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National Maintenance & Repair, Inc. v. Blair

UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF ILLINOIS


February 11, 2010

IN THE MATTER OF NATIONAL MAINTENANCE & REPAIR, INC., AS OWNER PRO HAC VICE OF SPUDDED CRANE BARGE BB-1 FOR EXONERATION FROM OR LIMITATION OF LIABILITY, PLAINTIFF,
v.
SHANNON L. BLAIR AND ROBERT VANDYGRIFF, CLAIMANTS.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: J. Phil Gilbert District Judge

MEMORANDUM AND ORDER

This matter comes before the Court on Claimant Shannon Blair's ("Blair") Motion (Doc. 45) to stay/abstain. Specifically, Blair asks that any further proceedings in this Court be stayed pending resolution of a related state court litigation.

On January 12, 2010, the Court entered a Memorandum and Order (Doc. 42) which found that certain stipulations made by Blair and fellow Claimant Robert Vandygriff necessitated dissolution of an injunction entered by this Court, excepting the issue of limitation of Plaintiff National Maintenance & Repair, Inc.'s ("National Maintenance") liability. See Lagnes v. Green, 282 U.S. 531, 541 (1931); In re Ill. Marine Towing, Inc., 498 F.3d 645, 650 (7th Cir. 2007); In re Complaint of McCarthy Bros. Co./Clark Bridge, 83 F.3d 821, 831 (7th Cir. 1996). The Court also found that said stipulations mandated federal abstention by this Court until resolution of the state court action, although the Court did not explicitly state as much.

Accordingly, in an effort to clarify its previous findings, the Court GRANTS the instant motion (Doc. 45) and STAYS any further proceedings herein pending resolution of the related state court case. The Court ORDERS that the dates of the scheduling/discovery conference, final pretrial conference, and bench trial be stricken. However, the Court RETAINS jurisdiction over the possibility that National Maintenance's right to limit its liability comes into question. See Lagnes, 282 U.S. at 541-42; McCarthy Bros., 83 F.3d at 832-33. Finally, the Court ORDERS that all of the parties submit a joint status report no later than ninety (90) days henceforth and every ninety (90) days thereafter.

IT IS SO ORDERED.

20100211

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