United States District Court, E.D. California
ORDER DENYING PLAINTIFF'S MOTION FOR
L. Nunley United States District Judge
matter is before the Court pursuant to Plaintiff Rolando
Aspiras's (“Plaintiff) Motion for Remand to State
Court. (ECF No. 6.) Defendant Adams & Associates, Inc.
(“Defendant”) opposes. (ECF No. 12.) The Court
has carefully considered the arguments raised by the
parties' briefing. For the following reasons, Plaintiffs
Motion for Remand to State Court (ECF No. 6) is DENIED.
Factual and Procedural Background
brings claims against Defendant, his former employer,
alleging (i) age discrimination, (ii) race and national
origin discrimination, (iii) wrongful termination, (iv)
retaliation, (v) failure to prevent discrimination, and (vi)
intentional infliction of emotional distress. (ECF No. 1 at
18-25.) Plaintiff filed this action with the Superior Court
of the State of California for the County of Sacramento on
February 19, 2016. (ECF No. 1 at 11.) On May 5, 2016,
Defendant removed this action to the United States District
Court for the Eastern District of California, alleging
diversity jurisdiction pursuant to 28 U.S.C. §§
1332 and 1441(b). (ECF No. 1 at 1-2.) Plaintiff filed the
instant motion asserting that Defendant has not met its
burden in showing diversity, specifically that Defendant is a
citizen of Nevada and not California. (ECF No. 6 at 3-4.)
Plaintiff adds that Defendant's Notice of Removal is
deficient because it was not timely filed within 30 days of
service of process. (ECF No. 6 at 5.)
action brought in state court, over which the district court
has original jurisdiction, may be removed by the defendant to
federal court in the judicial district and division in which
the state court action is pending. 28 U.S.C. § 1441(a).
The district court has original jurisdiction over civil
actions between citizens of different states in which the
alleged damages exceed $75, 000. 28 U.S.C. § 1332(a)(1).
The party asserting federal jurisdiction bears the burden of
proving diversity. Lew v. Moss, 797 F.2d 747, 749
(9th Cir. 1986) (citing Resnik v. La Paz Guest
Ranch, 289 F.2d 814, 819 (9th Cir. 1961)). Diversity is
determined as of the time the complaint is filed and removal
effected. Strotek Corp. v. Air Transp. Ass 'n of
Am., 300 F.3d 1129, 1131 (9th Cir. 2002). Once
jurisdiction attaches, a party cannot thereafter, by its own
change of citizenship, destroy diversity. Id. at
1132. Removal statutes are to be strictly construed against
removal. Gaus v. Miles, Inc., 980 F.2d 564, 566 (9th
amount in controversy is determined by reference to the
complaint itself and includes the amount of damages in
dispute, as well as attorney's fees, if authorized by
statute or contract. Kroske v. U.S. Bank Corp., 432
F.3d 976, 980 (9th Cir. 2005). Where the complaint does not
pray for damages in a specific amount, the defendant must
prove by a preponderance of the evidence that the amount in
controversy exceeds $75, 000. Singer v. State Farm Mut.
Auto. Ins. Co., 116 F.3d 373, 376 (9th Cir. 1997)
(citing Sanchez v. Monumental Life Ins. Co., 102
F.3d 398, 404 (9th Cir. 1996)). If the amount is not facially
apparent from the complaint, the Court may “require
parties to submit summary-judgment-type evidence relevant to
the amount in controversy at the time of removal.”
Id. (citing Allen v. R & H Oil & Gas
Co., 63 F.3d 1326, 1335-56 (5th Cir. 1995).
requires that the citizenship of each plaintiff be diverse
from the citizenship of each defendant (i.e., complete
diversity). Caterpillar Inc. v. Lewis, 519 U.S. 61,
68 (1996). For purposes of diversity, a corporation is a
citizen of any state in which it is incorporated and any
state in which it maintains its principal place of business.
28 U.S.C. § 1332(c)(1).
undisputed that Plaintiff is a citizen of California and the
amount in controversy exceeds $75, 000. (ECF Nos. 6 at 3; 12
at 3.) The Court is left to determine Defendant's
citizenship to decide whether the parties are diverse and to
decide whether removal was timely.
Defendant is a citizen of Nevada.
contends that Defendant's Notice of Removal is
insufficient because Defendant has not provided the required
information to determine its corporate citizenship, such as:
“(1) the number of employees it has in each state; (2)
the percentage of its sales originating in each state; and
(3) the percentages of its assets held in each state.”
(ECF No. 6 at 6-7.) Defendant asserts it is a citizen of
Nevada and argues that Plaintiff has applied the wrong legal
test for corporate citizenship. (ECF No. 12 at 2.) The Court
federal diversity jurisdiction statute provides that ‘a
corporation shall be deemed to be a citizen of any State by
which it has been incorporated and of the State where it has
its principal place of business.'” Hertz Corp.
v. Friend, 559 U.S. 77, 80 (2010) (quoting 28 U.S.C.
§ 1332(c)(1)). The Supreme Court has concluded that
“the phrase ‘principal place of business'
refers to the place where the corporation's high level
officers direct, control, and coordinate the
corporation's activities. Lower federal courts have often
metaphorically called that place the corporation's nerve
center.'” Id. at 80‒81.
General Counsel and Vice President of Human Resources has
provided a declaration in support of Defendant's
opposition which provides detail of Defendant's
operation. (ECF No. 13.) Defendant is a corporation organized
and existing under the laws of the State of Nevada and has
been since September 25, 1990. (ECF No. 13 ¶ 2.)
Defendant holds annual stockholder and Board of Directors
meetings, usually in the first quarter of the year. (ECF No.
13 ¶ 2.) These meetings take place at Defendant's
corporate office in Reno, as does Defendant's
twice-annual meetings for its Job Corps Center Directors
during which ...