UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT CENTRAL DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA
April 4, 2012
JAMES WELKER, PLAINTIFF,
JPMORGAN CHASE BANK, M.A., EMC MORTGAGE COMPANY,
NDEX WEST LLC, NAMED & UN-NAMED ASSOCIATES IN FACT, DEFENDANTS.
The opinion of the court was delivered by: Dean D. Pregerson United States District Judge
ORDER REMANDING CASE TO STATE COURT
[Docket Nos. 19, 21]
Plaintiff James Welker filed his initial Complaint against Defendants in California state court on May 31, 2011. Plaintiff then filed a First Amended Complaint ("FAC"), also in state court, on July 15, 2011. Plaintiff alleged a number of state law claims, as well as a federal Racketeering Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act ("RICO"), 18 U.S.C. §§ 1961-1968, cause of action, stemming from Defendants' foreclosure of his property. Defendants removed the action to federal court on September 23, 2011, on the basis of federal question and supplemental jurisdiction.
On September 30, 2011, Defendants filed a Motion to Dismiss Plaintiff's First Amended Complaint. In his Opposition, Plaintiff requested leave to file an amended complaint, noting that "removal of the federal question could provide grounds for remanding this case." The court granted the Motion and dismissed the Complaint without prejudice on January 10, 2012, providing Plaintiff thirty days to file an amended complaint. The court noted in its Order that remand would be appropriate if Plaintiff removed all federal claims.
Plaintiff filed his Second Amended Complaint ("SAC") on February 8, 2012. The SAC alleges only state law claims: 1) unfair business practices; 2) cancellation of instrument; 3) declaratory relief; 4) preliminary and permanent injunction; 5) quiet title; 6) breach of implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing and violations of stipulations and consent orders; and 7) negligent misrepresentations and common law fraudulent conveyance. Plaintiff also alleges in the SAC that the court has subject matter jurisdiction, pursuant to various federal laws. However, as noted, Plaintiff does not actually plead any federal cause of action.
Accordingly, because Plaintiff now alleges only state law claims, the court has discretion whether to exercise supplemental jurisdiction. See Schneider v. TRW, Inc., 938 F.2d 987, 993-94 (9th Cir. 1991). "[I]n the usual case in which federal-law claims are eliminated before trial, the balance of factors . . . will point toward declining to exercise jurisdiction over the remaining state law claims." Id. at 993 (internal quotation marks omitted). The court concludes that this is the case here, as the matter is still at the pleading stage and has been before the court for only a short time. The court therefore declines to exercise supplemental jurisdiction and remands the matter to state court.
IT IS SO ORDERED.
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