United States District Court, E.D. Michigan, Northern Division
KIMBERLY J. GUEST-MARCOTTE, Plaintiff,
METALDYNE POWERTRAIN COMPONENTS, Inc., et al., Defendants.
Magistrate Judge Patricia T. Morris
OVERRULING PLAINTIFF'S OBJECTIONS, ADOPTING THE REPORT
AND RECOMMENDATION, DENYING PLAINTIFF'S MOTION FOR
JUDGMENT, GRANTING DEFENDANT'S MOTION FOR DISMISSAL AND
JUDGMENT, GRANTING PLAINTIFF'S MOTION TO REVIEW RELEVANT
CASE, AND DIRECTING DEFENDANT TO SUBMIT PROPOSED
L. LUDINGTON United States District Judge
Kimberly J. Guest-Marcotte initiated this case by filing her
two-count complaint on February 27, 2015. Complaint, ECF No.
1. Plaintiff alleges that Defendants violated her rights
under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act, 29 U.S.C.
§ 1132(a)(1)(B) and (a)(2) (“ERISA”) in
denying her request for short term disability benefits, and
her rights under Michigan's Persons with Disabilities
Civil Rights Act (“PWDCRA”) in subsequently
terminating her employment. After her state law claim was
dismissed, Plaintiff filed a procedural challenge seeking
discovery and a motion for leave to file an amended
complaint. ECF Nos. 27, 35. On February 17, 2016 Magistrate
Judge Patricia T. Morris issued a report and recommendation
concluding that the appropriate standard of review was
arbitrary and capricious. ECF No. 40. She also recommended
granting in part and denying in part Plaintiff's motion
for leave to file an amended complaint, and denying
Plaintiff's procedural challenge. By an order dated March
15, 2016 Plaintiff's objections were overruled, and the
magistrate judge's report and recommendation was adopted.
ECF No. 42.
filed her amended complaint on April 19, 2016. See
ECF No. 44. After the administrative record was filed by
Defendants, Plaintiff Guest-Marcotte filed a motion for
judgment and Defendants filed a motion to dismiss the case
and for judgment on its counterclaim. See ECF No.
54, 55. Following the completion of briefing, Plaintiff then
filed a motion requesting that the Court consider a recent
and relevant Sixth Circuit case. See ECF No. 60. On
December 1, 2016 the magistrate judge issued her report,
recommending that Plaintiff's motion for consideration be
granted, but that her motion for judgment be denied.
See ECF No. 63. The report also recommends granting
Defendant's motion for judgment and dismissing
Plaintiff's complaint with prejudice. Plaintiff timely
objected. See ECF No. 64.
Magistrate Judge summarized the relevant background of this
case in her February report and recommendation. For this
reason, and because neither party has objected to this
summary, it is adopted in full.
to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 72, a party may object to
and seek review of a Magistrate Judge's report and
recommendation. See Fed.R.Civ.P. 72(b)(2). Objections must be
stated with specificity. Thomas v. Arn, 474 U.S.
140, 151 (1985) (citation omitted). If objections are made,
“[t]he district judge must determine de novo any part
of the magistrate judge's disposition that has been
properly objected to.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 72(b)(3). De novo
review requires at least a review of the evidence before the
Magistrate Judge; the Court may not act solely on the basis
of a Magistrate Judge's report and recommendation.
See Hill v. Duriron Co., 656 F.2d 1208, 1215 (6th
Cir. 1981). After reviewing the evidence, the Court is free
to accept, reject, or modify the findings or recommendations
of the Magistrate Judge. See Lardie v. Birkett, 221
F.Supp.2d 806, 807 (E.D. Mich. 2002).
those objections that are specific are entitled to a de novo
review under the statute. Mira v. Marshall, 806 F.2d
636, 637 (6th Cir. 1986). “The parties have the duty to
pinpoint those portions of the magistrate's report that
the district court must specially consider.”
Id. (internal quotation marks and citation omitted).
A general objection, or one that merely restates the
arguments previously presented, does not sufficiently
identify alleged errors on the part of the magistrate judge.
See VanDiver v. Martin, 304 F.Supp.2d 934, 937 (E.
D. Mich. 2004). An “objection” that does nothing
more than disagree with a magistrate judge's
determination, “without explaining the source of the
error, ” is not considered a valid objection.
Howard v. Sec'y of Health and Human Servs., 932
F.2d 505, 509 (6th Cir. 1991). Without specific objections,
“[t]he functions of the district court are effectively
duplicated as both the magistrate and the district court
perform identical tasks. This duplication of time and effort
wastes judicial resources rather than saving them, and runs
contrary to the purposes of the Magistrate's Act.”
now raises three objections to the magistrate judge's
report and recommendation: (1) the Plan/LICNA erred in using
the wrong disability standard; (2) Plaintiff presented
sufficient medical evidence to establish she was disabled
under the plan; and (3) the Plan/LICNA erred in declining to
request a physical examination of Plaintiff. See ECF
No. 64. The objections raised by Plaintiff are not proper
objections in that they are general, restate the core
arguments previously raised and already addressed by the
magistrate, and amount to nothing more than disagreement with
the magistrate judge's conclusions. Because
Plaintiff's objections impermissibly attempt to reargue
the entire case, they will be overruled.
it is ORDERED that Plaintiff
Guest-Marcotte's objections, ECF No. 64, are
further ORDERED that the report and