The opinion of the court was delivered by: Present: The Honorable Philip S. Gutierrez, United States District Judge
Wendy K. Hernandez Not Present n/a Deputy Clerk Court Reporter Tape No. Attorneys Present for Plaintiff(s): Attorneys Present for Defendant(s): Not Present Not Present
Proceedings: (In Chambers) Order REMANDING case to state court
On October 3, 2012 Defendant Seitha Guevara filed a notice of removal of a civil action for unlawful detainer brought by Plaintiff GB Inland Properties, LLC ("Plaintiff"). Dkt # 1. After reviewing Defendant's notice of removal and the underlying complaint, the Court finds that it lacks subject matter jurisdiction over this case. See Valdez v. Allstate Ins. Co., 372 F.3d 1115, 1116 (9th Cir. 2004) (observing that a court is required to consider sua sponte whether it has subject matter jurisdiction).
Generally, subject matter jurisdiction is based on the presence of a federal question, see 28 U.S.C. § 1331, or on complete diversity between the parties, see 28 U.S.C. § 1332. If at any time before the entry of final judgment it appears that the Court lacks subject matter jurisdiction over a case removed from state court, it must remand the action to state court. See 28 U.S.C. § 1447(c); Int'l Primate Prot. League v. Adm'rs of Tulane Educ. Fund, 500 U.S. 72, 87 (1991). There is a "strong presumption" against removal jurisdiction, and the party seeking removal always has the burden of establishing that removal is proper. Gaus v. Miles, Inc., 980 F.2d 546, 566 (9th Cir. 1992). If there is any doubt as to the propriety of removal, federal jurisdiction must be rejected. Id. at 567.
The well-pleaded complaint rule requires a federal question be evident from the face of the plaintiff's complaint for federal question jurisdiction to exist. See Caterpillar, Inc. v. Williams, 482 U.S. 386, 392 (1987). Here, the Complaint only asserts a claim for unlawful detainer, a cause of action that is purely a matter of state law, and does not present a federal question. In the notice of removal, Plaintiff asserts that the case involved "questions of both GB Inland Properties, LLC v. Twinstar Group Inc., aka Guadalupe Torres, et al.
Federal and State law," but does not identify a federal law giving rise to Plaintiff's cause of action. Therefore, there is no federal question jurisdiction.
There is also no diversity jurisdiction in this matter. For a federal court to exercise diversity jurisdiction, there must be "complete" diversity between the parties and the amount in controversy requirement must be met. See Strawbridge v. Curtis, 7 U.S. (3 Cranch) 267, 267 (1806); 28 U.S.C. § 1332(a). Defendant's notice of removal states that there is diversity of citizenship, but does not establish the citizenship of any of the parties. Not. 2:9-12. Furthermore, the Complaint states the amount demanded does not exceed $10,000. Compl. at 1:12-13. This is far below the statutory requirement that the amount in controversy must exceed $75,000. 28 U.S.C. § 1332(a).
For the foregoing reasons, the Court finds that it lacks subject matter jurisdiction and REMANDS the case to state court.
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