United States District Court, D. Arizona
Honorable Stephen M. McNamee Senior United States District
before the court is the Navajo Nation’s (the
“applicant”) Motion for Leave to Intervene as
Defendant as of right pursuant to Fed.R.Civ.P. Rule 24(a)(2).
(Doc. 47.) Plaintiff does not oppose the motion. Id.
Defendant United States of America, who opposes the motion,
has responded. (Doc. 50.) The Court has reviewed the briefing
and makes the following ruling.
case was originally filed in April of 2015 based upon the
Federal Torts Claim Act 28 U.S.C. § 2674, the Indian
Self-Determination and Education Assistance Act of 1975 25
U.S.C. § 450, et seq. “(ISDEAA), and the doctrine
of Bivens v. Six Unknown Narcotics Agents, 403 U.S.
388 (1971). (Doc. 1.) On August 24, 2015, Defendant United
States subsequently filed a motion to dismiss for lack of
jurisdiction and for failure to state a claim (Doc. 12). On
January 13, 2016, the Court granted in part and denied in
part Defendant United States motion to dismiss. (Doc. 23.) On
April 1, 2016, Plaintiff filed an amended complaint (Doc.
39.) On April 29, 2016, Defendant United States filed a
motion to dismiss the amended complaint (Doc. 45). On May 24,
2016, the Navajo Nation filed a motion to intervene. (Doc.
47.) On July 1, 2016, the Court granted Defendant United
States’ motion to dismiss the amended complaint. (Doc.
in the case are 5 claims against the United States. They are:
(1) False Imprisonment for the actions of Yazzie; (2)
Negligent Supervision for the alleged False Imprisonment
committed by Yazzie; (3) Negligent Supervision for the
failure of the Individual Defendants to protect Plaintiff
from unreasonable uses of force by other Individual
Defendants; (4) Negligent Supervision for the negligence of
Individual Defendants in leaving Plaintiff in solitary
confinement when she was in need of immediate medical
attention; and (5) Negligent Supervision for the failure of
Individual Defendants to administer aid to Plaintiff when her
injuries had been directly caused by the Individual
Navajo Nation and the United States are parties to a 638
contract under the Indian Self-Determination and Education
Assistance Act. (See Docs. 23; 52 (discussing the
relationship between United States and Indian tribes under
STANDARD OF REVIEW
Rule of Civil Procedure 24(a) states:
On a timely motion, the court must permit anyone to intervene
who…claims an interest relating to the property or
transaction that is the subject of the action and is so
situated that disposing of the action may as a practical
matter impair or impede the movant’s ability to protect
its interest, unless existing parties adequately represent
Fed.R.Civ.P. 24(a)(2). Intervention as of right under Rule
24(a) requires satisfaction of a four-part test: (1) the
applicant must file a timely motion; (2) the applicant must
have “significantly protectable” interest related
to the subject matter of the action; (3) the disposition of
the action may practically impair or impede the
applicant’s ability to protect that interest; and (4)
the interest must not be adequately represented by the
existing parties in the lawsuit. Wilderness Soc. V. U.S.
Forest Serv., 630 F.3d 1173, 1177 (9th Cir. 2011). The
party seeking to intervene bears the burden of showing all
four requirements for intervention have been met. United
States v. City of Los Angeles, Cal., 288 F.3d 391, 397
(9th Cir. 2001).
24(a) is construed “liberally in favor of proposed
intervenor” with the court taking into account
practical considerations. Sw. Ctr. for Biological
Diversity v. Berg, 268 F.3d 810, 818 (9th Cir. 2001).
When ruling on a motion to intervene as a matter of right,
the court accepts all of the applicant’s non-conclusory
allegations as true. Id. at 819.