College of Dental Surgeons of Puerto Rico v. Triple S Management Inc., 2009 WL 1076308 (D.Puerto Rico).

The plaintiffs in this case are either very smart or enjoy Puerto Rican rum too much. Lord knows there is plenty of Puerto Rican rum to choose from.

The defendants (insurance companies, health services, and medical plan organizations that contract with dentists to provide services to clients in Puerto Rico) removed this case to federal court based on CAFA. Unfortunately for them, it did not stay in federal court.

The court granted the plaintiff’s motion to remand because “Plaintiff ha[d] not defined a class under Federal pleading requirements” therefore this case was not a class action and did not meet the federal jurisdiction requirements of CAFA. 

The plaintiff did not define a class in the complaint, and described itself as “‘a legal entity…which by law mandatorily includes every professional who practices dental surgery in Puerto Rico, that is, every dentist.’” The plaintiff also alleged to represent “‘the dentistry class in Puerto Rico.’” 

Based on the ambiguous statements in the complaint, the court determined that the plaintiff did not state exactly “who it purports to represent as a part of the current lawsuit” and that this suit was not a class action.

By:  Erica Arbona