Valentine Ventures, LLC et al v. Gulf Coast Mineral, LLC et al
Order granting 65 MOTION to Dismiss Bruce Wallis and Harvey Kelley as Individual Plaintiffs filed by Destiny Energy, LLC, Harvey Kelley, Bruce Wallis, Valentine Ventures, LLC. Plaintiffs Bruce Wallis & Harvey Kelley are dismissed without prejudice. Signed by Chief Judge William H. Steele on 5/28/2015. (tgw)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF ALABAMA
VALENTINE VENTURES, LLC, et al.,
GULF COAST MINERAL, LLC, et al.,
) CIVIL ACTION 14-0352-WS-M
The four plaintiffs have filed a motion to dismiss two of their number as
plaintiffs. (Doc. 65). The defendants filed a response, (Doc. 71), and the plaintiffs
declined the opportunity to file a reply. (Doc. 67).
No party questions the Court’s authority to grant the requested relief under
Rule 41(a)(2).1 The defendants, however, ask the Court to impose “terms” under
The defendants first ask the Court to delay ruling on the plaintiffs’ motion
until April 21, 2015, to give them “an opportunity to file a motion for sanctions
supported by deposition testimony taken just last week.” (Doc. 71 at 1, 6). The
defendants have been given this time, and more, and they have filed no such
Second, the defendants ask the Court to declare the dismissal to be an
adjudication on the merits. (Doc. 71 at 1-3, 6). Their theory is that the Court’s
Rule 41(a) allows dismissal of “an action.” Thus, a plaintiff may dismiss one of
multiple defendants under this rule, because “dismissal in that context completely
removes a party from the case,” Exxon Corp. v. Maryland Casualty Co., 599 F.2d 659,
662 (5th Cir. 1979), ending the “action” as to that defendant. Accord Klay v. United
Healthgroup, Inc., 376 F.3d 1092, 1106 (11th Cir. 2004). In the same way, dismissal of
less than all plaintiffs ends the action as to those plaintiffs.
order dismissing the first amended complaint constituted an adjudication on the
merits and that the plaintiffs “should not be permitted to file [a second] amended
complaint and then immediately dismiss it in order to unring the bell of an
adjudication on the merits.” (Id. at 2-3). But the defendants have cited no
authority standing for the proposition that the dismissal of a complaint for
pleading deficiencies, with leave to amend, constitutes an adjudication on the
merits. Since the plaintiffs did timely amend, it is difficult to see how the Court’s
order could have adjudicated the merits and thus ended the litigation.
For the reasons set forth above, the plaintiffs’ motion to dismiss is granted.
Plaintiffs Bruce Wallis and Harvey Kelley are dismissed without prejudice.
DONE and ORDERED this 28th day of May, 2015.
s/ WILLIAM H. STEELE
CHIEF UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
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