United States District Court, E.D. Missouri, Eastern Division
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
L. WHITE UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
matter is before the Court on Defendant Wright Medical
Technology, Inc.'s ("Wright") Motion for
Reconsideration of the Court's Text Only Order Granting
Plaintiffs' Motion for Leave to File Amended Petition
(ECF No. 20). Plaintiffs have filed a response in opposition
to the motion. Defendant Wright has not filed a reply, and
the time for doing so has expired.
filed a Petition for Damages in the Circuity Court of the
City of St. Louis, Missouri on May 12, 2016. Defendant Wright
removed the case to federal court on June 16,
2016. On July 13, 2016, the Plaintiffs filed a
Motion to Remand and a Motion for Leave to File Amended
Petition, with a copy of the Amended Petition attached. (ECF
No. 11) The Court granted leave to file the Amended Petition
on that same date in a docket text order. (ECF No. 13) On
July 29, 2016, Defendant Wright filed the present motion to
reconsider, asserting that the joinder of a new Defendant,
Jason Kem, to the cause of action is improper because it
defeats subject matter jurisdiction. Defendant Wright
purports to bring this motion under Rule 59(e) or Rule 60(b)
of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure.
Rule 60(b), a court may relieve a party from a court order
for several reasons including mistake, inadvertence,
surprise, excusable neglect, newly discovered evidence,
fraud, misrepresentation, misconduct by an opposing party, or
any other reason that justifies relief. Fed.R.Civ.P.
60(b)(1)-(3), (6). '"Motions for reconsideration
serve a limited function: to correct manifest errors of law
or fact or to present newly discovered evidence.'"
Arnold v. ADT Sec. Servs., Inc., 627 F.3d 716, 721
(8th Cir. 2010) (quoting Hagerman v. Yukon Energy
Corp., 839 F.2d 407, 414 (8th Cir. 1988) (quotations and
citations omitted)). "The district court has wide
discretion in ruling on a Rule 60(b) motion . . . ."
Jones v. Swanson, 512 F.3d 1045, 1049 (8th Cir.
Defendant Wright contends that "the Court may have
overlooked that the addition of Kem as a defendant defeats
the Court's diversity jurisdiction such that his joinder
would be improper under the Federal Rules of Civil
Procedure." (ECF No. 20 at 1) Wright appears to be
claiming judicial inadvertence in ruling on Plaintiffs'
motion. See Spangle v. Ming Tah Elec. Co., 866 F.2d
1002, 1003 (8th Cir. 1989) ("[R]ule 60(b)(1) can be used
to obtain relief from judgments entered through judicial
inadvertence . . . ."). However, Rule 15 of the Federal
Rules of Civil Procedure provides that "[t]he court
should freely give leave [to amend] when justice so
requires." Fed.R.Civ.P. 15(a)(2). Plaintiffs are the
masters of their complaint, and at the early stages of this
case, amendment of the complaint was warranted, and leave was
not inadvertently granted. Hoechstenback v. Accu-Pay APS,
LLC, No. 4:15 CV 457 RWS, 2015 WL 3609088, at *2 (E.D.
Mo. Apr. 15, 2015).
the Court finds that Defendant Wright has failed to identify
any "exceptional circumstances" which would justify
Rule 60(b) relief from this Court's Order allowing
Plaintiffs to file an amended complaint. However, because
Defendant Wright raises issues and arguments better suited
for the Plaintiffs' Motion for Remand, the Court will
give Defendant the opportunity to file a sur-reply to that
motion with regard to Defendant Kem.
IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that Defendant Wright
Medical Technology, Inc.'s Motion for Reconsideration of
the Court's Text Only Order Granting Plaintiffs'
Motion for Leave to File Amended Petition (ECF No. 20) is
IS FURTHER ORDERED that Defendant Wright Medical
Technology, Inc. shall file a sur-reply to Plaintiffs'
Motion to Remand no later than September 21, 2016.
 Defendant removed the case based on
diversity jurisdiction under 28 U.S.C. § 1332(a),
alleging that the action is between citizens of different
states and the amount in controversy is alleged to exceed
$75, 000. Specifically, Defendant states that named Defendant
Jerry Amos was fraudulently joined to defeat subject matter
jurisdiction such that the Court should disregard his
citizenship. (Def's Notice of Removal pp. 4-7, ECF No.
 At the outset, the Court notes that
Rule 59(e) is inapplicable to Defendant Wright's motion
for reconsideration, as that rule pertains to altering or
amending a judgment. Fed.R.Civ.P. 59(e). Here, the Court did
not issue a judgment but ...