Hollis et al v. Kaplan et al
ORDER denying without prejudice 3 Motion for More Definite Statement, Motion to Strike and Motion to Dismiss. Signed by Judge Kristine G. Baker on 9/22/2015. (jak)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
EASTERN DISTRICT OF ARKANSAS
STEPHEN E. HOLLIS AND
Case No. 3:15-CV-0005-KGB
BERTRAM D. KAPLAN,
BERTRAM D. KAPLAN MD PLLC,
ANDREW KANIK, CBLPATH INC.,
Before the Court are a motion for more definite statement, motion to strike, and motion to
dismiss filed by defendants Bertram D. Kaplan and Bertram D. Kaplan MD PLLC (collectively
“Dr. Kaplan”) (Dkt. No. 3). Plaintiffs Stephen Hollis and Christy Hollis have responded to Dr.
Kaplan’s motions (Dkt. No. 4). For the following reasons, the Court denies without prejudice
Dr. Kaplan’s motions (Dkt. No. 3).
The Hollises originally filed this action on November 14, 2014, in the Circuit Court of
Crittenden County, Arkansas. Defendants removed this action to this Court on January 9, 2015.
In his answer to the Hollises’ complaint, which Dr. Kaplan originally filed in state court, Dr.
Kaplan moves “to strike Plaintiffs’ pleading immaterial and impertinent matters as to Bertram D.
Kaplan, M.D., PLLC” and “to dismiss the complaint in its entirety as to Bertram D. Kaplan,
M.D., PLLC as it fails to state a claim upon which relief may be granted as to that Defendant”
(Dkt. No. 3, at 2). Dr. Kaplan states that he “was not acting within the course or scope of any
employment with Bertram D. Kaplan, M.D., PLLC, at any time when he provided care and
treatment to Mr. Hollis” (Id.).
Dr. Kaplan’s “first affirmative defense and motion to dismiss” assert that the Hollises’
complaint “fail[s] to state a cause of action pursuant to Arkansas Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b),”
or alternatively, “that those allegations are not sufficiently certain and that Plaintiffs should be
required to provide a more definite and more certain statement of allegations against these
Defendants” (Id. at 11). Dr. Kaplan also makes four other affirmative defenses, including that
the Hollises’ claims “may be barred by the applicable statute of limitations” (Id.).
In their response, the Hollises state that “the averments that comprise the combined
Motion to Strike and Motion to Dismiss are without merit and unsupported by facts as required
by Rule 12 ARCP. In the absence of sufficient facts to support the Motion, it should be denied. .
. . [T]he averments that make up the combined Motion to Dismiss and Motion for more Definite
Statement are likewise without merit and unsupported by facts as required by Rule 12 ARCP”
(Dkt. No. 4, at 1).
“The Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, like other provisions of federal law, govern the
mode of proceedings in federal court after removal.” Granny Goose Foods, Inc. v. Brotherhood
of Teamsters and Auto Truck Drivers Local No. 70 of Alameda Cnty., 415 U.S. 324, 438 (1974).
Under Rule 12(e) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, when a party moves for a more
definite statement, “[t]he motion . . . must point out the defects complained of and the details
desired.” Fed. R. Civ. P. 12(e). Rule 12(f) states that “[t]he court may strike from a pleading an
insufficient defense or any redundant, immaterial, impertinent, or scandalous matter.” A party
may assert a motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim upon which relief can be granted in a
responsive pleading or by separate motion. Fed. R. Civ. P. 12(b)(6). For any of these motions,
the Local Rules for this Court require that the motions “shall be accompanied by a brief
consisting of a concise statement of relevant facts and applicable law.” Fed. Dist. Ct. E.D. Ark.
Local Rule 7.2.
In this case, Dr. Kaplan does not support the motions in his responsive pleading with any
facts, law, or analysis, nor does he support his motions with a brief in support. Dr. Kaplan only
makes conclusory arguments in support of his motions. For example, Dr. Kaplan’s motion for a
more definite statement fails to point out specific defects complained of and to provide any
specific details that he desires. Likewise, Dr. Kaplan’s motion to strike provides no specifics as
to what, specifically, Dr. Kaplan believes is redundant, immaterial, impertinent, or a scandalous
matter in the Hollises’ complaint that he seeks this Court to strike, and, from reviewing the face
of the complaint, the Court does not identify without further facts, law, or analysis from the
parties any such allegations that should be struck. Finally, Dr. Kaplan provides no factual or
legal support for his motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim upon which relief may be
granted. Dr. Kaplan only asserts conclusory defenses. The Court has insufficient information,
facts, law, or analysis upon which to analyze Dr. Kaplan’s motion to dismiss. For all of these
reasons, the Court denies without prejudice Dr. Kaplan’s motion for more definite statement,
motion to strike, and motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim upon which relief may be
granted (Dkt. No. 3).
SO ORDERED this 22nd day of September, 2015.
Kristine G. Baker
United States District Judge
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