Brady v. Basic Research, L.L.C., 2:13-cv-7169 (SFJ) (ARL) (E.D.N.Y. Feb. 3, 2016)

The day after Campbell Ewald Co. v. Gomez was decided by the United States Supreme Court, Defendants moved for permission to deposit funds with the Clerk of Court “consistent with the Rule 68 offer of judgment that [they] previously made to Plaintiffs.” The Court noted that by seeking permission to deposit the amount of their offer of judgment with the Clerk of Court, Defendants are attempting to moot the individual claims of Plaintiffs, thereby defeating the individual Plaintiffs’ attempt to have a class certified.

Citing Rule 67, the Court first noted that the Rule is a procedural device intended to provide a place for safekeeping of disputed funds pending resolution of a legal dispute and not to provide a means of altering contractual relationships and legal duties of parties. It is intended to relieve a depositor of the burden of administering an asset. The Court the cited extensively from Campbell Ewald, concluding that:

“As Defendants seek Rule 67(a) permission to deposit funds into court to moot this case arid not relieve themselves of the burden of administering an asset, and given the Supreme Court’s directive that ‘a would-be-class representative with a live claim of her own must be accorded a fair opportunity to show that certification is warranted, the Court finds that granting the Defendants’ Rule 67(a) Motion is not warranted.”