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Edgar Jesus Santillan Padilla and Karla Santillan v. Sears

November 13, 2012

EDGAR JESUS SANTILLAN PADILLA AND KARLA SANTILLAN, PLAINTIFFS,
v.
SEARS, ROEBUCK & CO., ET AL.,
DEFENDANTS.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Edward J. Davila United States District Judge

ORDER GRANTING PLAINTIFF'S MOTION FOR LEAVE TO FILE AN AMENDED COMPLAINT [Re: Docket No. 24]

United States District Court For the Northern District of California

Presently before the Court is Plaintiffs Edgar Jesus Santillan Padilla and Karla Santillan's ("Plaintiffs") Motion for Leave to File an Amended Complaint. For the reasons set forth below, 19 Plaintiffs' Motion will be GRANTED. 20 21

I.Background

This action arises out of a work-related accident that occurred on September 26, 2009, 23 when Plaintiff Padilla sustained serious injuries to multiple fingers while operating a saw. On 24 February 16, 2011, Plaintiffs filed a complaint with Santa Clara County Superior Court against 25 fictitious defendants Black Company and John Does 1--100 asserting claims of general negligence, 26 product liability, and loss of consortium. On June 28, 2011, Plaintiffs amended the complaint to 27 28 name Defendant Sears, Roebuck & Co. ("Sears") as the retailer that sold the saw that injured 2 Plaintiff Padilla as well as to add a claim for Breach of Warranty. On December 12, 2011, 3 Plaintiffs added One Word Technologies ("OWT") and Ryobi Technologies Inc. ("Ryobi") as 4 defendants after determining that they were manufacturers of the saw. 5 6 by Defendants. This Court has subject matter jurisdiction under 28 U.S.C. § 1332(a), based on 7 diversity of citizenship. On September 10, 2012 Plaintiffs filed the present Motion seeking to name 8 additional parties as defendants as well as to assert an additional claim. 9 10

13 should freely give leave when justice so requires"); Morongo Band of Mission Indians v. Rose, 893 14 F.2d 1074, 1079 (9th Cir.1990). Leave need not be granted, however, where the amendment of the 15 complaint would cause the opposing party undue prejudice, is sought in bad faith, constitutes an 16 exercise in futility, or creates undue delay. Foman v. Davis, 371 U.S. 178, 182 (1962); Janicki 17 Logging Co. v. Mateer, 42 F.3d 561, 566 (9th Cir. 1994). Not all of the Rule 15 considerations are 18 created equal; "it is the consideration of prejudice to the opposing party that carries the greatest 19 weight." Eminence Capital, LLC v. Aspeon, Inc., 316 F.3d 1048, 1052 (9th Cir. 2003). "The party 20 opposing the amendment bears the burden of showing prejudice." In re Fritz Cos. Sec. Litig., 282 21 F.2d 183, 187 (9th Cir. 1987)). Whether an amendment will relate back to the date of the original 23 pleading is governed by requirements set forth in Rule 15(c). 24 25 26 27 28

On February 9, 2012, this case was removed pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1441(b) to this Court

United States District Court For the Northern District of California

II.Legal Standard

Leave to amend is generally granted with liberality. Fed. R. Civ. P. 15(a)(2) ("The court F. Supp.2d 1105, 1109 (N.D. Cal. Aug. 27, 2003) (citing DCD Programs Ltd. v. Leighton, 833 22 3 parties are Techtronic Industries Co., Ltd. ("TTI") and Techtronic Industries North America, Inc. 4

Defendant OWT and that TTI-NA is a wholly-owned subsidiary of TTI and also the parent 6 company of OWT and Ryobi. Plaintiffs also seek to add an additional claim for punitive damages 7 based on the theory that manufacturers and distributers were grossly negligent in failing to protect 8 against the extreme degree of risk posed by the allegedly defective product at issue. 9 10

12 written consent or the court's leave." The Rule goes on to provide that "[t]he court should freely 13 give leave when justice so requires." As noted, leave to amend a complaint is typically granted 14 where amending the complaint would not result in undue prejudice, is sought in bad faith, 15 constitutes an exercise in futility, or creates undue delay. Foman, 371 U.S. at 182. 16

17 under Rule 15(a) and the common law standards described above. First, Defendants have not met 18 their burden of showing undue prejudice. Defendants contend that allowing the amendment would 19 result in additional costs as well as prolong the duration of this litigation. While there may indeed 20 be some additional costs that arise from the amendment, such prejudice is not "undue." 21

Furthermore, discovery in this case is ongoing and will continue to be open for several more 22 months. This will give sufficient time for the Defendants as well as the ...


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