United States District Court, W.D. Louisiana, Shreveport Division
DOUGHTY, MAGISTRATE JUDGE
L. HORNSBY, U.S. MAGISTRATE JUDGE
Stelly was injured at work when he slipped and fell while
offloading acid from his truck into a frac tank. Stelly filed
suit in state court against Comstock Oil & Gas-Louisiana,
LLC and Baker Hughes Oilfield Operations, LLC. The two
defendants removed the case based on an assertion of
diversity jurisdiction. The citizenship of the parties has
been an issue throughout the proceedings. As explained below,
still more information is needed to ensure subject matter
notice of removal alleged that Mr. Stelly is a citizen of
Louisiana. The complete diversity rule requires that all
persons on one side of the controversy be citizens of
different states than all persons on the other side.
McLaughlin v. Mississippi Power Co., 376 F.3d 344,
353 (5th Cir. 2004). Accordingly, no defendant may share Mr.
Stelly's Louisiana citizenship.
the Comstock LLC, the citizenship of an LLC is determined by
the citizenship of all of its members, with its state of
organization or principal place of business being irrelevant.
Harvey v. Grey Wolf Drilling Co., 542 F.3d 1077 (5th
Cir. 2008). The notice alleges that Comstock LLC has a single
member, a corporation. A corporation is deemed to be a
citizen of (1) the state in which it was incorporated and (2)
the state where it has its principal place of business. 28
U.S.C. § 1332(c)(1). The corporate member is alleged to
be incorporated in Nevada with its principal place of
business in Texas. Thus, Comstock is a citizen of Nevada and
notice of removal described Baker Hughes as an LLC with six
members, four of which were corporations and two of which
were LLCs. The court issued an order (Doc. 9) that explained
the rules for alleging the citizenship of an LLC, which
require allegations of citizenship with respect to each
member of the LLC. The notice of removal provided only the
state of organization and principal place of business for two
LLC-members of Baker Hughes, so the allegations were
inadequate. Baker Hughes filed an amended notice of removal
(Doc. 12) that provided the necessary citizenship information
about its members. It was established that Baker Hughes is a
citizen of Delaware, Ohio, New York, Massachusetts, and
next jurisdictional event was a complaint in intervention
filed by Mr. Stelly's employer, B&J Ortego
Enterprises, Inc. and its workers' compensation insurer,
LCTA Insurance Company. Doc. 21. Those entities properly
alleged their Louisiana citizenship under the applicable
rules and intervened to seek reimbursement of benefits they
paid Mr. Stelly in connection with the accident. Such
intervenors are aligned as plaintiffs, so their Louisiana
citizenship did not destroy diversity. Dushane v.
Gallagher Kaiser Corp., 2005 WL 1959151 (W.D. La. 2005).
Stelly later requested leave to add a new defendant, L&B
Transport, LLC. It was assumed that this proposed defendant
would share Mr. Stelly's Louisiana citizenship. The court
considered the relevant factors and denied leave to amend
pursuant to the Hensgens factors. Granting leave
would have destroyed diversity and required remand. Doc. 36.
next sought leave to add new defendants Chaps Oilfield
Services, LLC and Davis Chemical Services, LLC. Plaintiff
admitted that he did not know the citizenship of the members
of the LLCs, but he thought that diversity would not be
impaired because Chaps is an Oklahoma company and Davis is a
Texas Company. No. party opposed the proposed amendment. The
court conditionally granted leave to amend and add those new
defendants but directed the parties to file in the record
specific citizenship information for the new defendants. The
court noted that if either defendant would destroy diversity
the court would have to assess under Hensgens
whether the conditional grant of leave to amend should be
withdrawn. Doc. 37.
parties did not follow up on the court's instruction to
provide detailed citizenship information for Chaps and Davis,
so the court issued a second order on the matter and directed
that the information be filed. Doc. 61. Counsel for Chaps and
Davis then provided citizenship information to counsel for
Mr. Stelly, who filed a Statement Regarding Citizenship of
Parties (Doc. 63).
statement clarifies that Chaps has two members, both of whom
are individuals who are citizens of Oklahoma. Thus, Chaps is
a citizen of Oklahoma and does not destroy diversity of
information provided by Davis is more complicated. Despite
its detail, it does not contain all information needed to
determine the citizenship of Davis. Two of the four members
of Davis are individuals who are domiciled in Texas. The
other two members are OFC Davis, LLC and OFC Davis II, LLC.
Each of those LLCs is alleged to have four members, and it
appears that those members are identical in each entity.
the members of each OFC Davis entity is OFS Davis Blocker,
Inc., a Delaware corporation with its principal place of
business in Texas. That allegation is sufficient.
other three members of the OFC Davis entities are Delaware
limited partnerships. The citizenship of a partnership
(limited or general) is based on that of each of its
partners. Whalen v. Carter, 954 F.2d 1087, 1095 (5th
Cir. 1994). Each of the Delaware limited partnerships is said
to have a sole member: “OFS Energy Fund II GP, LLC, a
Delaware limited liability corporation with ...