Boutwell, et al v. Walker, et al (MAG+)
OPINION AND ORDER directing that the 18 motion to amend complaint is DENIED. Signed by Honorable Judge Myron H. Thompson on 4/22/13. (scn, )
IN THE DISTRICT COURT OF THE UNITED STATES FOR THE
MIDDLE DISTRICT OF ALABAMA, NORTHERN DIVISION
PAMELA J. BOUTWELL and
J. CLARK WALKER, et al.,
CIVIL ACTION NO.
OPINION AND ORDER
Now pending before the court is the motion to amend
the complaint filed by plaintiffs Pamela J. Boutwell and
The plaintiffs seek to amend their complaint to add
state-law claims for breach of contract and negligence.
They may also be attempting to state a claim under the
Alabama Legal Services Liability Act, 1975 Ala. Code
§ 6-5-570 et seq.
See 1975 Ala. Code § 6-5-573 (“There
shall be only one form and cause of action against legal
service providers in courts in the State of Alabama and it
shall be known as the legal service liability action and
shall have the meaning as defined herein.”).
plaintiffs’ proposed amended claims do not arise under
federal law, the claims do not fall within this court’s
federal-question jurisdiction. Smith v. GTE Corp., 236
F.3d 1292, 1310 (11th Cir. 2001) (“Under the federal
district court has subject matter jurisdiction over ‘all
civil actions arising under the Constitution, laws, or
treaties of the United States.’”).
As a jurisdictional basis for the amended claims, the
plaintiffs cite the amount in controversy and the fact
that “this case has Defendants in more than one State.”
Mot. to Amend (Doc. 18-1 p. 1).
Under 28 U.S.C. § 1332,
this court has original jurisdiction over civil actions
where the matter in controversy is between citizens of
different States and exceeds the sum or value of $ 75,000.
However, § 1332 “requir[es] complete diversity: In a case
with multiple plaintiffs and multiple defendants, the
presence in the action of a single plaintiff from the same
State as a single defendant deprives the district court of
original diversity jurisdiction over the entire action.”
Exxon Mobil Corp. v. Allapattah Servs., Inc., 545 U.S.
546, 553 (2005); see Strawbridge v. Curtiss, 3 Cranch 267,
2 L. Ed. 435 (1806) (establishing the rule of complete
In this case, complete diversity is lacking
because the plaintiffs and at least one of the defendants
are Alabama citizens.
Mot. to Amend (Doc. 18 p. 2).
Because the court has no subject-matter jurisdiction
over the proposed amended complaint, the motion to amend
should be denied as futile. Hall v. United Ins. Co. of
complaint under Rule 15(a) when such amendment would be
Accordingly, it is ORDERED that the plaintiffs’ motion
to amend (Doc. 18) is denied.
DONE, this the 22nd day of April, 2013.
/s/ Myron H. Thompson
UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
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