Coslan et al v. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.
ORDER granting 9 Motion to Dismiss. Signed by Judge Eldon E. Fallon. (jrc)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
EASTERN DISTRICT OF LOUISIANA
GLORIA COSLAN AND JOSEPH COSLAN
WAL-MART STORES, INC.
ORDER & REASONS
Before the Court is Defendant’s Motion to Dismiss Pursuant to the First-to-File Rule (R.
This personal injury action arises out of a slip-and-fall incident that occurred on or about
August 30, 2014. Plaintiff Gloria Coslan alleges that she slipped in liquid that was leaking from
an air conditioning vent onto the floor near the meat counter section of Wal-mart SuperCenter
#481 on West Thomas Street in Hammond, Louisiana.
Prior to filing this lawsuit, Plaintiffs filed a Complaint in the United States District Court
for the Middle District of Louisiana, which is the improper federal venue for claims arising in
Hammond, Louisiana. Thereafter, on July 22, 2015, Plaintiffs filed a second lawsuit involving
the same parties, claims, facts, and legal issues in the 21st Judicial District Court for the Parish of
Tangipahoa. On August 19, 2015, Defendant removed the lawsuit that was filed in the 21st JDC
to the Eastern District of Louisiana, where it was designated as case number 15-3631 to be heard
before the Honorable Sarah S. Vance. On September 1, 2015, the United States District Court
for the Middle District of Louisiana transferred the action pending in their court under case
number 15-355 to the Eastern District of Louisiana pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1406(a). Pursuant to
this transfer, on September 4, 2015, the Eastern District of Louisiana opened the present action
as case number 15-4100. The complaint in this lawsuit contains allegations that are identical to
the lawsuit removed to Judge Vance's Court on August 19, 2015. As a result, Defendant has filed
this motion to dismiss the present action, which is the later-filed lawsuit of the two proceedings
pending in this district.
LAW & ANALYSIS
The Fifth Circuit has explained that, “[u]nder the first-to-file rule, a district court may
dismiss, stay, or transfer an action where the issues presented can be resolved in an earlier-filed
action pending in another federal court.” Burger v. Am. Mar. Officers Union, Nos. 97–31099, et
seq., 1999 WL 46962, at *1 (5th Cir. Jan. 27, 1999). The first-to-file rule seeks “to avoid the
waste of duplication, to avoid rulings which may trench upon the authority of sister courts, and to
avoid piecemeal resolution of issues that call for a uniform result.” Id. Additionally, the
Plaintiffs do not oppose the motion.
Accordingly, the above-captioned action is hereby DISMISSED pursuant to the first-to-file
New Orleans, Louisiana, this 24th day of September, 2015.
UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
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