Rook v. Dorsett et al
ORDER denying 6 Motion to Strike. Signed by Judge Susan Webber Wright on 7/9/2014. (jak)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
EASTERN DISTRICT OF ARKANSAS
PAUL DORSETT and 5J OILFIELD
NO: 4:14CV00235 SWW
Plaintiff filed this personal injury action in state court, and Defendants removed the case
to federal court based on diversity of citizenship between the parties and an amount in
controversy exceeding $75,000. Now before the Court is Plaintiff’s motion to strike affirmative
defenses or, alternatively, for a more definite statement (ECF No. 6). After careful
consideration, and for reasons that follow, the motion is denied.
In support of her motion to strike, Plaintiff asserts that Defendants lack grounds for
asserting affirmative defenses set forth in the answer and that the pleading is void of factual
allegations related to the affirmative defenses. Rule 12(f) of the Federal Rules of Civil
Procedure permits a court to strike from a pleading “an insufficient defense or any redundant,
immaterial, impertinent, or scandalous matter.” However, striking a pleading is an extreme
measure, and motions to strike are viewed with disfavor and infrequently granted. Stanbury Law
Firm v. Internal Revenue Service, 221 F.3d 1059, 1063 (8th Cir. 2000). If, as Plaintiff contends,
there is no support for asserted defenses, it is unlikely that Defendants will pursue them.
Furthermore, the Court declines to determine the relevance or sufficiency of asserted defenses
without the benefit of a more thorough record. The motion to strike is denied.
The alternative relief requested is also denied. Rule 12(e) of the Federal Rules of Civil
Procedure provides that “[a] party may move for a more definite statement of a pleading to
which a responsive pleading is allowed but which is so vague or ambiguous that the party cannot
reasonably prepare a response.” Fed. R. Civ. P. 12(e). Here, the answer is not a pleading1 to
which a responsive pleading is allowed, thus Plaintiff is not entitled to relief under Rule 12(e).
IT IS THEREFORE ORDERED that Plaintiff’s motion to strike or for a more definite
statement (ECF No. 6) is DENIED.
IT IS SO ORDERED THIS 9TH DAY OF JULY, 2014.
/s/Susan Webber Wright
UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
The term “pleading” must be read in connection with Rule 7(a), which enumerates the
pleadings permitted under the federal rules as follows: a complaint, an answer, a reply to a
counterclaim, an answer to a cross-claim, a third-party complaint, a third-party answer, and
pursuant to a court order, a reply to an answer or a third party answer.
Disclaimer: Justia Dockets & Filings provides public litigation records from the federal appellate and district courts. These filings and docket sheets should not be considered findings of fact or liability, nor do they necessarily reflect the view of Justia.
Why Is My Information Online?