Iredale v. Insight Communications, L.P.
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER by Judge John G. Heyburn, II on 6/4/12 denying Plaintiff's 5 Motion to Remand.cc:counsel (DAK)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
WESTERN DISTRICT OF KENTUCKY
CIVIL ACTION NO. 3:12-CV-00155-H
INSIGHT COMMUNICATIONS COMPANY, L.P.
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
Plaintiff originally filed this action in Jefferson Circuit Court alleging retaliatory
termination against his former employer. Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1332, Defendant removed the
case to federal court. Plaintiff has filed a Motion to Remand arguing that the amount-incontroversy requirement of $75,000.00 for federal diversity jurisdiction is not met. For the
reasons that follow, Plaintiff’s motion is denied.
A party seeking removal to federal court bears the burden of establishing federal subject
matter jurisdiction. McNutt v. Gen. Motors Acceptance Corp., 298 U.S. 178, 189 (1936).
Generally, “when a plaintiff alleges a specific amount of damages in the complaint, that amount
controls unless the defendant proves to a ‘legal certainty’ that plaintiff in good faith cannot claim
the jurisdictional amount.” Egan v. Premier Scales & Sys., 237 F. Supp. 2d 774, 775-76 (W.D.
Ky. 2002) (quoting Klepper v. First Am. Bank, 916 F.2d 337, 340 (6th Cir. 1990)).
Paragraph 6 of the Complaint reads: “The Plaintiff expressly stipulates that the amount in
controversy is less than $75,000 inclusive of fees, punitive damages and fair value of any
injunctive relief.” Plaintiff argues that this “stipulation” is sufficient to justify remand.
However, Kentucky Rules of Civil Procedure prohibit plaintiffs “from specifically setting forth...
alleged damages in [a] complaint.” Therefore, the Court cannot consider this aspect of
Plaintiff’s Complaint, let alone consider it an executed stipulation. Shofner v. Mid-America
Harborside Healthcare, No. 3:07-CV-2-R, 2007 WL 433118, at *2 (W.D. Ky. Feb. 5, 2007); Ky.
R. Civ. P. 8.01 (2009). Thus, the Complaint provides no basis for remand.
Defendant requested that the parties enter an amount in controversy, thereby quashing
any jurisdictional doubts. An appropriate stipulation to this effect would suffice to establish that
federal subject matter jurisdiction is lacking. See Moore v. Humana Ins. Co., No. 3:11-CV00046-CRS-JDM (W.D. Ky. June 1, 2011) (“What is determinative on the question of remand is
that [Plaintiff] has stipulated that the amount in controversy in this case does not exceed
$75,000.00 and that she does not claim nor will she accept in excess of $75,000.00 . . . .” (italics
in original)). However, Plaintiff refused to offer an additional independent stipulation of any
kind, relying instead on the language of his Complaint. Because the amount in controversy
contained in the Complaint is prohibited by Kentucky Rules, and Plaintiff refuses to execute an
appropriate stipulation, there are no grounds for remand.
The Court being otherwise sufficiently advised,
IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that Plaintiff’s Motion to Remand is DENIED.
June 4, 2012
Counsel of Record
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?