IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE MIDDLE DISTRICT OF PENNSYLVANIA
August 29, 2011
DOCSON CONSULTING, LLC,
The opinion of the court was delivered by: Martin C. Carlson United States Magistrate Judge
(Magistrate Judge Carlson)
Defendant Docson Consulting LLC, through Keith Dougherty,*fn1
has filed a motion in the above-captioned action requesting
that the Court reconsider its order denying Defendant's motion to
strike Plaintiff's motion to remand this action to the Court of Common
Pleas of Dauphin County. (Doc. 18) Keith Dougherty filed a brief in
support of this motion (Doc. 19), though the legal grounds set forth
in the brief are difficult to understand, and do not appear to
articulate any legitimate basis for the
Court to reconsider its prior order denying Defendant's motion to
strike, and directing the parties to brief Plaintiff's motion to
The legal standards that govern motions for reconsideration of prior court rulings are both clear and clearly compelling. "The purpose of a motion for reconsideration 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). Typically, such a motion should only be granted in three narrowly defined circumstances, where a court finds: (1) that there has been an intervening change in controlling law; (2) the availability of new evidence not previously available; or (3) a need to correct a clear error of law or prevent manifest injustice. Howard Hess Dental Labs. Inc. v. Dentsply Int'l, Inc., 602 F.3d 237, 251 (3d Cir. 2010) (citing Max's Seafood Cafe v. Quinteros, 176 F.3d 669, 677 (3d Cir. 1999)).
In consideration of this narrow standard, it is well-settled that a mere disagreement with the court does not translate into the type of clear error of law which justifies reconsideration of a ruling. Dodge v. Susquehanna Univ., 796 F. Supp. 829, 830 (M.D. Pa. 1992). Furthermore, "[b]ecause federal courts have a strong interest in the finality of judgments, motions for reconsideration should be granted sparingly." Continental Cas. Co. v. Diversified Indus., Inc., 884 F. Supp. 937, 943 (E.D. Pa. 1995). Moreover, a motion for reconsideration is not a tool to re- litigate and reargue issues which have already been considered and disposed of by the court. Dodge, 796 F. Supp. at 830.
With these stringent standards as our guide, upon review of Defendant's motion and brief, we are unable to discern any legitimate basis upon which to reconsider our prior ruling denying Defendant's motion to strike Plaintiff's motion for remand. Indeed, and in marked contrast, our initial review of Plaintiff's motion for remand and supporting brief reveals that Plaintiff has made a number of arguments that may warrant -- or even compel -- the Court to remand this action to state court. We have, therefore, entered an order directing further briefing on this motion, and Defendant will be required to file its brief in opposition to the motion in accordance with our prior order and the Local Rules of this Court.
Finding no basis to reconsider the Court's prior order denying Defendant's motion to strike, and the Court finding it appropriate to give full consideration to Plaintiff's motion to remand once the motion is fully briefed, IT IS HEREBY ORDERED THAT Defendant's motion for reconsideration is DENIED.
Martin C. Carlson