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Rodriguez v. Dzurenda

United States District Court, D. Nevada

June 14, 2019

PEDRO RODRIGUEZ, Plaintiff,
v.
JAMES DZURENDA, Defendant.

          PRESENT: THE HONORABLE CARLA BALDWIN CARRY, U.S. MAGISTRATE JUDGE.

          MINUTES OF THE COURT

         MINUTE ORDER IN CHAMBERS:

         The District Court declined to adopt the report and recommendation of the Magistrate Judge (ECF No. 64). Therefore, the court now addresses other outstanding motions as follows:

         ECF No. 25 - Plaintiff's motion to amend complaint

         Plaintiff filed a motion to amend complaint (ECF No. 25) to add the following:

1. Insert correct dates and supplement facts in Counts I and II;
2. Add a claim, as Count III, alleging a violation of the First Amendment's ‘Establishment Clause';
3. Add a Claim, as Count III, alleging a violation of the Fourteenth Amendment's ‘Equal Protection Clause', and;
4. Add a Claim, as Count III, alleging a violation of the RLUIPA.

(ECF No. 25). Defendant opposed the motion (ECF No. 27) by making only two arguments: 1) that granting plaintiff leave to amend would prejudice the defendant due to the possibility of additional discovery; and 2) plaintiff was unduly delayed in seeking to amend because defendant had already begun drafting a dispositive motion. Defendant alternatively requested the court rescreen plaintiff's proposed amended complaint. (Id.) Plaintiff replied that he only sought leave to amend based upon facts revealed during discovery (ECF No. 30).

         The five factors the federal courts balance when considering a motion to amend are: (1) bad faith; (2) undue delay; (3) prejudice to the opposing party; (4) the possible futility of the proposed amendment; and (5) whether Plaintiff has previously amended his complaint. Desertrain v. City of Los Angeles, 754 F.3d 1147, 1154 (9th Cir. 2014). In his opposition, defendant only argued two of the five factors: prejudice and undue delay (ECF No. 27).

         The court finds that plaintiff did not bring the motion to amend in bad faith, the motion was timely filed pursuant to the scheduling order (ECF No. 20), and plaintiff had not previously amended his complaint. Because the District Court has declined to adopt the report and recommendation, the defendant will not be prejudiced, and defendant did not argue futility of the amendment. Rather, defendant requests rescreening.

         The court declines to rescreen the amended complaint. At this stage of the case, the court will not screen plaintiff's amended complaint, nor is it mandated to do so. The court has previously ruled that the screening provision in 28 U.S.C. § 1915A does not require a court, either explicitly or implicitly, to screen every time a plaintiff seeks to amend the complaint. See Olausen v. Murguia, No. 3:13-CV-0388-MMD (VPC), 2014 WL 6065622, at *3 (Nov. 12, 2014). Defendant fails to cite any case where a court has construed § 1915 to require a court to screen every proposed amended complaint filed after defendant has answered.

         The Supreme Court has recognized that the Prison Litigation Reform Act (“PLRA”) “mandated early judicial screening to reduce the burden of prisoner litigation on the courts.” Jones v. Bock, 549 U.S. 199, 223 (2007). Construing the PLRA to require court screening of every amended complaint, regardless of how far a case ...


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