Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. v. Hall et al

Filing 5

ORDER Remanding Case. Defendants have failed to establish this Court's subject matter jurisdiction over this action. Therefore, the Court Remands this action to the Superior Court of California, County of San Diego. Defendants also filed a motion for leave to proceed in forma pauperis (ECF Nos. 2 and 3 ). Because the Court remands this action to state court, Defendants' motion is Denied as moot. Signed by Judge Barry Ted Moskowitz on 8/23/2017. (Certified copy sent to Superior Court). (All non-registered users served via U.S. Mail Service)(mxn)

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1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT 9 SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA 10 11 37-02017-00015952-CL-UD-CTL WELLS FARGO BANK, N.A., Plaintiff, 12 13 ORDER REMANDING CASE v. 14 Case No.: 17-cv-1528-BTM-NLS HALL, et. al., 15 Defendant. 16 17 On July 27, 2017, James Hall and Mary Hall (“Defendants”), defendants in 18 an unlawful detainer action originally filed in the Superior Court of California, 19 County of San Diego, filed a Notice of Removal removing the action to this Court. 20 (Notice of Removal, ECF No. 1.) The Court finds that Defendants’ Notice of 21 Removal fails to establish that this Court has subject matter jurisdiction over the 22 removed action, and accordingly REMANDS the action to state court. 23 Subject to exceptions not applicable here, “any civil action brought in a 24 State court of which the district courts of the United States have original 25 jurisdiction, may be removed by the defendant or the defendants, to the district 26 court of the United States for the district court and division embracing the place 27 where such action is pending.” 28 U.S.C. § 1441(a). The removal statute is 28 strictly construed against removal jurisdiction, and the removing defendant bears 1 17-cv-1528-BTM-NLS 1 the burden of establishing federal jurisdiction. California ex rel. Lockyer v. 2 Dynegy, Inc., 375 F.3d 831, 838 (9th Cir. 2004). 3 “Congress has given the lower federal courts jurisdiction to hear, originally 4 or by removal from a state court, only those cases in which a well-pleaded 5 complaint establishes either that federal law creates the cause of action or that 6 the plaintiff’s right to relief necessarily depends on resolution of a substantial 7 question of federal law.” Franchise Tax Bd. Of State of Calif. V. Constr. Laborers 8 Vacation Tr. for S. Calif., 463 U.S. 1, 27–28 (1983). Whether a case “arises 9 under” federal law thus turns on the nature of the claims asserted in plaintiff’s 10 complaint. See id. at 10 (“For better or worse . . . a defendant may not remove a 11 case to federal court unless the plaintiff’s complaint establishes that the case 12 ‘arises under’ federal law.”). “A federal defense, however, is ‘inadequate to 13 confer federal jurisdiction.’” Dennis v. Hart, 724 F.3d 1249, 1253 (9th Cir. 2013) 14 (quoting Merrell Dow Pharm. Inc. v. Thompson, 478 U.S. 804, 808 (1986)). 15 Here, Plaintiff filed a complaint asserting only a cause of action for unlawful 16 detainer under California state law. The complaint therefore does not state a 17 federal claim, nor does the asserted cause of action rest on federal law. 18 Defendants assert that a federal question exists because their demurrer depends 19 on the determination of their rights and Plaintiff’s duties under federal law. 20 However, the law is clear that federal defenses do not confer federal question 21 jurisdiction. Dennis, 724 F.3d at 1253. 22 The removing defendant bears the burden of establishing that removal is 23 proper, and the Court resolves all ambiguity in favor of remand to state court. 24 Matheson v. Progressive Specialty Ins. Co., 319 F.3d 1089, 1090 (9th Cir. 2003) 25 (“Where doubt regarding the right to removal exists, a case should be remanded 26 to state court.”). Defendants have failed to establish this Court’s subject matter 27 jurisdiction over this action. Therefore, the Court REMANDS this action to the 28 Superior Court of California, County of San Diego. 2 17-cv-1528-BTM-NLS 1 Defendants also filed a motion for leave to proceed in forma pauperis. 2 Because the Court remands this action to state court, Defendants’ motion is 3 DENIED as moot. 4 IT IS SO ORDERED. 5 6 Dated: August 23, 2017 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 3 17-cv-1528-BTM-NLS

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