The opinion of the court was delivered by: CHARLES NORGLE, District Judge
Before the court is Defendant's Motion to Reconsider Transfer [docket
entry 23-1]. For the following reasons, the motion is denied.
The United States Securities and Exchange Commission ("SEC") filed this
action in the Northern District of Illinois against National Presto
Industries, Inc. ("National Presto") alleging that it has been operating
an as unregistered investment company in violation of the Investment
Company Act of 1940, 15 U.S.C. § 80a-1 et seq. In response,
National Presto filed a motion to transfer venue to the Western District
of Wisconsin pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § I404(a).
In an order dated March 6, 2003, the court denied National Presto's
motion to transfer to the Western District of Wisconsin pursuant to
28 U.S.C. § 1404(a), holding that National Presto had not carried its
burden of demonstrating that the Western District of Wisconsin would be a
more convenient forum. See Minute Order of March 6, 2003
[docket entry 15-1].
National Presto filed a petition for a writ of mandamus in the Seventh
Circuit Court of Appeals, seeking review of the court's March 6, 2003 order denying
transfer and asking the Seventh Circuit to transfer the action to the
Western District of Wisconsin. In an opinion dated October 21, 2003, the
Seventh Circuit denied the petition for mandamus. See In re National
Presto Indus., Inc., 347 F.3d 662, 665 (7th Cir. 2003).
In light of the Seventh Circuit's opinion, National Presto filed the
instant Motion to Reconsider Transfer. The motion is fully briefed and
before the court.
National Presto's instant motion seeks reconsideration of the court's
March 6, 2003 order denying the motion to transfer to the Western
District of Wisconsin pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1404(a), an
interlocutory order. National Presto states that the instant motion is
brought "[p]ursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 54(b) and pursuant
also to the common law of reconsideration. . . ." Def.'s Mot. to
Reconsider, at 1. While there is no Federal Rule of Civil Procedure that
allows the filing of a motion to reconsider an interlocutory order,
district courts have recognized such motions, finding the authority to
consider such motions in the authorities cited by National Presto.
See, e.g., Neal v. Honeywell. Inc., No. 93 C 1143, 1996 WL
627616, at *2 (N.D. Ill. Oct. 25, 1996) (collecting authority);
Snuff v. Consolidated Rail Corp., 865 F. Supp. 469, 472-73
(N.D. Ill. 1994).
District courts possess the inherent authority to modify interlocutory
orders. See Cameo, Convalescent Ctr., Inc. v. Percy.
800 F.2d 108, 110 (7th Cir. 1986); Kapco. Mfg. Co. v. C & O Enterprises.
Inc., 773 F.2d 151, 154 (7th Cir. 1985) (stating district courts
"always ha[ve] the power to modify earlier orders in a pending case").
However, "as a rule courts should be loathe to do so in the absence of
extraordinary circumstances such as where the initial decision was
`clearly erroneous and would work a manifest injustice.'"
Christianson v. Colt Indus. Operation Corp., 486 U.S. 800, 817 (1988) (quoting Arizona v. California. 460 U.S. 605,
618 n.8 (1983)).
As an exercise of a court's inherent authority, a motion to reconsider
an interlocutory order is appropriate where: (1) the court has patently
misunderstood a party; (2) the court has made a decision outside the
adversarial issues presented to the court by the parties; (3) the court
has made an error not of reasoning but of apprehension; (4) there has
been a controlling or significant change in the law since the submission
of the issue to the court; or (5) there has been a controlling or
significant change in the facts since the submission of the issue to the
court. See, e.g., Bank of Waunakee v. Rochester Cheese Sales.
Inc., 906 F.2d 1185, 1191 (7th Cir. 1990); Neal. 1996 WL
627616, at *2.
These grounds represent extraordinary circumstances, and the granting
of a motion to reconsider is to be granted only in such extraordinary
circumstances. See id. (stating that "[s]uch problems rarely
arise and the motion to reconsider should be equally rare"). Motions to
reconsider are not at the disposal of parties who want to "rehash" the
same arguments that were originally presented to the court. See In
re Oil Spill by "Amoco. Cadiz" Off Coast of France on March 16. 1978.
794 F. Supp. 261, 267 (N.D. Ill. 1992). Indeed, the court's orders are
not "mere first drafts, subject to revision and reconsideration at a
litigant's pleasure." Quaker Alloy Casting Co. y. Gulfco. Industries.
Inc., 123 F.R.D. 282, 288 (N.D. Ill. 1988).
National Presto claims that its motion to reconsider should be granted
based on two grounds: a controlling or significant change in the law and
the facts since the submission of the issue to the court. In response,
the SEC claims that neither a controlling or significant change in the
law nor the ...