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Why didn't Defendants oppose my Motion to Amend Complaint?

Los Angeles, CA |

I filed a Motion for Leave to Amend my Complaint (adding multiple fraud claims, a claim for punitive damages, and an additional Defendant) and the opposing parties filed a non-oppositional response to my proposed First Amended Complaint. Do opposing parties usually oppose a Plaintiff's Motions for Leave to Amend Complaint, or is a non-oppositional Response to such fairly commonplace?

Attorney Answers 6

  1. Best answer

    If it is early in the case, courts often will grant a motion for leave to amend. Indeed, the opposing party often will agree to stipulate to allowing the amendment. Later on in the case, it may become more difficult to obtain leave to amend the pleadings. It depends. In one case, we defeated a motion for leave to amend that was filed long after the original complaint was filed, and shortly before the close of discovery. In your case, the opposing party may have decided to focus its resources on other matters in the case.

    This answer is for informational purposes only. It is not intended as specific legal advice regarding your question. The answer could be different if all of the facts were known. This answer does not establish an attorney-client relationship.

  2. Maybe they didn't oppose it because they didn't take it seriously.

    This is AVVO, a place for users to obtain general legal information to general legal questions. I am glad to help you in any way I can, within those limits. I wish to make clear I am only communicating with you for the sole purpose of exchanging such general information, and nothing more. It is not legal advice, which I can not provide because among other reasons I know few of the necessary details of your situation. I do not purport to represent you in any way, shape or form. Of course, if you would like to seek out my services, and if you are a NY resident, I will probably not put up very much resistance but representation would still necessitate a signed retainer agreement between yourself and I. Thank you.

  3. It is not common to oppose motions for leave to amend the complaint because they are so commonly granted and the standard is very deferential and favors granting such motions

  4. It can go either way. Courts usually always grant a first motion for leave to amend. Smart defendants don't usually oppose since it gives them a chance to demurrer to the complaint.

    While I am an attorney, I am not your attorney. You should always speak with your own attorney to gain full and complete legal advice.

  5. The fact that they did not oppose the Motion for Leave to Amend your complaint may be a good sign that you are dealing with reasonable attorneys on the other side because, as many lawyers here have explained, the chances of defeating a motion to amend a complaint are pretty low. It could also mean that there isn't a lot of money on the other side.

    However, their non-opposition to the Motion for Leave to Amend does not mean you are out of the woods. They could file a demurrer to the First Amended Complaint to try to knock out some of the claims. Nor does it mean that if you are representing yourself here that you should continue to do so. If you intend to prove these claims, you are best served by consulting with and retaining an attorney to represent you here.

    I don't intend the foregoing to be legal advice but just a general answer to a question based on Avvo's rules. In particular, you are not my client. I am not your lawyer. For further details on this issue, you should consult an attorney.

  6. The standard on ruling on motions for leave to amend is a fairly liberal one. See Howard v. County of San Diego (2010) 184 Cal. App. 4th 1422, 1428 (the policy favoring amendment is so strong that it is a rare case in which denial of leave to amend can be justified). The idea behind the policy is to allow the parties to try their cases on the merits. It is a judicial policy that favors resolution of all disputes under various theories of recovery in the same lawsuit. Thus, opposing parties usually will not oppose such motions and will often times stipulate to an amended complaint, depending on the circumstances of the case. Once the motion is granted, the moving party will have leave to amend and will file and serve his or her amended complaint. The opposing party will then evaluate the amended pleading and may decide to demur or move to strike portions thereof.

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