Reason for the Delay
As shown above, there was no real delay in Thompson’s requesting the reopening
of her case. She had traveled from Nevada to Pennsylvania to care for her injured
daughter, a situation which certainly predominated her life. Under these circumstances, it
is understandable that a litigant would neglect to think of informing counsel of her
whereabouts in a case which had already been languishing far too long. When Thompson
became aware of the dismissal, she acted immediately and contacted her counsel.
A party acts in good faith where it acts with “reasonable haste to investigate the problem
and to take available steps toward remedy.” Welch & Forbes, Inc. v. Cendant Corp. (In re
Cendant Corp. Prides Litig.), 235 F.3d 176, 184 (3d Cir. 2000). Thompson acted in good faith
when she immediately contacted counsel upon receipt of the Order dismissing her case.
Counsel, in turn, promptly filed this motion to reopen. Accordingly, this final factor also
weighs in favor of the case’s reopening.
Having considered all the Pioneer factors and all relevant circumstances, I find that the
plaintiff’s neglect was excusable. There is not sufficient prejudice to the defendants to prevent
the reopening of the case, whereas denying the motion would preclude the plaintiff from
pursuing her claims. There was virtually no delay between the time that Thompson learned of
the dismissal and the time she contacted counsel to request a reopening. Thus, there has been
little effect on the judicial proceedings. The plaintiff acted in good faith once she received a
copy of the Order dismissing the case.