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Cooper v. Countrywide Home Loans, Inc.

United States District Court, Eastern District of Michigan, Southern Division

April 7, 2015

WESLEY COOPER, Plaintiff,
v.
COUNTRYWIDE HOME LOANS, INC., Defendant.

Michael J. Hluchaniuk, Magistrate Judge.

OPINION AND ORDER GRANTING DEFENDANT’S MOTION TO DISMISS [3]

LAURIE J. MICHELSON, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.

Wesley Cooper filed a pro se complaint in state court against Countrywide Home Loans, Inc., the lender for his residential mortgage loan. After Countrywide removed the case to this Court and filed a motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim, Cooper filed an amended complaint. (Dkt. 7.) It is not clear from Cooper’s vague and conclusory allegations what he thinks Countrywide did to cause him injury, and Cooper has not opposed the motion to dismiss. The Court finds that he has not stated a claim and therefore GRANTS Countrywide’s unopposed Motion to Dismiss (Dkt. 3).

I. LEGAL STANDARD

The Federal Rules of Civil Procedure require that pleadings contain “a short and plain statement of the claim showing that the pleader is entitled to relief.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a)(2). A plaintiff “must allege ‘enough facts to state a claim of relief that is plausible on its face.’” Traverse Bay Area Int. Sch. Dist. v. Mich. Dep’t of Educ., 615 F.3d 622, 627 (6th Cir. 2010) (quoting Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 570 (2007)). Pro se plaintiffs like Cooper “are treated to less stringent standards, but . . . [l]iberal construction does not require a court to conjure allegations on a litigant’s behalf.” Martin v. Overton, 391 F.3d 710, 714 (6th Cir. 2004). Facial plausibility means that “the complaint has to ‘plead[] factual content that allows the court to draw the reasonable inference that the defendant is liable for the misconduct alleged.’” Ohio Police & Fire Pension Fund v. Std. & Poor’s Fin. Servs., LLC, 700 F.3d 829, 835 (6th Cir. 2012) (alteration in original) (quoting Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009)). “This standard does not require detailed factual allegations, but a complaint containing a statement of facts that merely creates a suspicion of a legally cognizable right of action is insufficient.” HDC, LLC v. City of Ann Arbor, 675 F.3d 608, 614 (6th Cir. 2012) (citation and internal quotation marks omitted).

The court must “accept all well-pleaded factual allegations as true and construe the complaint in the light most favorable to plaintiffs.” Bennet v. MIS Corp., 607 F.3d 1076, 1091 (6th Cir. 2010). The court “need not, however, accept unwarranted factual inferences.” Id. (citing Twombly, 550 U.S. at 570). Nor are “[t]hreadbare recitals of the elements of a cause of action, supported by mere conclusory statements” entitled to an assumption of truth. Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 678. “[W]here the well-pleaded facts do not permit the court to infer more than the mere possibility of misconduct, the complaint has alleged-but it has not ‘show[n]’-‘that the pleader is entitled to relief.’” Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 679 (quoting Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a)(2)).

On a motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim, the Court may consider “the Complaint and any exhibits attached thereto, public records, items appearing in the record of the case and exhibits attached to defendant’s motion to dismiss so long as they are referred to in the Complaint and are central to the claims contained therein.” Bassett v. NCAA, 528 F.3d 426, 430 (6th Cir. 2008).

II. BACKGROUND

A. Procedural History

This case was removed from Macomb County Circuit Court on October 27, 2014, by Countrywide Home Loans, Inc., the sole defendant. (Dkt. 1.) Countrywide filed a Motion to Dismiss on November 3, 2014. (Dkt. 3, Mot.) Under Federal Rules of Civil Procedure 6(d), 12, and 15, Cooper had until November 27, 2014, to file a response to the Motion to Dismiss or an amended complaint. (See Dkt. 5.) On December 12, 2014, the Court received a letter from Cooper that asked the Court to “accept the enclosed Defendants Quiet Title Response.” (Dkt. 7 at Pg ID 192.) A newly captioned complaint was enclosed. (See Dkt. 7, Am. Compl.) Noting Cooper’s pro se status and the fact that mail to him had been returned as undeliverable, the Court granted Cooper an extension of time to respond to the Motion to Dismiss and treated the newly filed complaint as an Amended Complaint that was timely filed. (See Dkt. 9.) Countrywide elected to have the Court treat its Motion to Dismiss the Complaint as a motion to dismiss the Amended Complaint. (See Dkt. 10.) The Court gave Cooper until January 5, 2015, to file a response to the motion and cautioned him to pay careful attention to the Court’s deadlines going forward. (See Dkt. 9.)

The Court also reminded Cooper of his obligation to promptly file and serve a notice of any change of address, pointing out that the contact information the Court had on file for him was the address in Utica from which mail had been returned undeliverable. (See Dkt. 6.) The Court mailed the Order to the return address on Cooper’s Amended Complaint-an address in Macomb, Michigan. (See Dkt. 7.) The Order was not returned as undeliverable. Cooper did not file a change of address.

On December 24, 2014, Cooper filed an Emergency Motion for Discovery. (Dkt. 11.) The return address on the envelope was in Macomb, but Cooper still did not inform the Court that his address had changed. The Court denied the motion in light of Countrywide’s pending Motion to Dismiss. (Dkt. 12.)

Cooper has not responded to the Motion to Dismiss. On February 10, 2015, Countrywide filed a Reply in support of the motion. (Dkt. 14.) The Reply was not timely and Countrywide did not ...


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