Plaintiffs." Compl. at P 105; see also id. at p.4 (noting that action asserts claims under "common law theories of conspiracy, interference with contract rights, defamation, and breach of contract"). The damages alleged are for "loss of earnings, loss of reputations, damages to their reputations, humiliation, pain, suffering, emotional distress and other compensatory and foreseeable consequential damages in an amount in excess of $ 75,000," plus punitive damages. Id. at PP 106-07.
Under Rule 8, this pleading is unclear and provides insufficient notice to Defendants of what the claim for relief is and how to frame a response in the form of an answer under Rule 8(b). While the standard set by Rule 8 is liberal, i.e., all the Rule requires is "a short and plain statement of the claim showing that the pleader is entitled to relief," the statement must "give the defendant fair notice of what the plaintiff's claim is and the grounds upon which it rests." Conley, 355 U.S. at 47. While outlining a precise legal theory is not necessary to meet Rule 8's standards, see, e.g., Crull v. GEM Ins. Co., 58 F.3d 1386, 1391 (9th Cir. 1995), a pleading must nonetheless "give the opposing party fair notice of the nature and basis or grounds of the claim and a general indication of the type of litigation involved." 5 Charles Alan Wright & Arthur R. Miller, Federal Practice and Procedure: Civil § 1215 at 137-39 (2d ed. 1990); see also 5A id. § 1377 at 610 (discussing motion for more definite statement under Rule 12(e) in "judicially disfavored actions such as libel and slander"). Count V will therefore be dismissed without prejudice to Plaintiffs' right to amend their Complaint within twenty days to clarify the causes of action alleged consistent with the pleading standards described above.
Therefore, the Court need not consider the alternate grounds for dismissal asserted by Defendants, including the issue of whether the "litigation privilege" protects the Attorney Defendants from liability for, inter alia, defamation.
For the reasons set forth above, Count I of the Complaint will be dismissed with prejudice as to Defendants, Fox, Rothschild, Meklinsky, Carlisle Underland, Green, Field, and Haynie. The motions to dismiss will be denied as to Counts II (RICO) and IV (New Jersey RICO). Count V (the common law claims) will be dismissed without prejudice to Plaintiffs' right to amend their Complaint within twenty days of the date of this Opinion to clarify the common law causes of action which they seek to assert.
Plaintiffs' brief contains several ad hominem attacks on Defendants which I decline to repeat here, some of which I have noted above, see n.14, supra. While I recognize and indeed, encourage the professional duty of counsel to represent their clients with zeal and vigor, I take this opportunity to remind counsel of their obligations under Rule 11 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, and of their duties to this Court. At the end of the day, when discovery is complete and this case proceeds to trial, I am confident that the "facts," unadorned by such vitriolic hyperbole, will speak for themselves. In the law, as in architecture, "less" is frequently "more." Moreover, in this Court, counsel should be comforted by the fact that civility and professional courtesy will not be mistaken for weakness.
Dated: January 28, 1998
STEPHEN M. ORLOFSKY
United States District Judge
This matter having come before the Court on the motion of Defendants, CARING, Inc., CARING Residential Services, Inc., CARINGHouse Projects, Inc., CARING Medical Day Services, Inc., CARING Fellowship Centers, Inc., CARING International, Inc., Comprehensive ElderCARING, Inc., Coastal Support Services, Inc., Ann J. Underland, Carlisle W. Underland, Garfield L. Greene, Lewis W. Field, and Mary E. Haynie, to dismiss the Complaint pursuant to Fed. R. Civ. P. 12(b)(6), dated March 21, 1997, Patrick G. Brady, Esq., Jed M. Milstein, Esq., Carpenter, Bennett & Morrissey appearing, and the motion of Defendants, Fox, Rothschild, O'Brien & Frankel and Ian Meklinsky, Esq., to dismiss the Complaint pursuant to Fed. R. Civ. P. 12(b)(6), Paul A. Rowe, Esq., Alan S. Naar, Esq., Gary K. Wolinetz, Esq., Andrew M. Baer, Esq., Greenbaum, Rowe, Smith, Ravin, Davis & Himmel appearing, and Susan B. Pliner, Esq., Gary Green, Esq., Steven H. Griffiths, Esq., Sidkoff, Pincus & Green appearing on behalf of Plaintiffs, John H. Mruz, Vasilike D. Nika, and Jane A. Johnson; and The Court having considered the Complaint and briefs submitted by the parties; and
For the reasons set forth in the OPINION filed concurrently with this ORDER;
IT IS HEREBY ORDERED on this 28th day of January, 1998 that:
1. Defendants' motions to dismiss Count I of the Complaint are GRANTED as to Defendants, Fox, Rothschild, Meklinsky, Carlisle Underland, Green, Field, and Haynie, and DENIED as to Defendant, Ann Underland;
2. Defendants' motions to dismiss Counts II and IV of the Complaint are DENIED.
3. Defendants' motions to dismiss Count V of the Complaint are GRANTED without prejudice to Plaintiffs' right to file an amended Count V of the Complaint within twenty days of the date of this ORDER.
STEPHEN M. ORLOFSKY
United States District Judge