United States District Court, D. Oregon, Medford Division
KLAMATH IRRIGATION DISTRICT, et al, SHASTA VIEW IRRIGATION DISTRICT, et al, Plaintiffs,
UNITED STATES BUREAU OF RECLAMATION, et al, Defendants.
OPINION AND ORDER
D. CLARKE, MAGISTRATE JUDGE
case comes before the Court on two motions to intervene (#21,
29), for the limited purpose of filing motions to dismiss,
filed by the Hoopa Valley Tribe and the Klamath Tribes. For
the reasons below, the motions to intervene are GRANTED. The
Court will enter a separate scheduling order regarding the
motions to dismiss.
Intervention as of Right Rule 24(a)(2) provides in relevant
On 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
is to be liberally construed in favor of the party seeking
intervention, Arakaki v. Cayetano, 324 F.3d 1078,
1083 (9th Cir. 2003), because '"a liberal policy in
favor of intervention serves both efficient resolution of
issues and broadened access to the courts.'"
Wilderness Soc'y. v. U.S. Forest Serv., 630 F.3d
1173, 1179 (9th Cir.2011) (quoting United States v. City
of Los Angeles, 288 F.3d 391, 397-98 (9th Cir. 2002));
see also In re Estate of Ferdinand E. Marcos Human Rights
Litig, 536 F.3d 980, 985 (9th Cir.2008) ("the
requirements for intervention are broadly interpreted in
favor of intervention").
analyzing a motion to intervene as of right under Rule
24(a)(2), this Court applies a four-part test:
(1) the motion must be timely; (2) the applicant must claim a
"significantly protectable" interest relating to
the property or transaction which is the subject of the
action; (3) the applicant must be so situated that the
disposition of the action may as a practical matter impair or
impede its ability to protect that interest; and (4) the
applicant's interest must be inadequately represented by
the parties to the action.
Wilderness Soc'y, 630 F.3d at 1177 (internal
citations and quotations omitted). In applying this test,
"courts are to take all well-pleaded, nonconclusory
allegations in the motion to intervene, the proposed
complaint or answer in intervention, and declarations
supporting the motion as true absent sham, frivolity or other
objections." Sw. Ctr. for Biological Diversity v.
Berg, 268 F.3d 810, 820 (9th Cir. 2001).
assessing timeliness, the Court weighs three factors:
"(1) the stage of the proceeding at which an applicant
seeks to intervene; (2) the prejudice to other parties; and
(3) the reason for and length of the delay." Orange
Cty. v. Air Cal., 799 F.2d 535, 537 (9th Cir. 1986)
(citing United States v. State of Oregon, 745 F.2d
550, 552 (9th Cir. 1984)).
intervenors filed their motion in a timely manner; one motion
(#21) was filed shortly before the defendants filed their
Answers (#26, 27) to the Amended Complaint, and one was filed
shortly after (#29). Hence, intervenors' motions were
made at an early stage in the proceedings, and the parties
will suffer no prejudice, disruption, or delay from the grant
of intervention. See Citizens for Balanced Use v. Mont.
Wilderness Ass'n, 647 F.3d 893, 897 (9th Cir. 2011)
(holding that a motion to intervene as of right was timely
and would not cause prejudice, disruption, or delay in the
proceedings when the applicants filed their motion less than
three months after the complaint was filed and less than two
weeks after the answer was filed); see also Cal. Trout,
Inc. v. U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, 115 F.Supp.3d 1102,
1118 (CD. Cal. 2015) (finding the motion to intervene to be
timely because "the court ha[d] not yet substantively
engaged in the issues in the case").
Significant Protectable Interest
applicant seeking intervention has a "significant