Silaev v. Swiss-America Trading Corporation

Filing 36

ORDER, Defendant's Stipulated Motion to Transfer and Consolidate 35 is denied; a copy of this Order shall be filed in Case Nos. CV 14-2551-PHX-JAT, CV 14-2552-PHX-ROS, and CV 14-2553-PHX-HRH. Signed by Senior Judge James A Teilborg on 7/21/15. (Associated Cases: 2:14-cv-02551-JAT, 2:14-cv-02552-ROS, 2:14-cv-02553-HRH) (REW)

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1 WO 2 3 4 5 6 IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT 7 FOR THE DISTRICT OF ARIZONA 8 9 Serguei Silaev, No. CV-14-02551-PHX-JAT Plaintiff, 10 11 v. 12 ORDER Swiss-America Trading Corporation, 13 Defendant. 14 Pending before the Court is Defendant Swiss-America Trading Corporation’s 15 16 Stipulated Motion to Transfer and Consolidate. (Doc. 35). 17 This Motion concerns three different removed cases currently pending in the 18 District of Arizona. (Doc. 35). The first, Silaev v. Swiss-America Trading Corp., is before 19 this Court. (Id. at 1). The second, Mann v. Swiss-America Trading Corp., is before Judge 20 Silver. (Id.). The third, Christopherson v. Swiss-America Trading Corp., is before Judge 21 Holland. (Id.). “In all three lawsuits, Plaintiffs are represented by the same legal counsel, 22 and Defendant Swiss-America Trading Corp. is represented by the same legal counsel.” 23 (Id. at 2). 24 All three cases concern Defendant allegedly selling coins to Plaintiffs “under 25 various misrepresentations and misleading sales tactics concerning quality, rarity, and 26 value of the coins. (Id.). Additionally, Plaintiffs allege that “Defendant did not honor a 27 purported money back guarantee if Plaintiffs did not realize their initial investment.” 28 (Id.). 1 Defendant filed partial motions to dismiss in all three lawsuits, which were 2 granted. (Id.). In the present case and in Mann, the remaining claims are: breach of 3 contract; “fraud, negligent misrepresentation, fraudulent inducement, & negligence”; and 4 breach of warranty. (Id. at 3). In Christopherson, the remaining claims are breach of 5 contract and breach of warranty. (Id.). 6 The parties stipulate that consolidation is necessary to “avoid or minimize 7 unnecessary costs, delays, and potentially different conclusions on common allegations 8 and substantially similar questions of law.” (Id.). As such, they stipulate that the case 9 should be consolidated before this Court for all purposes except motion practice and trial. 10 (Id. at 5). 11 “If actions before the [C]ourt involve a common question of law or fact, the 12 [C]ourt may: (1) join for hearing or trial any or all matters at issue in the actions; (2) 13 consolidate the actions; or (3) issue any other orders to avoid unnecessary cost or delay.” 14 Fed. R. Civ. P. 42(a). The Court has broad discretion “under this rule to consolidate cases 15 pending in the same district.” In’rs Research Co. v. United States Dist. Court for Cent. 16 Dist. of Cal., 877 F.2d 777, 777 (9th Cir. 1989). To make this discretionary decision, the 17 Court “weighs the interest of judicial convenience against the potential for delay, 18 confusion and prejudice caused by consolidation.” Sw. Marine, Inc. v. Triple A Mach. 19 Shop, Inc., 720 F. Supp 805, 807 (N.D. Cal. 1989). Consolidation is inappropriate “if it 20 leads to inefficiency, inconvenience, or unfair prejudice to a party.” Garcia v. Bana, No. 21 C 1102047 LB, 2012 WL 2119157, at *11 (N.D. Cal. June 9, 2012) (internal quotation 22 marks omitted) (quoting EEOC v. HBE Corp., 135 F.3d 543, 551 (8th Cir. 1998)). 23 The parties in this case have made stipulations, which by their very nature are 24 conclusory. Given this Court’s wide degree of discretion, the Court elects to evaluate the 25 issue of judicial convenience de novo. 26 The Court disagrees with the parties’ stipulation that consolidation “will likely 27 result in greater convenience for the parties and court.” (Doc. 35 at 4). The factual 28 determinations to be made in each case will be mostly unrelated. The sole commonalities -2- 1 in this case are the Defendant, the products sold, and counsel. The Plaintiffs are all 2 different individuals, who made purchases from different states at different times. (Doc. 3 13 at 2); Plaintiff’s First Amendment Complaint at 3, Mann v. Swiss-America Trading 4 Corp., No. CV142552PHXROS (D. Ariz. Dec. 23, 2014) (Doc. 12); Plaintiff’s First 5 Amended Complaint at 1, Christopherson v. Swiss-America Trading Corp., No. 6 CV142553PHXHRH (D. Ariz. Jan. 22, 2015) (Doc. 17). While there are certain 7 parallels between the cases, the distinct nature of each action belies the notion that 8 judicial economy will best be served by consolidation. Rather, forcing together actions 9 where distinct and significant issues must be determined would serve to mire each case in 10 the intricacies of the others. 11 Additionally, the attorneys implicitly acknowledge this unrelatedness by asking 12 the Court to refrain from consolidating dispositive motions and trial. (Id. at 5). They 13 assert that such consolidation will hinder “Defendant’s ability . . . to fully present its 14 defenses in anticipated dispositive motions in regard to each lawsuit.” (Id.). The fact that 15 Defendant will have various defenses for each particular case underscores the unique 16 character of each action. Accordingly, because grouping these actions would frustrate 17 judicial economy, the Court denies the Motion to Consolidate. 18 19 Because the Court has not granted consolidation, it does not independently reach the issue of whether transfer is appropriate. 20 Accordingly, 21 IT IS ORDERED that Defendant’s Stipulated Motion to Transfer and 22 23 24 25 Consolidate, (Doc. 35), is DENIED. IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that a copy of this Order be filed in Case Nos. CV142551PHXJAT, CV142552PHXROS, and CV142553PHXHRH. Dated this 21st day of July, 2015. 26 27 28 -3-

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