No amendment to defeat remand motion

Moore sued PPG Industries and several local parties for injuries at a chemical complex; the defendants removed, arguing fraudulent joinder.  After some jurisdictional discovery, Moore sought to add three more local parties, and the district court denied him leave to do so.  Moore v. Manns, No. 12-31265 (Oct. 8, 2013). The Fifth Circuit affirmed, first reminding; “If after removal the plaintiff seeks to join additional defendants whose joinder would destroy subject matter jurisdiction, the court may deny joinder, or permit joinder and remand the action to the State court”; accordingly, a district court should review such a proposed amendment “more closely than an ordinary amendment.”  Factors include the extent to which the amendment is solely for jurisdictional purposes, whether plaintiff was dilatory, and potential harm to plaintiff of not allowing the amendment.  Here, the Court agreed that the “general responsibilit[y]” for safety under which the new parties were sued did not trigger personal fault under Louisiana law, making the amendment tactical and impermissible.

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