Motion for Reconsideration — Standards — Sanctions

Chapman v. Journal Concepts, Inc., 2007 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 91621 (D. Haw. Dec. 12, 2007):

1. Standards. “Courts have established only three grounds justifying reconsideration: (1) an intervening change in controlling law; (2) the discovery of new evidence not previously available; and (3) the need to correct clear or manifest error in law or fact in order to prevent manifest injustice.”

2. Frivolousness v. New Issues. “A motion for reconsideration is sanctionable if it is frivolous, but not if it raises new issues” (citation and quotation omitted).

3. Rehashing Old Arguments vs. Asserting Old Evidence as New. “The court finds that Plaintiff's argument of manifest error of law largely rehashes issues already addressed by the court, but does not rise to the level of objective frivolity appropriate for sanctions. The court does find, however, that Plaintiff's ‘discovery of new materials’ argument may warrant sanctions.... Plaintiff was served the materials it now alleges are ‘newly discovered, and had no excuse why, other than secretary negligence, Plaintiff did not review the Reply.... Because ‘[e]vidence is not newly discovered if it was in the party's possession at the time of summary judgment or could have been discovered with reasonable diligence,’ [citation omitted], it appears that Plaintiff had no valid basis for raising this argument in his Motion for Reconsideration. Accordingly, the court ORDERS the Plaintiff to Show Cause why sanctions should not be imposed for arguing reconsideration based on discovery of new materials.”

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