April 21, 2019

Colorado Court of Appeals: Amended Complaint Could Not Avoid Jurisdictional Time Bar Because It Did Not Relate Back to Original Complaint

The Colorado Court of Appeals issued its opinion in Auxier v. McDonald on Thursday, April 23, 2015.

CRCP 106(b) Time Limits in Relation to CRCP 106(a)(4).

The Fritzes obtained a building permit to construct an accessory structure at a Salida address adjacent to plaintiff Auxier’s property. Auxier objected and appealed several decisions related to the project to the City of Salida Planning Commission. The Planning Commission affirmed the issuance of the building permit on January 10, 2013.

On January 25, Auxier filed a complaint in the district court, alleging four claims for relief and naming the Salida City Administrator, the Fritzes, and Chalk Creek Initiative, LLC as defendants. Auxier filed an amended complaint on March 25, seventy-four days after the Planning Commission’s final decision. The amended complaint added the City of Salida, the City Council, and the Planning Commission as defendants. It also added a CRCP 106(a)(4) claim against the Planning Commission.

Defendants moved to dismiss the claims against them. The district court found Auxier’s CRCP 106(a)(4) claim untimely because it had not been filed within twenty-eight days of the Planning Commission’s final decision and did not relate back to the original complaint. It therefore dismissed this claim for lack of subject matter jurisdiction. Construing Auxier’s claim against the Administrator as seeking mandamus relief under CRCP 106(a)(2), the court dismissed it for failure to state a claim on which relief could be granted.

On appeal, Auxier argued it was error to dismiss his CRCP 106(a)(4) claim as untimely. He contended that it related back to his original complaint, which gave “ample notice” of facts giving rise to a CRCP 106(a)(4) claim against the Planning Commission. The Court of Appeals disagreed. Auxier’s original complaint did not give notice of a claim against anyone in the City other than the Administrator, and did not give notice of any claim regarding abuse of discretion or exceeding its jurisdiction of any governmental body. Under these circumstances, his original complaint did not give ample notice of a CRCP 106(a)(4) claim against the Planning Commission, and the district court properly treated Auxier’s claim against the Planning Commission in the amended complaint as a new claim.

Auxier further argued that CRCP 106(b) permitted him to add a Rule 106(a)(4) claim after the twenty-eight-day limitations period expired because his original complaint alleging other claims for relief was filed within twenty-eight days of the Planning Commission’s final decision. The Court disagreed. Auxier’s original complaint did not seek review under CRCP 106(a)(4), so his amended complaint seeking such review did not relate back to his original complaint. The judgment was affirmed.

Summary and full case available here, courtesy of The Colorado Lawyer.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Speak Your Mind

*