United States District Court, D. Idaho
Lynn Winmill Chief Judge
Court has before it Plaintiff's Motion for
Reconsideration, Dkt. 33, Defendants' Motion for Trial,
Dk.t 36, and Plaintiff's Counsel's Motion to
Withdraw, Dkt. 37.
Motion for Reconsideration
motion to reconsider an interlocutory ruling requires an
analysis of two important principles: (1) Error must be
corrected; and (2) Judicial efficiency demands forward
progress. The former principle has led courts to hold that a
denial of a motion to dismiss or for summary judgment may be
reconsidered at any time before final judgment. Preaseau
v. Prudential Insurance Co., 591 F.2d 74, 79-80 (9th
Cir. 1979). While even an interlocutory decision
becomes the “law of the case, ” it is not
necessarily carved in stone. Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes
concluded that the “law of the case” doctrine
“merely expresses the practice of courts generally to
refuse to reopen what has been decided, not a limit to their
power.” Messinger v. Anderson, 225 U.S. 436,
444 (1912). “The only sensible thing for a trial court
to do is to set itself right as soon as possible when
convinced that the law of the case is erroneous. There is no
need to await reversal.” In re Airport Car Rental
Antitrust Litigation, 521 F.Supp. 568, 572 (N.D.Cal.
need to be right, however, must co-exist with the need for
forward progress. A court's opinions “are not
intended as mere first drafts, subject to revision and
reconsideration at a litigant's pleasure.”
Quaker Alloy Casting Co. v. Gulfco Indus., Inc., 123
F.R.D. 282, 288 (N.D.Ill.1988).
of a court's prior ruling under Federal Rule of Civil
Procedure 59(e) is appropriate “if (1) the district
court is presented with newly discovered evidence, (2) the
district court committed clear error or made an initial
decision that was manifestly unjust, or (3) there is an
intervening change in controlling law.” S.E.C. v.
Platforms Wireless Int'l Corp., 617 F.3d 1072, 1100
(9th Cir. 2010) (citation omitted). If the motion to
reconsider does not fall within one of these three
categories, it must be denied.
Rule 59 is not intended to provide litigants with a
“second bite at the apple.” Weeks v.
Bayer, 246 F.3d 1231, 1236 (9th Cir. 2001). Instead,
reconsideration of a final judgment under Rule 59(e) is an
“extraordinary remedy, to be used sparingly in the
interests of finality and conservation of judicial
resources.” Carroll v. Nakatani, 342 F.3d 934,
945 (9th Cir. 2003). A losing party cannot use a
post-judgment motion to reconsider as a means of litigating
old matters or presenting arguments that could have been
raised before the entry of judgment. School Dist. No. 1J,
Multnomah County, Or. v. ACandS, Inc., 5 F.3d 1255, 1263
(9th Cir. 1993).
result, there are four limited grounds upon which a motion to
alter or amend judgment may be granted: (1) the motion is
necessary to correct manifest errors of law or fact; (2) the
moving party presents newly discovered or previously
unavailable evidence; (3) the motion is necessary to prevent
manifest injustice; or (4) there is an intervening change in
the law. Turner v. Burlington North. Santa Fe R.R.
Co., 338 F.3d 1058, 1063 (9th Cir. 2003) (citation
appears that Plaintiff is suggesting that reconsideration is
appropriate to correct manifest errors or manifest injustice.
The Court set forth its reasons for granting summary judgment
against the Plaintiff in detail in its earlier order, and
nothing in the pending motions changes the Court's
reasoning or meets the standard set forth above. Accordingly,
the motion to reconsider will be denied.
the Court recognizes that although the motion for summary
judgment was only brought by defendant City of Nampa, and the
Court only addressed the motion as to defendant City of
Nampa, the Court mistakenly dismissed the case in its
entirety without noting that the case must proceed as to the
remaining defendant, Deny Burns. Accordingly, the Court will
withdraw its earlier judgment.
Motion to Withdraw
cause appearing, the Court will grant Plaintiff's
counsel's motion to withdraw as explained below in the
Order section of this decision.