Bodine v. Salesforce.com, Inc. et al
ORDER denying re 47 Objection to Non-Dispositive Order . Signed by Judge Brian Morris on 12/19/2019. (APP)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE DISTRICT OF MONTANA
SALESFORCE.COM, INC., and
JOHN and JANE DOES 1-5,
Plaintiff Kim Bodine has filed an objection to the Order filed by United
States Magistrate Judge Kathleen DeSoto. Judge DeSoto issued an order on
November 26, 2019. (Doc. 43). Judge DeSoto’s Order granted Defendants’
Motion for Leave to Amend Answer. Id.
Plaintiff objects pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 72. Rule 72
specifies that an objection to a nondispositive matter resolved by a United States
Magistrate Judge must be considered by the Court, with the Magistrate Judge’s
Order to be set aside if clearly erroneous or contrary to law. Fed. R. Civ. P. 72.
Judge DeSoto’s Order allowed Defendants to amend their answer to add an
after-acquired evidence defense. (Doc. 43 at 11). Judge DeSoto’s Order
determined that Salesforce had established good cause under Federal Rule of Civil
Procedure 16(b)(4), and that its motion should be granted under Federal Rule of
Civil Procedure 15. (Id. at 5-11). Plaintiffs object to Judge DeSoto’s conclusion,
arguing that the record does not support Judge DeSoto’s finding of diligence.
(Doc. 47 at 8). Plaintiff also objects to Judge DeSoto’s conclusion that the
Plaintiff will not be prejudiced by the amendment. (Id. at 10).
Judge DeSoto concluded that Salesforce was diligent in discovering facts to
form the basis of its motion to amend. Salesforce reviewed approximately 94,000
emails sent or received by Plaintiff. (Id.). Judge DeSoto concluded that
Salesforce had satisfied Rule 16's good cause requirement given the high volume
of emails, Salesforce’s engagement in discovery otherwise, and its prompt
notification to Plaintiff regarding her email misuse. (Id. at 6). Judge DeSoto’s
determination is not clearly erroneous or contrary to law.
Judge DeSoto found that Plaintiff would not be prejudiced by granting
Salesforce leave to amend. (Doc. 43 at 10). Judge DeSoto based her conclusion
on the fact that the discovery deadline has not passed, depositions were only
recently taken, and no dispositive motions have been filed. Judge DeSoto noted
that while Plaintiff may have to pursue additional discovery resulting in some
delay, this fact alone would not cause prejudice sufficient to overcome the liberal
policy in favor of amendment. Leave to amend under Rule 15 “shall be freely
given when justice so requires,” and this policy is “to be applied with extreme
liberality.” Eminence Capital. LLC v. Aspeon. Inc., 316 F.3d 1048, 1051 (9th Cir.
2003). Prejudice to the opposing party is the factor “that carries the greatest
weight.” Id. The Court determines that Judge DeSoto’s conclusion that Plaintiff
will not suffer prejudice to overcome the policy in favor of amendment was not
contrary to law or clearly erroneous.
IT IS ORDERED that Plaintiff’s Objection (Doc. 47) is DENIED.
DATED this 19th day of December, 2019.
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?