Nails v. Cambridge Insurance Company

Filing 3

MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER that this case is dismissed without prejudice for want of subject matter jurisdiction. Signed by Judge Mark E. Fuller on 9/21/06. (sl, )

Download PDF
Nails v. Cambridge Insurance Company Doc. 3 Case 1:06-cv-00820-MEF-DRB Document 3 Filed 09/21/2006 Page 1 of 4 IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT F O R THE MIDDLE DISTRICT OF ALABAMA S O U T H E R N DIVISION A N G E L A DENISE NAILS, ) ) P L A IN T IF F , ) ) v. ) C A S E NO.: 1:06-cv-820-MEF ) C A M B R ID G E INSURANCE COMPANY, ) (WO-Not Recommended for Publication) ) DEFEND AN T. ) M E M O R A N D U M OPINION AND ORDER P la in tif f has filed a motion seeking to proceed in forma pauperis in this action (Doc. # 2). Upon consideration of the motion, it is O R D E R E D that the motion to proceed in forma pauperis is GRANTED. Upon re v ie w of the complaint filed in this case, the court concludes that dismissal of the complaint p rio r to service of process is appropriate under 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B).1 A n g e la Denise Nails ("Nails") filed this suit against Cambridge Insurance Company (" C a m b r id g e " ) on September 13, 2006. Nails, a citizen of Alabama, brings suit against the C a m b r id g e , an insurance company alleged to be also a corporate citizen of Alabama. A c c o rd in g to the allegations of the Complaint, this is an action by which Nails is seeking to m a k e a claim for workers compensation benefits from Cambridge, which is alleged to be the The statute provides, in pertinent part: "[T]he court shall dismiss the case at any tim e if the court determines that . . . the action or appeal­ (i) is frivolous or malicious, (ii) f a ils to state a claim on which relief may be granted; or (iii) seeks monetary relief against a d ef en d an t who is immune from such relief." 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B). 1 Case 1:06-cv-00820-MEF-DRB Document 3 Filed 09/21/2006 Page 2 of 4 liab ility insurance company for workers compensation coverage for Manpower Temporary S e rv ic e s. Nails alleges that she was injured on the job while employed by Manpower T e m p o r a ry Services.2 A federal court is a court of limited of jurisdiction. Kokkonen v. Guardian Life Ins., 5 1 1 U.S. 375, 377 (1994). That is, a federal court is authorized to entertain only certain a c tio n s which the Constitution or Congress has authorized it to hear. Id. "It is to be p re su m e d that a cause lies outside this limited jurisdiction, ..., and the burden of establishing th e contrary rests upon the party asserting jurisdiction,...." Id. (citations omitted). Therefore, a plaintiff is required by Rule 8(a)(1) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure to allege in his c o m p la in t "a short and plain statement of the grounds upon which the court's jurisdiction d e p e n d s." Indeed, a federal court's jurisdiction must be established by a plaintiff in the c o m p la in t by stating the basis of the court's jurisdiction and by pleading facts that d e m o n s tra te the existence of jurisdiction. Taylor v. Appleton, 30 F.3d 1365, 1367 (11 th Cir. 1 9 9 4 ); Kirkland Masonry, Inc. v. Comm'r, 614 F.2d 532, 533 (5 th Cir. 1980) (same).3 P r o se litigants are not excused from compliance with the Federal Rules of Civil P r o c e d u re . Although the court is required to liberally construe a pro se litigant's pleadings, Plaintiff has filed at least one other lawsuit against Manpower Temporary Services re la tin g to the injuries she allegedly suffered. This lawsuit was dismissed by this court for w a n t of subject matter jurisdiction. In Bonner v. City of Prichard, Ala., 661 F.2d 1206, 1209 (11 th Cir. Nov. 3, 1981) (e n banc), the Eleventh Circuit adopted as binding precedent all Fifth Circuit decisions h a n d e d down prior to the close of business on September 30, 1981. 2 3 2 Case 1:06-cv-00820-MEF-DRB Document 3 Filed 09/21/2006 Page 3 of 4 th e court does not have "license to serve as de facto counsel for a party ..., or to re-write an o th e rw is e deficient pleading in order to sustain an action...." GJR Investments, Inc. v. County o f Escambia, Fla., 132 F.3d 1359, 1369 (11 th Cir. 1998). Consequently, a court may not e x c u se a pro se litigant from the requirement of stating the basis for the court's jurisdiction in her pleadings. "[O]nce a court determines that there has been no [Congressional] grant th a t covers a particular case, the court's sole remaining act is to dismiss the case for lack of ju ris d ic tio n ." Morrison v. Allstate Indemnity Co ., 228 F.3d 1255, 1261 (11 th Cir. 2000). A c c o r d , Barnett v. Bailey, 956 F.2d 1036, 1039-41 (11 th Cir.1992) (holding that a court is re q u ire d to examine its jurisdiction over an action at any time and dismiss an action sua sp o n te for lack of subject matter jurisdiction if jurisdiction is not found). Indeed, Federal R u le of Civil Procedure 12(h)(3) specifically provides that "[w]henever it appears by s u g g e s tio n of the parties or otherwise that the court lack jurisdiction of the subject matter, the court shall dismiss the action." Fed. R. Civ. P. 12(h)(3) (emphasis added). A f te r a careful review of the Complaint (Doc. # 1), the Court finds that Nails has fa iled to articulate any conceivable basis for federal subject matter jurisdiction. Moreover, g iv e n that this action is an action seeking workers compensation between private parties who a ll are citizens of Alabama, the Court cannot imagine any possible, but as yet unarticulated b a sis for federal subject matter jurisdiction over this action. Neither the United States C o n s titu tio n , nor any act of Congress authorizes this Court to entertain this cause of action. A c c o rd in g ly, it is hereby ORDERED that this case is DISMISSED WITHOUT PREJUDICE 3 Case 1:06-cv-00820-MEF-DRB Document 3 Filed 09/21/2006 Page 4 of 4 f o r want of subject matter jurisdiction. DONE this the 21 st day of September, 2006. /s/ Mark E. Fuller CHIEF UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE 4

Disclaimer: Justia Dockets & Filings provides public litigation records from the federal appellate and district courts. These filings and docket sheets should not be considered findings of fact or liability, nor do they necessarily reflect the view of Justia.

Why Is My Information Online?