United States District Court, M.D. Louisiana
JAMES L. TALBOT
ELECTRIC INSURANCE COMPANY, ET AL.
NOTICE AND ORDER
WILDER-DOOMES UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
a civil action involving claims for damages as a result of
injuries sustained by Plaintiff, James L. Talbot
(“Plaintiff”), from an automobile accident on or
about January 12, 2016. The matter was removed by defendants,
Electric Insurance Company, General Electric Company d/b/a GE
Power, and Jacob Staples (“Defendants”) on May 9,
2017 pursuant to 28 U.S.C. §1332.
Notice of Removal alleges that the parties are completely
diverse. However, it is not apparent from the face
of Plaintiff's Petition for Damages that the claims are
likely to exceed $75, 000.00. In the Petition, Plaintiff
alleges that he “has sustained damages including, but
not limited to, pain and suffering, mental anguish and
suffering, medical expenses, lost wages, loss of enjoyment of
life and any and all other damages that may be proven at the
trial of this matter.”There is no allegation in the
Petition regarding Plaintiff's specific injuries, medical
expenses, or lost wages. Further, although the Petition
purports to make a claim for “lost wages, ”
Plaintiff's responses to Defendants' discovery
requests repeatedly assert that Plaintiff “is not
making a claim for lost wages and/or loss of earning
Notice of Removal, Defendants assert that:
On April 13, 2017, Defendants received responses to discovery
from Plaintiff which included the first production of medical
records for treatment of injuries allegedly sustained by
Plaintiff in the incident that is the subject of these
proceedings. These records reveal, among other things, that
Plaintiff was diagnosed with an alleged traumatic brain
injury which his treating physicians causally relate to the
subject incident. Plaintiff's discovery responses and the
medical records produced in connection therewith are attached
hereto as Exhibit “B.” Accordingly, it can now be
demonstrated that the amount in controversy at the time of
filing and now exceeds $75, 000, the threshold for diversity
jurisdiction under 28 U.S.C. §1332, and removal is
proper under 28 U.S.C. §1446(b)(3). See Bosky v.
Kroger Texas, LP, 288 F.3d 208, 211 (5th Cir. 2002);
S.W.S. Erectors, Inc. v. Infax, Inc., 72 F.3d 489,
491-492 (5th Cir. 1996); Wilson v. Belin, 20 F.3d
644, 651 n. 8 (5th Cir. 1994).
their Notice of Removal, Defendants do not allege the amount
of medical expenses incurred to date, nor do Defendants set
forth an allegation regarding Plaintiff's prognosis.
Defendants include records indicating Plaintiff has been
diagnosed with “post-concussive syndrome,
” even a mild concussion would be considered
a traumatic brain injury. This court has noted that
“general damages involving severe concussions can be
significant, though it is difficult to determine the amount
of such awards that are based solely on concussions.”
Ammon v. Dillard's Dept. Store # 68, 2015 WL
2184059, at * 4 (M.D. La. May 8, 2015) (citing Beasley v.
Yokem Toyota, 767 So.2d 149 (La.App. 2 Cir.2000)
(amending general damage award for plaintiff who suffered a
mild concussion and soft tissue injuries in automobile
accident to $20, 000.00); Bullock v. The Rapides
Foundation, 941 So.2d 170 (La.App. 3 Cir.2006)
(affirming $30, 000.00 general damage award to plaintiff who
fell from stool and sustained cerebral concussion and
contusion to right hip).
on the allegations set forth in the Petition, as well as the
information asserted in the Notice of Removal, the court
sua sponte raises the issue of whether it may
exercise diversity jurisdiction in this matter, specifically,
whether the amount in controversy requirement has been met.
IS ORDERED that defendants, Electric Insurance
Company, General Electric Company d/b/a GE Power, and Jacob
Staples shall file a memorandum and supporting evidence
concerning subject matter jurisdiction, specifically whether
the amount in controversy requirement of 28 U.S.C. §
1332 is met, within ten (10) days of this Notice and Order.
IS FURTHER ORDERED that Plaintiff shall file either:
(1) a memorandum and supporting evidence concerning the
court's subject matter jurisdiction, specifically,
whether the amount in controversy requirement of 28 U.S.C.
§ 1332 is met; or (2) a Motion to Remand, within ten
(10) days after the filing of Defendants' memorandum. The
case will be allowed to proceed if jurisdiction is adequately
 R. Doc. 1.
 R. Doc. 1, ¶¶ 9-12.