Nelson v. State of Minnesota et al
ORDER dismissing case without prejudice for lack of jurisdiction; denying as moot 2 Application to Proceed in District Court without Prepaying Fees or Costs. (Written Opinion) Signed by Judge Susan Richard Nelson on 9/8/2021. (SMD)
CASE 0:21-cv-01825-SRN-DTS Doc. 3 Filed 09/09/21 Page 1 of 2
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
DISTRICT OF MINNESOTA
Steven Allen Nelson, Sr.,
Case No. 21-CV-1825 (SRN/DTS)
ORDER OF DISMISSAL
State of Minnesota; Minneapolis City
Council Members; and Minnesota
Department of Health,
SUSAN RICHARD NELSON, United States District Judge
Rule 12(h)(3) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure requires that “[i]f the court
determines at any time that it lacks subject-matter jurisdiction, the court must dismiss the
action.” Because plaintiff Steven Allen Nelson, Sr., has not adequately pleaded a basis for
the Court’s jurisdiction over this matter, this action will be dismissed without prejudice.
Nelson alleges in his complaint and accompanying materials that various officials
of the State of Minnesota and City of Minneapolis acted unlawfully in banning the sale of
menthol cigarettes in Minneapolis. The exact legal basis for Nelson’s claims is unclear;
Nelson does not cite a specific federal or state law pursuant to which he is seeking relief.
Under Rule 8(a)(1) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, “[a] pleading that states
a claim for relief must contain . . . a short and plain statement of the grounds for the court’s
jurisdiction.” In his complaint, Nelson alleges that diversity of citizenship, see 28 U.S.C.
§ 1332(a), supplies the statutory basis for the Court’s jurisdiction over this matter, see
CASE 0:21-cv-01825-SRN-DTS Doc. 3 Filed 09/09/21 Page 2 of 2
Compl. at 3 [Doc. No. 1]. But Nelson also alleges that both he and the defendants are each
citizens of the State of Minnesota. See id. Because the parties are plainly not of diverse
citizenship, § 1332(a) cannot supply a statutory basis for the Court’s jurisdiction.
Nelson does not allege any other basis for the Court’s subject-matter jurisdiction,
and no such basis is obvious from the complaint. For example, the pleading does not appear
to present a federal question of law such that 28 U.S.C. § 1331 could serve as a basis for
jurisdiction. No federal constitutional provision, statute, or other federal legal provision is
cited by Nelson as grounds for relief. Section 1331, then, cannot supply a statutory basis
for the Court’s jurisdiction either.
Without jurisdiction, the Court cannot proceed to the merits of Nelson’s lawsuit.
See Fed. R. Civ. P. 12(h)(3). Accordingly, this matter will be dismissed without prejudice
and Nelson’s pending application to proceed in forma pauperis will be denied as moot.
Based on the submissions and the entire file and proceedings herein, IT IS
HEREBY ORDERED that
This matter is DISMISSED WITHOUT PREJUDICE for lack of
The application to proceed in forma pauperis of plaintiff Steven Allen
Nelson, Sr. [Doc. No. 2] is DENIED AS MOOT.
LET JUDGMENT BE ENTERED ACCORDINGLY.
Dated: September 8, 2021
s/Susan Richard Nelson
SUSAN RICHARD NELSON
United States District Judge
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