Stillwater Property and Casualty Insurance Company v Xuan Hong et al

Filing 13

MEMORANDUM Order Signed by the Honorable Milton I. Shadur on 2/13/2017:Mailed notice(clw, )

Download PDF
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE NORTHERN DISTRICT OF ILLINOIS EASTERN DIVISION STILLWATER PROPERTY AND CASUALTY INSURANCE COMPANY, Plaintiff, v. XUAN HONG, PEI HONG and ADELA CUEVAS, Defendants. ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) Case No. 16 C 9613 MEMORANDUM ORDER Stillwater Property and Casualty Insurance Company ("Stillwater") has filed this Complaint for Declaratory Judgment against its insureds Xuan Hong and Pei Hong (collectively "Hongs") and Adela Cuevas ("Cuevas"), seeking to invoke federal subject matter jurisdiction in diversity-of-citizenship terms. Complaint ¶ 4 alleges that Cuevas has filed a personal injury action against Hongs in the Circuit Court of Cook County, asserting that she was the victim of a dog bite by Hong's German Shepherd. But quite apart from disclosing that their client Stillwater gets an "F" grade in spelling (its policy refers to the dog's breed as "Sheperd"), its counsel's Complaint discloses that they or their client (or both) failed the requirement of due diligence by alleging this as to the requisite amount in controversy (Complaint ¶5): On information and belief, the amount in controversy in said personal injury lawsuit is in excess of $75,000.00. But all that Cuevas' Circuit Court Complaint alleged, other than adverting to her having sustained "severe injuries," was that the amount sought in the lawsuit was "a dollar amount sufficient to satisfy the jurisdictional limits of this Court" -- and though the quite different jurisdictional limits of this federal court might have created a belief that more than $75,000 was in controversy, as to information an inquiry directed to the Hongs before filing suit would have revealed, as their Answer ¶ 6 stated: Defendants deny the allegations contained in this paragraph and further state the Plaintiff in the underlying case, Adela Cuevas, has made a written demand to settle her claim in the amount of $35,000. Haste makes waste, and a lawsuit that fails to check out the basis for a party's allegation of information as well as a statement of its belief has resulted here in the payment of a wasted $400 filing fee. This action must be and is dismissed sua sponte for the lack of federal subject matter jurisdiction. __________________________________________ Milton I. Shadur Senior United States District Judge Date: February 13, 2017

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?