Mandatory Relation Back: Krupski v. Costa Crociere, S.p.A.

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Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 15(c) permits an amended complaint to relate back to a previously filed complaint if the proper party knew or should have known within the time of service that but for a mistake in identity, the plaintiff would have asserted the claims against the proper party. The “mistaken identity” problem often arises with corporations and usually occurs when different corporate entities run separate parts of a business. In Krupski v. Costa Crociere, S.p.A., ., __ U.S. __, 130 S.Ct. 2485, 2490 (2010), the United States Supreme Court interpreted Rule 15(c) and found relation back is mandatory if the requirements of Rule 15(c) are met.

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