United States District Court, N.D. California
ORDER GRANTING MOTION TO REMAND RE:
DKT. NO. 17
Gonzalez Rogers United States District Court Judge.
case arises out of plaintiff Saberi's purchase of a new
vehicle from defendant Les Stanford Chevrolet Cadillac
("Les Stanford"), and the delivery of said vehicle
from Michigan to California by defendants BJ Interstate Auto
Transporters, Inc. ("BJ Interstate") and Bogdan
Dedyk d/b/a Safe Auto Transport ("Dedyk"). (Dkt.
1-1, "Compl.") The case was removed to federal
court by defendant Les Stanford on April 22, 2016. (Dkt. No.
before the Court is plaintiff's Motion to Remand. (Dkt.
No. 17, "Mtn.") Defendant Les Stanford has filed a
response in opposition to plaintiff's Motion, (Dkt. No.
24, "Opp'n"), and plaintiff has filed a reply,
(Dkt. No. 28, "Reply"). For the reasons set forth
below, the Court Remands the action to the state
is an individual residing in San Mateo County, California.
(Compl. ¶ 1.) On or about September 17, 2015, Plaintiff
purchased a Corvette from defendant Les Stanford, which is a
Michigan corporation with its principal place of business in
Michigan, for delivery to plaintiff in San Francisco,
California. (Id. at ¶¶ 2, 9.) According to
the Complaint, defendant Les Stanford contracted with
defendant BJ Interstate "for the purpose of transporting
the Corvette for delivery to [plaintiff]." (Id.
at ¶ 8.) Defendant BJ Interstate is a Nevada corporation
with its principal place of business in Nevada. (Id.
at ¶ 3.) Plaintiff alleges that defendant BJ Interstate,
in turn, subcontracted with defendant Dedyk, who is an
individual residing in Roseville, California, "for the
purpose of transporting the Corvette for delivery to
[plaintiff] in San Francisco, California." (Id.
at ¶¶ 4, 9.) Plaintiff alleges that, based on his
reliance on certain warranties and representations, he
"made full payment in the sum of $128, 391.93" to
defendant Les Stanford for the Corvette. (Id. at
¶ 10.) According to the Complaint, upon delivery of the
Corvette on or about October 13, 2015, plaintiff
"discovered that the Corvette was defective and not safe
for reasonable operation" and that the "Corvette
was in fact unmerchantable and unfit to be operated."
(Id. at ¶¶ 11-12.)
believes that the defendants "proximately caused the
damaged to the Corvette." (Id. at ¶ 14.)
Plaintiff filed his complaint in California state court on
November 18, 2015 alleging the following: (i) violation of
California's Song-Beverly Consumer Warranty Act against
defendant Les Stanford for delivering a defective automobile;
(ii) fraud against all defendants for misrepresenting that
the automobile was of merchantable quality and fit for
driving and operation; and (iii) negligence against all
defendants for breaching their duty of care not to damage the
automobile. (Id. at ¶¶ 17-27.)
courts are courts of limited jurisdiction. Kokkonen v.
Guardian Life Ins. Co. of Am., 511 U.S. 375, 377 (1994)
(federal courts "possess only that power authorized by
Constitution and statute"). A defendant may remove a
civil action from state court if the action could have
originally been filed in federal court. 28 U.S.C. §
1441. Federal subject matter jurisdiction under 28 U.S.C.
§ 1332(a)(1) requires complete diversity of citizenship
and an amount in controversy in excess of $75, 000. Federal
subject matter jurisdiction under 28 U.S.C. § 1331
requires a civil action to arise under the constitution,
laws, or treaties of the United States. A claim "arises
under" federal law only if a "well-pleaded
complaint" alleges a cause of action based on federal
law-"an actual or anticipated defense" does not
confer federal jurisdiction. Vaden v. Discover Bank,
556 U.S. 49, 60 (2009). "The presence or absence of
federal-question jurisdiction is governed by the
‘well-pleaded complaint rule, ' which provides that
federal jurisdiction exists only when a federal question is
presented on the face of the plaintiff's properly pleaded
complaint." Wayne v. DHL Worldwide Express, 294
F.3d 1179, 1183 (9th Cir. 2002) (quoting Caterpillar,
Inc. v. Williams, 482 U.S. 386, 392 (1987)).
defendant seeking removal "bears the burden of
establishing that removal is proper" and the
"removal statute is strictly construed against removal
jurisdiction." Provincial Gov't of Marinduque v.
Placer Dome, Inc., 582 F.3d 1083, 1087 (9th Cir. 2009);
see also Shamrock Oil & Gas Corp. v. Sheets, 313
U.S. 100, 108-09 (1941). A plaintiff may seek to have a case
remanded to the state court from which it was removed if the
district court lacks jurisdiction or if there is a defect in
the removal procedure. 28 U.S.C. § 1447(c).
is typically a strong presumption against finding removal
jurisdiction. Gaus v. Miles, Inc., 980 F.2d 564, 566
(9th Cir. 1992). The burden of establishing federal
jurisdiction for purposes of removal is on the party seeking
removal. See Valdez v. Allstate Ins. Co., 372 F.3d
1115, 1117 (9th Cir. 2004). The party seeking removal
"has the burden to prove, by a preponderance of the
evidence, that removal is proper." Geographic
Expeditions, Inc. v. Estate of Lhotka, 599 F.3d 1102,
1107 (9th Cir. 2010).
when a case is removed to federal court, the court has an
independent obligation to satisfy itself that it has federal
subject matter jurisdiction. Valdez, 372 F.3d at
1116. A case removed to federal court must be remanded back
to state court "if at any time before final judgment it
appears that the district court lacks subject matter
jurisdiction." 28 U.S.C. § 1447(c). "Federal
jurisdiction must be rejected if there is any doubt as to the
right of removal in the first instance." Gaus,
980 F.2d at 566; accord Matheson v. Progressive Specialty
Ins. Co., 319 F.3d 1089, 1090 (9th Cir. 2003). The court
"resolves all ambiguity in favor of remand to state
court." Hunter v. Philip Morris USA, 582 F.3d
1039, 1042 (9th Cir. 2009).
plaintiff argues that remand is appropriate because: (a)
defendant's notice of removal contained several
procedural deficiencies; (b) there is no federal question
that would give the court jurisdiction; and (c) even if
defendant had properly removed on the basis of diversity,
there is no complete diversity in this case.