Smith v. Smith et al
Plaintiff: Hunter Smith
Defendant: Christopher Smith, Thomas Gaston and Shane Herlet
Case Number: 3:2023cv01284
Filed: October 2, 2023
Court: US District Court for the District of Connecticut
Presiding Judge: Thomas O Farrish
Referring Judge: Omar A Williams
Nature of Suit: P.I.: Other
Cause of Action: 28 U.S.C. ยง 1332 Diversity-Breach of Fiduciary Duty
Jury Demanded By: None
Docket Report

This docket was last retrieved on December 8, 2023. A more recent docket listing may be available from PACER.

Date Filed Document Text
December 8, 2023 Filing 17 MOTION for Cassandra L. Sanchez to Withdraw as Attorney Renewed Motion to Withdraw Appearance by Thomas Gaston, Shane Herlet. (Barrack, Robert)
December 5, 2023 Opinion or Order Filing 16 ORDER denying #15 Motion to Withdraw. The motion fails to indicate "that the party has received actual notice of the motion to withdraw," D. Conn. L. Civ R. 7(e), and instead suggests that the defendants will receive notice of this motion at a later time. The court hereby denies the motion without prejudice to renew once the parties have received actual notice. It is so ordered. Signed by Judge Omar A. Williams on 12/05/2023. (Kim, Hyo June)
December 4, 2023 Filing 15 MOTION for Cassandra L. Sanchez to Withdraw as Attorney by Thomas Gaston, Shane Herlet. (Barrack, Robert)
November 30, 2023 Filing 14 ELECTRONIC SUMMONS ISSUED in accordance with Fed. R. Civ. P. 4 and LR 4 as to *Christopher Smith* with answer to complaint due within *21* days. Attorney *Candace Veronica Fay* *Candace V. Fay - Attorney & Counselor at Law, PC* *118 Coalpit Hill Road* *Danbury, CT 06810*. (Peterson, M).
November 27, 2023 Request for Clerk to issue summons as to Christopher Smith. (Fay, Candace)
November 9, 2023 Opinion or Order Filing 13 ORDER granting #12 Motion for Leave. Defendants file this instant motion seeking to stay the parties' obligation under Federal Rules of Civil Procedure 26, such that they may conduct preliminary discovery concerning the court's subject matter and personal jurisdiction over this case. Defendants cite to a separate action filed in Connecticut Superior Court in which Plaintiff not only raises similar factual and legal allegations as this action, but also represents that he is a resident of Connecticut and not Indiana. In cases such as this, "[w]here issues arise as to jurisdiction or venue, discovery is available to ascertain the facts bearing on such issues." Oppenheimer Fund, Inc. v. Sanders, 437 U.S. 340, 351 n.13 (1978). Moreover, it is well established that until the plaintiff shows a reasonable basis for this court to assume jurisdiction, he "is not entitled to any other discovery." Filus v. Lot Polish Airlines, 907 F.2d 1328, 1332 (2d Cir. 1990) (quoting Oppenheimer Fund, Inc., 437 U.S. at 351 n.13). Finding that the basis of this court's jurisdiction sufficiently has been thrown into question, the court grants Defendants' motion and orders the parties to conduct preliminary discovery regarding the jurisdictional elements of this case. This preliminary discovery shall be completed on or before December 22, 2023. Thereafter, parties shall file motions contesting or supporting finding of jurisdiction on or before January 19, 2024. Any response in opposition to the opposing party's motions regarding jurisdiction shall be filed on or before February 2, 2024, and any replies in further support shall be filed on or before February 9, 2024. These deadlines take into account the impending holiday season, though reasonable requests related thereto may be entertained. Accordingly, the parties' obligation to file a report pursuant to Federal Rule 26(f) shall be stayed until the court's determination on the jurisdictional arguments. It is so ordered. Signed by Judge Omar A. Williams on 11/9/2023. (Kim, Hyo June)
October 26, 2023 Filing 12 MOTION Leave to Conduct Preliminary Jurisdictional Discovery; File Initial Motion to Dismiss Limited to Lack of Diversity; and Stay Rule 26(f) Obligations, Including Merits Discovery by Thomas Gaston, Shane Herlet.Responses due by 11/16/2023 (Attachments: #1 Exhibit A-Verified Complaint and Affidavit in Plaintiff's State Court Action, #2 Exhibit B-Docket Sheet for State Court Action, #3 Exhibit C-Withdrawal of State Court Action, #4 Memorandum in Support)(Barrack, Robert)
October 19, 2023 Set Deadline: Rule 26 Meeting Report due by 12/2/2023. (Velez, F.)
October 19, 2023 Filing 11 NOTICE of Appearance by Cassandra Lynn Sanchez on behalf of Thomas Gaston, Shane Herlet (Sanchez, Cassandra)
October 19, 2023 Filing 10 NOTICE of Appearance by Robert M. Barrack on behalf of Thomas Gaston, Shane Herlet (Barrack, Robert)
October 19, 2023 Filing 9 NOTICE of Appearance by Peter E. Strniste, Jr on behalf of Thomas Gaston, Shane Herlet (Strniste, Peter)
October 16, 2023 Opinion or Order Filing 8 ORDER denying #1 Motion for Temporary Restraining Order and Permanent Injunction. Within his complaint, Plaintiff has asked this court to issue a temporary restraining order against Defendants. For the reasons stated below, the court denies this motion. Although Plaintiff cites to Connecticut General Statute 52-471, it is well established that "federal courts sitting in diversity apply state substantive law and federal procedural law." Gasperini v. Ctr. for Humans., Inc., 518 U.S. 415, 416 (1996). Section 52-471 is understood to establish the "procedure for injunctive relief," and is not considered substantive. Speer v. City of New London, 537 F. Supp. 3d 212, 231 (D. Conn. 2021); see Di Mauro v. Pavia, 492 F. Supp. 1051, 1064 (D. Conn. 1979) (noting that an injunction issued pursuant to 52-471 "is equivalent to the federal order governed by [Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 65(b)]"). Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 65(b)(1)(B) instructs that a court "may issue a temporary restraining order without written or oral notice to the adverse party or its attorney only if... the movant's attorney certifies in writing any efforts made to give notice and the reasons why it should not be required." Moreover, in order to obtain a temporary restraining order within courts of the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, a party must demonstrate "(1) irreparable harm in the absence of the injunction and (2) either (a) a likelihood of success on the merits or (b) sufficiently serious questions going to the merits to make them a fair ground for litigation and a balance of hardships tipping decidedly in the movant's favor." MyWebGrocer, L.L.C. v. Hometown Info., Inc., 375 F.3d 190, 192 (2d Cir. 2004). Plaintiff's complaint satisfies neither the requirements under the Federal Rule nor Second Circuit precedent.For starters, the complaint does not indicate what effort, if any, had been spent in trying to notify the defendants. Secondly, Plaintiff's complaint makes clear that he seeks this injunctive relief to prevent the insolvency of the Estate. See Compl. 14. Indeed, the complaint seeks little else aside from monetary damages and related interests and fees. See id. at 109. The complaint, therefore, does not demonstrate the possibility of irreparable harm, which is an injury "that cannot be redressed through a monetary award." JSF Trading Corp. v. Tray-Wrap, Inc., 917 F.2d 75, 79 (2d Cir. 1990).In denying Plaintiff's motion for temporary restraining order, the court also denies the motion for preliminary injunction because both forms of injunctive relief are issued under the same standard. See Black v. Owen, No. 3:14-cv-23(RNC), 2018 WL 806511, at *2 (D. Conn. Feb. 9, 2018) (citing Spencer Trask Software & Info. Servs., LLC v. RPost Intl Ltd., 190 F. Supp. 2d 557, 580 (S.D.N.Y. 2002)). It is so ordered. Signed by Judge Omar A. Williams on 10/16/2023. (Kim, Hyo June)
October 3, 2023 Filing 7 NOTICE TO COUNSEL/SELF-REPRESENTED PARTIES : Counsel or self-represented parties initiating or removing this action are responsible for serving all parties with attached documents and copies of #1 Complaint filed by Hunter Smith, #3 Order on Pretrial Deadlines, #4 Electronic Filing Order, #5 Protective Order, 2 Notice re: Disclosure Statement, #6 Order Signed by Clerk on 10/3/2023. (Peterson, M)
October 2, 2023 Opinion or Order Filing 6 Standing Order to Litigants Regarding Letters to the Court Signed by Judge Janet C. Hall on 10/02/2023. (Peterson, M)
October 2, 2023 Opinion or Order Filing 5 STANDING PROTECTIVE ORDER Signed by Judge Omar A. Williams on 10/02/2023. (Peterson, M)
October 2, 2023 Opinion or Order Filing 4 ELECTRONIC FILING ORDER FOR COUNSEL - PLEASE ENSURE COMPLIANCE WITH COURTESY COPY REQUIREMENTS IN THIS ORDER Signed by Judge Omar A. Williams on 10/02/2023. (Peterson, M)
October 2, 2023 Opinion or Order Filing 3 Order on Pretrial Deadlines: Amended Pleadings due by 12/1/2023. Discovery due by 4/2/2024. Dispositive Motions due by 5/7/2024. Signed by Clerk on 10/02/2023. (Peterson, M)
October 2, 2023 Filing 2 Notice: Pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 7.1, a disclosure statement must be filed with a party's first appearance, pleading, petition, motion, response, or other request addressed to the Court and must be supplemented if any required information changes during the case. Signed by Clerk on 10/2/23.(Hushin, Z.)
October 2, 2023 Filing 1 COMPLAINT against All Defendants ( Filing fee $402 receipt number ACTDC-7501422.), filed by Hunter Smith.(Fay, Candace)
October 2, 2023 Judge Omar A. Williams and Judge Thomas O. Farrish added. (Oliver, T.)

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Plaintiff: Hunter Smith
Represented By: Candace Veronica Fay
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Defendant: Christopher Smith
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Defendant: Thomas Gaston
Represented By: Cassandra Lynn Sanchez
Represented By: Peter E. Strniste, Jr.
Represented By: Robert M. Barrack
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Defendant: Shane Herlet
Represented By: Peter E. Strniste, Jr.
Represented By: Cassandra Lynn Sanchez
Represented By: Robert M. Barrack
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