Miller et al v. The City of Fort Myers et al
ORDERED: Plaintiffs' Motion to Strike Defendants' Dual Summary Judgment Motions (Doc. 118) is DENIED. Plaintiffs' Motion for Extension of Time to Respond to Defendants' Summary Judgment Motions Pending Ruling on Plaintiffs ' Motion to Strike Defendants' Dual Summary Judgment Motions (Doc. 119) is DENIED as moot. Plaintiffs' must FILE responses to Defendants' Motion for Partial Summary Judgment on RCRA (Doc. 115) and Defendants' Motion for Partial Summary Judgment on Plaintiffs' Individual State-Law Claims (Doc. 116) on or before October 23, 2019. Signed by Judge Sheri Polster Chappell on 10/9/2019. (AEH)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
MIDDLE DISTRICT OF FLORIDA
FORT MYERS DIVISION
DERETHA MILLER, TAMBITHA
BLANKS and WILLIE BLANKS,
individually, and on behalf of a class of
persons similarly situated
Case No.: 2:18-cv-195-FtM-38NPM
THE CITY OF FORT MYERS,
RANDALL P. HENDERSON, JR.
and SAEED KAZEMI,
Before the Court is Plaintiffs’ Motion to Strike Defendants’ Dual Summary
Judgment Motions (Doc. 118). Defendants opposes the Motion. (Doc. 120).
Defendants jointly filed two Motions for Summary Judgment. (Docs. 115; 116).
The Middle District not only frowns on filing multiple summary judgment motions without
leave, the Local Rules prohibit it.
See M.D. Fla. R. 3.01(a); 3.01(d).
Management Scheduling Order echoes the Local Rule. (Doc. 35 at 6 (“A motion for
summary judgment shall include [all requirements] . . . in a single document not to exceed
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25 pages.”). Courts here interpret that Rule to prohibit filing multiple motions absent
leave. E.g., Benhassine v. Star Transp. Mgmt., Inc., No. 6:12-cv-1508-Orl-37GJK, 2013
WL 12164716, at *1-2 (M.D. Fla. Oct. 29, 2013); Se. Metals Mfg. Co. v. Fla. Metal Prods.,
Inc., No. 3:09-cv-1250-J-25TEM, 2011 WL 833260, at *1 (M.D. Fla. Mar. 7, 2011).
Multiple summary judgment motions are not a matter of right, so a party must seek leave
before filing them. E.g., Fernandez v. Bankers Nat’l Life Ins., 906 F.2d 559, 569 (11th
Cir. 1990); Essex Ins. v. Foley, 827 F. Supp. 2d 1326, 1329 n.2 (S.D. Ala. 2011). And if
multiple motions are filed without leave, striking them may be proper. McKenzie-Wharton
v. United Airlines, Inc., No. 8:15-cv-114-17MAP, 2016 WL 5346948, at *7-8 (M.D. Fla.
Sept. 23, 2016).
Although Plaintiffs are correct that the Court could strike both Motions for Summary
Judgment, the Court will accept them, nevertheless. This case is complex, and the typical
page limit is likely not enough to address all the issues. So while Defendants should have
sought leave to file separate motions, that request may have been granted.
minimum, Defendants should have requested additional pages for a single motion, which
would have been granted. In either situation, the parties would be in essentially the same
position as now with these two pending Motions. And waiting for all the briefing on those
motions would add unnecessary time and expense only to end up at the same place. To
expedite the disposition of summary judgment, therefore, the Court will accept the
Motions (Docs. 115; 116).2 But out of fairness to Plaintiffs, the Court extends the deadline
for both Plaintiffs’ responses to fourteen days from today. To be clear, Plaintiffs must
In the future, the Court will not be as lenient on this issue because the Local Rules and
Middle District caselaw are clear. However, as explained, under the circumstances the
Court accepts these Motions for the sake of efficiency.
respond to each summary judgment motion; and each response should follow the normal
page limit (twenty pages each) or request additional pages, if necessary.
Accordingly, it is now
1. Plaintiffs’ Motion to Strike Defendants’ Dual Summary Judgment Motions (Doc.
118) is DENIED.
2. Plaintiffs’ Motion for Extension of Time to Respond to Defendants’ Summary
Judgment Motions Pending Ruling on Plaintiffs’ Motion to Strike Defendants’
Dual Summary Judgment Motions (Doc. 119) is DENIED as moot.
3. Plaintiffs’ must FILE responses to Defendants’ Motion for Partial Summary
Judgment on RCRA (Doc. 115) and Defendants’ Motion for Partial Summary
Judgment on Plaintiffs’ Individual State-Law Claims (Doc. 116) on or before
October 23, 2019.
DONE and ORDERED in Fort Myers, Florida this 9th day of October, 2019.
Copies: All Parties of Record
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