United States District Court, E.D. California
ORDER TO SHOW CAUSE WHY THIS CASE SHOULD NOT BE
DISMISSED FOR LACK OF SUBJECT MATTER JURISDICTION FOURTEEN
DAY DEADLINE (DOC. 1)
K. OBERTO UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
Gabriel Martinez, appearing pro se, filed a
Complaint on July 8, 2019. (Doc. 1). From the Court's
initial review of the Complaint, it appears that the Court
lacks subject matter jurisdiction to consider the claims.
courts are courts of limited jurisdiction and lack inherent
or general subject matter jurisdiction. Federal courts can
adjudicate only those cases which the United States
Constitution and Congress authorize them to adjudicate.
Kokkonen v. Guardian Life Ins. Co., 511 U.S. 375
(1994). To proceed in federal court, a plaintiffs pleading
must establish the existence of subject matter jurisdiction.
Generally, there are two potential bases for federal subject
matter jurisdiction: (1) federal question jurisdiction, or
(2) diversity jurisdiction.
case ‘arises under' federal law either where
federal law creates the cause of action or ‘where the
vindication of a right under state law necessarily turn[s] on
some construction of federal law.'” Republican
Party of Guam v. Gutierrez, 277 F.3d 1086, 1088-89 (9th
Cir. 2002), quoting Franchise Tax Bd. v. Construction
Laborers Vacation Trust, 463 U.S. 1, 8-9 (1983). The
presence or absence of federal question jurisdiction is
governed by the “well-pleaded complaint rule.”
Caterpillar, Inc. v. Williams, 482 U.S. 386, 392
(1987). Under the well-pleaded complaint rule, “federal
jurisdiction exists only when a federal question is presented
on the face of the plaintiff's properly pleaded
the Complaint does not appear to contain any allegation of a
violation arising under the Constitution, federal law, or
treaties of the United States. Instead, Plaintiffs apparent
claims, breach of contract (see Doc. 1), arise under
state law and do not invoke federal subject matter
jurisdiction. See Hall v. North American Van Lines,
Inc., 476 F.3d 683, 686 (9th Cir. 2007).
under 28 U.S.C. § 1332, federal district courts have
original jurisdiction over civil actions in diversity cases
“where the matter in controversy exceeds the sum or
value of $75, 000” and where the matter is between
“citizens of different states.” 28 U.S.C. §
1332. “Subject matter jurisdiction based upon diversity
of citizenship requires that no defendant have the same
citizenship as any plaintiff.” Tosco Corp. v.
Communities for a Better Env't, 236 F.3d 495, 499
(9th Cir.2001) (per curiam), abrogated on other grounds by
Hertz Corp. v. Friend, 559 U.S. 77 (2010), citing 28
U.S.C. § 1332(a). “A plaintiff suing in federal
court must show in his pleading, affirmatively and
distinctly, the existence of whatever is essential to federal
jurisdiction, and, if he does not do so, the court . . . on
discovering the [defect], must dismiss the case, unless the
defect be corrected by amendment.” Id.
(quoting Smith v. McCullough, 270 U.S. 456 (1926)).
does not make any allegation that diversity jurisdiction
exists. Kanter v. Warner-Lambert Co., 265 F.3d 853,
857-858 (9th Cir. 2001) (“the party asserting diversity
jurisdiction bears the burden of proof”). To the
contrary, the Civil Cover Sheet attached to the Complaint
alleges that Plaintiff and Defendant are both residents of
Fresno County, California (see Doc. 1-1), which
destroys the requisite complete diversity in this case.
See Cook v. AVI Casino Enterprises, Inc., 548 F.3d
718, 722 (9th Cir. 2008) (citing Caterpillar, Inc. v.
Lewis, 519 U.S. 61, 68 (1996) (stating that diversity
jurisdiction requires “complete diversity of
Court has an independent duty to consider its own subject
matter jurisdiction, whether or not the issue is raised by
the parties, and must dismiss an action over which it lacks
jurisdiction. See Morongo Band of Mission Indians v. Cal.
State Bd. of Equalization, 858 F.2d 1376, 1380 (9th Cir.
1988); Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(h)(3); see also Cal. Diversified
Promotions, Inc. v. Musick, 505 F.2d 278, 280 (9th Cir.
1974) (“It has long been held that a judge can dismiss
sua sponte for lack of jurisdiction.”). Here,
it appears that the Court would lack subject matter
jurisdiction over the claims in the Complaint. Therefore,
Plaintiff is ORDERED to SHOW CAUSE why this case should not
be dismissed for lack of subject matter jurisdiction.
Plaintiff shall file a written response within fourteen (14)
days of this Order. Alternatively, Plaintiff may elect to
file a notice of dismissal of this action instead of filing a
response to this Order.
Court further CAUTIONS Plaintiff that, if he fails to take
action as set forth above within fourteen (14) days of the
date of service of this Order, the Court will recommend to