Civil Litigation

First Round Knock Out in Federal Court

When a financial institution is sued in federal court, the first question is usually:  “How quickly can we get this case thrown out?”  One of the most effective mechanisms for challenging a faulty Complaint is through Rule 12(b)(6).  However, Rule 12(b)(6) only determines whether a plaintiff has set forth sufficient facts to support a claim.  As a general rule, a defendant cannot argue the merits of the claim or the applicability of defenses in a 12(b)(6) motion.  In fact, while considering a Rule 12(b)(6) motion, a court must accept all factual allegations in the complaint as true and must draw all reasonable inferences in favor of the plaintiff.  However, blanket legal conclusions with little or no supporting facts can and should be challenged.  The Courts continue to hold that the plaintiff’s obligation to provide the grounds of entitlement to relief requires more than mere labels and conclusions.

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