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Deutsche Bank Nat'l Trust Co. v. Bell

October 10, 2012

DEUTSCHE BANK NAT'L TRUST CO.
v.
BELL



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Present: The Honorable Margaret M. Morrow

CIVIL MINUTES - GENERAL

ANEL HUERTA N/A

Deputy Clerk Court Reporter

Attorneys Present for Plaintiffs: Attorneys Present for Defendants:

N/A N/A

Proceedings: Order Remanding Action to Los Angeles Superior Court for Lack of Subject Matter Jurisdiction

I. FACTUAL BACKGROUND

Plaintiff Deutsche Bank National Trust Company commenced this for unlawful detainer action on July 25, 2012 against Jessie Bell, Jr. and certain fictitious defendants in state court.*fn1 On September 13, 2012, Bell removed the action to this court based on federal question jurisdiction.*fn2

Plaintiff alleges that it is entitled to possession and is the owner of record of a parcel of real property located at 69 Rolling Ridge Dr., Pomona, California 91766.*fn3 Defendants allegedly remain in possession of the property despite having being served with a 3/90 day notice to quit.*fn4 Plaintiff acquired title to the property on June 29, 2012 at a trustee's sale. It was the foreclosing beneficiary, and recorded a trustee's deed on sale confirming its ownership of the property.*fn5 On July 16, 2012, plaintiff served a 3/90 day notice to quit on defendants by posting the notice in a conspicuous place on the property and mailing a copy to defendants at the subject property.*fn6 Plaintiff alleges that although on July 17, 2012, the notice to quit expired, defendants have remained in possession of the property.*fn7 It seeks restitution and possession of the property, holdover damages of $75.00 per day from July 18, 2012 to the date of judgment, costs of suit, and any other relief the court deems appropriate.*fn8

Bell filed a demurrer to the complaint on August 3, 2012, alleging that the notice to quit was defective and that the complaint failed to state a cause of action on which relief could be granted.*fn9 The state court overruled his demurrer.*fn10

II. DISCUSSION

A. Legal Standard Regarding Removal Jurisdiction

Federal courts have a duty to examine their subject matter jurisdiction whether or not the parties raise the issue. See United Investors Life Ins. Co. v. Waddell & Reed, Inc., 360 F.3d 960, 966 (9th Cir. 2004) ("[A] district court's duty to establish subject matter jurisdiction is not contingent upon the parties' arguments," citing Mitchell v. Maurer, 293 U.S. 237, 244 (1934)); see also Attorneys Trust v. Videotape Computer Products, Inc., 93 F.3d 593, 594-95 (9th Cir. 1996) (lack of subject matter jurisdiction may be raised at any time by either party or by the court sua sponte); Thiara v. Kiernan, No. C06-03503 MJJ, 2006 WL 3065568, *2 (N.D. Cal. Oct. 25, 2006) ("A district court has an independent obligation to examine whether removal jurisdiction exists before deciding any issue on the merits").

Where a case has been removed, the court may remand for lack of subject matter jurisdiction at any time before final judgment. See 28 U.S.C. ยง 1447(c) ("If at any time before final judgment it appears that the district court ...


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