Connally v. Cafe Golo et al

Filing 26


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1 2 3 4 5 6 7 UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT 8 NORTHERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA 9 10 PATRICK CONNALLY, Case No. 15-cv-02030-RS Plaintiff, 11 United States District Court Northern District of California v. 12 13 CAFE GOLO, et al., ORDER RE MOTION TO SUBSTITUTE PLAINTIFF AND RE MOTION FOR LEAVE TO AMEND Defendants. 14 15 16 Plaintiff Patrick Connally filed this action in May of 2015, asserting claims under the 17 American with Disabilities Act (“ADA”) and California state law relating to access conditions he 18 encountered at Café Golo earlier that year. Connally died in February of this year. The following 19 month, plaintiff’s counsel brought a motion to substitute Michael J. Connally, Patrick’s brother, to 20 be the plaintiff herein, as Patrick’s heir and successor. Just over a month later, plaintiff’s counsel 21 filed a motion for leave to amend the complaint, proposing to add as an additional plaintiff 22 Harrison Benjamin Kinney, an individual who had served as a driver and assistant for Patrick 23 Connally, and who had accompanied him on the visits to Café Golo at issue. Pursuant to Civil 24 Local Rule 7-1(b), both motions are suitable for disposition without oral argument, and the 25 hearing set for June 23, 2016 is vacated. 26 Defendants’ opposition to the motion to substitute Michael Connally in his deceased 27 brother’s stead noted several procedural deficiencies, which plaintiff’s counsel acknowledges, but 28 which he claims have been cured on reply. Even assuming a sufficient showing has now been 1 made that Michael Connally is an appropriate successor in interest, however, Patrick’s claims 2 under the ADA did not survive his death, a point plaintiff’s counsel now concedes. Moreover, 3 absent a viable federal claim, discretion weighs against retaining jurisdiction in this forum. 4 See 28 U.S.C. § 1367(c)(3) (providing that a district court may decline to exercise supplemental 5 jurisdiction where it “has dismissed all claims over which it has original jurisdiction”). 6 Accordingly, the motion to substitute Michael Connally as a plaintiff is denied, without prejudice 7 to any rights he may have to pursue claims under state law in state court, as his brother’s successor 8 in interest.1 Two days before these motions were to have been heard, plaintiff’s counsel filed a new 9 complaint on behalf of Harrison Benjamin Kinney, which has also been assigned, randomly, to the 11 United States District Court Northern District of California 10 undersigned.2 The new complaint is substantively identical to the proposed amended complaint in 12 this action, except that Michael Connally is not included as a co-plaintiff to Kinney. In view of 13 the filing of that complaint, the proposed amendment here would be wholly duplicative, even if it 14 had otherwise been proper to allow Kinney to become a plaintiff herein. Accordingly, the motion 15 for leave to amend is denied. Nothing in this ruling precludes defendants from challenging 16 Kinney’s standing to bring the claims he has alleged in the new action. 17 IT IS SO ORDERED. 18 Dated: June 21, 2016 ______________________________________ RICHARD SEEBORG United States District Judge 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 1 Although defendants have suggested this action should be dismissed in light of plaintiff’s death, there is no motion pending to do so. Accordingly, plaintiff’s counsel will be given the opportunity to submit a brief within 15 days of the date of this order, not to exceed 10 pages, setting forth any reasons he contends this action should not be dismissed notwithstanding the conclusions reached herein. In the event no such brief is filed, the action will be dismissed without further notice. 2 Counsel has filed a motion to relate the two actions under Local Civil Rule 3-12. Although both matters are already assigned to the same judge, the motion to relate will hereby be granted. 27 28 CASE NO. 2 15-cv-02030-RS

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