jump registered the judgment
    in the Western District of Louisiana on June 26, 1992. In June and
    July of 1992, Jump recorded the judgment in various Louisiana
           The assignment, which was executed on the same day as the
    note, encompassed McFarland's right, title, and interest "in and
    to the oil, gas and other minerals, of whatever nature and kind
    whatsoever, situated in and under and which may be produced from
    the land affected by the leases described" in a schedule attached
    to the mortgage.
          We will refer to the 1984 mortgage note as the 1984 mortgage
    and the 1984 mineral lease mortgage and assignment as the 1984
    assignment. We will also refer to both instruments jointly as the
    1984 mortgage and assignment.
         On October 31, 1991, the FDIC filed suit to collect the debt
    owed by McFarland to the Bank of Commerce, including the 1984
    mortgage and assignment. Bank One and Jump intervened in the case4
    seeking the proceeds from the mineral leases that had been paid
    into the court registry.5 They claimed that the 1984 assignment did
    not encompass a specific offshore lease, OCS-310.
         In 1993, the district court ordered McFarland to pay the FDIC
    from the proceeds in the court registry and recognized the 1984
    mortgage as the first lien. The court also held that the 1984
    assignment did not include OCS-310 and ordered McFarland to pay the
    proceeds of that lease to Bank One and Jump.6 The FDIC recorded the
    1993 judgment of the district court in various Louisiana parishes
           Bank One and Jump agreed to combine their efforts in the
    ensuing ranking dispute.
           Texaco, Inc. had deposited proceeds from the mineral leases
    into the court registry. The FDIC had joined Texaco as a party
    given its status as the operator of most of the encumbered mineral
    interests. The FDIC had also joined as parties Russell Long and
    Palmer Long, who were trustees of certain expired trusts of which
    McFarland had been beneficiary. Prior to the 1993 action, the Longs
    periodically received funds from Texaco and distributed them to
           On October 23, 1995, Bank One received $300,000 from the
    funds deposited in the court registry that were traceable to the
    OCS-310 lease. Bank One then released its judgment as to
    McFarland's interest in the OCS-310 lease. Jump initiated
    foreclosure proceedings and purchased that leasehold interest at a
    sale held by the United States Marshal. Jump also received the
    balance of the funds on deposit in the registry attributable to the
    OCS-310 lease.
    between   November   2,   1993,   and   November   8,   1993.   This   Court
    subsequently affirmed the judgment in relevant part.7
         The FDIC reinscribed the 1984 mortgage and assignment in
    various Louisiana parishes in July 1995. In 1997, the FDIC assigned
    the mortgage and assignment to the Dennis Joslin Company.
         In 1998, Joslin filed a motion for issuance of a writ of
    execution and for foreclosure of the property subject to the 1984
    mortgage and assignment. Joslin also sought distribution of the
    funds that had accumulated in the court registry. The district
    court issued the requested writ of execution and the United States
    Marshal for the Western District of Louisiana seized the property.
    The marshal advertised the sale of the property and set October 28,
    1998 as the date of sale.
         Through successive filings on October 23 and 26, 1998, Jump
    objected to Joslin's actions. Jump contended that the FDIC's
    failure to reinscribe the 1984 mortgage and assignment within ten
    years of its execution resulted in a loss of ranking. Jump argued
    that the 1991 Jump judgment consequently had priority as to both
    the mineral interests and the proceeds deposited in the court
    registry. The court postponed the marshal's sale.
         In June 1999, the district court entered another judgment
    holding that Louisiana law required the FDIC to reinscribe the 1984
           See Federal Deposit Ins. Corp. v. McFarland, 
    33 F.3d 532
    (5th Cir. 1994).
    mortgage   and   assignment    by    November    30,   1994.8   The   FDIC's
    reinscription    in   1995   was    therefore   untimely,   depriving   its
    assignee, Joslin, of priority rank. The court consequently ranked
    the Bank One judgment first, the Jump judgment second, and the
    FDIC's 1984 mortgage and assignment third. Joslin appeals this
         Joslin contends, first, that this case is moot.9 Joslin points
    to the 1993 judgment, in which the district court declared the FDIC
    to be "the owner and entitled to all funds paid into the Registry
           See La. Civ. Code Ann. art. 3369 (West 1992) (requiring the
    reinscription of a mortgage within ten years of its creation).
    Although the statute was amended in 1993, see 1992 La. Acts No.
    1132, these amendments only apply to mortgages created on or after
    the effective date of January 1, 1993. See id. at § 7; Seal v.
    767 So. 2d 798
    , 801 (La. App. 1st Cir. 2000). We note that
    a pledge of minerals, or assignment of runs, faces the same ten-
    year reinscription requirement as the mortgage it secures. See La.
    Rev. Stat. Ann. § 31:202 (West 1989). Contrary to Joslin's
    assertions, the 1990 repeal of certain provisions of the Louisiana
    Mineral Code does not affect this case. Revised Article 204 of the
    Mineral Code, La. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 31:204 (West Supp. 2000), does
    not apply to pledges entered into before the effective date of
    Chapter 9 of the Louisiana's Commercial Laws. See 1989 La. Acts
    137, § 20. The 1984 pledge at issue in this case was executed prior
    to this effective date and is therefore governed by former Article
    202 of the Mineral Code.
           See Bayou Liberty Ass'n v. United States Army Corps of
    217 F.3d 393
    , 396 (5th Cir. 2000) ("We must address the
    issue of mootness first, because to qualify as a case for federal
    court adjudication, a case or controversy must exist . . . .
    Whether a case is moot is a question of law that we resolve de
    of this Court." Joslin argues that, except for the funds derived
    from the OCS-310 lease, the FDIC was declared owner of all past and
    future proceeds from the leases in question. Because the 1993
    judgment vested the FDIC with priority lien status, Joslin contends
    that the reinscription question was rendered moot.10
         Joslin's position is meritless. There is a live case or
    controversy regarding the meaning of the 1993 judgment—the extent
    to which it encompasses future, as well as past, proceeds deposited
    in the registry. Moreover, we note that Louisiana law mandates the
    reinscription   of   mortgages   and   assignments   within   a   ten-year
    period.11 As the Louisiana Supreme Court has held, "[a] litigation
    between   the   mortgage    creditors      does   not   dispense      from
    reinscription. . . . The inscription must continue until the
    proceeds of the property mortgaged are reduced to possession."12 The
    1993 judgment did not then implicitly end the FDIC's continuing
    obligation to reinscribe the mortgage. Moreover, the FDIC's failure
    to reinscribe the mortgage did not occur until 1994, and the issue
           See Umanzor v. Lambert, 
    782 F.2d 1299
    , 1301 (5th Cir. 1986)
    (discussing Article III case or controversy requirements and noting
    that, "[i]f the subject of an appeal has become moot, the appellate
    court may not decide it").
           See La. Civ. Code Ann. art. 3369 (West 1992); La. Rev. Stat.
    Ann. § 31:202 (West 1989).
           Shepherd v. The Orleans Cotton Press Co., 
    2 La. Ann. 100
    111 (La. 1847).
    was not properly before the district court.13 Even if we were to
    interpret the 1993 judgment as declaring the FDIC to be owner of
    all future proceeds deposited in the court registry, the judgment
    would      still      not   exclude    the     possibility    that       other
    circumstances—e.g., failure to reinscribe—might deprive the FDIC of
    its     lien.   The    instant   appeal      therefore   presents    a   live
          The larger question posed by this case is whether Louisiana
    reinscription law applies to mortgages held by the FDIC. The
    parties urge three different means of resolving this question.
    First, Jump15 contends that the 1993 judgment disposed of the
    reinscription question and is the "law of the case." Second, Joslin
           Because the facts litigated in the 1993 judgment differ from
    those in the 1999 judgment, collateral estoppel is of no assistance
    to Joslin. See Copeland v. Merrill Lynch & Co., 
    47 F.3d 1415
    , 1422
    (5th Cir. 1995).
           Joslin also frames its mootness argument in terms of the law
    of the case doctrine. Joslin contends that the 1993 judgment
    granted it (through the FDIC) ownership of the past and future
    proceeds from the leases. It argues that this decision was binding
    on the 1999 proceedings. This argument fails for the same reasons
    as Joslin's mootness claim. The 1993 judgment did not preclude the
    possibility that other circumstances could strip Joslin of its
    ownership interest. Moreover, as discussed infra, we are skeptical
    as to whether or not the 1993 and 1999 proceedings constitute
    different phases of the same "case." Cf. United States v. Lawrence,
    179 F.3d 343
    , 351 (5th Cir. 1999).
           Jump is the only party besides Joslin participating in this
    appeal. Pursuant to a prior compromise and settlement agreement,
    Jump is participating on behalf of both himself and Bank One.
    argues    that    the   Financial     Institutions       Reform,      Recovery,   and
    Enforcement       Act   of   198916    frees       the    FDIC       from   state-law
    reinscription      requirements.      If       FIRREA   does   not    apply,   Joslin
    asserts    that    federal    common       law    governs      the    FDIC,    thereby
    precluding the imposition of state reinscription obligations. We
    address each contention in turn.
         Jump argues that the district court in the 1999 case was bound
    by the 1993 judgment, which provided the "law of the case."                      Under
    the "law of the case" doctrine, "a decision on an issue of law made
    at one stage of a case becomes a binding precedent to be followed
    in successive stages of the same litigation."17 Where a final
    judgment is entered, the case appealed, and the case remanded, a
    trial judge must adhere on remand to the rulings it made in the
    case before appeal, assuming that the appellate court has not
    overturned the rulings.18 Moreover, an appellate court is generally
           Pub. L. No. 101-73, 103 Stat. 183 (codified as amended in
    scattered sections of 12 U.S.C.).
           Roboserve, Inc. v. Kato Kagaku Co., 
    121 F.3d 1027
    , 1031 (7th
    Cir. 1997) (citations and quotations omitted); see also United
    States v. Webb, 
    98 F.3d 585
    , 587 (10th Cir. 1996); 18 Charles Alan
    Wright, Arthur R. Miller & Edward H. Cooper, Federal Practice and
    Procedure § 4478 (West Supp. 2000).
              See Roboserve, 121 F.3d at 1031.
    precluded from reexamining issues decided in a prior appeal.19 This
    doctrine applies regardless of whether the issue was decided
    expressly or by necessary implication.20
         Jump    notes   that   the   1993   judgment   found   a   mortgage   and
    assignment issued by McFarland in 1981 to be "preempted." He
    contends that the district court found the 1981 mortgage to be
    preempted because of the FDIC's failure to reinscribe the original
    mortgage within a ten-year period. Jump concludes that the district
    court thereby recognized that the FDIC must comply with Louisiana
    reinscription requirements. Jump concedes that the 1993 judgment
    did not and could not address the FDIC's subsequent failure to
    reinscribe the pledged 1984 mortgage. However, he asserts that the
    1993 judgment enunciated a legal principle that was binding on the
    1999 judgment.21 As we understand it, he contends that the 1993 case
    was merely a prior stage of the same litigation, and that the
    district court's prior judgment bound it in future phases of the
    same case.22
            See Chevron U.S.A., Inc. v. Traillour Oil Co., 
    987 F.2d 1138
    , 1150 (5th Cir. 1993).
              See id.
            Jump does not argue that this Court's prior decision
    provides the law of the case. Nothing in our 1994 decision implied
    an affirmation of the district court's ruling on the reinscription
    issue. Indeed, this Court did not even discuss the 1981 mortgage.
    Failure to address an issue decided below does not necessarily
    imply its affirmation.
              See Roboserve, 121 F.3d at 1031.
         On the face of the matter it is doubtful whether the 1993 and
    1999 proceedings constitute the same "case."   It is true that the
    same trial judge presided at both proceedings and that the two
    judgments had the same case number and caption. It is equally true,
    however, that the 1993 decision was a final judgment and the 1999
    case was not decided on remand from our 1994 decision. By then,
    several facts had changed: Joslin became the holder of the FDIC's
    1984 mortgage and assignment, and the FDIC failed to reinscribe the
         Even if we assume that the two rulings were part of the same
    "case," we do not read the 1993 judgment as advocated by Jump. The
    1993 judgment does not explain its finding of preemption. In a pre-
    trial order adopted by the district court in 1993, the court
    recognized as a contested issue of law "[w]hether the 1981 FDIC
    mortgage is unenforceable because it was not reinscribed" (emphasis
    added). The court also noted two other objections to the 1981
    mortgage: (1) whether the mortgage was "unenforceable" because it
    failed to comply with La. Rev. Stat. § 30:138; and (2) whether
    failure to fill in the effective date on the mortgage similarly
    rendered it "unenforceable." The record does not reflect any
           Cf. United States v. Lawrence, 
    179 F.3d 343
    , 351 (5th Cir.
    1999) (finding that law of the case doctrine did not apply, as a
    post-conviction motion is a separate "case" from the initial
    proceeding resulting in conviction).
    further discussion by the parties of the reinscription issue prior
    to the 1993 judgment.
         The 1993 judgment failed to unambiguously affirm the FDIC's
    obligation to abide by Louisiana reinscription law. While Louisiana
    cases occasionally employ the term "preemptive" to describe the
    period in which a mortgage must be reinscribed,24 this language
    differs from the court's 1993 pre-trial order, "unenforceable."
    Given these uncertainties, we are not prepared to conclude that the
    law of the case doctrine barred the district court from considering
    the reinscription issue.25
         Joslin argues that FIRREA, 12 U.S.C. § 1825(b)(2), protects
    the FDIC from state-law reinscription requirements.26 The statute
         When acting as a receiver, the following provisions shall
         apply with respect to the Corporation: . . . No property
         of the Corporation shall be subject to levy, attachment,
           See State ex rel. Meriwether v. City of Shreveport, 
    91 So. 678
    , 679 (La. 1921); Vautrain v. Neel, 
    163 So. 555
    , 557 (La. Ct.
    App. 1935).
           See Roboserve, Inc. v. Kato Kagaku Co., 
    121 F.3d 1027
    , 1031-
    32 (7th Cir. 1997) (finding that the law of the case doctrine did
    not apply, as scant references in the record were insufficient to
    establish that the district court or appellate court prior to
    remand had decided the issue).
           This Court applies de novo review to questions of law. See
    St. Martin v. Mobil Exploration & Prod. U.S. Inc., 
    224 F.3d 402
    405 (5th Cir. 2000).
           garnishment, foreclosure, or sale without the consent of
           the Corporation, nor shall any involuntary lien attach to
           the property of the Corporation.27
    Joslin asserts that the plain meaning of the statute compels the
    conclusion that Louisiana reinscription law would not apply to the
           The Louisiana reinscription statute may effect a re-ranking of
    liens. Failure to reinscribe a mortgage within the ten-year period
    specified in Article 3369 of the Louisiana Civil Code does not
    invalidate      the mortgage     as    between    the     contracting    parties.28
    Untimely       reinscription     does,     however,       render   the     initial
    inscription of the mortgage ineffective against third parties.
    Third-party creditors then have priority over the mortgage that was
    not timely reinscribed. Any attempt to reinscribe after the ten-
    year    period    can   not    alter     this    change    in   seniority.    Late
    reinscription merely crystallizes the ranking in effect at the time
    of the reinscription.29
           Although failure to reinscribe a mortgage may result in the
    application of an "involuntary lien" to FDIC property, FIRREA does
                12 U.S.C. § 1825(b)(2) (2000).
           See Security Nat'l Trust v. Alexander, 
    621 So. 2d 30
    , 31
    (La. App. 2d Cir. 1993).
           See Executors of Liddell v. Rucker, 
    13 La. Ann. 569
    , 571
    (La. 1858); Alexander, 621 So. 2d at 31. The 1984 assignment faces
    an equivalent reinscription law. See La. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 31:202
    (West 1989) (articulating a ten-year reinscription period and
    noting that the "effect of registry" of a pledge terminates after
    that period).
    not provide relief. We read the provisions of FIRREA in context,
    cognizant of the statute's         structure and purpose.30 Passed in the
    wake of a national crisis in the banking and savings-and-loan
    industries, FIRREA was intended to promote stability, economic
    recovery, and increased public confidence.31 To this end, the FDIC
    was   empowered     to   serve     as     receiver      for    failed   financial
    institutions.32 Section 1825 was enacted to facilitate the FDIC's
    efforts      as   receiver   and    was      intended     to    "protect   assets
    involuntarily acquired by the FDIC from losing value because of its
    lack of knowledge about local and state tax liens."33
          Before the passage of FIRREA, section 1825 only included the
    provision currently codified as 1825(a), which articulated the
    FDIC's exemption from taxation while acting in its corporate
    capacity.34 FIRREA added subsection (b) to extend this exemption to
    the FDIC's role as receiver.35 We are persuaded that section
           See Lady v. Neal Glaser Marine, Inc., 
    228 F.3d 598
    , 609 (5th
    Cir. 2000).
           See Trembling Prairie Land Co. v. Verspoor, 
    145 F.3d 686
    690 (5th Cir. 1998); H.R. Rep. No. 101-54(I), at 294, 307 (1989),
    reprinted in 1989 U.S.C.C.A.N. 86, 90, 103; H.R. Conf. Rep. No.
    101-222, at 393 (1989), reprinted in 1989 U.S.C.C.A.N. 432, 432.
               See 12 U.S.C. §§ 1821(c)(6)(B)(ii) (2000).
               Verspoor, 145 F.3d at 689-90.
               See 12 U.S.C. § 1825 (1988).
           See Irving Indep. Sch. Dist. v. Packard Props., 
    970 F.2d 58
    61 (5th Cir. 1992).
    1825(b)(2) merely extends the general exemption of the FDIC from
    taxation     to     the    receivership     context.   As     a   House    Report
    accompanying FIRREA indicated:
         [Section 1825(b)(2)] clarifies the existing provision
         specifying that the only kind of non-Federal tax to which
         the FDIC, in its corporate capacity or as receiver, is
         subject is a tax on real property. The exemption from
         taxation extends to the [FDIC's] property and operations
         in whatever capacity it is functioning, and particularly
         as receiver for a national bank, a branch of a foreign
         bank, or a savings association (but not as a receiver for
         a State bank under State law).36
         The title to section 1825 confirms the arrangement established
    by FIRREA.37 Section 1825 is labeled, "Exemption from taxation;
    limitations on borrowing." FIRREA added the heading, "General
    rule," to subsection (a).38 The heading which FIRREA designated for
    subsection        (b),    "Other   exemptions,"    confirms       that    section
    1825(b)(2) was intended to address other exemptions from taxation
    than those stipulated in the "general rule." The "other exemption"
    at issue in this case is the rule precluding the attachment of an
    involuntary tax lien to FDIC property. The structure, title, and
    purpose of the statute compel this conclusion.
            H.R. Rep. No. 101-54(I), at               337,      reprinted     in   1989
    U.S.C.C.A.N. at 133 (emphasis added).
           See United States v. Marek, 
    2001 WL 10561
    , at *8 (5th Cir.
    2001) (affirming the value of examining the title of a disputed
    provision where ambiguity is present).
           See FIRREA § 219, 103 Stat. 183, 261 (codified as amended
    at 12 U.S.C. § 1825(a)).
         This Court has consistently interpreted section 1825(b)(2) in
    this fashion. We have found that this section prohibits state and
    local taxing authorities from foreclosing on property subject to an
    FDIC lien without its consent.39 This Court has not applied the
    exemption of section 1825(b)(2) to liens not attached by state and
    local taxing authorities.40 Indeed, we have repeatedly found that
    section 1825(b)(2) "represents the express will of Congress that
    the FDIC must consent to any deprivation of property initiated by
    a state."41
         Joslin attempts to apply this exemption to the intervention
    initiated by Jump and Bank One. As Jump and Bank One are private
    entities possessing normal judgment liens, however, their claims
    are not barred by section 1825(b)(2). We therefore find that FIRREA
    does not preclude the application of Louisiana reinscription law to
    the FDIC's property. Nothing in FIRREA prevents Louisiana law from
    recognizing either the FDIC's obligation to reinscribe mortgages or
              See Trembling Prairie Land Co. v. Verspoor, 
    145 F.3d 686
    689-91    (5th Cir. 1998); FDIC v. Lee, 
    130 F.3d 1139
    , 1143 (5th Cir.
    1997);    Donna Indep. Sch. Dist. v. Balli, 
    21 F.3d 100
    , 101 (5th Cir.
    1994);    Matagorda County v. Russell Law, 
    19 F.3d 215
    , 222 (5th Cir.
    1994);    see also Simon v. Cebrick, 
    53 F.3d 17
    , 22 (3d Cir. 1995).
           Our Court is consequently in disagreement with the Tenth
    Circuit. See GWN Petroleum Corp. v. OK-Tex Oil & Gas, Inc., 
    998 F.2d 853
     (10th Cir. 1993). We note that the GWN court failed to
    address whether the scope of section 1825(b)(2) was restricted to
    liens held by state and local taxing authorities.
           Lee, 130 F.3d at 1143 (emphasis added); First State Bank-
    Keene v. Metroplex Petroleum Inc., 
    155 F.3d 732
    , 738-39 (5th Cir.
    the loss of ranking suffered by the FDIC if it fails to meet this
    obligation. FIRREA only prohibits state and local entities from
    taking advantage of the FDIC's failure to reinscribe by attaching
    liens and other instruments to satisfy tax judgments. As these
    circumstances are not present here, Joslin's argument fails.42
            Joslin also invokes 12 U.S.C. § 1821(d)(13)(C), which
    provides: "No attachment or execution may issue by any court upon
    assets in the possession of the receiver." Courts have construed
    this provision as prohibiting the attachment of liens and judgments
    against the property of the FDIC or Resolution Trust Corporation
    (RTC) when they are acting as receivers. See Resolution Trust Corp.
    v. Cheshire Mgmt. Co., 
    18 F.3d 330
    , 335 (6th Cir. 1994); GWN
    Petroleum, 998 F.2d at 856-57; Cambridge Capital Corp. v. Halcon
    Enters., Inc., 
    842 F. Supp. 499
    , 505 (S.D. Fla. 1993). However,
    none of these decisions has applied this provision to the assignee
    of the FDIC or RTC. Indeed, the plain language of section
    1821(d)(13)(C) affirms that the provision applies only while the
    assets are "in the possession" of the FDIC/RTC. While it is
    generally true that "an assignee takes all of the rights of the
    assignor, no greater and no less," In re New Haven Projects Ltd.
    Liability Co. v. City of New Haven, 
    225 F.3d 283
    , 290 n.4 (2d Cir.
    2000) (quotations omitted), no authority supports the proposition
    that section 1821(d)(13)(C) creates assignable rights. See id.
         At oral argument, Joslin raised for the first time the
    contention that 12 U.S.C. § 1821(d)(13)(D), in conjunction with
    section 1821(d)(13)(C), deprived the district court of jurisdiction
    to decide the matter. Section 1821(d)(13)(D), which is entitled,
    "Limitation on judicial review," states:
         Except as otherwise provided in this subsection, no court
         shall have jurisdiction over - (i) any claim or action
         for payment from, or any action seeking a determination
         of rights with respect to, the assets of any depository
         institution for which the Corporation has been appointed
         receiver, including assets which the Corporation may
         acquire from itself as such receiver; or (ii) any claim
         relating to any act or omission of such institution or
         the Corporation as receiver.
    12 U.S.C. § 1821(d)(13)(D). This provision merely requires
    claimants to assets in possession of the FDIC to exhaust
    administrative remedies prior to filing in court. The circuits
         Joslin argues, in the alternative, that federal common law—
    and not Louisiana reinscription law—governs the status of FDIC
    liens. In United States v. Kimbell Foods, Inc.,43 the Supreme Court
    articulated the general framework for determining whether to apply
    federal common law or state law. The Kimbell Foods case addressed
    the question of whether liens arising from federal loan programs
    take precedence over private liens. The Court noted that, in the
    absence of a federal statutory provision setting priorities, it
    must first decide whether federal or state law provides the "rule
    of decision" for the controversy. 44 If a federal rule of decision
    agree on this point. See, e.g., American First Federal, Inc. v.
    Lake Forest Park, Inc., 
    198 F.3d 1259
    , 1263 (11th Cir. 1999); FDIC
    v. Scott, 
    125 F.3d 254
    , 258 (5th Cir. 1997); Nat'l Union Fire Ins.
    v. City Sav., 
    28 F.3d 376
    , 393 (3d Cir. 1994); RTC v. Midwest Fed.
    Sav. Bank, 
    36 F.3d 785
    , 791 (9th Cir. 1993). The record does not
    reveal that administrative claim remedies were pursued prior to
    either the 1993 or 1999 action. This Court is precluded from
    collaterally attacking the 1993 decision. See Chicot County
    Drainage Dist. v. Baxter State Bank, 
    308 U.S. 371
     (1940); Jack's
    Fruit Co. v. Growers Mktg. Serv., Inc., 
    488 F.2d 493
    , 494 (5th Cir.
    1973) (per curiam). Failure to pursue remedies in the 1999 case is
    of no moment, however, as the FDIC was no longer a party. It would
    be absurd for us to interpret section 1821(d)(13)(D) as assignable
    to the current holder, Joslin. The claim procedures articulated in
    12 U.S.C. § 1821(d)(5)-(11) are predicated on the FDIC's possession
    of the property in question. When the FDIC relinquishes ownership,
    the procedures governing its role as a receiver no longer apply to
    the property. Thus, section 1821(d)(13)(D) did not deprive the 1999
    court of jurisdiction. As noted above, section 1821(d)(13)(C) is
    not a jurisdictional provision.
    440 U.S. 715
              Id. at 718.
    is appropriate, the court must determine whether to fashion a
    uniform federal standard or to incorporate state commercial law.45
    The Court's inquiry was guided by consideration of three factors:
    (1) the federal interest in uniform federal rules; (2) whether
    application of state law would frustrate the specific objectives of
    the federal program at issue; and (3) to what extent application of
    a federal rule would disrupt commercial relationships predicated on
    state law.46 In subsequent cases, the Court has held that federal
    law provides the "rule of decision" in lieu of state law only where
    there is a "significant conflict between some federal policy or
    interest and the use of state law."47 The Supreme Court has observed
    that such a conflict is a "precondition for recognition of a
    federal rule of decision," and has noted that such cases are "few
    and restricted."48
           We find that state law provides the rule of decision in this
    case. FIRREA is a comprehensive and detailed statutory scheme.49 The
    Supreme Court has stated that we are not to "adopt a court-made
    rule        to    supplement   federal    statutory     regulation    that   is
            O'Melveny & Myers           v.    FDIC,   
    512 U.S. 79
    ,   87   (1994)
    (quotations omitted).
            See id. at 85 (describing FIRREA as "comprehensive
    legislation"). Joslin concedes that FIRREA is "meticulous and
    comprehensive and detailed; matters left unaddressed in such a
    scheme are presumably left subject to the disposition provided by
    state     law."50   Joslin    does   not     articulate   a   valid    basis   for
    overcoming this presumption.
         Moreover, the FDIC in this case acts not in its corporate
    capacity, but as receiver for a private bank. This Court has
    followed the Supreme Court in recognizing that "the capacity in
    which the FDIC acts may have a determinative impact on whether a
    state or federal rule should control."51 As receiver for the Bank
    of Commerce, the FDIC's rights and liabilities derive from a
    private lien held by a private bank. Precedent confirms that the
    FDIC's     actions    as     receiver   do     not   implicate   the    concerns
    articulated in cases such as Kimbell Foods.52 As the FDIC's actions
    as a receiver do not concern the "rights of the United States in a
    nationwide federal program,"53 state law normally supplies the rule
    of decision.54
           Davidson v. FDIC, 
    44 F.3d 246
    , 251 (5th Cir. 1995); see
    O'Melveny & Myers, 512 U.S. at 88.
           See Atherton v. FDIC, 
    519 U.S. 213
    , 225 (1997); O'Melveny
    & Myers, 512 U.S. at 88; Ferguson v. FDIC, 
    164 F.3d 894
    , 897-98
    (5th Cir. 1999); Davidson, 44 F.3d at 251.
              Davidson, 44 F.3d at 251.
           See id. at 250 ("Absent [a significant federal proprietary
    interest] . . . or some express congressional policy to the
    contrary, state law governs state-law rights held by the FDIC in
    its limited capacity as the receiver of a nonfederal entity.").
         We also do not find that application of state law would create
    a "significant conflict" with the FDIC's putative interest in the
    application of a uniform national standard.55 Joslin points to
    provisions in FIRREA which protect the FDIC from the effects of
    state law,56 yet offers no reason why these protections—none of
    which is relevant to the reinscription issue at hand—imply the need
    for a uniform national standard.57 While uniformity of law would
    free the FDIC from the obligation of consulting state law to
    determine reinscription and lien priority rules, this requirement
    is one of the "ordinary consequences" of operating as receiver.58
    Disposing of the assets and obligations of a failed financial
    institution necessarily requires an individualized inquiry into the
    effects of local law.59 FIRREA lightens this burden considerably by
              See Kimbell Foods, 440 U.S. at 728-29.
           See, e.g., 12 U.S.C. § 1825; see also Campbell Leasing, Inc.
    v. FDIC, 
    901 F.2d 1244
    , 1249 (5th Cir. 1990) (finding that the FDIC
    enjoys holder in due course status as a matter of federal common
    law, regardless of whether it acts in a corporate or receivership
           See Atherton v. Federal Deposit Ins. Corp., 519 U.S. at 218
    ("Nor does the existence of related federal statutes automatically
    show that Congress intended courts to create federal common-law
    rules, for 'Congress acts . . . against the background of the total
    corpus juris of the states.'") (quoting        Wallis v. Pan Am.
    Petroleum Corp., 
    384 U.S. 63
    , 68 (1966)); see also O'Melveny &
    Myers, 512 U.S. at 86-87.
              See O'Melveny & Myers, 512 U.S. at 88.
           See Kimbell Foods, 440 U.S. at 729-33 (noting that adherence
    to state-law lien priority rules would not unduly impede the
    operations of the Small Business Administration (SBA), given that
    protecting the FDIC from the effect of state law in various
    respects. Joslin provides no compelling reason for this Court to
    extend these protections. Nor does it offer any limiting principles
    were we to proceed down that road, demonstrating the "runaway
    tendencies of 'federal common law.'"60
           Joslin articulates no significant federal policy or interest
    that        would   be   jeopardized   by   exposure   to   reinscription
    requirements. There is a candidate. FIRREA was "designed in part to
    facilitate the efficient and speedy recovery of the assets of . .
    . failed [financial institutions]."61 Given the need to market
    occasionally large quantities of assets,         the FDIC prefers to sell
    assets without the risk of losing its priority position. While we
    are not unsympathetic to the bureaucratic limitations of the FDIC,
    we fail to see how the state-law requirements at issue pose a
    "significant conflict" with the federal interest in effectively
    disposing of the assets at the FDIC's disposal.
           Precedent also leaves little doubt that a federal agency's
    interest in preserving priority lien status is insufficient to
    render state law inapplicable. Although Kimbell Foods applied a
    federal rule of decision, it incorporated state law for purposes of
    determining the relative priority of competing federal and private
    it already engaged in individualized inquiry regarding local law
    and prospective debtors).
                O'Melveny & Myers, 512 U.S. at 89.
                N.S.Q. Assocs. v. Beychok, 
    659 So. 2d 729
    , 731 (La. 1995).
    liens.62 In Magnolia Federal Bank v. United States,63 our Court
    similarly    found   that,     "[i]nsofar   as   Magnolia's   claim   would
    subordinate    rather   than    bar   enforcement   of   SBA's   liens   for
    untimeliness, state law is properly invoked against the federal
    agency."64 Failure to reinscribe a lien in Louisiana does not
    extinguish the mortgage. The mortgage merely loses priority status
    vis-a-vis other creditors.65 The prohibition against applying state
    statutes of limitations to the activities of federal agencies
    consequently does not govern this case.66 The Louisiana law at issue
    presents no significant conflict with the FDIC's interests.
         We further note that the application of federal law would
    disrupt commercial relationships predicated on state law.67 As
    Joslin concedes, Louisiana has a strong public records doctrine.68
              See Kimbell Foods, 440 U.S. at 718.
    42 F.3d 968
     (5th Cir. 1995).
           Magnolia, 42 F.3d at 969. This Court fails to discern a
    relevant difference between the interests of agencies such as the
    SBA and the Farmers Home Administration (FmHA) in preserving
    priority lien status and that of the FDIC.
           See Executors of Liddell v. Rucker, 
    13 La. Ann. 569
    , 571
    (La. 1858); Security Nat'l Trust v. Alexander, 
    621 So. 2d 30
    , 31
    (La. App. 2d Cir. 1993).
            See Magnolia, 42 F.3d at 972; cf. United States v.
    310 U.S. 414
    , 416 (1940); cf. Farmers Home Admin. v.
    42 F.3d 964
    , 965 (5th Cir. 1995).
              See Kimbell Foods, 440 U.S. at 728-29, 739-40.
           See McDuffie v. Walker, 
    51 So. 100
    , 105 (La. 1909); see also
    Max Nathan, Jr. & Anthony P. Dunbar, The Collateral Mortgage: Logic
    The public records doctrine serves important reliance interests, as
    third parties are "entitled to rely on the absence from the public
    records of any unrecorded interest in the property."69 The purposes
    of the Louisiana reinscription requirement are "to provide public
    notice of the essentials of the mortgage and to limit 'searching,
    for the evidence of mortgages, more than ten years back.'"70 The
    significance of this doctrine is evident in the Louisiana rule
    stating that actual knowledge by third parties of an unrecorded
    interest is immaterial; recordation and reinscription are alone
    dispositive of priority status.71
    and Experience, 
    49 La. L
    . Rev. 39, 44 n.22 (1988) (discussing
    Louisiana's "strong public records doctrine"); Lee Hargrave,
    Presumptions and Burdens of Proof in Louisiana Property Law, 
    46 La. L
    . Rev. 225, 234 (1985) (same).
            Dallas v. Farrington, 
    490 So. 2d 265
    , 269 (La. 1986)
    (emphasis omitted).
           Exxon Process & Mech. Fed. Credit Union v. Moncrieffe, 
    498 So. 2d 158
    , 159 (La. App. 1st Cir. 1986) (quoting Poutz v. Reggio,
    25 La. Ann. 637
           See Dallas, 490 So. 2d at 269. The fact that Jump and Bank
    One had actual notice of the 1984 mortgage and assignment is
    therefore irrelevant. We note that they are "third persons" as
    defined in La. Civ. Code Ann. art. 3309 (West 2000) ("Third persons
    to a mortgage are those who are neither parties to the contract of
    mortgage or the judgment that the mortgage secures."). Jump and
    Bank One were not parties to the 1984 mortgage and assignment,
    which was created by contract. However, Joslin contends that the
    language, "judgment that the mortgage secures," indicates that Jump
    and Bank One, who are parties to the 1993 judgment, are not third
    persons. As previously discussed, a mortgage only binds "third
    persons" to the extent that it is validly recorded and reinscribed.
    See La. Civ. Code Ann. art. 3308 (West 2000). Following Joslin's
    reasoning, the FDIC's failure to reinscribe does not render the
    1984 mortgage and assignment ineffective as to Jump and Bank One.
           Case law affirms the importance of respecting this state
    policy. The Supreme Court has recognized that state laws of this
    kind    provide    private   commercial      entities   with   "the   stability
    essential for reliable evaluation of the risks involved."72 The
    Supreme Court also has noted that if federal law were to displace
    state law regulating lien priority, "[c]reditors who justifiably
    rely on state law to obtain superior liens would have their
    expectations      thwarted   whenever    a   federal    contractual    security
          It is unclear whether the current version of Article 3309
    applies to a mortgage that was created before the effective date of
    the Act creating that provision. See 1992 La. Acts 1132, §§ 2, 7
    (amending prior definition of "third persons" and indicating in
    general terms the effective date of the Act as January 1, 1993).
    Louisiana law prior to 1993 defined "third persons" as "persons who
    are not parties to the act or to the judgment on which the mortgage
    is founded." La. Civ. Code Ann. art. 3343 (West compiled ed. 1973)
    (emphasis added). This language makes clear that the previous
    formulation of the    category, "third persons," simply excluded
    parties to the proceedings creating the original judicial mortgage.
         The 1992 Act revising this article indicates that the current
    Article 3309 merely codifies principles of the existing public
    records doctrine and that it is based on former Civil Code articles
    3343 and 3344. 1992 La. Acts 1132, § 2 (cmts. following Article
    3309). The commentary following the revised article does not
    indicate that the new language changed prior law. Indeed, the
    current version of article 3299 of the Civil Code defines "judicial
    mortgage" as a mortgage which "secures a judgment for the payment
    of money." La. Civ. Code Ann. art. 3299 (West 2000) (emphasis
    added). This language mirrors that which appears in Article 3309.
    Although Bank One and Jump might be parties to a judicial mortgage
    created by the 1993 judgment, this fact is irrelevant. The parties
    do not contend that the FDIC failed to reinscribe a judicial
    mortgage created in 1993. The 1993 judgment only binds Bank One and
    Jump to the extent that the underlying 1984 mortgage and assignment
    remains valid.
                Kimbell Foods, 440 U.S. at 739.
    interest suddenly appeared and took precedence."73 Moreover, this
    Court's jurisprudence     affirms   that   we   are   to   defer   to   state
    property regimes when considering whether to apply a federal common
    law rule.74 We have found that the "strong local interest in state
    regulation of land titles. . . . should 'be overridden by the
    federal courts only where clear and substantial interests of the
    National Government, which cannot be served consistently with
    respect for such state interests, will suffer major damage if the
    state law is applied.'"75 As we do not find that state law will
    significantly impede the work of the FDIC as receiver in this
    context, "we decline to override [this] intricate state law[ ] of
    general applicability on which private creditors base their daily
    transactions."76 We are ill-equipped to take such a step and leave
    this matter in Congress's capable hands.77
            See Farmers Home Admin. v. Muirhead, 
    42 F.3d 964
    , 966 (5th
    Cir. 1995); Davidson v. Federal Deposit Ins. Corp., 
    44 F.3d 246
    251 n.4 (5th Cir. 1995); see also United States v. Yazell, 
    382 U.S. 341
    , 352-54 (1966); Mason v. United States, 
    260 U.S. 545
    , 555-57
              Davidson, 44 F.3d at 251 n.4 (quoting Yazell, 382 U.S. at
              Kimbell Foods, 440 U.S. at 729.
           See O'Melveny & Myers, 512 U.S. at 89. Our holding today
    renders it unnecessary to decide the question of whether the
    putative exemption of the FDIC from Louisiana reinscription law is
    assignable to Joslin. See Federal Deposit Ins. Corp. v. Bledsoe,
    989 F.2d 805
    , 811 (5th Cir. 1993) (holding that assignees of the
    FDIC and FSLIC are entitled to federal six-year statute of
         Assuming that Louisiana reinscription law applies to the FDIC,
    Joslin     contends   that   the     1993   judgment    satisfied     these
    requirements. We disagree. Article 3333 of the Louisiana Civil Code
    requires that the holder of the mortgage file a signed, written
    notice of reinscription which, inter alia, "shall declare that the
    document is reinscribed."78    Article 3336 of the Civil Code affirms
    that this method is exclusive of all others.79 The Act creating the
    reinscription    method   currently    in   effect   states   that   "[t]he
    procedure for reinscription of mortgages and privileges as set
    forth in Civil Code Articles 3328 through 3331 shall be effective
    as to all requests for reinscription filed on or after [January 1,
    1993]."80 Assuming that the 1993 judgment constitutes a "request for
    reinscription," the method outlined in Article 3333 applies. Not
    limitations); Federal Sav. & Loan Ins. Corp. v. Cribbs, 
    918 F.2d 557
    , 560 (5th Cir. 1990) (finding that assignees of the FDIC enjoy
    holder in due course status whether or not they satisfy the
    requirements of state law); Porras v. Petroplex Sav. Ass'n, 
    903 F.2d 379
    , 381 (5th Cir. 1990) (holding that the protections
    accorded the FDIC under the D'Oench, Duhme doctrine apply to
    private assignee).
    78 La. Civ
    . Code Ann. art. 3333 (West 2000). The name of the
    mortgagor, as well as the "recordation number or other appropriate
    recordation information," are also required. Id.
    79 La. Civ
    . Code Ann. art. 3336.
              1992 La. Acts 1132, § 7.
    only was the 1993 judgment not signed by an FDIC representative,
    but   it    also   does    not   declare    that   the   document   is   to   be
    reinscribed. Consequently, the 1993 judgment did not reinscribe the
    1984 mortgage and assignment.
          Even under prior law, the 1993 judgment would not constitute
    an effective reinscription of the mortgage and assignment. Although
    a recorded judgment could effectively reinscribe a mortgage, it had
    to include each of the "substantial particulars" of the mortgage.81
    A reinscription had to contain "notice to the world that the
    mortgagor continue[s] to admit his indebtedness, and that the
    mortgagee continue[s] to maintain its mortgage on the property
    described."82 The 1993 judgment does not include a copy of the 1984
    mortgage and assignment. It only refers to "the oil and gas leases,
    royalty interests, overriding royalty interests and other property
    described" in the mortgage. This description fails to provide
    third-parties       with     the    notice    required     under    Louisiana
    reinscription law.83 The judgment also was deficient in other
           See Exxon Process, 498 So. 2d at 160 (quoting Life Ins. Co.
    of Virginia v. Nolan, 
    159 So. 583
    , 585 (La. 1935)). Former Article
    3369 of the Louisiana Civil Code governs reinscription in this
    case. Recent statutory amendments do not apply to the 1984 mortgage
    and assignment. See 1992 La. Act No. 1132, § 7 (stating that
    amendments do not apply to mortgages entered into before January 1,
               Nolan, 159 So. at 585.
           See Shepherd v. The Orleans Cotton Press Co., 
    2 La. Ann. 100
    , 113 (La. 1847) (noting that the description of the property
    mortgaged is one of the "essential requisites" of Louisiana
    respects, as it failed to include, inter alia, "the name of the
    officer who passed the act [of mortgage and assignment]."84 We
    therefore agree with the district court that the 1993 judgment was
    not a valid reinscription of the 1984 mortgage and assignment.85
         Joslin contends that the Jump judgment was not a "final"
    judgment and therefore improperly registered. 28 U.S.C. § 1963
    allows for registration where a judgment "has become final by
    appeal or expiration of the time for appeal or when ordered by the
    court that entered the judgment for good cause shown." By the plain
    reinscription law and that "reference to previous mortgages does
    not cure that defect").
              A. Miltenberger & Co. v. Dubroca, 
    34 La. Ann. 313
    , 314 (La.
            Joslin also points out that Jump and Bank One made no
    additional seizure of McFarland's assets following the 1993
    judgment. It argues that the 1993 judgment "merged" Jump and Bank
    One's previous seizure of the proceeds from the mineral leases.
    Assuming that the FDIC's failure to reinscribe resulted in Joslin's
    lien losing priority, Joslin contends that Jump and Bank One no
    longer have a claim to the assets.
         Joslin fails to explain what "merger" in this context entails.
    It is far from clear that the 1993 judgment ended the seizure of
    the registry funds obtained by Jump and Bank One in 1992. Even if
    the seizure terminated in the wake of the 1993 judgment, Jump and
    Bank One's failure to renew this seizure does not necessarily
    deprive them of a claim. Assuming that they have valid judgment
    liens against McFarland that have yet to be fully satisfied by the
    OCS-310 proceeds, they presumably have a claim to the other
    proceeds generated by the mineral pledge entered into by McFarland.
    Moreover, Joslin fails to cite any authority in support of its
    argument. See Fed. R. App. P. 28(a)(9)(A); Jason D.W. v. Houston
    Indep. Sch. Dist., 
    158 F.3d 205
    , 210 n.4, 212 (5th Cir. 1998).
    language of the statute, registration may only occur where a
    judgment or order is final for purposes of appeal.86 The only
    exception contemplated by section 1963 is where the district court
    makes a good cause determination.
         Rule 54 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure affirms that
    a judgment is not final for purposes of appeal where it disposes of
    fewer than all of the claims or parties involved in a case. Rule
    54(b) allows a court to "direct the entry of final judgment as to
    one or more but fewer than all of the claims or parties only upon
    an express determination that there is no just reason for delay and
    upon an express direction for the entry of judgment."
         The Jump judgment only disposed of Jump's claims. Litigation
    involving other parties to the Colorado litigation did not conclude
    until August 25, 1997—long after the FDIC's reinscription of the
    mortgage and assignment. As Jump concedes that no Rule 54(b)
    certification was obtained, the judgment upon which he bases his
    claim was not final.87 Because the registration of the Jump judgment
    was premature,88 it could not prime the FDIC's lien following the
            The time for appeal articulated in Fed. R. App. P.
    4(a)(1)(A) is only triggered by the entry of a final judgment or
    order. See Nelson v. Foti, 
    707 F.2d 170
    , 171 (5th Cir. 1983)
    ("F.R.A.P. 4(a) provides that an appeal from a final judgment must
    be filed within 30 days of entry of judgment.") (emphasis added).
           See Huckeby v. Frozen Food Express, 
    555 F.2d 542
    , 545-46
    (5th Cir. 1977); Redding & Co. v. Russwine Constr. Corp., 
    417 F.2d 721
    , 723-24 (D.C. Cir. 1969).
              Our holding today does not constitute a collateral attack
    FDIC's reinscription of the mortgage and assignment in 1995.
    Although registration of the 1997 judgment would assure Jump of a
    claim       to   McFarland's   assets,   a    resulting     lien   would   remain
    subordinate to those held by Bank One and Joslin, respectively.89
           The district court focused on the unique status of consent
    judgments, which are unappealable.90 The court held that the time
    for appeal from a consent judgment expires immediately upon the
    entry of judgment.91 Even if we accept the court's position, it does
    not alter the fact that Jump failed to obtain the requisite Rule
    54(b) certification. We are unprepared to carve out an exception to
    Rule    54(b)      for   consent   judgments.    Such   a   decision   is   more
    appropriately taken by Congress.92
    on the 1993 judgment—a step that we are not permitted to take. See
    Chicot County Drainage Dist. v. Baxter State Bank, 
    308 U.S. 371
    375 (1940); Jack's Fruit Co. v. Growers Mktg. Serv., Inc., 
    488 F.2d 493
    , 494 (5th Cir. 1973) (per curiam).
           On remand, Jump will have the opportunity to re-register his
    judgment. We are unprepared to view the conclusion of the Colorado
    litigation in 1997 as automatically rendering Jump's registered
    judgment final.
           See Stanford v. Utley, 
    341 F.2d 265
    , 271 (8th Cir. 1965)
    (Blackmun, J.).
           See id.; Kelly v. Greer, 
    354 F.2d 209
    , 211 (5th Cir. 1965)
    (dictum); Dichter v. Disco Corp., 
    606 F. Supp. 721
    , 724 (S.D. Ohio
            See Coopers & Lybrand v. Livesay, 
    437 U.S. 463
    , 476 n.28
    (1978) ("The Congress is in a position to weigh the competing
    interests of the dockets of the trial and appellate courts, to
    consider the practicability of savings in time and expense, and to
    give proper weight to the effect on litigants. . . . This Court .
    . . is not authorized to approve or declare judicial modification.
          In light of the preceding, we hereby AFFIRM the judgment of
    the   district      court   finding   that    Louisiana   reinscription    law
    operates to strip the FDIC of priority lien status. We further
    REVERSE the district court's holding that the Jump judgment was an
    executable, final judgment and its finding that the Jump judgment
    was   senior   to    Joslin's   lien.    We   REMAND   for   proceedings   not
    inconsistent with this opinion.
          AFFIRMED in part, REVERSED and REMANDED in part.
    . . . [These] choices fall in the legislative domain.") (quoting
    Baltimore Contractors v. Bodinger, 
    348 U.S. 176
    , 181-82 (1955)).