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Katherine A. Frey v. Grumbine's Rv

February 16, 2011

KATHERINE A. FREY,
PLAINTIFF
v.
GRUMBINE'S RV;
DAMON MOTOR COACH; AND
J. RAMBO MEYER'S RV CENTERS, LLC, DEFENDANTS



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Sylvia H. Rambo United States District Judge

MEMORANDUM

Before the court is Defendant Damon Motor Coach's ("Damon's")*fn1 motion for reconsideration, (Doc. 29), of this court's November 15, 2010 order granting in part and denying in part Defendants' motions to dismiss. (Doc. 25.) The motion has been fully briefed and is ripe for disposition. For the reasons that follow, the motion will be denied.

I. Background

A. Facts

The court has previously laid out the pertinent facts in a memorandum dated November 15, 2010, (Doc. 25), and will only briefly summarize them here.

On October 28, 2009, Plaintiff Katherine A. Frey ("Frey") entered into an agreement to purchase a 2009 Damon Avanti class A motor home ("motor home") from Defendant Grumbine's RV ("Grumbine's") for Ninety Seven Thousand Nine Hundred Eighty Four Dollars and sixty-five cents ($97,984.65). (Doc. 1-2, Compl. ¶ 6.) The motor home was manufactured by Defendant Damon. Following the purchase of the motor home, Frey experienced several problems including, inter alia, a leaking sink drain and windshield, a malfunctioning furnace and leveling jacks, exposed wires, and a jammed shifter. (Doc. 1-2, Compl. ¶ 17, 25, 28.) After several apparently unsuccessful attempts at repair by Grumbine's, Plaintiff filed the instant action against both the seller (Grumbine's) and the manufacturer (Damon).

B. Procedural History

On June 14, 2010, Frey filed a complaint in the Court of Common Pleas in Dauphin County, Pennsylvania, case no. 2010-CV-7908-CV, against Defendants Grumbine's, Damon, and Meyer's RV Centers, LLC. In the complaint, Plaintiff alleges that the motor home was defective and seeks damages for breach of contract, breach of the implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing, breach of the warranty of merchantability, breach of the warranty of fitness for a particular purpose, and misrepresentation. Plaintiff also seeks to revoke her acceptance of the motor home and rescind the contract. On July 14, 2010, Defendants filed a Notice of Removal. (Doc. 1.) On July 19, 2010, Damon and Grumbine's filed motions to dismiss (Docs. 2-3) followed by briefs in support on July 29, 2010. (Docs. 7-8.) On August 9, 2010, Frey filed a motion to remand, as well as a motion to stay briefing of Defendants' motions to dismiss. (Docs. 10, 12.) Frey's motion for remand contested whether there was complete diversity of citizenship between the parties. On August 10, 2010, the court granted Frey's motion to stay briefing of Defendants' motions to dismiss. (Doc. 16.)

By memorandum and order dated September 15, 2010, the court denied Frey's motion for remand, finding that there was complete diversity of citizenship of all parties. (See Doc. 20.) In the accompanying order, the court issued new briefing deadlines for Defendants' motions to dismiss. On September 29, 2010, Frey filed her briefs in opposition to Defendants' motions to dismiss. (Docs. 21-22.) On October 8, 2010, Grumbine's and Damon filed their respective reply briefs. (Docs. 23-24.) After full briefing, the court issued its order and accompanying memorandum dated November 15, 2010, granting in part and denying in part both motions. (Doc. 25.) Regarding Damon's motion, the court granted dismissal of Counts I (breach of contract), II (implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing), IV (warranty of fitness for a particular purpose), V (misrepresentation), and VII (rescission of contract) of Frey's complaint and denied Damon's motion as to Count III (breach of implied warranty of merchantability). The court also denied Damon's motion as to Count VI of Frey's complaint pertaining to revocation of acceptance. In its motion, Damon argued for dismissal of Count VI because "Plaintiff did not accept any goods from Damon as her relationship was only with Defendant Grumbine's RV and only Defendant Grumbine's RV delivered goods to Plaintiff. Plaintiff cannot revoke her acceptance of the motor home as to Defendant Damon because Damon was a stranger to the transaction whereby Plaintiff initially accepted the goods." (Doc. 2 .) The court denied the motion in this regard, stating:

Damon provides no case law on the subject. While the argument has some logical appeal, in the absence of case law to support it, the court will reject the argument in light of the well established rule in Pennsylvania that privity of contract between buyer and a manufacturer no longer operates as a bar to recovery by a buyer . . . . While the discussion of privity in [Moscatiello v. Pittsburgh Contractors Equipment Co., 595 A.2d 1198 (Pa. Super. Ct. 1991)] concerned claims for breach of implied warranties, the court believes the logic is equally applicable to a case like the one sub judice because underlying all of Frey's claims is the assertion that the motor home was defective and the defects were never remedied. In the absence of authority to the contrary, the court concludes the lack of contractual privity between Damon and Frey is not fatal to Frey's effort to revoke acceptance of the motor home. (Doc. 25 at 16-17.)

On November 29, 2010, Damon submitted this motion for reconsideration requesting that the court dismiss with prejudice Count VI of Frey's complaint regarding revocation of acceptance.

II. Standard

A motion for reconsideration is a device of limited utility. Its purpose is to correct manifest errors of law or fact or to present newly discovered evidence. Harsco Corp. v. Zlotnicki, 779 F.2d 906, 909 (3d Cir. 1985). Accordingly, a party seeking reconsideration must demonstrate at least one of the following grounds prior to the court altering, or amending, a standing judgment: (1) an intervening change in the controlling law; (2) the availability of new evidence that was not available when the court entered judgment; or (3) the need to correct a clear error of law or fact or to prevent manifest injustice. Max's Seafood Cafe v. Quinteros, 176 F.3d 669, 677 (3d Cir. 1999) (citing North River Ins. Co. v. CIGNA Reinsurance Co., 52 F.3d 1194, 1218 (3d Cir. 1995)). A motion for reconsideration is appropriate in instances where the court has "patently misunderstood a party, or has made a decision outside the adversarial issues presented to the Court by the parties, or has made an error not of reasoning but of apprehension." Rohrbach v. AT&T Nassau Metals Corp., 902 F. Supp. 523, 527 (M.D. Pa. 1995), vacated in part on other grounds on reconsideration, 915 F. Supp. 712 (M.D. Pa. 1996) (quoting Above the Belt, Inc. v. Mel Bohannan Roofing, Inc., 99 F.R.D. 99, 101 (E.D. Va. 1983)). It may not be used as a means to reargue unsuccessful theories, or argue new facts or issues that were not ...


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