The opinion of the court was delivered by: Present: The Honorable Jacqueline H. Nguyen
Alicia Mamer Not Reported N/A
Deputy Clerk Court Reporter / Recorder Tape No.
Proceedings: ORDER GRANTING PLAINTIFF'S EX PARTE APPLICATION
AND REMANDING CASE TO STATE COURT (In Chambers)
On August 6, 2010, Plaintiff filed an action against Defendant for unlawful detainer. On October 26, 2010, Defendant removed this action to federal court from the Riverside County Superior Removal to federal court is governed by 28 U.S.C. § 1441, which in relevant part states that "any civil action brought in a State court of which the district courts of the United States have original jurisdiction, may be removed by the defendant or the defendants." 28 U.S.C. § 1441(a). However, the Court may remand a case to state court for lack of subject matter jurisdiction. 28 U.S.C. § 1447(c). "The burden of establishing federal jurisdiction is on the party invoking federal jurisdiction." U.S. v. , 530 F.3d 799, 810 (9th Cir. 2008).
Under 28 U.S.C. § 1331, the Court has original jurisdiction over civil actions "arising under" federal law. "The presence or absence of federal-question jurisdiction is governed by the 'well-pleaded complaint rule,' which provides that federal jurisdiction exists only when a federal question is presented on the face of the plaintiff's properly pleaded complaint." Caterpillar, Inc. v. Williams, 482 U.S. 386, 392 (1987). The only exception to this rule is where plaintiff's federal claim has been disguised by "artful pleading," such as where the only claim is a state claim preempted by federal law. Sullivan v. First Affiliated Sec., Inc., 813 F. 2d 1368, 1372 (9th Cir. 1987). Here, the Complaint's only cause of action is for unlawful detainer pursuant to California Code of Civil Procedure § 1161. No federal question is presented on the face of the Complaint, nor has a federal claim been disguised by artful pleading. No federal question jurisdiction exists.
Under 28 U.S.C. § 1332, the Court also has original jurisdiction over civil actions where there is complete diversity of citizenship and the amount in controversy exceeds $75,000. Morris v. Princess Cruises, Inc., 236 F.3d 1061, 1067 (9th Cir. 2001). Here, there is no allegation of diversity of citizenship, and the Complaint explicitly states that the amount demanded does not exceed $10,000. As such, there is also no diversity jurisdiction.
For these reasons, the Court lacks subject matter jurisdiction.
Moreover, Defendant's attempt to remove this case is untimely. Under 28 U.S.C. § 1446(b), a notice of removal must be filed within 30 days after the defendant receives "a copy of the initial pleading setting forth the claim for relief upon which such action or proceeding is based" or after the defendant receives "an amended pleading, motion, order or other paper" indicating that an action not initially removable has become removable. Here, the state court complaint was filed August 6, 2010. Defendant's notice of removal makes no mention of new paper indicating that this case had become removable within 30 days of October 26, 2010. Thus, the 30-day window closed on September 6, 2010.
Accordingly, the Court GRANTS the Ex Parte Application (docket no. 6) and remands the case to the Superior Court of the State of California, County of Riverside, California. The Court DENIES Plaintiff's request for attorney's fees and costs.
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