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Mendez v. Shah

United States District Court, D. New Jersey

March 30, 2015

MARIA MENDEZ, Plaintiff,
v.
RAHUL V. SHAH, M.D., et al., Defendants

For Plaintiff: MICHAEL T. ROONEY, ROONEY & ROONEY, PHILADELPHIA, PA.

For Medtronic Sofamaor Danesk USA Inc., Medtronic Spine LLC, Medtronic USA Inc., and Medtronic Inc., Defendants: JOHN F. BRENNER, MELISSA ANNE CHUDEREWICZ, PEPPER HAMILTON, LLP, PRINCETON, NJ.

OPINION

NOEL L. HILLMAN, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.

Before the Court is a motion to dismiss the third amended complaint filed by defendants Medtronic Sofamaor Danesk USA Inc., Medtronic Spine LLC, Medtronic USA Inc., and Medtronic Inc. (collectively " Medtronic" ). For the reasons stated below, the motion will be granted.

I. BACKGROUND

The factual background was summarized in the Court's earlier Opinion, Mendez v. Shah, 28 F.Supp.3d 282 (D.N.J. 2014), and will not be repeated here.

Procedurally, the Court previously granted Medtronic's motion to dismiss plaintiff's second amended complaint in part. The Court dismissed Count V (implied warranty), Count VI (design defect), Count X (third party beneficiary), and Count XII (fraud). The Court also dismissed plaintiff's request for punitive damages as to any Medtronic device which had received premarket approval. The Court dismissed Count VII (express warranty), and Count VI (manufacturing defect and failure to warn), but without prejudice, and granted plaintiff leave to file an amended complaint to provide a more definite statement of her claims.

Plaintiff filed a third amended complaint which Medtronic now seeks to dismiss.

II. JURISDICTION

This Court exercises jurisdiction pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1332(a), diversity of citizenship. Plaintiff is a citizen of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and the defendants, are citizens of either the States of New Jersey, Tennessee, Delaware, or Minnesota. The amount in controversy exceeds the jurisdictional limit exclusive of interest and costs.

A Court exercising diversity jurisdiction must apply the law of the forum state within which it sits, and therefore, New Jersey law will apply to plaintiff's state law claims. See Chemical Leaman Tank Lines, Inc. v. Aetna Casualty and Surety Co., 89 F.3d 976, 983 (3d Cir. 1996) (stating that " [a]s a federal court sitting in diversity, we must apply the substantive law of New Jersey." ) (citing Borse v. Piece Goods Shop, Inc., 963 F.2d 611, 613 (3d Cir. 1992)).

III. DISCUSSION

A. Standard for Motion to Dismiss

When considering a motion to dismiss a complaint for failure to state a claim upon which relief can be granted pursuant to Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(b)(6), a court must accept all well-pleaded allegations in the complaint as true and view them in the light most favorable to the plaintiff. Evancho v. Fisher,423 F.3d 347, 351 (3d Cir. 2005). It is well settled that a pleading is sufficient if it contains " a short and plain statement of the claim showing that the pleader is entitled to relief." Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a)(2). Under the liberal federal pleading rules, it is not necessary to plead evidence, and it is not necessary to plead all the facts that serve as a basis for the claim. Bogosian v. Gulf Oil Corp.,561 F.2d 434, 446 (3d Cir. 1977). However, " [a]lthough the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure do not require a claimant to set forth an intricately detailed description of the asserted basis for relief, they do require that the pleadings give ...


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