United States District Court, D. Maine
WALTER WILLIAM MOORE, a/k/a Nikki Natasha Petrovickov, Plaintiff,
MAINE DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS, et al., Defendants
ORDER ON MOTION TO STAY/MOTION TO AMEND
COMPLAINT/MOTION FOR DOCUMENTS
C. Nivison, U.S. Magistrate Judge.
matter is before the Court on Plaintiff's motions to stay
this action, to amend the complaint, and for the production
of certain documents. (Motion, ECF No. 126.)
a review of the motions, and after consideration of the
parties' arguments, the Court denies the motions.
Motion to Stay
District Court has discretion to grant a temporary stay.
Good v. Altria Grp., Inc., 624 F.Supp.2d 132, 134
(D. Me. 2009). “Generally, in evaluating whether to
issue a stay, a court will consider three factors: (1)
potential prejudice to the non-moving party; (2) hardship and
inequity to the moving party without a stay; and, (3)
judicial economy.” Id.
requests a stay of this matter until six months after receipt
of certain documents. Plaintiff's request for documents
has been the subject of several motions the Court has
addressed. (Orders, ECF Nos. 121, 139, 141, 144, 149.)
Plaintiff's concerns about the documents does not warrant
a stay. The matter has been pending for more than two years,
and the Court previously stayed the matter at Plaintiff's
request. (Orders, ECF Nos. 76, 82.) The matter should proceed
to resolution. After considering the relevant factors,
including the interests of all parties, the Court finds no
reasonable basis for the requested stay.
Motion to Amend Complaint
seeks to amend and expand the claim, evidently to include a
claim based on the Americans with Disabilities Act. Rule
15(a)(1) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure permits a
litigant to amend a pleading “once as a matter of
course, ” subject to certain time constraints. After
the defendant files an answer to a complaint, freedom to
amend the complaint without leave of court is permitted
within 21 days of the date on which the answer was filed.
Fed.R.Civ.P. 15(a)(1)(A). Thereafter, leave of court is
required, though leave should be granted “freely . . .
when justice so requires.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 15(a)(2);
see also Foman v. Davis, 371 U.S. 178, 182 (1962).
The standard is elevated, however, when the motion seeking
leave to amend is filed after the deadline for amendment of
the pleadings found in the Court's scheduling order. A
motion to amend that is filed beyond the scheduling order
deadline requires an amendment of the scheduling order. To
obtain an amendment of the scheduling order, a party must
demonstrate “good cause.” Johnson v. Spencer
Press of Maine, Inc., 211 F.R.D. 27, 30 (D. Me. 2002);
El- Hajj v. Fortis Benefits Ins. Co., 156
F.Supp.2d 27, 34 (D. Me. 2001); Fed.R.Civ.P. 16(b)(4).
court's decision on good cause “focuses on the
diligence (or lack thereof) of the moving party more than it
does on any prejudice to the party-opponent.” Steir
v. Girl Scouts of the USA, 383 F.3d 7, 12 (1st Cir.
2004). “Particularly disfavored are motions to amend
whose timing prejudices the opposing party by
‘requiring a re-opening of discovery with additional
costs, a significant postponement of the trial, and a likely
major alteration in trial tactics and strategy.'”
Id. (quoting Acosta-Mestre v. Hilton Int'l
of P.R., Inc., 156 F.3d 49, 52 (1st Cir. 1998)). It is
within a court's discretion whether to grant a late
motion to amend, and that discretion should be exercised on
the basis of the particular facts and circumstances of the
mentioned above, this matter has been pending for more than
two years, the deadline for amendment to the pleadings has
passed, and discovery is closed. Several parties have filed a
motion for summary judgment. (Motion, ECF No. 133.) To permit
the amendment at this stage of the proceedings would be
prejudicial to the defendants as it would likely require
further discovery and delay the resolution of the matter. The
Court concludes that an amendment at this stage of the
proceedings is not appropriate. C. Motion for
Documents As explained above, the Court has addressed
several similar motions for documents filed by Plaintiff.
(Orders, ECF Nos. 121, 139, 141, 144, 149.) The Court
believes the prior orders have adequately addressed the
issue, and that a further order of the Court is not
on the foregoing analysis, the Court denies Plaintiff's
Motion to Stay, Motion to Amend, and ...