Sassi v. Dutchess County et al
ORDER: Plaintiff's motion for leave to file an Amended Complaint, dkt. # 17 , is hereby GRANTED. The Clerk of Court shall docket Plaintiff's Proposed AmendedComplaint, dkt. # 17-2, as a separate docket entry. The Defendants shall answer or otherwise respond to the Amended Complaint within the time required by the Federal Rules. Defendant Dutchess County's motion to dismiss, dkt. # 16 , is hereby DENIED as moot. Signed by Senior Judge Thomas J. McAvoy on 4/17/17. (alh, )
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
NORTHERN DISTRICT OF NEW YORK
RICHARD J. SASSI, II,
DUTCHESS COUNTY, and
Thomas J. McAvoy, S.U.S.D.J.
On December 6, 2016, Plaintiff filed the instant action alleging violations of his
constitutional rights while he was held in the Dutchess County and Warren County Jails.
See dkt. # 1. Defendant Warren County answered the Complaint on January 4, 2017.
See dkt. # 8. Defendant Dutchess County, after receiving an extension of time to answer
the Complaint, filed a motion to dismiss pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure
12(b)(6) on January 20, 2017. See dkt. #s 15-16. Plaintif f responded to that motion on
February 24, 2017, simultaneously filing his own motion for leave to file an amended
complaint. See dkt. # 17.
Federal Rule of Civil Procedure provides that a party may amend a pleading “once
as a matter of course” within 21 days of receiving a responsive pleading under Rule 12(b).
FED. R. CIV. P. 15(a)(1)(B). If 21 days have passed since the filing of the pleading, a party
may amend the pleading “only with the opposing party’s written consent or the court’s
leave.” Fed. R. Civ. P. 15(a)(2). “The court should freely give leave when justice so
requires.” Id. A motion to dismiss under Rule 12(b) is not a responsive pleading and a
party may amend as of right after a party files such a motion. Barbara v. New York Stock
Exch., 99 F.3d 49, 56, (2d Cir. 1996).
Here, Plaintiff is entitled pursuant to Rule 15 to amend his complaint without leave
of court with reference to Dutchess County, but must seek leave to file an amended
complaint regarding Warren County. Only Dutchess County objects to the proposed
Amended Complaint, and the Court is not permitted to consider those objections as
Dutchess County has not filed a responsive pleading. Defendant Warren County has not
objected to Plaintiff’s motion for leave to file an amended complaint.
As a general matter, Courts emphasize “that courts ‘should freely give leave [to
amend] when justice so requires.’” Kroshnyi v. U.S. Pack Courier Servs., 771 F.3d 93, 109
(2d Cir. 2014) (quoting Fed. R. Civ. P. 15(a)(2)). As such “‘[i]n the absence of any
apparent or declared reason . . . such as undue delay , bad faith or dilatory motive on the
part of the movant . . . [or] undue prejudice to the opposing party by virtue of the allowance
of the amendment . . . the leave sought should, as the rules require, be freely given.’” Id.
(quoting Foman v. Davis, 371 U.S. 178, 182 (1962)).
The Court will grant the motion for leave to file an amended complaint. Given the
early stage at which this litigation rests, the fact that the party with standing to object to an
amended filing has not objected, that the Court finds no apparent dilatory motive on the
Plaintiff’s part, and that no apparent prejudice could com e to Warren County from an
Amended Pleading that Defendant could now seek to have dismissed, the Court finds that
leave to file the Amended Complaint should be granted. As the Plaintiff’s Amended
Complaint will be accepted for filing, Defendant Dutchess County’s motion to dismiss will
be denied as moot.
As such, Plaintiff’s motion for leave to file an Amended Complaint, dkt. # 17, is
hereby GRANTED. The Clerk of Court shall docket Plaintiff’s Proposed Amended
Complaint, dkt. # 17-2, as a separate docket entry. The Defendants shall answer or
otherwise respond to the Amended Complaint within the time required by the Federal
Rules. Defendant Dutchess County’s motion to dismiss, dkt. # 16, is hereby DENIED as
IT IS SO ORDERED.
Dated: April 17, 2017
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