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Herminia Rodriguez, et al. v. Equinox Fitness Century City

August 17, 2012

HERMINIA RODRIGUEZ, ET AL.
v.
EQUINOX FITNESS CENTURY CITY, INC., ET AL.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Honorable John F. Walter, United States District Judge

CIVIL MINUTES -- GENERAL

Shannon Reilly

Courtroom Deputy

ATTORNEYS PRESENT FOR PLAINTIFFS:

None

None Present

Court Reporter

ATTORNEYS PRESENT FOR DEFENDANTS:

None

PROCEEDINGS (IN CHAMBERS): ORDER REMANDING ACTION TO LOS ANGELES COUNTY SUPERIOR COURT

On June 1, 2012, Plaintiff Herminia Rodriguez and Hilaria Rodriguez ("Plaintiffs") filed their First Amended Complaint against Defendants Equinox Fitness Century City, Inc., Equinox Fitness Newport Beach, Inc., Equinox Fitness Palo Alto, Inc., Equinox Fitness Palos Verdes, Inc., Equinox Fitness Pasadena, Inc., Equinox Fitness San Mateo, Inc., Equinox Fitness South Bay, Inc., Equinox Fitness Westwood, Inc., Equinox Fitness Woodland Hills, Inc., Equinox Sports Club SF, Inc., Equinox West Hollywood, Inc., Equinox Holdings, Inc., and Equinox Group, Inc. ("Defendants") in Los Angeles County Superior Court. On July 5, 2012, Defendant Equinox Holdings, Inc. filed a Notice of Removal of Action ("Notice of Removal").

Federal courts are courts of limited jurisdiction, having subject matter jurisdiction only over matters authorized by the Constitution and Congress. See Bender v. Williamsport Area School , 475 U.S. 534, 541 (1986). "Because of the Congressional purpose to restrict the jurisdiction of the federal courts on removal, the statute is strictly construed, and federal jurisdiction must be rejected if there is any doubt as to the right of removal in the first instance." Duncan v. , 76 F.3d 1480, 1485 (9th Cir. 1996) (citations and quotations omitted). There is a strong presumption that the Court is without jurisdiction unless the contrary affirmatively appears. See Fifty Associates v. Prudential Insurance Company of America, 446 F.2d 1187, 1190 (9th Cir. 1990). As the party invoking federal jurisdiction, Defendant Equinox Holdings, Inc. bears the burden of demonstrating that removal is proper. See, e.g., Gaus v. Miles, 980 F.2d 564, 566 (9th

Emrich v. Touche Ross & Co., 846 F.2d 1190, 1195 (9th Cir. 1988).

"A civil action in state court may be removed to federal district court if the district court has 'original jurisdiction' over the matter." Lowdermilk v. United States Bank Nat'l Ass'n, 479 F.3d 994, 997 (9th Cir. 2007). Under CAFA, a federal district court has subject matter jurisdiction over a class action in which: (1) there are 100 or more proposed class members; (2) at least some of the members of the proposed class have a different citizenship from the defendant; and (3) the aggregated claims of the proposed class members exceed the sum or value of $5,000,000. See 28 U.S.C. ยง 1332(d). "'[U]nder CAFA the burden of establishing removal jurisdiction remains, as before, on the proponent of federal ...


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