IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE NORTHERN DISTRICT OF ILLINOIS EASTERN DIVISION
April 6, 2007
BEVERLY C. MEBANE, PLAINTIFF,
READY-PAC PRODUCE, INC., DEFENDANT.
The opinion of the court was delivered by: Milton I. Shadur Senior United States District Judge
Ready Pac Produce, Inc. ("Ready Pac") has filed its Answer to the Amended Complaint brought against it by Beverly Mebane, who charges Ready Pac with employment discrimination and violation of the Family and Medical Leave Act. This brief memorandum order is occasioned by one flaw in that responsive pleading (to the extent that Mebane's counsel may seek to challenge any other aspects of the Answer or its affirmative defenses, counsel is of course free to do so.
Whenever Ready Pac's counsel sets out a properly-stated disclaimer pursuant to the second sentence of Fed. R. Civ. P. ("Rule") 8(b) to get the benefit of a deemed denial (see Answer ¶¶4, 14 and 16-18), that proper disclaimer concludes inappropriately with the phrase "therefore Ready Pac denies these allegations." That is of course oxymoronic--how can a party that asserts (presumably in good faith) that it lacks even enough information to form a belief as to the truth of an allegation then proceed to deny it in the same objective good faith that is required by Rule 11(b)? Accordingly the quoted phrase is stricken wherever it appears in the Answer.
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