Romano v. Northrop Grumman Corporation, et al., No. 16-5760 (E.D.N.Y. Dec. 15, 2017).

In this action, while denying the plaintiffs’ motion to remand, a district court in New York found that amending a complaint after removal to eliminate class allegations does not deprive a court of jurisdiction under CAFA.

The plaintiffs brought a putative class action in Nassau County Supreme Court on behalf of current and former residents and property owners of Bethpage, New York, asserting various state law causes of action against the defendants, Northrop Grumman Corporation and Northrop Grumman Systems Corporation (collectively “Northrop”), for injuries and damages allegedly suffered as a result of the release of hazardous substances from its former site, formerly known as the Grumman-Aerospace-Bethpage Facility Site (“the Site”), as well as land donated by Grumman Corporation to the Town of Oyster Bay and currently known as Bethpage Community Park (the “Park”).Continue Reading Post-Removal Amendments Do Not Oust CAFA Jurisdiction

Gonzalez v. Banco Santander, et al., 2017 WL 5957735 (D.P.R. Dec. 1, 2017).

In this action, while denying the plaintiffs’ motion to remand, a district court in Puerto Rico found that the “local controversy” exception to CAFA does not apply if the defendants engaged in conduct that could be alleged to have injured consumers throughout the country, or broadly throughout several states, even if it was filed as a single-state class action.Continue Reading A Single-State Class Action Fails to Qualify for the Local Controversy Exception If the Alleged Conduct Could Have Injured Consumers Throughout the Country

Bell v. Gateway Energy Services Corporation et al., 2017 WL 5956887 (S.D.N.Y. Nov. 29, 2017).

In this action, while granting the defendants’ motion to dismiss for lack of subject matter jurisdiction, a district court in New York found that in absence of direct business relationship, customers cannot arraign a corporation as a defendant.Continue Reading In Absence of Direct Business Relationship, Customers Cannot Arraign a Corporation as a Defendant

Pazol v. Tough Mudder Inc., 2016 WL 1638045 (1st Cir. April 26, 2016)

Lisa C. Pazol, Maria C. Newman, Lisa Russ and Audrey J. Bennet (“Plaintiffs”) were registrants of an extreme obstacle course that was organized by Tough Mudder Incorporated, Tough Mudder, LLC and BK Bridge Events, LLC (“Defendants”). Defendants are business entities that organized physically challenging obstacle courses in various locations in the United States. Plaintiffs registered to participate in one of those events called the “Mudderella”, which was scheduled to take place on September 6, 2014, in Haverhill, Massachusetts.
Continue Reading Unsupported Assumptions Prove Insufficient To Establish Amount In Controversy Under CAFA

Loehn v. Lumber Liquidators Inc., 2016 WL 722002 (E.D. La. Feb. 24, 2016).

Here, the Eastern District of Louisiana denied remand finding that the post-removal event—plaintiffs’ voluntary dismissal of their class claims—did not deprive the court of jurisdiction, which was properly established at the time of removal under CAFA.Continue Reading Post-Removal Dismissal of Class Claims Does Not Eliminate Otherwise-Proper CAFA Jurisdiction

Cowan v. Devon Energy Corporation et al., No. 6:16-cv-00510-SPS (E.D. Ok. Nov. 8, 2017).

In this action, while granting the plaintiff’s motion to remand, a district court in Oklahoma found that in determining the six enumerated factors for the application of the discretionary exception, a ‘neutral’ factor should not weigh against remand.

The plaintiff, an oil and gas well owner, brought a putative class action in Pittsburg County, Oklahoma alleging that the defendants, operator of the well, violated Oklahoma statute that required payment of interest on delayed payment of revenue from oil and gas production. The plaintiff alleged that the defendants routinely delayed payment of production proceeds and denied owners the interest payments to which they were entitled as part of an overarching scheme to avoid its obligations under the Oklahoma Law.Continue Reading A “Neutral” Factor Under 28 U.S.C. § 1332(D)(3)(A)-(F) Should Not Count Against Remand

Roberts v. Mars Petcare US Inc., No. 17-6122 (6th Cir. Nov. 2, 2017).

In this action, while reversing a district court’s denial of the plaintiff’s motion to remand, the Sixth Circuit found that a corporation cannot rely on its State of incorporation and ignore its principal place of business to create diversity under CAFA.

The plaintiff, a citizen of Tennessee, brought a putative class action on behalf of Tennessee citizens in Tennessee state court against the defendant, a citizen of Tennessee and Delaware, alleging that the defendant conspired with other pet food manufacturers, veterinarian chains, and a retailer to employ a “prescription-authorization requirement” to sell pet food at above market prices in violation of the Tennessee Trade Practices Act.Continue Reading Section 1332(C)(1) Refers To Dual, Not Alternative, Citizenship For Corporations

Cedar Lodge Plantation LLC et al. v. CSHV Fairway View II LLC ,768 F.3d 425 (5th Cir. 2014).

The Fifth Circuit reversed an order remanding a class action to state court, holding that the application of the local controversy exception depends on the pleadings at the time the class action is removed, not on an amended complaint filed after removal.

The plaintiffs brought a putative class action on behalf of individuals and entities who were living or had lived, or who worked or owned property, in the immediate vicinity of an apartment complex. The original complaint alleged that the defendants, a group of apartment-owning and managing entities (the “Fairway Defendants”) exposed plaintiffs to underground sewage leaks that discharged higher than permitted levels of contaminants and hazardous substances.
Continue Reading Local Controversy Exception to CAFA Cannot Be Invoked On the Basis of Post-Removal Amendments

Watson v. City of Allen, Tex., 821 F.3d 634 (5th Cir. 2016).

In Watson, the Fifth Circuit held that a plaintiff timely filed his motion to remand under the “local controversy” and “home state” exceptions to the Class Action Fairness Act, 28 USC 1332(d)(4)(A), (B). The court reasoned that these exceptions do not fall within the thirty-day deadline set by 28 U.S.C. § 1447(c), so remand motions based on sections (d)(4)(A) and (B) need only be brought within a reasonable time.Continue Reading Remand Motions Invoking CAFA Exceptions Must Be Brought Within A “Reasonable Time”

Lauren_Hall_v__Welch_Foods__Inc__et_al., 2017 WL 4422418 (D.N.J. Oct. 5, 2017).

In this action, while denying Plaintiff Lauren Hall’s (“Plaintiff”) motion to remand, the United States District Court, District of New Jersey (the “District Court”), found post-removal amendments to a complaint which changes the nature or scope of the class have no bearing on the jurisdictional question.Continue Reading The Operative Complaint at the Time of Removal Governs CAFA Jurisdiction