CA7 Joins CA3 on §1421(c) and §1429: Klene v. Napolitano

CA7 Joins CA3 on §1421(c) and §1429: Klene v. Napolitano

"The existence of overlapping proceedings does not diminish a district court’s power but does present a question on which the judge should exercise sound discretion.  A judge asked to enter a declaratory judgment that as a practical matter will dispose of some other case should consider whether a multi-track course of litigation is the best way to resolve the dispute. ... Appellate review of the judge’s decision—whether to grant or to withhold declaratory relief—is deferential. ... In Klene’s case, however, the district judge thought that he had no discretion to exercise.  That was a mistake, so we remand with instructions to decide whether it is appropriate to resolve the dispute through a declaratory judgment and, if so, to decide the merits." - Klene v. Napolitano, Oct. 12, 2012.