United States District Court, D. New Jersey
SUSAN GALICIA, individually and on behalf of all others similarly situated, Plaintiff,
RECOVERY MANAGEMENT SOLUTIONS, LLC, Defendant.
Michael A. Shipp United States District Judge
matter comes before the Court upon Plaintiff Susan
Galicia's ("Plaintiff) Motion to Set Aside Judgment
and to Permit Plaintiff to File an Amended Complaint. (ECF
No. 18.) Defendant Recovery Management Solutions, LLC
("Defendant") opposed. (ECF No. 19.) The Court has
carefully considered the parties' submissions and decides
the matter without oral argument pursuant to Local Civil Rule
action arises out of "an obligation [that] was allegedly
incurred to AA Bail Bonds Inc." that was later sold or
assigned to Defendant. (Am. Compl. ¶¶ 14, 20, ECF
No. 6; see generally Am, Compl.) Plaintiff alleged
violations of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act both
individually and, as to some counts, on behalf of a putative
class, against Defendant for its alleged debt collection
efforts, which included correspondence and telephone calls.
(Id. ¶¶ 60-88.) On August 6, 2018, the
Court granted Defendant's Motion to Dismiss and provided
leave for Plaintiff to file a Second Amended Complaint by
September 5, 2018. (Aug. 6th Order, ECF No. 17.) Plaintiff
did not file a Second Amended Complaint by the deadline. On
September 14, 2018, Plaintiff filed the current motion.
moves for relief pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure
Rule 60(b)(1), which provides: "On motion and just
terms, the court may relieve a party or its legal
representative from a final judgment, order, or proceeding
for the following reasons: (1) mistake, inadvertence,
surprise, or excusable neglect[.]" Plaintiffs counsel
asserts excusable neglect based on a calendaring error.
(Pl.'s Moving Br. 1, ECF No. 18-1.) In considering
excusable neglect, the Court must weigh the following
factors: (1) the danger of prejudice to the movant; (2) the
length of the delay and its potential impact on judicial
proceedings; (3) the reason for the delay, including whether
it was within the reasonable control of the movant; and (4)
whether the movant acted in good faith. In re Cendant
Corp. PRIDES Litig, 235 F.3d 176, 182 (3d Cir. 2000)
(citing Pioneer Inv. Servs. v. Brunswick Assocs., Ltd.
P'ship, 507 U.S. 380, 395 (1993)).
Court's August 6, 2018 Order indicated that if Plaintiff
failed to file a Second Amended Complaint within thirty days,
the Complaint would be dismissed with prejudice. (Aug. 6th
Order 5.) As of the date Plaintiff filed her motion, the
Court had not entered an order dismissing the Complaint with
prejudice but Plaintiffs deadline to file a Second Amended
Complaint had passed. The Court, therefore, finds it
appropriate to consider the excusable neglect factors. Here,
the first factor weighs strongly in favor of relief because,
absent relief, "Plaintiffs case [would) be dismissed
forever." (Pl.'s Moving Br. 2.) As to the second
factor, the length of the delay was relatively short and the
impact on judicial proceedings inconsequential. The Court,
therefore, finds that the second factor weighs in favor of
relief. With respect to the third factor, the reason for the
delay-a calendaring error-was within the reasonable control
of Plaintiffs counsel and weighs slightly against the
requested relief. Finally, the Court finds the fourth factor
weighs neither for nor against relief. The Court does not
find bad faith on the part of Plaintiff s counsel and counsel
appeared to move in good faith to reopen the matter.
Plaintiffs counsel, nevertheless, did not file a proposed
form of Second Amended Complaint with the current motion or
following submission of Defendant's opposition papers.
After careful consideration, the Court finds that the
excusable neglect factors overall weigh in favor of relief.
The Court, accordingly, finds good cause to grant Plaintiffs
on the foregoing, and for other good cause shown, IT IS on
this 29th day of April 2019, ORDERED that:
Clerk's Office shall reopen this matter.
Plaintiffs Motion (ECF No. 18) is GRANTED.
Plaintiff may file a Second Amended Complaint by May 29,
2019. If Plaintiff fails to file a Second
Amended Complaint by such deadline, the Amended Complaint
will be dismissed with prejudice.