UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT CENTRAL DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA
January 31, 2012
TITLE BANK OF AMERICA, N.A.
The opinion of the court was delivered by: The Honorable Andrew J. Guilford
CIVIL MINUTES - GENERAL
Present: The Honorable ANDREW J. GUILFORD
Lisa Bredahl Not Present
Deputy Clerk Court Reporter / Recorder Tape No.
Attorneys Present for Plaintiffs: Attorneys Present for Defendants:
Proceedings: [IN CHAMBERS] ORDER REMANDING CASE
For the reasons that follow, this case is REMANDED to the California Superior Court, County of Orange.
Plaintiff filed a Complaint for unlawful detainer against Defendant Tony Guy in state court, seeking to evacuate Defendant from foreclosed property ("Property") and requesting related damages.
Tenant Marvin Lang ("Tenant") now files a Notice of Removal ("Notice") to remove the unlawful detainer action to this Court. Tenant claims that this Court has federal question jurisdiction of this case under the "Protecting Tenants at Foreclosure Act of 2009" ("PTFA"), Pub. L. No. 111--22, § 702, 123 Stat. 1660 (2009). PFTA requires new owners of foreclosed property to give bona fide tenants at least 90 days to evacuate the premises, while California law only requires 60 days. Cal. Civ. Code § 1161(a)-(b). Tenant argues that this case was "artfully pled" as a state unlawful detainer action, when the true cause of action was Federal under the PFTA. Tenant is incorrect.
Courts have repeatedly held that PFTA does not provide a cause of action, and does not confer federal subject matter jurisdiction. See, e.g., Wells Fargo Bank v. Lapeen, No. C 11--01932 LB, 2011 WL 2194117, at *4 (N.D. Cal. June 6, 2011) (finding that PFTA did not provide a federal cause of action or confer federal subject matter jurisdiction); Wescom Credit Union v. Dudley, No. CV 10-8203 GAF (SSx), 2010 WL 4916578, at *2 (C.D. Cal. Nov.22, 2010) (same); SD Coastline LP v. Buck, No. 10CV2108 MMA (NLS), 2010 WL 4809661, at *2-3 (S.D. Cal. Nov.19, 2010) (same); U.S. v. Lopez, No. 2:10-cv-02438 WBS KJN PS, 2010 WL 523301, at *3 (E.D. Cal. Dec. 16, 2010) (same); Zalemba v. HSBC Bank, USA, Nat. Ass'n., No. 10-cv-1646 BEN (BLM), 2010 WL 3894577, at *1 (S.D. Cal. Oct. 1, 2010) (same); Nativi v. Deutsche Bank Nat. Trust Co., No. 09-06096 PVT, 2010 WL 2179885, at *2-5 (N.D. Cal. May 26, 2010) (same); Aurora Loan Servs., LLC v. Martinez, No. C10-01260 HRL, 2010 WL 1266887, at *1 (N.D. Cal. Mar. 29, 2010) (same).
In closing, the Court reminds Tenant that "[s]peedy adjudication is desirable [in unlawful detainer actions] to prevent subjecting the landlord to undeserved economic loss and the tenant to unmerited harassment and dispossession when his lease or rental agreement gives him the right to peaceful and undisturbed possession of the property." Lindsey v. Normet, 405 U.S. 56, 73 (1972). Improper removal of unlawful detainer cases raises the concerns stated in Lindsey. Tenant is cautioned not to improperly seek federal jurisdiction, particularly for delay. See Newman & Cahn, LLP v. Sharp, 388 F. Supp. 2d 115, 119 (E.D.N.Y. 2005) (finding that a removal was "frivolous and unwarranted," but declining to order sanctions against the removing party "because she [was] pro se," though warning her "that the filing of another frivolous paper with the Court may result in monetary sanctions under Rule 11").
Tenant fails to establish that federal jurisdiction exists over this case. Thus, the case is REMANDED to the appropriate state court.
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