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Elite Right, LLC v. Jeffrey K. Winter

UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT CENTRAL DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA


July 10, 2012

ELITE RIGHT, LLC, PLAINTIFF,
v.
JEFFREY K. WINTER, DEFENDANT.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Dean D. Pregerson United States District Judge

ORDER GRANTING PLAINTIFF'S MOTION TO REMAND AND DENYING ATTORNEY FEES [Docket No. 5]

Presently before the court is Plaintiff Elite Right, LLC's Motion to Remand to State Court and for Award of Attorney Fees ("Motion"). Defendant Jeffrey K. Winter has not filed any opposition.

As Plaintiff explains, there is no federal subject matter jurisdiction in this action. Plaintiff's unlawful detainer complaint raises only issues of state law, and the amount in controversy does not appear to exceed $75,000. Further, defenses based on federal law are insufficient to create federal jurisdiction. See HSBC Bank USA v. Santiago, No. CV 10-04127, 2011 WL 165382, at *1-2 (C.D. Cal. Jan. 18, 2011). The court therefore grants Plaintiff's request to remand the case to state court.

The court, however, denies Plaintiff's request for attorney fees. As this court has explained under similar circumstances: "Defendants are proceeding without the assistance of counsel. While it is black letter law that defenses arising under federal law do not create removal jurisdiction, the court does not fault the Defendants for not having the same familiarity with the nuances of federal civil procedure that a lawyer should." Id. at *2. The court notes, however, that Defendant may be ordered to pay Plaintiff's attorney's fees and costs if he attempts again to remove this unlawful detainer action.

IT IS SO ORDERED.

20120710

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