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Terry L. Hopkins v. Wells Fargo Bank

UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT EASTERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA


April 11, 2013

TERRY L. HOPKINS,
PLAINTIFFS,
v.
WELLS FARGO BANK, N.A. AND DOES 1-10, DEFENDANTS.

ORDER FOR SUPPLEMENTAL BRIEFING

Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1348, national banks are "deemed citizens of the States in which they are respectively located" for purposes of diversity jurisdiction. In Wachovia Bank v. Schmidt, 546 U.S. 303 (2006), the Supreme Court rejected that a national bank is "located" for purposes of § 1348 in every state in which it maintains a branch and held that "a national bank . . . is a citizen of the State in which its main office, as set forth in its articles of association, is located." Schmidt, 546 U.S. at 307. After Schmidt, there remains a split, however, both within the Eastern District of California and throughout the Ninth Circuit as to whether a bank is also "located" in the state where it maintains a principal place of business. Compare Grace v. Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., Civ. No. 12-2050-GPC-NLS, 2013 WL 663169, at *4, --- F. Supp. 2d ----, (S.D. Cal. 2013) (holding that a bank is located both where it has its main office and the state where its principal place of business is located); Taheny v. Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., 878 F. Supp. 2d 1093, 1109 (E.D. Cal. 2012) (same); Gosal v. Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., Civ. No. 2:12-02024-GEB, 2012 WL 4961696, at *1 (E.D. Cal. Oct. 15, 2012) (adopting the reasoning of Taheny); with Mireles v. Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., 845 F. Supp. 2d 1034, 1061 (C.D. Cal. 2012) (holding that a bank is only a citizen of the state where its main office is located); Marzette v. Provident Sav. Bank, F.S.B., Civ No. 2:11-2089 JAM-CKD, 2011 WL 5513556, at *2 (E.D. Cal. Nov. 10, 2011) (same); Tse v. Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., Civ. No. 10-4441 TEH, 2011 WL 175520, at *2 (N.D. Cal. Jan. 19, 2011) ("[T]he test for a national bank's citizenship under section 1348 is determined solely by the location of its main office designated in its articles of association.").

The court now requests additional briefing on the limited question of whether, for purposes of § 1348, Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. ("Wells Fargo") is "located" only in the state where it has its main office, or also where it maintains a principal place of business. The parties shall simultaneously brief the issue by April 17, 2013. The hearing on Wells Fargo's motion to dismiss remains calendared for April 22, 2013.

20130411

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