United States District Court, N.D. Texas, Dallas Division
FINDINGS, CONCLUSIONS, AND RECOMMENDATION OF THE
UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
L. HORAN, UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
Reginald Darrel Taylor filed a pro se action in
state court against his former employer, Defendant Academic
Partnerships, LLC, and others. See Dkt. No. 1-6.
Academic Partnerships answered in state court, see
Dkt. No. 1-8, and then removed to federal court, see
Dkt. No. 1.
action has been referred to the undersigned United States
magistrate judge for pretrial management under 28 U.S.C.
§ 636(b) and a standing order of reference from United
States District Judge Ed Kinkeade.
now moves for sanctions under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure
11 against Academic Partnerships; Salman Meherali, also a
named defendant; and their counsel, Carrie B. Hoffman based
on this action's removal to federal court. See
generally Dkt. No. 41; see also Id. at 5
(“Plaintiff respectfully files this Motion for Rule 11
Sanctions, after allotting considerable time for adverse
counsel to revise Notice of Removal and Notice of Filing of
Removal or comments held wherein. Specifically, the above
referenced [filings] were not filed in good faith, and was
filed with intentions to hinder, deter, or intimidate pro se
Plaintiff from moving forward with civil litigation.”).
authorizes a court to impose sanctions on a party who files a
pleading for an improper purpose, such as to harass the
opposing party, delay the proceedings, or increase the
expense of litigation. See Fed. R. Civ. P. 11(b),
(c). Sanctions under Rule 11 may be appropriate if the Court
finds that a document has been presented for an improper
purpose, see Fed. R. Civ. P. 11(b)(1); the claims or
defenses of the signer are not supported by existing law or
by a good-faith argument for an extension or change in
existing law, see Fed. R. Civ. P. 11(b)(2); or the
allegations and other factual statements lack evidentiary
support or are unlikely to do so after a reasonable
opportunity for investigation, see Fed. R. Civ. P.
11(b)(3). The purpose of the rule is to “deter baseless
filings in district court, ” Cooter & Gell v.
Hartmarx Corp., 496 U.S. 384, 393 (1990), and “to
spare innocent parties and overburdened courts from the
filing of frivolous lawsuits, ” Cappa Fund III,
L.L.C. v. Actherm Holding, A.S., No. 3:10-cv-897-L, 2011
WL 817384, at *2 (N.D. Tex. Feb. 21, 2011) (quoting
Kurkowski v. Volcker, 819 F.2d 201, 204 (8th Cir.
1987)), rec. adopted, 2011 WL 816861 (N.D. Tex. Mar.
Taylor admits in his Rule 11 motion, he “sued
defendant[s] for negligent acts or omissions, in which were
violations of [multiple federal statutes].” Dkt. No. 41
at 2; see also Dkt. No. 1-6 (state court petition),
¶ 4.1.1 (alleging that he was “wrongfully
discharg[ed] in retaliation for the complaint filed with the
[EEOC]”), ¶ 9.1 (alleging that the defendants
“disregard[ed]” the “Civil Rights [Act]
Academic Partnerships removed this action on the admitted
basis of federal question jurisdiction. See Dkt. No.
1 at 3; see also 28 U.S.C. § 1331.
“even if [Taylor's] motion were procedurally
correct, given ... the fact that there is authority ... that
supports removal, the court cannot conclude that Rule 11
sanctions should be imposed.” In re Enable
Commerce, Inc., 256 F.R.D. 527, 533 (N.D. Tex. 2009)
(noting that there - unlike here - the authority supporting
removal was distinguishable and not controlling; footnote
omitted); cf. Melinder v. Ocwen Loan Servicing, LLC,
Civ. A. No. G-09-190, 2009 WL 10711724, at *5 (S.D. Tex. Nov.
23, 2009) (“[T]here was no factual or legal basis for
the removal of this case and; hence, removal was unreasonable
and improper and volitive of FRCP, Rule 11.” (citing
Garcia v. Amfels, Inc., 254 F.3d 585, 587 (5th Cir.
Court should therefore deny the motion for Rule 11 sanctions.
Court should deny Plaintiff Reginald Darrel Taylor's
Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 11 motion for sanctions
against Academic Partnerships, Salman Meherali, and Carrie B.
Hoffman [Dkt. No. 41].
of these findings, conclusions, and recommendation shall be
served on all parties in the manner provided by law. Any
party who objects to any part of these findings, conclusions,
and recommendation must file specific written objections
within 14 days after being served with a copy. See
28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1); Fed.R.Civ.P. 72(b). In order to
be specific, an objection must identify the specific finding
or recommendation to which objection is made, state the basis
for the objection, and specify the place in the magistrate
judge's findings, conclusions, and recommendation where
the disputed determination is found. An objection that merely
incorporates by reference or refers to the briefing before
the magistrate judge is not specific. Failure to file
specific written objections will bar the aggrieved party from
appealing the factual ...