Tuesday, June 17, 2014

New Pleading Requirements

On Thursday of last week, the Mississippi Supreme Court amended many of the comments to the Rules of Civil Procedure and deleted entirely many of the others.  A copy of the order and the amendments is located here.  One of the more interesting twists regards Rule 9 now.  Here is what the comments to Rule 9 say
now in part:

"Rule 9(g) requires a detailed pleading of special damages and only a general pleading of
general damages. General damages are damages that are typically caused by, and flow
naturally from, the injuries alleged. Special damages are damages that are unusual or
atypical for the type of claim asserted. Special damages are required to be pled with
specificity so as to give the defendant notice of the nature of the alleged damages. Special
damages include, but are not limited to, consequential damages, damages for lost
business profit, and punitive damages. See Puckett Machinery Co. v. Edwards, 641 So.
2d 29, 37-38 (Miss. 1994) (consequential damages must be plead with specificity); Lynn
v. Soterra, Inc., 802 So. 2d 162, 169 (Miss. Ct. App. 2001) (damages for lost business
profit caused by defendant’s blocking of a road are likely special damages). If claimant
fails to plead special damages with specificity, an award for such damages may be
reversed. The requirement that special damages must be stated with specificity will be
waived if special damages are tried by the express or implied consent of the parties
pursuant to Rule 15(b)."

To me, the part that is interesting is that punitive damages are now included in the Rule 9 requirements  to be plead with specificity.  To me, this appears to now require Twombly pleading on punitive damages or the claim may be dismissed.  I previously discussed Twombly here.    This Rule is set to take effect July 1, 2014.  This seems to confirm the paranoia of pleading more is now the better practice.


No comments:

Post a Comment