United States District Court, W.D. Washington, Seattle
ORDER ON 1.TION TO AMEND COMPLAINT 2.TION TO COMPEL DISCOVERY
MARSHA J. PECHMAN, District Judge.
The Court, having received and reviewed:
1. Plaintiff's Motion to Amend Complaint (Dkt. No. 57), Defendant's Response (Dkt. No. 60) and Plaintiff's Reply (Dkt. No. 67); and
2. Plaintiff's Motion to Compel Discovery (Dkt. No. 47), Defendant's Response (Dkt.
No. 62), Plaintiff's Reply (Dkt. No. 64) and Defendant's Surreply (Dkt. No. 70) and all attached declarations and exhibits, makes the following ruling:
IT IS ORDERED that the motion to amend the complaint and add an additional party is GRANTED.
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that the motion to compel discovery is DENIED; the parties are ordered to meet and confer on the new discovery issues raised in Plaintiff's reply and file a unified motion pursuant to LCR 37 if the matter is still not resolved.
Three of the five Limited Partner/siblings in a family-owned partnership exercised their rights under the Partnership Agreement and ousted Defendant Campbell Walker as General Partner; a management company owned by sibling Antoinette Walker was then voted in as General Partner. In the aftermath of these events, Antoinette Walker's management company (RRW Legacy Management; hereinafter, "RRW") filed a declaratory action in state court to affirm that the ouster of Campbell Walker and appointment of RRW was proper. Defendant removed the matter to federal court.
Defendant has previously filed a summary judgment (Dkt. No. 9), which was denied. (Dkt. No. 36.) The motions currently before the Court concern Plaintiff's request to file an amended complaint which adds a new party (Antoinette Walker) and alleges new causes of action, and a motion to compel which alleges that Defendant has not fully complied with Plaintiff's requests for discovery.
Motion to Amend
Defendant points out, correctly, that Plaintiff's "Motion to Amend Complaint" is not simply a motion to amend the complaint. Plaintiff is seeking to add Antoinette Walker as a new plaintiff with new causes of action which are legally distinct from the declaratory relief sought by RRW (the new causes of action are: breach of contract, breach of fiduciary duty and violations of the Washington Limited Partnership Act (WLPA)). Although the parties had earlier agreed to an extension of the deadline to amend pleadings, that agreement does not cover this situation. According to the scheduling order, the deadline for adding additional parties passed on July 2, 2014. (Dkt. No. 35.)
A request to add additional parties beyond the deadline for doing so is governed by FRCP 16, as well as FRCP 15. In contrast to FRCP 15's "when justice so requires" standard, FRCP 16(b) "requires that a party show good cause' for modifying the deadlines set forth in a scheduling order." Janakish v. First Am. Title Ins. Co., 2009 WL 1919117 at *1 (WAWD, July 2, 2009). Although there is some case law that failure to address the "good cause" requirement alone is grounds for denial, in the ...