Williams v. State National Insurance Co et al
JURISDICTIONAL REVIEW FINDING - Diversity jurisdiction is established. Signed by Magistrate Judge Joseph H L Perez-Montes on 6/14/2017. (crt,Tice, Y)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
WESTERN DISTRICT OF LOUISIANA
CIVIL ACTION NO. 16-CV-01049
CHIEF JUDGE DRELL
STATE NATIONAL INSURANCE
CO., et al.
MAGISTRATE JUDGE PEREZ-MONTES
JURISDICTIONAL REVIEW FINDINGS
Before the Court is a Complaint removed from a Louisiana state court by
Defendants Timothy L. Herrington, Southern Tire Mart, L.L.C., and State National
Defendants premise federal jurisdiction on diversity of
Defendants were ordered to supplement their pleadings to show
diversity of citizenship (Docs. 22, 29).
Plaintiff Jacob Williams is a citizen of Louisiana.
Defendant Timothy Herrington is a resident of Mississippi.
Defendant State National Insurance Company was incorporated in Texas and
has its principal place of business in Texas.
Defendant Robison Tire Company was incorporated in Mississippi and has its
principal place of business in Mississippi. Robison was dismissed as a defendant after
the case was removed (Doc. 16).
Defendants contend that Defendant Southern Tire Mart, L.L.C. is a limited
liability company owned by two trusts: the Thomas Milton Duff Individual Trust and
the James Ernest Duff Individual Trust (Doc. 25). Traditionally, a trust is not
considered a distinct legal entity, but a “fiduciary relationship” between multiple
people. See Americold Realty Trust v. Conagra Foods, Inc., 136 S. Ct. 1012, 1016
(2016). A trust exists where a settlor transfers title of property to a trustee to hold
in trust for the benefit of beneficiaries. See Hometown 2006-1 1925 Valley View,
L.L.C. v. Prime Income Asset Mgmt., L.L.C., 847 F.3d 302, 307 (5th Cir.2017) (citing
Americold, 136 S. Ct. at 1016).
Defendants contend that both trusts are traditional trusts, but the
Certifications and Agreements for the trusts show there is no stated beneficiary for
either trust. James Ernest Duff is both the Settlor and Trustee of the James Earnest
Duff Individual Trust (Doc. 30-4), and Thomas Milton Duff is both the Settlor and
Trustee of the Thomas Milton Duff Individual Trust (Doc. 30-5). Both trusts were
organized for the operation and control of various business and property interests
(Docs. 30-4, 30-5). Neither the Thomas Milton Duff Individual Trust or the James
Ernest Duff Individual Trust involve “multiple people.”
Both trusts are unincorporated business entities rather than traditional
trusts. The member/owner of the James Ernest Duff Individual Trust is James
Earnest Duff, a citizen of Mississippi. The member/owner of the Thomas Milton Duff
Individual Trust is Thomas Milton Duff, a citizen of Mississippi.
Accordingly, diversity jurisdiction is established.
necessary at this time.
No further action is
THUS DONE AND SIGNED in chambers in Alexandria, Louisiana, this _____
day of June, 2017.
Joseph H.L. Perez-Montes
United States Magistrate Judge
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