Cummings v NYMT Loan Financing Trust et al
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER - IT IS THEREFORE ORDERED BY THE COURT that this case is remanded for lack of subject matter jurisdiction. The Clerk shall remand this case to the Wyandotte County, Kansas District Court. Signed by Chief District Judge Julie A. Robinson on 1/5/2021. (ca)
Case 2:20-cv-02664-JAR-JPO Document 7 Filed 01/06/21 Page 1 of 3
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE DISTRICT OF KANSAS
PAMELA L. CUMMINGS,
Case No. 20-2664-JAR-JPO
NYMT LOAN FINANCING TRUST, et al.,
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
On December 31, 2020, Pamela Cummings filed a pro se Notice of Removal, purporting
to remove this action from the Wyandotte County, Kansas District Court. The original Notice of
Removal contains handwritten strikethroughs of the party titles in the caption, changing
Cummings’ title from Plaintiff to Defendant.1 Later that day, Cummings filed an Amended
Notice of Removal, reflecting that she is the Plaintiff in the state court action.2 The state court
records filed on January 5, 2021, confirm that Cummings is the Plaintiff in Wyandotte County,
Kansas Case No. 2020 CV 97.3
Federal district courts are required to remand a case “[i]f at any time before final
judgment it appears that the district court lacks subject matter jurisdiction.”4 To avoid remand,
the removing party must establish federal jurisdiction by a preponderance of the evidence.5
Because federal courts are courts of limited jurisdiction, courts strictly construe federal removal
28 U.S.C. § 1447(c).
Dutcher v. Matheson, 733 F.3d 980, 985 (10th Cir. 2013).
Case 2:20-cv-02664-JAR-JPO Document 7 Filed 01/06/21 Page 2 of 3
statutes with a presumption against federal jurisdiction.6 Courts must follow the inflexible and
without exception presumption against federal jurisdiction by denying jurisdiction in all cases
where federal jurisdiction does not affirmatively appear in the record.7 Moreover, courts must
resolve doubtful cases in favor of remand.8 Because Cummings is a pro se litigant, the Court
must construe her pleadings liberally and apply a less stringent standard than that which is
applicable to attorneys.9 A pro se litigant is not excused from complying with the rules of the
Court, and is subject to the consequences of noncompliance.10
The Court must remand this matter because it plainly lacks subject matter jurisdiction.
Under 28 U.S.C. § 1441(a), “any civil action brought in a State court of which the district courts
of the United States have original jurisdiction, may be removed by the defendant or the
defendants, to the district court of the United States for the district and division embracing the
place where such action is pending.”11 Cummings may not remove this action because she is a
plaintiff in the state court action; removal is only permitted by defendants. Therefore, this Court
lacks subject matter jurisdiction and must remand this action.
IT IS THEREFORE ORDERED BY THE COURT that this case is remanded for lack
of subject matter jurisdiction. The Clerk shall remand this case to the Wyandotte County,
Kansas District Court.
IT IS SO ORDERED.
See Aetna U.S. Healthcare, Inc. v. Hoechst Aktiengesellschaft, 54 F. Supp. 2d 1043, 1047 (D. Kan. 1999)
See Ins. Corp. of Ir. v. Compagnie Des Bauxites De Guinee, 456 U.S. 694, 702 (1982).
Baby C v. Price, 138 F. App’x 81, 83 (10th Cir. 2005).
Whitney v. New Mexico, 113 F.3d 1170, 1173 (10th Cir. 1997).
Ogden v. San Juan Cty., 32 F.3d 452, 455 (10th Cir. 1994) (citing Nielsen v. Price, 17 F.3d 1276, 1277
(10th Cir. 1994)).
28 U.S.C. § 1441(a) (emphasis added).
Case 2:20-cv-02664-JAR-JPO Document 7 Filed 01/06/21 Page 3 of 3
Dated: January 5, 2021
S/ Julie A. Robinson
JULIE A. ROBINSON
CHIEF UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
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