of interests intended to be protected or regulated by the statute or constitutional guarantee in question (citations omitted). Id.
There are two alternative, but related, ways Mangini could be found to have standing in this court. First, as defendant argues, the very existence of a state created statutory right may confer "injury" on Mangini sufficient to meet federal standing requirements. As the Warth court held:
Although standing in no way depends on the merits of the plaintiff's contention that particular conduct is illegal, it often turns on the nature and source of the claim asserted. The actual or threatened injury required by Article III may exist solely by virtue of 'statutes creating legal rights, the invasion of which creates standing' (citations omitted)".
Warth, 45 L. Ed. 2d at 355. Defendant contends that the mere violation of the state statute, which confers on plaintiff standing in state court, rises to the level of Art. III injury. Defendant fails to realize, however, that the "statutes" to which the Warth court refers, and those to which the cases cited in Warth refer, are all federal statutes. That such acts of Congress may confer standing where none would otherwise exist illustrates the relationship between the Constitutional and prudential limitations on standing in federal court:
Congress may, by legislation, expand standing to the full extent permitted by Art. III, thus permitting litigation by one "who otherwise would be barred by prudential standing rules." In no event, however, may Congress abrogate the Art. III minima: A plaintiff must always have suffered "a distinct and palpable injury to himself," that is likely to be redressed if the requested relief is granted.
Gladstone, Realtors v. Village of Bellwood, 60 L. Ed. 2d 66, 441 U.S. 91, 99 S. Ct. 1601 (1979).
Defendants have cited no authority, however, and this court can find none, which suggests that state legislatures may expand the standing in federal courts, even in a diversity case. It is one thing when Congress enacts a statute, the violation of which constitutes "injury" in the Art. III sense. Congress has, in that case, overridden the prudential limitations and provided an injury which confers standing. It is quite another thing to suggest that the states have the same power to waive by statute the prudential, or more problematically, the constitutional limitations on standing in federal court and, by way of a state created right, confer injury in the Art. III sense where none would otherwise exist.
Second, since this court is sitting as a diversity court it could simply look to the state standing rule to determine plaintiff's standing. Mangini has standing in California court. See Hernandez v. Atlantic Finance Co., 105 Cal. App. 3d 65, 72-73 , 164 Cal. Rptr. 279 (1980). However, and as the above discussion suggests, state standing rules need not be honored by the federal courts if Art. III requirements are not met. 13A Wright, Miller & Cooper, Federal Practice and Procedure: Jurisdiction, 2d § 3531.13 at 91. See People v. Beltz Travel Service, Inc., 379 F. Supp. 948 (N.D.Cal. 1974) (plaintiff lacked standing on removal in federal court where suit was brought pursuant to predecessor statute to § 17024).
If Art. III limitations are met, but the state standing rule conflicts with federal prudential limitation, at least one commentator has suggested that "the federal court would have to choose between the general obligation to exercise diversity jurisdiction and its doubts as to the wisdom of enforcing this state claim of this particular plaintiff." Id. Since federal courts should avoid the constitutional issue as long as other grounds for decision exist,
the court should first look to the prudential considerations to see if they conflict with the state standing rule, and only if they do should the court then proceed to consider whether the state rule would expand standing in federal court beyond the limitations of Art. III.
This court's decision is made easier by the procedural posture of this case. Where sufficient doubt or ambiguity exists concerning the court's jurisdiction, all such doubts should be resolved in favor of remanding to the state court. In this case, there is considerable doubt whether Mangini can satisfy either the prudential or constitutional limitations on standing in the federal court. Therefore, without reaching a conclusion on whether or not Mangini could meet the Art. III standing requirements, the court finds that this case should be REMANDED to California state court.
In accordance with the above reasoning, the court hereby GRANTS plaintiff's motion to remand, and orders this case REMANDED to California state court.
IT IS SO ORDERED
Dated: March 9, 1992.
United States District Judge