United States District Court, E.D. California
JOHN COTTLE, an individual, and VALLEY FRESH PRODUCE, INC., Plaintiffs,
WESTERN SKYWAYS INC., and DOES 1-25, Inclusive, Defendants.
ORDER GRANTING DEFENDANT'S MOTION TO DISMISS
(Doc. No. 6)
matter is before the court on March 7, 2017, for hearing on
defendant's motion to dismiss filed pursuant to Rule
12(b)(2) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. (Doc. No.
6.) Attorney Michael Marderosian appeared on behalf of
plaintiffs John Cottle and Valley Fresh Produce, Inc., and
attorney John Hanson appeared on behalf of defendant Western
Skyways, Inc. Oral argument was heard and the motion was
taken under submission. For the reasons stated below,
defendant's motion to dismiss will be granted.
January 11, 2017, plaintiffs John Cottle and Valley Fresh
Produce, Inc. (“Valley Fresh”) commenced this
action against defendants Western Skyways Inc.
(“Western”) and Does 1-10. (Doc. No. 2.)
Plaintiffs are citizens of California, while defendant
Western Skyways Inc. is a citizen of Colorado. (Id.
at 2.) In their complaint, plaintiffs raise the following
five causes of action brought under state law: (i) breach of
contract; (ii) breach of express warranty; (iii) strict
liability; (iv) negligence; and (v) negligence per se. (Doc.
No. 2 at 4-8.) Plaintiffs seek relief consisting of economic
and non-economic damages, prejudgment interest, and costs.
(Id. at 7-8.) In their complaint, plaintiffs allege
the following facts.
February of 2016, plaintiffs contacted defendant Western
regarding work to be performed on a Cessna T-210, N111VF
(“Aircraft”). (Id. at 2, ¶¶ 8,
11-14.) Defendant Western agreed to manufacture and install a
new engine system in the Aircraft, a
“Turbo-normalizing” system. (Id. at 2,
¶ 9.) As part of this retrofit, defendant Western also
agreed to install, overhaul, or modify a number of other
Aircraft components. (Id. at 2, ¶ 10.) After
entering into the contract, plaintiffs delivered the Aircraft
to defendant Western's facilities in Montrose, Colorado.
(Id. at 3, ¶ 14.)
Western initially estimated the mechanical work on the
retrofit would be completed in four to six weeks.
(Id. at 3, ¶ 14.) However, the work was not
completed until August 13, 2016. (Id. at 3, ¶
17.) Defendant represented to plaintiffs that the delay was
caused by the unavailability of certain parts and
difficulties encountered during the test flight aspect of the
installation. (Id. at 3, ¶ 18.)
finishing its mechanical work, defendant Western delivered
the Aircraft to plaintiffs in Fresno, California.
(Id. at 3, ¶¶ 17-18.) However, defendant
failed to provide, or significantly delayed in providing,
paperwork concerning work performed on the Aircraft.
(Id. at 4, ¶ 19.) Various defects were also
revealed when the Aircraft was inspected upon delivery,
including defects in the newly-installed engine.
(Id. at 3-4, ¶ 18.) The Aircraft was deemed
unsafe for flight and was grounded. (Id. at 4,
¶ 20.) Plaintiffs allege that, as a result of
defendant's actions, they incurred substantial economic
and non-economic damages. (Id. at 6, ¶¶
February 2, 2017, defendant Western filed a motion to dismiss
plaintiffs' complaint in its entirety. (Doc. No. 6.) On
February 21, 2017, plaintiffs filed their opposition, as well
as a request for judicial notice. (Doc. Nos. 8-9.) Defendant
filed its reply on February 28, 2017. (Doc. No. 10.)
Rule 12(b)(2) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, a
defendant may seek dismissal of an action for lack of
personal jurisdiction. In opposing a defendant's motion
to dismiss for lack of personal jurisdiction, the burden of
proof to show that jurisdiction is appropriate lies with the
plaintiffs. See Picot v. Weston, 780 F.3d 1206, 1211
(9th Cir. 2015); Love v. Assoc. Newspapers, Ltd.,
611 F.3d 601, 608 (9th Cir. 2010); Boschetto v.
Hansing, 539 F.3d 1011, 1015 (9th Cir. 2008). When a
defendant's motion to dismiss is to be decided on the
pleadings, affidavits, and discovery materials, the
plaintiffs need only make a prima facie showing that personal
jurisdiction exists in order for the action to proceed.
See Picot, 870 F.3d at 1211; Love, 611 F.3d
at 608; Boschetto, 539 F.3d at 1015.
determining whether plaintiffs have met their burden to show
personal jurisdiction, the court accepts plaintiffs'
allegations as true, and any conflicts between parties over
statements contained in affidavits must be resolved in the
plaintiffs' favor. Love, 611 F.3d at 608;
Boschetto, 539 F.3d at 1015; Schwarzenegger v.
Fred Martin Motor Co., 374 F.3d 797, 800 (9th Cir.
2004). However, plaintiffs “cannot simply rest on the
bare allegations of its complaint.” Amba Mktg.
Sys., Inc. v. Jobar Int'l, Inc., 551 F.2d 784, 787
(9th Cir. 1977).
plaintiffs seek to invoke specific personal jurisdiction,
they must establish jurisdiction for “each claim
asserted against a defendant.” Picot, 780 F.3d
at 1211 (quoting Action Embroidery Corp. v. Atl.
Embroidery, Inc., 368 F.3d 1174, 1180 (9th Cir. 2004)).
If personal jurisdiction exists over one claim, but not
others, the district court may exercise pendent personal
jurisdiction over any remaining claims that arise out of the
same “common nucleus of operative facts” as the
claim for which jurisdiction exists. Id.
request that the court take judicial notice of the original
complaint filed in this action. (Doc. No. 9 at 1.) The court
may take judicial notice of its own files and of documents
filed in other courts. Reyn's Pasta Bella, LLC v.
Visa USA, Inc., 442 F.3d 741, 746 n.6 (9th Cir. 2006).
However, the court need not take judicial notice of prior
filings submitted in the same case. See, e.g., Ortega v.
Univ. of the Pac, No. S-13-1426 KJM EFB, 2013 WL
6054447, at *3 (E.D. Cal. Nov. 15, 2013) (finding it
unnecessary to take judicial notice of a complaint filed in
the same case). Plaintiffs' request will therefore be
moves to dismiss plaintiffs' complaint for lack of
personal jurisdiction. “Where, as here, there is no
applicable federal statute governing personal jurisdiction,
the law of the state in which the district court sits
applies.” Core-Vent Corp. v. Nobel Indus. AB,
11 F.3d 1482, 1484 (9th Cir. 1993); see also Yahoo! v. La
Ligue Contre Le Racisme, 433 F.3d 1199, 1205 (9th Cir.
2006) (en banc) (same). “California's long-arm
statute allows courts to exercise personal jurisdiction over
defendants to the extent permitted by the Due Process Clause
of the United States Constitution.” Core-Vent
Corp., 11 F.3d at 1484; see also Cal. Civ. Pro.
Code § 410.10 (“A court of this state may exercise
jurisdiction on any basis not inconsistent with the
Constitution of this state or of the United States.”);
Love, 611 F.3d at 608-09. Thus, only constitutional
principles constrain the jurisdiction of a federal court in
California. Love, 611 F.3d at 608-09;
Boschetto, 539 F.3d at 1015; Sher v.
Johnson, 911 F.2d 1357, 1361 (9th Cir. 1990).
the Fourteenth Amendment due process clause, courts may
exercise personal jurisdiction over nonresident defendants
only so long as there exist sufficient “minimum
contacts” between the defendant and the forum state.
World-Wide Volkswagen Corp. v. Woodson, 444 U.S.
286, 292 (1980); see also Ranza v. Nike, Inc., 793
F.3d 1059, 1068 (9th Cir. 2015); Harris Rutsky & Co.
Ins. Servs., Inc. v. Bell & Clements Ltd., 328 F.3d
1122, 1129 (9th Cir. 2003). Maintenance of the suit must
“not offend traditional notions of ...