Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Maqablh v. Heinz

United States District Court, W.D. Kentucky, Louisville Division

April 13, 2017

ALI AL MAQABLH, Plaintiff,
v.
CRYSTAL L. HEINZ, et al., Defendants.

          MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER

          COLIN LINDSAY, MAGISTRATE JUDGE

         Plaintiff Ali Al Maqablh (“Plaintiff”) has filed a motion styled, “Plaintiff's Motion to Strike Defendant Alley's Reply with a Prayer for Emergency Relief.” (DN 37.) The Court construes Plaintiff's motion as requesting that the Court take the following actions:

1. Strike DN 28, a reply filed by Defendant Lindsey Alley (“Alley”) in support of her answer to the complaint (DN 21), and the attachments thereto;
2. In the alternative, seal the attachments to DN 28;
3. File under seal the attachments to DN 27, Alley's response to an earlier motion to strike filed by Plaintiff (DN 25);
4. Direct the Clerk of Court to mail to Alley a guide for pro se litigants in federal court; and
5. “[H]ave all of Defendant Alley's future filings automatically filed under seal and scrutinized for sensitive information.” (DN 37 at 2.)

         DISCUSSION

         1. Plaintiff's request that the Court strike DN 28 and attachments thereto

         First, Plaintiff requests that the Court strike DN 28 and the attachments thereto. Under Rule 12(f) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, “[t]he court may strike from a pleading an insufficient defense or any redundant, immaterial, impertinent, or scandalous matter.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(f). The Court may use Rule 12(f) to correct pleadings when they contain defects that “may affect the merits of the litigation or prejudice one of the parties.” Tinsley v. Conn. Gen. Life Ins. Co., 744 F.Supp.2d 637 (W.D. Ky. 2010) (quoting 5C Wright & Miller, Federal Practice & Procedure § 1382 (3d ed. 2009). As is clear from the above quotation from Rule 12(f), a court may strike only material that is contained in the pleadings. Rule 7(a) defines pleadings as “a complaint and an answer; a reply to a counterclaim denominated as such; an answer to a cross-claim, if the answer contains a cross-claim; a third-party complaint, if a person who was not an original party is summoned under the provisions of Rule 14; and a third-party answer, if a third-party complaint is served.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 7(a).

         In this case, Alley filed DN 28 as a “reply” to her answer to the complaint. Plaintiff describes DN 28 as “barely intelligible but highly impertinent.” (DN 37 at 1.) He states that Alley “is proceeding pro se and seems to be under the impression that she is entitled to file endless replies.” (Id.) Having reviewed the docket, the Court concludes that Alley filed DN 28 in response to Plaintiff having filed DN 23, which he captioned a reply to Alley's answer to the complaint. Neither Plaintiff's reply to the answer (DN 23) nor Alley's reply to Plaintiff's reply (DN 28) is a “pleading” within the meaning of Rule 7(a). The same is true of the attachments to Alley's reply. Based on the foregoing, DN 28, Alley's reply, is not a proper subject of a motion to strike under Rule 12(f). See Martin v. Citimortgage, 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 39218, *7 (W.D. Ky. Mar. 26, 2015) (holding that “certain scandalous accusations” made by plaintiff in response to motion to dismiss were not a pleading under Rule 7(a) and therefore not the proper subject of a Rule 12(f) motion to strike); Fox v. Mich. State Police Dep't, 173 F. App'x 372, 375 (6th Cir. 2006) (“Exhibits attached to a dispositive motion are not ‘pleadings' within the meaning of Fed.R.Civ.P. 7(a) and are therefore not subject to a motion to strike under Rule 12(f).”).

         Moreover, also pursuant to Rule 7, a reply to an answer is allowed only if the court orders one. Fed.R.Civ.P. 7(a)(7). In this case, Plaintiff did not seek the Court's permission to file a reply to the answer, and the Court did not allow him to file one. He did so anyway (DN 23). It is apparent to the Court that upon receiving -- and disagreeing with -- that reply, Alley filed her own reply (DN 28). This Court will not strike -- pursuant to Rule 12(f) or otherwise -- Alley's reply while allowing Plaintiff's to remain in the record. The Court finds that neither party is unduly prejudiced by the other's reply remaining in the record. Indeed, to allow both replies to remain appears to be the most just approach under the circumstances. Accordingly, the Court declines to grant Plaintiff's first request for relief.

         2. Plaintiff's request that the Court seal the attachments to DN 28

         Second, Plaintiff asserts that in the event that the Court does not strike DN 28, it should seal the attachments thereto (DN 28 at 8-12). Plaintiff argues that this is proper under Rule 5.2(a) of the Federal Rules of Civil ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.