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Whitsitt v. Ramball

United States District Court, E.D. California

February 7, 2014

WILLIAM J. WHITSITT, Plaintiff,
v.
PAMELA RAMBALL, et al., Defendants.

ORDER DENYING PLAINTIFF'S MOTION FOR RELIEF FROM FINAL JUDGMENT

JOHN A. MENDEZ, District Judge.

This matter is before the Court on Plaintiff William J. Whitsitt's ("Plaintiff") Motion for Relief from Final Judgment (Doc. #32).[1] Defendants did not file an opposition. For the reasons set forth below, Plaintiff's motion is DENIED.

I. FACTUAL ALLEGATIONS AND PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND

In Plaintiff's First Amended Complaint ("FAC"), he alleges employment discrimination and retaliation claims under the Age Discrimination in Employment Act ("ADEA"), Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 ("Title VII") and various state laws (Doc. #4). Defendant Manpower Group, Inc. ("Defendant") moved to dismiss the FAC pursuant to Federal Rule Civil Procedure 12(b)(6) (Doc. #10). On January 10, 2013, the Magistrate Judge issued findings and recommendations, granting Defendant's motion to dismiss in its entirety (Doc. #23). On March 12, 20, this Court issued an order adopting the Magistrate Judge's findings and recommendations (Doc. #28). Plaintiff now moves for relief from final judgment (Doc. #32).

II. OPINION

A. Legal Standard

Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 60(b) ("Rule 60(b)") governs the reconsideration of final orders of the district court. Rule 60(b) permits a district court to relieve a party from a final order or judgment on grounds of "(1) mistake, inadvertence, surprise, or excusable neglect; (2) newly discovered evidence...; (3) fraud... of an adverse party; (4) the judgment is void; (5) the judgment has been satisfied... or (6) any other reason justifying relief from the operation of the judgment." Fed.R.Civ.P. 60(b). "Neither ignorance nor carelessness on the part of the litigant or his attorney provide grounds for relief under Rule 60(b)(1)." Engleson v. Burlington N. R. Co. , 972 F.2d 1038, 1043 (9th Cir. 1992) (citations omitted).

B. Discussion

Plaintiff argues, in part, that the motion should be granted because he missed the motion to dismiss hearing due to an emergency and because he believes that the Court never looked at his objections to the findings and recommendations.

1. Missed Hearing

Plaintiff argues that the Magistrate Judge should have not taken into consideration his failure to attend the hearing for the motion to dismiss because he failed to appear for a legitimate excusable reason. Although the Magistrate Judge noted in a footnote that Plaintiff failed to attend the hearing, Plaintiff's absence was not considered and the motion to dismiss was decided on the merits. See Findings and Recommendations, Doc. #23, at 2 n. 1, 3-9. Accordingly, Plaintiff has failed to show that there was a prejudicial error.

2. Opposition to Findings and Recommendations Plaintiff states that he never received a copy of the

Court's Order adopting the Magistrate Judge's findings and recommendations ("Order"). In addition, he claims that he found out second hand that the Court did not receive his objections to the findings and recommendations or his notice of change of address. First, the Court served the Order by mail but it was returned undeliverable because the Court did not receive any notice of change of address until September 6, 2013, after the Court had issued its order. Because pro se parties are under the continuing duty to notify the Clerk and all other parties of any change of address, service of documents at the prior address of a pro se party is deemed fully effective absent such notice. L.R. 183(f). Therefore, because the Court had not been notified about the change of address, service of the Order to Plaintiff's previous address was effective.

Second, the Court received Plaintiff's objections on January 23, 2013 (Doc. #26), and the Court considered them. See Order, Doc. #28, at 1 ("Objections to the findings and recommendations have been filed."). Accordingly, Plaintiff has not provided the Court with sufficient grounds for relief.

3. Other Grounds

Plaintiff also makes the same arguments he has previously raised in his opposition to the motion to dismiss and his objections to the findings and recommendations. However, he has provided no evidence or circumstances that would satisfy the requirements of Rule 60(b). Accordingly, the Court finds no grounds that warrant reconsideration of Plaintiff's claims.

III. ORDER

For the reasons set forth above, the Court DENIES Plaintiff's Motion for Relief from Final Judgment.

IT IS SO ORDERED.


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