United States District Court, M.D. Louisiana
RULING AND ORDER
A. JACKSON JUDGE
the Court is Starr Indemnity & Liability Company's
("Intervenor") Motion for Appeal and Objections to
Magistrate Judge's November 2, 2018 "Order"
(Doc 69) Denying Leave to Submit Petition for Intervention
for Declaratory Judgment by Crum & Forster Specialty
Insurance Company. (Doc. 80). Oral argument is not required.
For reasons stated below, the Magistrate Judge's Order
(Doc. 69) is converted to a Report and Recommendation. The
Court ADOPTS the Report and Recommendation herein, and DENIES
August 2, 2016, Wendell Fisher ("Plaintiff')
sustained injuries at Woodside Landfill. (Doc. 1-1 at p. 6).
Plaintiff alleges his injuries were caused by the negligence
of Waste Management of Louisiana, LLC d/b/aJ;
Woodside Landfill, and Waste Management National Services,
Inc. ("Defendants"). (Doc. 1-1 at p. 7). On March
24, 2017, Plaintiff filed a claim in the 19th Judicial
District Court of Louisiana. (Doc. 1 at p. 1). On April 21,
2017, Defendants removed the case to this Court. On September
20, 2018, Intervenor filed a Motion for Leave to File
Petition for Intervention for Declaratory Judgment. (Doc.
34). The Magistrate Judge issued an Order denying
Intervener's Motion. (Doc. 69). Presently before the
Court is Intervener's Motion for Appeal and Objections to
the Magistrate Judge's order. (Doc. 80). II. LEGAL
STANDARD Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 72 confers upon
Magistrate Judges the responsibility to make determinations
or recommendations for pretrial matters. Magistrate Judges
can hear, decide, and issue orders for pretrial matters that
are not dispositive of a party's claim. Fed. R. Civ. Pro.
72(a). However, when a pretrial matter concerns a matter that
is dispositive of a claim or defense, the Magistrate Judge
may only make recommendations. Fed. R. Civ. Pro. 72(b)(1).
The distinction between dispositive and non-dispositive
matters impacts the district court's standard of review.
See Davidson v. Georgia-Pacific, L.L.C., 819 F.3d
758, 765 (5th Cir. 2016). Magistrate Judge's orders on
non-dispositive matters are reviewed under the standard of
"clearly erroneous" or "contrary to law;"
whereas, a recommendation on dispositive matters are subject
to a de novo review. Id.
are divided on the issue of whether motions to intervene are
dispositive of an intervener's claim or defense. See
N.Y. Chinese TV Programs, Inc. v. U.E. Enters., Inc.,
996 F.2d 21, 25 (2d Cir. 1993) (holding a motion to intervene
is dispositive); Day v. Persels & Associates,
LLC, 729 F.3d 1309, 1322 (11th Cir. 2013) (holding a
motion to intervene is dispositive); People Who Care v.
Rockford Bd. of Educ, 171 F.2d 1083, 1089 (7th
Cir. 1999) (holding a motion to intervene is not
Intervenor argues that the Magistrate Judge erred in issuing
the recommendation as an order as opposed to a report and
recommendation. (Doc. 80-1). Intervenor further argues that
the Court should convert the Magistrate Judge's order
into a report and recommendation, and review its arguments
de novo. (Id.). Intervenor has not
presented any case law from this Circuit addressing whether a
motion to intervene is a dispositive motion. Nonetheless, the
Court is influenced by the sound reasoning from the Eleventh
Circuit Court of Appeals holding that a motion to intervene
is a dispositive motion. See Day, 729 F.3d at 1322
(11th Cir. 2013). Therefore, the Magistrate Judge's Order
denying Intervener's motion is viewed as a Report and
Recommendation subject toade novo review.
Davidson, 819 F.3d at 765.
raises three objections. (Doc. 80-1 at p. 2). First,
Intervenor objects to the Magistrate Judge's finding that
its motion to intervene is untimely. (Id.). The
Court agrees with the Magistrate Judge that "timeliness
is largely within the district court's discretion."
Howse v. S/VCanada Goose I, 641 F.2d 317, 320 (5th
Cir. Unit B 1981). Further, Intervenor has provided no
reasons other than those first presented in its motion to
intervene to excuse its untimeliness.
Intervenor challenges the Magistrate Judge's finding that
intervention would lead to undue prejudice. (Doc. 80-1 at p.
2). Specifically, the Magistrate Judge found intervention at
this stage would require a continuance of the
trial. (Doc. 69 at p. 3). Intervenor argues that
a continuance is not necessary, and that their interest would
be protected by a bifurcated trial after the matter currently
before the Court. (Id.). The Court concurs with the
Magistrate Judge that Intervenor has still failed to
"demonstrate that its 'interest' in this case
would be potentially impaired if the main action is resolved
without it." (Doc. 69 at p. 4).
Intervenor asserts it has a cognizable interest founded in
substantive Louisiana law. (Doc. 80-1 at p. 2). However,
Intervenor still fails to show how the denial of intervenor
status would preclude it from seeking declaratory relief in a
separate lawsuit. (Doc. 69 at p. 4).
foregoing reasons, and having carefully considered the
underlying motion and related filings, the Court construes
the Magistrate Judge's Order as a Report and
Recommendation and adopts it as its opinion herein.
The Court shall receive the Magistrate Judge's Order (Doc
69) as a Report and Recommendation.
ORDERED that the Magistrate Judge's Order (Doc. 69) is