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Moreno v. USG Corp.

March 19, 2007

MORENO, ET AL., PLAINTIFFS,
v.
USG CORPORATION, ET AL., DEFENDANTS.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Hon. Rudi M. Brewster United States Senior District Court Judge

ORDER DENYING DEFENDANT USG CORPORATION'S MOTION TO STRIKE

I. INTRODUCTION

Before this Court is Defendant USG Corporations's ("USG") Motion to Strike filed on November 13, 2006. (Doc. No. 6.) For the reasons set forth below, the Court hereby:

(1) DENIES USG's Motion to Strike punitive damages from the Complaint; and (2) DENIES USG's Motion to Strike "known defects in the hereinabove described material forming machine" from paragraph 30 of the Complaint.

II. BACKGROUND

Plaintiffs Gilbert Moreno and his wife Angela Moreno filed the present suit on October 4, 2006, alleging (1) negligence against USG and Defendant Coe Manufacturing Company ("Coe"), (2) strict liability in tort against USG and Coe, and (3) loss of consortium. (Doc. No. 1.) On November 13, 2006, Defendant USG filed the present Motion to Strike. (Doc. No. 6.)

III. DISCUSSION

A. STANDARD OF LAW

1. Motion to strike

Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(f) provides that "the court may order stricken from any pleading any insufficient defense or any redundant, immaterial, impertinent, or scandalous matter." Fed. R. Civ. Proc. 12(f). Under the express language of the rule, only pleadings are subject to motions to strike. See Sidney-Vinstein v. A.H. Robins Co., 697 F.2d 880, 885 (9th Cir. 1983). "[T]he function of a 12(f) motion to strike is to avoid the expenditure of time and money that must arise from litigating spurious issues by dispensing with those issues prior to trial . . ." Id.

Redundant matter "consists of allegations that constitute a needless repetition of other averments in the pleading." 5 CHARLES A. WRIGHT & ARTHUR R. MILLER, FEDERAL PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE § 1382 (1990). Immaterial matter is "that which has no essential or important relationship to the claim for relief or the defenses being pleaded." Id. Impertinent matter "consists of statements that do not pertain, and are not necessary, to the issues in question." Id. Scandalous matter is "that which improperly casts a derogatory light on someone, most typically on a party to the action." Id.

B. ANALYSIS

1. Punitive damages

USG moves to strike punitive damages from the Complaint. California Civil Code ยง 3294 states in pertinent ...


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