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Satchell v. Ocwen Loan Servicing

IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE EASTERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA


March 23, 2010

DERRICK SATCHELL AND CARLA SATCHELL, PLAINTIFFS,
v.
OCWEN LOAN SERVICING; DOWNEY LOANS ASSOCIATION; WESTERN PROGRESSIVE; PREMIER STATE MORTGAGE; NICHOLAS GUS TSOUVAS JR.; JEROME ROGERS; AND DOES 1-20 INCLUSIVE, DEFENDANTS.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Garland E. Burrell, Jr. United States District Judge

ORDER DENYING AS MOOT DEFENDANT'S MOTION TO DISMISS AND DECLINING EXERCISE OF SAVINGS AND SUPPLEMENTAL JURISDICTION OVER PLAINTIFFS' CLAIMS*fn1

On February 25, 2010, Defendant Ocwen Loan Servicing filed a motion under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6)to dismiss Plaintiffs' complaint with prejudice. However, on March 18, 2010, Plaintiffs filed a first amended complaint ("FAC"), which is now the operative pleading. See Hal Roach Studios, Inc., v. Richard Feiner and Co., Inc., 896 F.2d 1542, 1546 (9th Cir. 1989) (stating an amended complaint supercedes the prior complaint); see also Fed. R. Civ. P. 15(a)(1)(B) (stating that "[a] party may amend its pleading once as a matter of course within . . . 21 days after service of a motion under Rule 12(b)"). Since the pending dismissal motion does not address the operative pleading, it is denied as moot.

Plaintiffs' FAC states in the jurisdiction section of the FAC that Plaintiffs' federal questions have been removed from the FAC, and "there is no predicate herein for federal jurisdiction based upon the "diversity" of the parties . . . " (FAC ¶ 1.) The FAC alleges eight claims under California law. Therefore, the Court may sua sponte decide whether to continue exercising supplemental jurisdiction over Plaintiffs' state law claims. See Acri v. Varian Assocs., Inc., 114 F.3d 999, 1000 (9th Cir. 1997) (en banc). Under 28 U.S.C. § 1367(c)(3), a district court "may decline to exercise supplemental jurisdiction over a [state] claim" if "all claims over which it has original jurisdiction" have been dismissed. "While discretion to decline . . . supplemental jurisdiction over state law claims is triggered by the presence of one of the conditions in § 1367(c), it is informed by the . . . values of economy, convenience, fairness and comity" as delineated by the Supreme Court in United Mine Workers of Am. v. Gibbs, 383 U.S. 715, 726 (1966). Acri, 114 F.3d at 1001. "Since state courts have the primary responsibility to develop and apply state law, . . . the Gibbs values do not favor continued exercise of supplemental jurisdiction over [Plaintiffs'] state claims . . . ." Anderson v. Countrywide Fin., No. 2:08-cv-01220-GEB-GGH, 2009 WL 3368444, at *5 (E.D. Cal. Oct. 19, 2009); see also Acri, 114 F.3d at 1001 (stating that "in the usual case in which all federal-law claims are eliminated before trial, the balance of factors will point towards declining to exercise jurisdiction over the remaining state-law claims" (quotations and citation omitted)). Therefore, Plaintiffs' state law claims are dismissed without prejudice under 28 U.S.C. § 1367(c)(3), and this case shall be closed.


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