The opinion of the court was delivered by: Harold A. Baker United States District Judge
Before the Court is Plaintiff's motion to file an amended complaint (d/e 20). Leave of court is required because Defendants filed their Answer before Plaintiff filed his motion. Fed. R. Civ. P. 15(a). Rule 15 (a) provides that "leave shall be freely given when justice so requires," and Defendants do not object to the proposed amended complaint. However, leave is not required if there is undue delay, bad faith, dilatory motive, undue prejudice to the opposing party, or when the amendment would be futile. Bethany Pharmacal Co. v. QVC, Inc., 241 F3d 854, 860 (7th Cir. 2001), citing Foman v. Davis, 371 U.S. 178, 182; Perrian v. O'Grady, 958 F.2d 192, 194 (7th Cir. 1992).
The Court concludes that leave to file the amended complaint should be granted. Though the amended complaint does add six new defendants, but those new defendants appear to be part of Plaintiff's existing claim that he was retaliated against for exercising his First Amendment rights. The alleged retaliation by the new defendants took the form of making visits with Plaintiff's wife difficult or impossible. This is somewhat similar to Plaintiff's existing claim against Defendants Truthheart and Firkus, and involves the same prison. Additionally, Defendants do not object to the amendment. The court notes that some of the new allegations may be barred by the statute of limitations, but that is not a determination that can be made at this point.
1) The plaintiff's motion for leave to file an amended complaint is granted (d/e 20). The clerk is directed to docket the amended complaint and add the new defendants to the docket caption. The Court notes that the Amended Complaint does not appear to name Trutheart as a defendant, but it appears Plaintiff intends Trutheart to remain a defendant. Accordingly, Trutheart remains as a defendant at this time.
2) The clerk is directed to send notices and waivers of service, along with the amended complaint, to the new defendants.
3) Sua sponte, discovery is extended to August 31, 2007. The dispositive motion deadline is extended to September 28, 2007.
4) A status conference is scheduled for May 30, 2007, at 9:30 a.m. by telephone conference to check on service on the new defendants. The clerk is directed to issue a writ to secure the plaintiff's presence. The court will initiate the call.
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