Gilmore v. Bayer Corporation, 2009 WL 4789406 (S.D. Ill. Dec. 9, 2009)
We seasoned CAFA Law Blog analysts know that when it comes to remand opinions, the stuff of life is in the footnotes. In Gilmore, 19 plaintiffs, including 2 who were co-executors of the estate of a deceased party, filed suit in Illinois state court against various Bayer entities for injuries caused by the drug Trasylol.
The defendants removed, but the case was remanded for lack of subject matter jurisdiction. Shortly thereafter, an amended complaint was filed adding 81 new plaintiffs, and the defendants again removed. This time, the case stuck, based on the court’s independent analysis of the “mass action” provisions of CAFA.
The court had an easy time determining that 1) minimum diversity existed based in part on the dual citizenship of Bayer, and 2) each plaintiff’s claims exceeded $75,000 in controversy based on findings in similar cases. To find 100 plaintiffs, as required under the mass action provision, the court dropped a footnote stating that for purposes of CAFA’s mass action provision, the two co-executors were both real parties in interest based on their individual wrongful death claims, notwithstanding that their claims arose from injuries to the same deceased party.
My question is this. Why in the HELL were exactly 81 plaintiffs added? Did nobody read CAFA? Did the backup battery go dead in the removal warning strobe beacon attached to the computer of the hapless paralegal making the damn spreadsheet of all their new clients? What the ?????? Somebody get me an aspirin.