United States District Court, E.D. Louisiana
ORDER & REASONS
the Court is Plaintiff's Motion for Reconsideration. R.
Doc. 12. Defendant responds in opposition. R. Doc. 13. After
reviewing the parties' briefs and the applicable law, the
Court issues this Order & Reasons.
Cabrina Robertson has filed this lawsuit against the United
States Coast Guard and various unidentified officers of the
Coast Guard on behalf of herself and her deceased son, Travon
Robertson. R. Doc. 1 at 1. In May 2015, Travon was swimming
at Grand Isle State Park and was drowned. R. Doc. 1 at 2-4.
Plaintiff alleges that the Coast Guard could have sent a
helicopter to rescue Travon but negligently did not send the
helicopter until after Travon had drowned. R. Doc. 1 at 3-4.
Plaintiff maintains that several negligent acts by the U.S.
Coast Guard, including failure to maintain a proper chain of
command resulted in Travon's death. R. Doc. 1 at 4-5.
Plaintiff claims survival damages, damages for wrongful
death, negligent infliction of emotional distress, funeral
expenses, and costs of mental health treatment. R. Doc. 1 at
answers denying all allegations and arguing that the U.S.
Coast Guard and its officers are improper defendants. R. Doc.
7. Defendant argues that because Plaintiff's claims are
brought under the Federal Tort Claims Act
(“FTCA”) the United States of America is the only
proper defendant. R. Doc. 7 at 5. Further, Defendant alleges
multiple affirmative defenses including: failure to state a
claim upon which relief can be granted, comparative
negligence bar and/or reduction, the discretionary function
exception to the FTCA, prescription, and lack of subject
matter jurisdiction. R. Doc. 7 at 4-5.
October 20, 2017, the Court granted Defendant's motion to
dismiss because Defendants were not the proper parties to be
sued. R. Doc. 10. Plaintiffs did not respond to
Defendant's motion to dismiss. On October 23, 2017, a
judgment was entered in favor of Defendants and
Plaintiff's complaint was dismissed without prejudice. R.
Doc. 11. Plaintiff now brings this motion for
reconsideration. R. Doc. 12.
moves the Court to reconsider its judgment for Defendant. R.
Doc. 12. Plaintiff asserts that while she can file a new
complaint against the proper defendant, the United States of
America, it will be more judicially efficient for the Court
to reopen this case and allow Plaintiff to amend her
complaint to name the United States of America. R. Doc. 12.
respond in opposition to Plaintiff's motion. R. Doc. 13.
Defendant argues that Plaintiff has not suggested any grounds
under which the Court should reconsider under Rule 59 or Rule
60. R. Doc. 13 at 2. Defendant argues that the Plaintiff has
not alleged any errors or changes in the law. R. Doc. 13 at
2. Rather, Defendant alleges that Plaintiff merely requests
to start over. R. Doc. 13 at 3. Furthermore, Defendant argues
that Plaintiff cannot amend her complaint under Rule 15
because she did not timely move to amend. R. Doc. 13 at 3.
Therefore, Defendant argues that Plaintiff's motion
should be denied and Plaintiff may then file a lawsuit
against the proper party. R. Doc. 13 at 3.
current issue in this case is the proper procedure for
amending a complaint and joining proper parties after a
complaint has been filed.
LAW & ANALYSIS
Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 59, district courts have
discretion to grant or deny motions to reconsider. Under Rule
59, there are three grounds upon which a court may grant a
motion for reconsideration: 1) there has been an intervening
change in the controlling law, (2) evidence not previously
available became available, or (3) reconsideration is
necessary to correct clear error of law or prevent manifest
injustice. Database America, Inc. v. Bellsouth
Advertising & Pub. Corp., 825 F.Supp. 1216,
Under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 60, courts may
[o]n motion and just terms, the court may relieve a party or
its legal representative from a final judgment, order, or