How Many Opportunities May Court Give to ''Correct Defects'' In Complaint Before Dismissing It ?
In Plocar v. Dunkin'Donuts of America, Inc., 103 Ill. App. 3d 740, 749, 431 N.E.2d 1175, 59 Ill. Dec. 418 (1981), the appellate court stressed that "the trial court had afforded the plaintiffs three opportunities" to remedy the deficiencies in their complaint before dismissing it. Plocar, 103 Ill. App. 3d at 750.
In Plocar, plaintiffs had filed a total of three complaints. Plocar. 103 Ill. App. 3d at 743.
After plaintiffs filed their original complaint, defendants filed a motion to dismiss on the ground that plaintiffs had failed to attach the contract at issue, as required by our Code of Civil Procedure. Plocar, 103 Ill. App. 3d at 743.
The trial court granted defendant's motion to dismiss, but simultaneously granted plaintiff a month to file an amended complaint. Plocar. 103 Ill. App. 3d at 743.
After plaintiffs filed an amended complaint, defendants renewed their motion, and plaintiffs moved for leave to file a second amended complaint, which the trial court allowed them. Plocar, 103 Ill. App. 3d at 743.
After plaintiffs filed their second amended complaint - still with no contract -- the trial court granted defendant's motion, dismissing the complaint with prejudice. Plocar, 103 Ill. App. 3d at 743.
The facts in Plocar remind us of the old adage: "three strikes and you're out."
In Plocar the Court affirmed the trial court, observing that "a party does not have a right to unlimited amendments," and that, at some point, "the trial court may bring the litigation to an end" when it believes that further amendments will not bear fruit. Plocar, 103 Ill. App. 3d at 750.