United States District Court, W.D. Texas, El Paso Division
MEMORANDUM OPINION & ORDER
T. BERTON UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
day, the Court considered:
• “Defendant Stanton Nelson's Motion to
Dismiss Plaintiffs Amended Complaint” (“Motion to
Dismiss”) (ECF. No. 53);
• Argent's “Motion for Leave to Amend
Complaint” (ECF. No. 68);
• “Defendant Justin Bynum's Rule 12(c) Motion
for Judgment on the Pleadings Seeking Dismissal of Plaintiffs
Amended Complaint” (“Motion for Judgment on the
Pleadings Regarding Argent's Claims”) (ECF. No.
• “Defendant Justin Bynum's Rule 12(c) Motion
for Judgment on the Pleadings Seeking Dismissal of
Cross-Claimant's Claims” (“Motion for
Judgment on the Pleadings Regarding EEPPMC's
Crossclaims”) (ECF. No. 78).
reviewing the parties' moving papers and the applicable
law, the Court orders that Argent's Motion for Leave to
Amend Complaint is HEREBY GRANTED and the
remaining motions are HEREBY DENIED WITHOUT PREJUDICE
28, 2017, Argent filed suit against Defendants East El Paso
Physicians' Medical Center, LLC d/b/a Foundation Surgical
Hospital of El Paso (“EEPPMC”), Foundation
Surgical Hospital Holdings LLC, Randstad Professionals US,
LLC d/b/a Tatum, Stanton Nelson, and Justin Bynum
(collectively, “Defendants”). (ECF. No. 1).
Thereafter, on August 4, 2017, Argent filed its Amended
Complaint against Defendants. (ECF. No. 15). Argent asserts
various causes of action related to a “Receivables
Purchase and Sales Agreement” for the purchase of
medical debt. (Id.). On November 28, 2017, after an
extended absence from the litigation, Nelson filed a Motion
to Dismiss Argent's Amended Complaint. (ECF. No. 53).
Thereafter, on January 5, 2018, Argent sought leave to file a
Second Amended Complaint. (ECF. No. 68).
EEPPMC filed an amended answer containing crossclaims against
Justin Bynum, Stanton Nelson, and Foundation Surgical
Hospital Holdings and counterclaims against Argent. (ECF. No.
57). Bynum now seeks judgment on the pleadings regarding
Argent and EEPPMC's claims against him. (ECF. Nos. 77,
Federal Rules of Civil Procedure provide that “a party
may amend its pleading only with the opposing party's
written consent or the court's leave. The court
should freely give leave when justice so
requires.” Fed. R. Civ. P 15(a)(2) (emphasis
added). “[T]he language of this rule ‘evinces a
bias in favor of granting leave to amend.'”
Chitimacha Tribe of La. v. Harry L. Laws Co., Inc.,
690 F.2d 1157, 1162 (5th Cir. 1983) (citing cases).
Consequently, although leave to amend is not automatic,
“there is a strong presumption in favor of granting
leave to amend . . . .” Ackerson v. Bean Dredging
LLC, 589 F.3d 196, 208 (5th Cir. 2009) (citation
omitted); Ashe v. Corley, 992 F.2d 540, 542 (5th
Cir. 1993). As this strong presumption exists, a court must
possess “substantial reason” to deny a request
for leave to amend. Lyn-Lea Travel Corp. v. Am.
Airlines, 283 F.3d 282, 286 (5th Cir. 2002) (quoting
Jamieson v. Shaw, 772 F.2d 1205, 1208 (5th Cir.
determining whether substantial reason exists to deny leave
to amend, the Court considers the following factors: (1)
undue delay; (2) bad faith or dilatory motive on the part of
the movant; (3) repeated failure to cure deficiencies by
amendments previously allowed; (4) undue prejudice to the
opposing party; and (5) futility of amendment. Ashe,
992 F.2d at 542 (citing Foman v. Davis, 371 U.S.
178, 182 (1962)). Amendment is futile if “the amended
complaint would fail to state a claim upon which relief could
be granted.” Stripling v. Jordan Prod. Co.,
234 F.3d 863, 873 (5th Cir. 2000). In determining futility,
the court applies “the same standard of legal
sufficiency as applies under Rule 12(b)(6).”
Id. “Even if substantial reason to deny leave
exists, the court should consider prejudice to the movant, as
well as judicial economy, in determining whether justice
requires granting leave.” Jamieson, 772 F.2d
at 1208 (citation omitted).
survive a Rule 12(b)(6) motion to dismiss, a complaint must
contain “sufficient factual matter, accepted as true,
to state a claim to relief that is plausible on its
face.” Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678
(2009) (internal quotation marks and citation omitted).
“A claim has facial plausibility when the plaintiff
pleads factual content that allows the court to draw the
reasonable inference that the defendant is liable for the
misconduct alleged.” Id. (citation omitted).
“Factual allegations must be enough to raise a right to
relief above the speculative level, on the assumption that
all the allegations in the complaint are true (even if
doubtful in fact).” Bell Atl. Corp. v.
Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007) (citations omitted).
Consequently, a complaint requires more ...