United States District Court, W.D. Louisiana, Alexandria Division
MARSHA WARE, et al.
STATE FARM MUTUAL AUTOMOBILE INSURANCE COMPANY
SUA SPONTE JURISDICTIONAL REVIEW BRIEFING
H.L. Perez-Montes United States Magistrate Judge
the Court is a Complaint removed from a Louisiana state court
by Defendant State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company.
(Doc. 1). Defendant premises federal jurisdiction on
diversity of citizenship.
Court has “an independent obligation to determine
whether subject-matter jurisdiction exists, even in the
absence of a challenge from any party.” Arbaugh v.
Y&H Corp., 546 U.S. 500, 514 (2006). This duty
persists throughout all phases of the litigation, even after
trial and the entry of final judgment. See id. at
diversity statute - 28 U.S.C. § 1332 - is satisfied upon
a showing of: (1) diversity of citizenship between the
parties; and (2) an amount in controversy in excess of $75,
000, exclusive of interest and costs. “Complete
diversity requires that all persons on one side of the
controversy be citizens of different states than all persons
on the other side.” Harvey v. Grey Wolf Drilling
Co., 542 F.3d 1077, 1079 (5th Cir. 2008). Further,
“when jurisdiction depends on citizenship, citizenship
must be distinctly and affirmatively alleged.”
Getty Oil Corp., a Div. of Texaco, Inc. v. Ins. Co. of N.
Am., 841 F.2d 1254, 1259 (5th Cir. 1988). In cases
removed from state court, diversity of citizenship must exist
both at the time of filing in state court and at the time of
removal to federal court. Coury v. Prot, 85 F.3d
244, 249 (5th Cir. 1996).
citizenship of an individual is his or her domicile, meaning
the place where an individual resides and intends to remain.
See Acridge v. Evangelical Lutheran Good Samaritan
Soc., 334 F.3d 444, 448 (5th Cir. 2003). A corporation
shall be deemed to be a citizen of every State and foreign
state by which it has been incorporated and of the single
State or foreign state where it has its principal place of
business. See Tewari De-Ox Systems, Inc. v. Mountain
States/Rosen, L.L.C., 757 F.3d 481, 483 (5th Cir. 2014);
Guerrero v. State Farm Mut. Auto. Ins. Co., 181 F.3d
97, *2 (1999). The citizenship of a general partnership
depends on that of all partners. See Int'l Paper Co.
v. Denkmann Associates, 116 F.3d 134, 135, 137 (5th Cir.
1997). The citizenship of a limited liability company
(“L.L.C.”), a limited partnership, or other
unincorporated association or entity is determined by the
citizenships of all its members. See Harvey, 542
F.3d at 1079-80.
alleges that all Plaintiffs-Marsha Ware, Arthur Lebrane, and
Callie Hall-are citizens of Louisiana. (Doc. 1).
further alleges that State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance
Company is “a corporate entity organized and existing
pursuant to the laws of the State of Louisiana, ” with
its principal place of business in Illinois. (Doc. 1).
Defendant appears to allege State Farm Mutual Automobile
Insurance Company is a citizen of both Louisiana and
Illinois, an allegation that would defeat diversity. However,
it is not clear which state(s) State Farm Mutual Automobile
Insurance Company was incorporated in, or whether it is
actually incorporated. If it is not incorporated, the nature
of its business organization must be alleged and the
citizenship of the relevant partners or members must be
diversity of citizenship at the time of removal is not clear
from the pleadings. Therefore, the existence of federal
jurisdiction is in question.
Clerk of Court is DIRECTED to serve a copy of this order upon
all parties to this action IMMEDIATELY upon receipt of proof
of service or an appearance.
ORDERED that, no later than 21 days
from service of this Order, Defendant shall file: (1) a Juris
diction al Memorandum stating whether Defendant is
incorporated; (2) the nature of its legal organization if it
is not incorporated, and a list of all States of which its
partners or members are citizens; and (3) a motion for leave
to amend the juris diction al allegations of the Notice of
Removal to adequately allege diversity jurisdiction.
FURTHER ORDERED that Plaintiffs will be allowed 7
days from receipt of Defendants' memorandum