CouponCabin LLC v. Does 1 through 10
OPINION AND ORDER: Counterclaimant Sazze Inc ORDERED to submit by 11/15/2016 a jurisdictional statement and supporting brief as outlined in Order. Signed by Judge Theresa L Springmann on 10/17/16. (cer)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
NORTHERN DISTRICT OF INDIANA
SAVINGS.COM, INC., COX TARGET
MEDIA, INC., LINFIELD MEDIA, LLC, )
INTERNET BRANDS, INC., SAZZE, INC. )
d/b/a DEALSPLUS, and
Does 1 through 10,
SAZZE, INC. d/b/a DEALSPLUS,
CAUSE NO.: 2:14-CV-39-TLS
OPINION AND ORDER
This matter is before the Court sua sponte. The Court must continuously police its
subject-matter jurisdiction. Hay v. Ind. State Bd. of Tax Comm’rs, 312 F.3d 876, 879 (7th Cir.
The Counterclaimant alleges that the Court’s original subject-matter jurisdiction is based
on diversity of citizenship under 28 U.S.C. § 1332. Diversity jurisdiction exists when the parties
to an action on each side are citizens of different states, with no defendant a citizen of the same
state as any plaintiff, and the amount in controversy exceeds $75,000. 28 U.S.C. § 1332(a)(1). In
this case, the parties dispute whether the amount in controversy exceeds $75,000.
As for diversity of citizenship, the Counterclaimant is a corporation and the Counterclaim
Defendant is a limited liability company. A limited liability company is analogous to a
partnership and takes the citizenship of its members. Belleville Catering Co. v. Champaign Mkt.
Place, LLC, 350 F.3d 691, 692 (7th Cir. 2003). If the members of the limited liability company
are themselves limited liability companies, the counterclaimant must also plead the citizenship of
those members as of the date the counterclaim was filed. Thomas v. Guardsmark, LLC, 487 F.3d
531, 534 (7th Cir. 2007) (“[A]n LLC’s jurisdictional statement must identify the citizenship of
each of its members as of the date the complaint or notice of removal was filed, and, if those
members have members, the citizenship of those members as well.”). A corporation, however, is
deemed to be a citizen of every state and foreign state in which it has been incorporated and the
state or foreign state where it has its principal place of business. 28 U.S.C. § 1332(c)(1). The
term “principal place of business” refers to the corporation’s “nerve center,” that is, the place
where a corporation’s officers direct, control, and coordinate the corporation’s activities. Hertz
Corp. v. Friend, 559 U.S. 77, 92–93 (2010). Counterclaimant Sazze, Inc., invoked this Court’s
diversity jurisdiction by filing an Indiana state law claim in its federal court Counterclaim. As the
party seeking federal jurisdiction, Sazze, Inc., has the burden of establishing that subject-matter
jurisdiction exists. Smart v. Local 702 Int’l Bhd. of Elec. Workers, 562 F.3d 798, 802–03 (7th
There is insufficient information for the Court to determine the citizenship of
Counterclaim Defendant CouponCabin LLC, which is necessary to determine whether this
Counterclaim properly invokes this Court’s diversity jurisdiction. 28 U.S.C. § 1332. The
Counterclaim Defendant “is a Delaware limited liability company and . . . its principal place of
business is in Whiting, Indiana.” (Counterclaim ¶ 10, ECF No. 93.) This description is
insufficient for the Court to confirm diversity of citizenship. “Limited liability companies are
unincorporated entities, and, for diversity purposes, ‘limited liability companies are citizens of
every state of which any member is a citizen.’” Commonwealth Ins. Co. v. Titan Tire Corp., 398
F.3d 879, 881 n.1 (7th Cir. 2004). The Counterclaimant has not identified the members of
CouponCabin LLC, which is necessary to confirm that diversity of citizenship exists over the
Counterclaim. Wise v. Wachovia Sec., LLC, 450 F.3d 265, 267 (7th Cir. 2006).
The Court will also highlight that it is not the residency of an individual or a limited
liability company that matters, but rather the citizenship of the individual or limited liability
company. See Meyerson v. Harrah’s E. Chi. Casino, 299 F.3d 616, 617 (7th Cir. 2002) (per
curiam). An individual’s citizenship depends on his or her domicile. See id. Domicile is the place
one intends to remain. Dakuras v. Edwards, 312 F.3d 256, 258 (7th Cir. 2002). As noted above,
the citizenship of a limited liability company is the citizenship of each of its members, which in
turn may be another limited liability company, an individual, or a corporation.
Therefore, the Court ORDERS Counterclaimant Sazze, Inc., to submit, on or before,
November 15, 2016, a jurisdictional statement and supporting brief providing:
(1) the members of CouponCabin LLC; and
(2) the citizenship of the members of CouponCabin LLC.
SO ORDERED on October 17, 2016.
s/ Theresa L. Springmann
THERESA L. SPRINGMANN
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FORT WAYNE DIVISION
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