NHF Automobiles, LLC v. Ford Motor Credit Company, LLC
ORDER: Finding as Moot 5 Motion to Dismiss for Failure to State a Claim; Granting Motion to Consolidate 7 . Signed on 9/21/2017 by Judge Ann L. Aiken. (ck)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE DISTRICT OF OREGON
NHF AUTOMOBILES, LCC,
Civ. No. 1:17-cv-00948-AA
FORD MOTOR CREDIT
AIKEN, District Judge.
This matter comes before the Court on PlaintiffNHF's Motion to Consolidate, ECF No.
7. NHF seeks to merge this action with Ford Motor Credit Co. v. 1'.!fichael B. Wray, Case No.
1: 17-cv-00208-CL, presently pending before Judge Clarke. A matching motion has been filed as
ECF No. 33 in the H'ray case.
Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 42(a) authorizes courts to consolidate actions involving
"common question[s] of law or fact" Fed. R. Civ. P. 42(a). Coutts may consolidate for hearing
or trial any and all matters at issue, including the entire case. Id. In making this determination,
the cou1t must weigh "the interest in judicial convenience against the potential for delay,
confusion, and prejudice caused by consolidation." Paxonet Commc 'ns, Inc. v. TranSwitch
Corp., 303 F. Supp.2d 1027, 1028 (N.D. Cal. 2003). The district court has broad discretion to
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decide whether to consolidate cases for trial. In re Adams Apple, Inc., 829 F.2d 1474, 1487 (9th
In this case, the parties agree that the cases should be merged, which alleviates the
customary concerns about delay, confusion, or prejudice.
Instead, the paiiies dispute the
procedural mechanism to be used to combine the actions. Defendant Ford Motor Credit Co.
("Ford Credit") urges the Comi to dismiss this action without prejudice, while simultaneously
permitting Ford Credit to amend its complaint in the Wi·ay case to add NHF as a defendant in
that action. 1 NHF would then, Ford Credit argues, be pe1111itted to bring the claims raised here as
counterclaims in the Wray case. This strikes the Court as needlessly convoluted, given the fact
that Rule 42 provides a ready mechanism for achieving the same result.
Accordingly, the Comi GRANTS Plaintiffs Motion to Consolidate. ECF No. 7.
Consistent with Local Rule 42-4, the earlier-filed Ford Nlotor Credit Co. v. Nlichael B. Wi·ay,
Case No. l:l 7-cv-00208-CL, shall be designated the lead case in the consolidated action for
administrative control and case management purposes. Defendant's Motion to Dismiss, ECF
No. 5, is DENIED as MOOT.
.:::>jbf' of September, 2017.
It is so ORDERED and DATED this (,,)\._
United States District Judge
Although Ford Credit ostensibly relies on Rule 12(b)(6) and Rule 19 as grounds for dismissal, the substance of
Ford Credit's motion is not that the complaint should be dismissed because NHF has failed to state a claim or
because it has failed to join a necessary party. Rather, Ford Credit argues that this case should be dismissed
pursuant to the Court's inherent power to manage its docket on the grounds that it is duplicative of the Wray case.
As the Court has opted to resolve this motion on other grounds, it will not address this issue. The Court notes,
however, that the motion to amend the Wray complaint is properly before Magistrate Judge Clarke and not this
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