Commercial Litigation and Arbitration

Rule 54(b) and Reconsideration “As Justice Requires” — 4 Considerations

From Alexander v. FBI, 2010 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 21386 (D.D.C. Mar. 9, 2010):

Rule 54(b) allows a court to modify any ruling that adjudicates fewer than all the claims or rights and liability of fewer than all the parties, which does not end the action as to any of the claims or parties at any time before the entry of final judgment. FED. R. CIV. P. 54(b). The denial of a motion to dismiss is just such an order. Lemmons v. Georgetown Univ. Hosp., 241 F.R.D. 15, 22 n.11 (D.D.C. 2007).

This Court has indicated in the past that reconsideration will be granted as justice requires. Cobell v. Norton, 355 F. Supp. 2d 531, 539 (D.D.C. 2005) (Lamberth, J.). Whether justice requires granting such a motion, rests on a determination, within the Court's discretion, whether it is necessary given the relevant circumstances.... Some of those considerations are: (1) whether the court patently misunderstood one of the parties; (2) whether the court made a decision beyond the adversarial issues presented; (3) whether the court failed to consider a controlling decision or information; and (4) whether an intervening change in controlling law (or even a significant change) has occurred. In Defense of Animals v. Nat'l Institutes of Health, 543 F. Supp. 2d 70, 75 (D.D.C. 2008).

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