Johnson v. Rotisabjiinc

Filing 16


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1 2 UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT 3 NORTHERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA 4 SAN JOSE DIVISION 5 6 SCOTT JOHNSON, Plaintiff, 7 8 9 10 United States District Court Northern District of California 11 Case No. 5:22-cv-01167-EJD ORDER TO SHOW CAUSE WHY THE COURT SHOULD EXERCISE SUPPLEMENTAL JURISDICTION AND WHY SUBJECT MATTER JURISDICTION EXISTS v. ROTISABJIINC, Defendant. 1. Federal courts may decline to exercise supplemental jurisdiction over a state law claim 12 “in exceptional circumstances.” 28 U.S.C. § 1367(c)(4). When a “high-frequency” litigant asserts 13 a California Unruh Act claim in federal court alongside an ADA claim, this will typically 14 constitute an exceptional circumstance that justifies dismissal of the Unruh Act claim. See Arroyo 15 v. Rosas, 19 F.4th 1202, 1211–14 (9th Cir. 2021); Garcia v. Maciel, 2022 WL 395316, at *2–5 16 (N.D. Cal. Feb. 9, 2022); Johnson v. Right Crons Inc., 2021 WL 3565441 (N.D. Cal. Aug. 11, 17 2021). Plaintiff is therefore ordered to show cause why this Court should not decline to exercise 18 supplemental jurisdiction over the Unruh Act claim. 19 In the interests of efficiency, assuming the Court declines to exercise supplemental 20 jurisdiction over the Unruh Act claim, it is not obvious whether Plaintiff would want to continue 21 pursuing his ADA claim in this Court, rather than proceeding on his Unruh Act claim and ADA 22 claim in state court. Plaintiff is therefore ordered to inform the Court whether he would prefer to 23 dismiss his ADA claim to proceed on that claim in state court with his Unruh Act claim. 24 2. With respect to Plaintiff’s ADA claim, federal courts “have an independent obligation to 25 determine whether subject-matter jurisdiction exists, even in the absence of a challenge from any 26 party.” Arbaugh v. Y&H Corp., 546 U.S. 500, 514 (2006). Consistent with that independent 27 obligation, Plaintiff is ordered to show cause why this case should not be dismissed for lack of 28 Case No.: 5:22-cv-01167-EJD ORDER TO SHOW CAUSE 1 1 Article III standing. In response, both Plaintiff and Plaintiff’s counsel must submit separate 2 declarations sworn under penalty of perjury. Plaintiff’s declaration must substantiate the 3 jurisdictional allegations as to Plaintiff’s intent to return to Defendant’s establishment. 4 Furthermore, considering the well-pled allegations by the San Francisco and Los Angeles District 5 Attorneys regarding the conduct of the Potter Handy firm and its clients, these declarations must 6 substantiate, in detail, the allegations that Plaintiff visited the establishment in the first place. See 7 Complaint, People of the State of California v. Potter Handy LLP, No. CGC-22-599079 (Cal. 8 Super. Ct. 2022), 2022 WL 1102496. Counsel’s declaration must describe, in detail, the 9 investigation counsel conducted to ensure that their client visited the establishment and intends to 10 United States District Court Northern District of California 11 return there. 3. Assuming the Court finds the jurisdictional allegations contained in the declarations to 12 be facially adequate, Defendant shall have the option to conduct jurisdictional discovery. If 13 Defendant opts for jurisdictional discovery, they will be permitted to take discovery on Plaintiff’s 14 intent to return and whether Plaintiff did, in fact, personally visit Defendant’s establishment. 15 Regardless of whether jurisdictional discovery takes place, the Court will likely schedule an in- 16 person evidentiary hearing to test the veracity of the jurisdictional allegations submitted in 17 response to this order to show cause. 18 Plaintiff and counsel must respond within 21 days of this order. Failure to respond and 19 failure to appear in-person will result in a dismissal of this action with prejudice. In the 20 meantime, all other deadlines are vacated in this case and the parties are temporarily relieved from 21 the requirements of General Order 56. 22 IT IS SO ORDERED. 23 Dated: July 29, 2022 24 EDWARD J. DAVILA United States District Judge 25 26 27 28 Case No.: 5:22-cv-01167-EJD ORDER TO SHOW CAUSE 2

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