Sanzo v. Sanzo
ORDER denying 16 Motion to Remand to State Court. Signed by Judge Stefan R. Underhill on 8/16/2013. (Carter, J.)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
DISTRICT OF CONNECTICUT
No. 3:13-cv-686 (SRU)
RULING ON MOTION TO REMAND
The pro-se plaintiff, David Sanzo (“the plaintiff”), a citizen of Nevada, brought this
action in Connecticut Superior Court against the defendant, Kathleen Sanzo (“the defendant”), a
citizen of Maryland. The defendant subsequently removed the action to federal court on the
basis of diversity jurisdiction. See Notice of Removal (doc. # 1). Now before the court is the
plaintiff’s motion to remand. For the reasons that follow, the plaintiff’s motion (doc. # 16) is
“The federal removal statute allows a defendant to remove an action to the United States
District Court in ‘any civil action brought in a State court of which the district courts of the
United States have original jurisdiction.’” Bounds v. Pine Belt Mental Health Care Res., 593
F.3d 209, 215 (2d Cir. 2010) (quoting 28 U.S.C. § 1441(a)). The party seeking removal bears
the burden of establishing federal jurisdiction. United Food & Commercial Workers Union v.
CenterMark Props. Meriden Square, Inc., 30 F.3d 298, 301 (2d Cir. 1994).
“In general, under 28 U.S.C. §§ 1332(a)(1) and 1441(a), a defendant may remove to
federal court any civil action brought in state court where parties are citizens of different states
and the amount in controversy exceeds $75,000, exclusive of interest and costs.” Am. Standard,
Inc. v. Oakfabco, Inc., 498 F. Supp. 2d 711, 717 (S.D.N.Y. 2007). The Second Circuit has held
that it is a well-settled principle that “[i]t must appear to a legal certainty that the claim is really
for less than the jurisdictional amount to justify dismissal.” Chase Manhattan Bank, N.A. v. Am.
Nat. Bank & Trust Co. of Chicago, 93 F.3d 1064, 1070 (2d Cir. 1996) (citing St. Paul Mercury
Indem. Co. v. Red Cab Co., 303 U.S. 283, 288-89 (1938)).
The plaintiff does not dispute diversity of citizenship, but rather claims that the amount in
controversy does not meet the jurisdictional threshold of $75,000. In Count One of the
Complaint, however, the plaintiff alleged a claim for loss of expectancy of inheritance of an
estate that, at the time of his mother’s death, was a “multimillion dollar estate with 17 fully paid
for properties.” See Complaint, Count One ¶ 6. As the plaintiff is one of five heirs, even one
fifth of that estate would amount to over $75,000.
In light of the above, and based on the allegations raised in the complaint, I conclude that
the amount in controversy exceeds $75,000. Therefore, the defendant has met her burden, both
with respect to diversity of citizenship and amount in controversy.
In sum, the plaintiff’s motion for remand (doc. # 16) is DENIED.
It is so ordered.
Dated at Bridgeport, Connecticut, this 16th day of August 2013.
/s/ Stefan R. Underhill
Stefan R. Underhill
United States District Judge
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