Double-edged sword about pleading amendment

The plaintiff in Butler v. Taser International sought to amend a negligence suit to add a new fraud claim, after the deadline for motions to amend pleadings.  No. 12-11026 (July 10, 2013, unpublished).  In affirming the denial of leave to amend, the Fifth Circuit noted: “In his first amended complaint, Officer Butler pled a litany of facts that could have supported claims for fraudulent inducement and failure to warn. He alleged that TI had made false representations, and that TI’s warnings regarding the dangers of a Taser shock were inadequate.”  In other words, a point that weighs against a finding of prejudice — that the matters raised by the new pleading were already in issue — also weighed against a finding of good cause and justified denial of leave, especially after the deadline.

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