United States District Court, District of Columbia
ROSEMARY M. COLLYER United States District Judge
Richardson has filed suit pro se against his former
employer for a variety of constitutional torts, common-law
torts, and statutory violations that he alleges occurred
during his employment. Having previously amended his original
complaint once, Mr. Richardson now moves to amend his
complaint again, although the Court's deadline to do so
has long passed. Mr. Richardson argues that he should be
permitted to amend his complaint because he has learned new
information that supports new claims, while Defendants argue
that Mr. Richardson has not shown good cause to amend, as
required by Rule 16 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure.
Because Mr. Richardson has established neither that he acted
diligently to amend his complaint nor that the proposed
amendment would not prejudice Defendants, the Court finds
that Mr. Richardson has not shown good cause. Accordingly,
the Court will deny Mr. Richardson's motion without
the question at bar is limited to whether Mr. Richardson may
again amend his complaint, only a summary of the facts
relevant to the motion to amend, and not a summary of the
entire case, is necessary here. Mr. Richardson, a pro
se plaintiff, complains that his former employer, the
Federal Reserve Board of Governors, and its chair, Janet
Yellen (Defendant or the Board) committed against him a
variety of torts and statutory violations while Mr.
Richardson was employed as a law enforcement officer with the
4, 2010, the Board sent Mr. Richardson a letter informing him
of his termination and detailing the reasons, which included
“misconduct or negligence in prior employment.”
Letter to Edward Richardson [Dkt. 60-1]. The letter provided
a brief description of the conduct alleged, which according
to the letter was brought to light during a background
investigation upon which Mr. Richardson's employment was
Richardson filed his initial complaint in this action on
October 8, 2014, and subsequently amended his complaint
pursuant to Rule 15 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure
on March 20, 2015. See Compl. [Dkt. 1]; Am. Compl.
[Dkt. 8]. As the litigation progressed, this Court issued a
scheduling order on June 30, 2016 providing, among other
deadlines, that “Plaintiff may amend its pleadings no
later than July 15, 2016.” Scheduling Order [Dkt. 48].
The Court also directed that “[t]his schedule shall not
be modified, even where all parties consent, except upon
motion demonstrating good cause and an order from the
Court.” Id. (citing Fed.R.Civ.P. 16(b); LCvR
16.4 (governing the Court's issuance of scheduling
parties progressed to discovery, with an initial deadline of
October 28, 2016. See Scheduling Order at 2.
Discovery was extended twice, see 11/2/2016 Order
[Dkt. 63]; 11/15/2016 Minute Order; and 3/30/2017 Order [Dkt.
105]. Discovery concluded on May 5, 2017. See
5/8/2017 Joint Status Report [Dkt. 110].
to Mr. Richardson, at some point during discovery he obtained
new information about three other employees: Shandra Love,
Darren Harris, and Rocco Christoff.
Mr. Richardson now asserts that he obtained new information
establishing that these three former coworkers had all
“possessed unfavorable employment backgrounds prior to
employment with the Board, ” about which they allegedly
lied to the Board. Pl.'s Mot. Leave Am. Compl. [Dkt. 107]
at 2 (Mot.); Pl.'s Reply Support Mot. Leave Am. Compl.
[Dkt. 116] at 2 (Reply). Messrs. Harris and Christoff are
white, Ms. Love is a woman, and Mr. Richardson is an
African-American man. See Ex. A, Mot. [Dkt. 107-1]
at ¶¶ 180-81. Mr. Richardson contends that he did
not learn of this information until “[d]uring the
discovery period, ” Mot. at 2, when he says he was able
to review documents including background questionnaires that
brought to light “disciplinary actions in employment
prior to [the three other employees'] employment with the
Board.” Reply at 2. Mr. Richardson does not provide the
date or dates on which he received the background
on November 22, 2016, Mr. Richardson filed a Notice of
Subpoena, in which he discussed various details from Mr.
Christoff's and Ms. Love's employment histories (such
as disciplinary actions), as well as Mr. Harris's
“prior arrest record.” Motion to Subpoena [Dkt.
69] at 1-2, 3 (Notice of Subpoena). The Board claims that Mr.
Richardson obtained this information from “public
documents and other information not obtained from the
Board.” Opp'n Pl.'s Mot. Leave Am. Compl. [Dkt.
111] at 3 (Opp'n).
3, 2017, Mr. Richardson moved to amend his First Amended
Complaint pursuant to Rule 15(a)(2). See Mot.;
see also Fed. R. Civ. P. 15(a)(2) (providing that
“[t]he court should freely give leave” to amend a
complaint other than as a matter of course “when
justice so requires”). Defendants opposed, arguing that
Rule 16(b), which requires “good cause” to amend
if a scheduling order deadline has passed, governs instead.
See Opp'n. Mr. Richardson replied. See
Reply. The motion is ripe for review.
15(a)(2) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure provides
that “[t]he court should freely give leave” to
amend a complaint other than as a matter of course
“when justice so requires.” Under this standard,
a court may deny a motion to amend if it finds “undue
delay, bad faith or dilatory motive on the part of the
movant, repeated failure to cure deficiencies by amendments
previously allowed, [or] undue prejudice to the opposing
party.” Foman v. Davis, 371 U.S. 178, 182
as this Court has noted before, when a plaintiff “seeks
leave to amend which deviates from a court-ordered deadline,
the more stringent good cause standard imposed by Federal
Rule of Civil Procedure 16(b) applies.” In re Papst
Licensing GmbH & Co. KG Litig., 762 F.Supp.2d 56, 59
(2011); see also Lurie v. Mid-Atl. Permanente Med. Grp.,
P.C., 589 F.Supp.2d 21, 23 (D.D.C. 2008) (“To hold
otherwise would allow Rule 16's standards to be
‘short circuited' by those of Rule 15 and would
allow for parties to disregard scheduling orders, which would
‘undermine the court's ability to control its
docket, disrupt the agreed-upon course of the litigation, and
reward the indolent and the cavalier.'”) (quoting
Leary v. Daeschner, 349 F.3d 888, 906 (6th Cir.
2003)). Under Rule 16(b), a court may enter a scheduling
order that limits the time to amend the pleadings ...