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American Legend Homes v. Navigators Specialty Insurance Co.

Court: ED Tx  11/05/2019  District Court Denies Plaintiff Insured's Joinder of Non-Diverse Insurer but Grants Leave to Amend Pleading to Include Diverse Insurer

The district court reasoned that the insurer sought to be joined by the plaintiff insured was not a necessary party and, therefore, not an indispensable party under Rule 19 because complete relief could be granted between the insured and defendant insurer without the non-diverse party. The court also applied the Hensgens factors, finding that the insured knew about the non-diverse party's role at the time it filed its lawsuit suggesting it was trying to defeat federal jurisdiction and the insured was dilatory in seeking amendment, which outweighed the potential prejudice of parallel proceedings and inconsistent relief. The court, however, found that, while the insured was dilatory in seeking to join another, diverse insurer, the factors under Rule 15(a) weighed in favor of granting the insured leave to amend its pleading.

commercial general liability insurance, FRCP 19, joinder, non-diverse party, indispensable party, Hensgens factors, FRCP 15(a), leave to amend

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