United States District Court, N.D. California
ORDER DENYING DEFENDANTS' MOTION TO DISMISS FOR
LACK OF PERSONAL JURISDICTION, DENYING REQUEST FOR
JURISDICTIONAL DISCOVERY, AND GRANTING MOTION TO TRANSFER Re:
ECF No. 13
TIGAR, United States District Judge
the Court is Defendants' Motion to Dismiss for Lack of
Personal Jurisdiction under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure
12(b)(2), or in the Alternative, to Transfer under 28 U.S.C.
§ 1404(a). ECF No. 13. Plaintiff opposes the motion. ECF
No. 27. The Court denies the motion to dismiss for lack of
jurisdiction and grants the motion to transfer the case to
the District of South Carolina pursuant to 28 U.S.C. §
April 18, 2017, Plaintiff Ophelia Dubose filed a complaint
against AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals LP
(“AstraZeneca”), Bristol-Myers Squibb Company
(“Bristol-Myers”), and McKesson Corporation
(“McKesson”). Dubose is a citizen and resident of
South Carolina. ECF No. 1 ¶ 7. Bristol-Myers is a
Delaware corporation with its principal place of business in
New York. Id. ¶ 9; ECF No. 13 at 11, n.4.
AstraZeneca is a Delaware limited partnership with its
principal place of business in Delaware. Id. ¶
11. McKesson is a Delaware corporation with its principal
place of business in California. Id. ¶ 12. The
complaint alleges that Saxagliptin, a prescription drug under
the brands Onglyza and Kombiglyze XR, causes heart failure,
congestive heart failure, cardiac failure, death from heart
failure, and other serious conditions to users who suffer
from Type 2 diabetes, due to their increased cardiovascular
risk. ECF No. 1. Plaintiff alleges that Defendants were
involved with aspects of bringing Saxagliptin to market,
including, but not limited to, the manufacturing, marketing,
and distribution of the prescription drug. Id.
¶¶ 27-29, 33-35. In addition, Plaintiff claims that
Defendants refused to warn, failed to warn, or
“under-warned” about Saxagliptin's risks, and
engaged in “inadequate clinical trials, testing and
study, and inadequate reporting regarding the results of the
clinical trials, testing and study.” See ECF
No. 1 at 1-9, 11.
April 24, 2017, Defendants filed the instant motion, arguing
that the Court lacks personal jurisdiction over
Plaintiff's claims with regard to AstraZeneca and
Bristol-Myers because they are out-of-state defendants and
Plaintiff's claims do not arise from Defendants'
conduct within California. ECF No. 13 at 9. In the
alternative, Bristol-Myers, AstraZeneca, and McKesson move to
transfer the case to the United States District Court for the
District of South Carolina because Plaintiff resides in South
Carolina and does not allege any connection to California.
opposition to a defendant's motion to dismiss for lack of
personal jurisdiction, the plaintiff bears the burden of
establishing that jurisdiction is proper.”
Boschetto v. Hansing, 539 F.3d 1011, 1015 (9th Cir.
2008). Absent an evidentiary hearing, the plaintiff need only
make a “prima facie showing” of personal
jurisdiction. Id. (quoting Sher v. Johnson,
911 F.2d 1357, 1361 (9th Cir. 1990)). “Uncontroverted
allegations in the plaintiff's complaint must be taken as
true.” Id. Where there are “[c]onflicts
between the parties over statements contained in affidavits,
” they “must be resolved in the plaintiff's
favor.” Id. (internal quotation marks omitted)
(quoting Schwarzenegger v. Fred Martin Motor Co.,
374 F.3d 797, 800 (9th Cir. 2004)).
a court can exercise personal jurisdiction over a nonresident
defendant, the laws of the forum state must provide a basis
for exercising personal jurisdiction, and the assertion of
personal jurisdiction must comport with due process.
CollegeSource, Inc. v. AcademyOne, Inc., 653 F.3d
1066, 1073-74 (9th Cir. 2011). Because
“California's long-arm statute is co-extensive with
federal standards, . . . a federal court may exercise
personal jurisdiction if doing so comports with federal
constitutional due process.” Id. (citing
Panavision Int'l L.P. v. Toppen, 141 F.3d 1316,
1320 (9th Cir. 1998)).
are two types of personal jurisdiction: “general or
all-purpose” and “specific or case-linked.”
Goodyear Dunlop Tires Operations, S.A. v. Brown, 564
U.S. 915, 919 (2011) (citing Helicopteros Nacionales de
Colombia, S.A. v. Hall, 466 U.S. 408, 414 nn.8-9
(1984)). When a defendant's affiliations with the forum
state are so “continuous and systematic” as to
render the defendant “at home” in the state, a
court may assert general jurisdiction to “hear any and
all claims” against that defendant. Id.
jurisdiction, on the other hand, depends on an affiliatio[n]
between the forum and the underlying controversy, principal,
activity or an occurrence that takes place in the forum State
and is therefore subject to the State's
regulation.” Goodyear, 564 U.S. at 919
(internal quotation marks omitted). In contrast to general
jurisdiction, specific jurisdiction is also “confined
to adjudication of issues deriving from, or connected with,
the very controversy that establishes jurisdiction.”
Id. (internal quotation marks omitted). In other
words, specific jurisdiction “focuses on the
relationship among the defendant, the forum, and the
litigation.” Walden v. Fiore, 134 S.Ct. 1115,
1121 (2014). The Ninth Circuit has established a
“three-prong test for analyzing a claim of specific
(1) The non-resident defendant must purposefully direct his
activities or consummate some transaction with the forum or
resident thereof; or perform some act by which he
purposefully avails himself of the privilege of conducting
activities in the forum thereby invoking the benefits and
protections of its laws; (2) the claim must be one which
arises out of or relates to the defendant's forum-related
activities; and (3) the exercise of jurisdiction must comport
with fair play and substantial justice, i.e. it must be
Schwarzenegger, 374 F.3d at 802 (quoting Lake v.
Lake, 817 F.2d 1416, 1421 (9th Cir. 1987)). “The
plaintiff bears the burden of satisfying the first two prongs
of the test.” Id. (citing Sher, 911
F.2d at 1361). If the plaintiff succeeds in doing so,
“the burden then shifts to the defendant to
‘present a compelling case' that the exercise of
jurisdiction would not be reasonable.” Id.
(quoting Burger King Corp. v. Rudzewicz, 471 U.S.
462, 477 (1985)).