Bowler et al v. AlliedBarton Security Services, LLC
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER... IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that Plaintiffs' Motion to Remand is GRANTED (Doc. 6 ); IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that Plaintiffs' Motion for Attorney's Fees Under 28 U.S.C. § 1447(c) is DENIED (Doc. 8 ); IT IS FURTHE R ORDERED that Defendant's Motion for Reconsideration and Dissolution of Court Order on Plaintiffs Emergency Motion to Enjoin Defendants Contact with Putative Class Members is DENIED, as moot (Doc. 14 ); and IT IS FINALLY ORDERED that this case is remanded to the Circuit Court of the City of St. Louis, Missouri. An appropriate Order of Remand shall accompany this Memorandum and Order. Signed by Magistrate Judge Noelle C. Collins on 8/12/2015. (NEB)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
EASTERN DISTRICT OF MISSOURI
STEVE BOWLER, DWIGHT WATSON,
CHRIS KASSAB, PAULA ANTKOWIAK,
and MATTHEW DOUBET, on behalf of
themselves and a class of individuals
Case No. 4:15CV600NCC
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
Before the court is the Motion to Remand filed by Plaintiffs Steve Bowler,
Dwight Watson, Chris Kassab, Paula Antkowiak, and Matthew Doubet (jointly,
Plaintiffs). (Doc. 6). Also before the court are Plaintiffs’ Motion for Attorney’s
Fees Under 28 U.S.C. § 1447(c) (Doc. 8), and the Motion for Reconsideration and
Dissolution of Court Order on Plaintiffs’ Emergency Motion to Enjoin Defendant’s
Contact with Putative Class Members filed by Defendant AlliedBarton Security
Services, LLC, (Defendant) (Doc. 14). The matters are fully briefed and ready for
disposition.1 The parties have consented to the jurisdiction of the undersigned
United States Magistrate Judge pursuant to Title 28 U.S.C. § 636(c). (Doc. 27).
On February 24, 2015, Plaintiffs, who are Security Officers employed by
Defendant, filed a Petition in the Circuit Court of the City of St. Louis, Missouri.
On April 9, 2015, Defendant removed this matter from the Circuit Court of the
City of St. Louis to federal court based on this court’s federal question jurisdiction,
as conferred by 28 U.S.C. §1331 (“The district courts shall have original
jurisdiction of all civil actions arising under the Constitution, laws, or treaties of
the United States.”).
On April 10, 2015, Plaintiffs filed a First Amended Class Action Petition
adding Matthew Doubet as a named Plaintiff. (Doc. 12). The allegations of the
First Amended Class Action Petition track the original allegations as they relate to
Defendant’s practice of failing to properly pay its Security Officers in Missouri the
straight-time and overtime wages to which they are allegedly entitled by law.
Specifically, Plaintiffs claim that Defendant requires its Missouri-based Security
Plaintiffs filed a Response to Defendant’s Motion for Reconsideration.
(Doc. 15). Defendant filed a Memorandum in Opposition to Plaintiffs’ Motion to
Remand and For Attorneys’ Fees. (Doc. 17). Plaintiffs filed a Reply
Memorandum in Support of their Motion to Remand to State Court (Doc. 20), and
a Reply Memorandum in Support of their Motion to Attorney’s Fees Pursuant to
28 U.S.C. § 1447 (c) (Doc. 21). Also, Defendant filed a Surreply in Support of its
Opposition to Plaintiffs’ Motion to Remand. (Doc. 26).
Officers to work and remain at their posts, without relief, during purported thirtyminute meal breaks, and that Defendant does not pay the Security Officers for this
Plaintiffs bring Count I pursuant to Mo. Rev. Stat. § 290.5052 and Mo. Rev.
Stat. § 290.5273 “for Underpayment of Overtime Wages and Liquidated
Damages.” In Count II, Plaintiffs allege Breach of Contract based on Defendant’s
As relevant to this cause of action, Mo. Rev. Stat. § 290.505 states:
1. No employer shall employ any of his employees for a workweek
longer than forty hours unless such employee receives compensation
for his employment in excess of the hours above specified at a rate not
less than one and one-half times the regular rate at which he is
4. Except as may be otherwise provided under sections 290.500 to
290.530, this section shall be interpreted in accordance with the Fair
Labor Standards Act, 29 U.S.C. Section 201, et seq., as amended, and
the Portal to Portal Act, 29 U.S.C. Section 251, et seq., as amended,
and any regulations promulgated thereunder.
As relevant, Mo. Rev. Stat. § 290.527 states:
Any employer who pays any employee less wages than the wages to
which the employee is entitled under or by virtue of sections 290.500
to 290.530 shall be liable to the employee affected for the full amount
of the wage rate and an additional equal amount as liquidated
damages, less any amount actually paid to the employee by the
employer and for costs and such reasonable attorney fees as may be
allowed by the court or jury. The employee may bring any legal
action necessary to collect the claim.
employee handbook, which sets forth employee hourly wages and provides “timeand-half for overtime beyond the 40-hour workweek.” Plaintiffs bring Count III
pursuant to Quantum Meruit for payment of “the fair and reasonable value of their
services” and “the fair and reasonable value of their overtime.”4 Plaintiffs ask that
the matter be certified as a class action under Missouri Supreme Court Rule 52.08.
For relief, Plaintiffs seek compensatory damages for themselves and other Class
Members, reasonable attorney’s fees and costs, statutory liquidated double
damages under Count I, and other relief as the court deems just and proper.
In support of their Motion to Remand, Plaintiffs argue that this court does
not have federal question jurisdiction because the First Amended Class Action
Petition only alleges causes of action pursuant to State law; it does not allege a
federal cause of action. Also, Plaintiffs have moved the court to order Defendant
to compensate them for attorney’s fees which they incurred as a result of
Defendant’s alleged improper removal. Defendant argues, for numerous reasons,
that its removal of this matter was proper and that, even if this court should remand
this matter, Plaintiffs should not be awarded attorney’s fees.
The court will
address the parties’ arguments below.
Federal jurisdiction is determined by “examination of the complaint” at the
time it was filed, in this case by the Petition as it stood at the time of removal.
Iowa Lamb Corp. v. Kalene Indus., Inc., 871 F.3d 1149, 1155 (8th Cir. 1994). In
the original Petition, upon which removal was based, Plaintiff incorrectly
numbered Count III as Count IV. Nonetheless, the original Petition was identical
to the First Amended Class Action Petition in regard to the substantive allegations.
Except as otherwise expressly provided by Congress, civil actions for which
the district courts of the United State have original jurisdiction may be removed
from State court to federal district court. 28 U.S.C. §§ 1441(a), 1446. A party
opposing removal may file a motion to remand to State court.
28 U.S.C. §
1447(c). The party removing and opposing remand has the burden of establishing
federal subject matter jurisdiction. Iowa Lamb Corp. v. Kalene Indus., Inc., 871
F.3d 1149, 1154 (8th Cir. 1994); In re Business Men’s Assur. Co. of America, 992
F.2d 181, 182 (8th Cir. 1983 (per curiam). Upon considering a motion to remand,
a district court is “required to resolve all doubts about federal jurisdiction in favor
of remand.” Business Men’s Assurance, 992 F.2d at 182 (citing Steel Valley Auth.
v. Union Switch & Signal Div., 809 F.2d 1006, 1010 (3d Cir. 1987)).
“The presence or absence of federal-question jurisdiction is governed by the
‘well-pleaded complaint rule,’ which provides that federal jurisdiction exists only
when a federal question is presented on the face of the plaintiff's properly pleaded
complaint.” Caterpillar Inc. v. Williams, 482 U.S. 386, 392 (1987) (quoting Gully
v. First Nat’l Bank, 299 U.S. 109, 112–113 (1936)). See also Gaming Corp. of
America v. Dorsey & Whitney, 88 F.3d 536, 542 (8th Cir. 1996) (“The ‘wellpleaded complaint rule’ requires that a federal cause of action must be stated on the
face of the complaint before the defendant may remove the action based on federal
question jurisdiction.”) (quoting Caterpillar, 482 U.S. at 392). Because federal law
provides that plaintiffs are the “masters of [their claims], [plaintiffs] may avoid
federal jurisdiction by exclusive reliance on state law.” Caterpillar, 482 U.S. at
Even in situations where a cause of action based on a federal statute does not
appear on the face of the complaint, such as in the matter under consideration,
preemption based on a federal statutory scheme may apply in circumstances where
“the pre-emptive force of a statute is so extraordinary that it converts an ordinary
state common-law complaint into one stating a federal claim.” Caterpillar, 482
U.S. at 393 (internal quotation and citation omitted). See e.g., Metro. Life Ins. Co.
v. Taylor, 481 U.S. 58, 65 (1987) (where former employee alleged breach of
contract, retaliatory discharge, and wrongful termination of disability benefits in
state court complaint, Court held that former employee’s claims were preempted
by the Employee Retirement and Income Security Act (ERISA); plaintiff’s claims
were necessarily federal in character; and, therefore, removal under 28 U.S.C. §
1441(a) was proper). An ordinary state common-law complaint may be converted
into to a federal claim where “the pre-emptive force of a statute is 
extraordinary.” Caterpillar, 482 U.S. at 393. Thus, although a plaintiff has only
filed State law claims, a court may conclude that the plaintiff has “simply brought
a mislabeled federal claim, which may be asserted under some federal statute.”
Johnson v. MFA Petroleum Co., 701 F.3d 243, 247 (8th Cir. 2012) (internal
As further explained by the Eighth Circuit, the exception to the well-pleaded
complaint rule applies where a federal statute provides “an exclusive cause of
action for the claim asserted and also set[s] forth procedures and remedies
governing that cause of action.” Johnson, 701 F.3d at 248. The Supreme Court
has recognized that such circumstances arise only in three areas: § 301 of the
Labor Management Relations Act (LMRA), Avco Corp. v. Aero Lodge No. 735,
390 U.S. 557 (1968); § 502(a) of ERISA, Metro. Life Ins. Co. v. Taylor, 481 U.S.
58 (1987); and §§ 85 and 86 of the National Bank Act, Beneficial Nat'l Bank v.
Anderson, 539 U.S. 1 (2003). Johnson, 701 F.3d at 248.
As stated above, Plaintiffs allege only State law claims. Thus, for this court
to find that federal jurisdiction exists and consequently to deny Plaintiffs’ motion
seeking remand to State court, it must determine that the exception to the wellpleaded complaint rule applies. See Caterpillar, 482 U.S. at 393.
Defendant argues that Plaintiffs’ cause of action is preempted by the Fair
Labor Standards Act (FLSA), 29 U.S.C §§ 201, et seq. Indeed, the FLSA does not
include a supersedure clause providing for federal preemption as does ERISA. Cf.
Robertson v. LTS Mgmt. Servs., LLC, 642 F. Supp. 2d 922, 928 (W.D. Mo. 2009)
(“[T]he FLSA does not expressly preempt all state law causes of action.”) (quoting
Osby v. Citigroup, Inc., 2008 WL 2074102, at *2 (W.D. Mo. May 14, 2008)
(unreported)). See also Lechner v. Arvinmeritor, Inc., 2005 WL 1920746, at *5
(W.D.N.C July 14, 2005) (unreported) (“[W]hen enacting the FLSA Congress did
not express any clear, unqualified intent to make claims such as those [the
defendant] states removable to federal court. . . . The FLSA's legislative history
does not include, as ERISA's does, plain statements that cases such as this one are
intended to arise under the courts' federal question jurisdiction.”).
Further, it is well established within this Circuit that the FLSA does not have
the requisite preemptive force to convert a plaintiff’s State claims to a claim under
the FLSA. See e.g., Robertson, 642 F. Supp. 2d at 928 (duplication of claims does
not mean that plaintiffs’ state-law claim is preempted by their FLSA claim because
the FLSA does not provide the exclusive remedy for its violations) (citing
Bouaphakeo v. Tyson Foods Inc., 564 F. Supp. 2d 870 (N.D. Iowa 2008); Osby v.
Citigroup, Inc., 2008 WL 2074102 (W.D. Mo. May 14, 2008)); Perrin v. Papa
John’s Intern., Inc., 2015 WL 4131358, at *14 (E.D. Mo. July 8, 2015) (“The
FLSA “does not generally preempt state law claims in a given case.”); Fry v.
Accent Mktg. Servs., LLC, 2013 WL 2403669, at *2 (E.D. Mo. May 31, 2013)
(agreeing “with the district courts within the Eighth Circuit that . . . have found no
preemption under the FLSA of state common law claims”; “Most district courts in
the Eighth Circuit agree that . . . the FLSA does not provide an exclusive remedy
for its violations.”).5
Defendant suggests that Plaintiffs’ reliance on Defendant’s employee
handbook as the factual basis for the breach of contract claim alleged in Count II
invokes an exception to the well-pleaded complaint rule. Indeed, the LMRA,
codified as 29 U.S.C. § 185(a), provides that suits for violations of collective
bargaining agreements between a labor organization and an employer may be
brought in the district court having jurisdiction over the parties. Specifically,
federal preemption applies when “[t]he heart of the [state-law] complaint [is] a . . .
clause in [a] collective bargaining agreement.”
Caterpillar, 482 U.S. at 394.
Clearly, Plaintiffs’ claims are not based on rights created by or dependent on a
To the extent Plaintiffs rely on
As noted by the district court in Fry, 2013 WL 2403669, at *2, there is
authority from other circuits to the contrary. See, e.g., Anderson v. Sara Lee
Corp., 508 F.3d 181, 194 (4th Cir. 2007) (holding that the plaintiff's state law
contract, negligence, and fraud claims were preempted by the FLSA, under conflict
or what is sometimes called implied preemption). This court, however, is bound to
apply precedent established within the Eighth Circuit. See Hood v. United States,
342 F.3d 861, 864 (8th Cir. 2003); Anastasoff v. United States, 223 F.3d 898 (8th
District courts within the Eighth Circuit have held that, even when a plaintiff
alleges both state and FLSA claims in a federal lawsuit and those claims are
duplicative, a plaintiff’s state law claims are not preempted. See Robertson, 642 F.
Supp. 2d at 928 (duplication of claims does not mean that plaintiffs’ state-law
claim is preempted by their FLSA claim because the FLSA does not provide the
exclusive remedy for its violations).5
Defendant’s employee handbook as creating the contractual rights they claim in
Count II of the First Amended Class Action Petition, the Supreme Court holds that
the exception to the well-pleaded complaint rule does not apply to breaches of
individual employment contracts, id. at 394-95 (“Section 301 says nothing about
the content or validity of individual employment contracts.”; “[I]ndividual
employment contracts are not inevitably superseded by any subsequent collective
agreement covering an individual employee, and claims based upon them may
arise under state law.”); and, under Missouri law, an employee handbook does not
constitute a contract between employees and employer, see Johnson v. McDonnell
Douglas Corp., 745 S.W.2d 661, 662 (Mo. 1988) (employee handbook did not alter
at-will status of employee); West Cent. Mo. Reg’l Lodge No. 50 v. Bd. of Police
Comm’rs of Kansas City, Mo., 939 S.W.2d 565, 567 (Mo. Ct. App. 1997)
(personnel policy and benefit manual did not constitute a contract between
defendant and its employees; defendant’s unilateral act of publishing manual was
not a contractual offer).
Defendant acknowledges that it is “well settled law” that “a case may not be
removed to federal court on the basis of a federal defense, including the defense of
pre-emption.” Caterpillar, 482 U.S. at 393 (citing Franchise Tax Bd. of Cal. v.
Constr. Laborers Vacation Trust for S. Cal., 463 U.S. 1, 12 (1983)). This rule
applies “even if the defense is anticipated in the plaintiff’s complaint, and even if
both parties concede that the federal defense is the only question truly at issue.”
Caterpillar, 482 U.S. at 393. Defendant argues, however, that it does not assert
preemption as a defense. (Doc. 17 at 11). Nonetheless, any proof regarding the
impact of the FLSA would be in the form of a defense, and, as stated above, a
possible federal defense does not create federal question jurisdiction.
Chapman v. Lab One, 390 F.3d 620, 625 (8th Cir. 2004) (“In the ordinary case,
federal preemption is merely a defense to a plaintiff's state-law claim, and it does
not alter the jurisdiction of the federal court.”) (citing Metropolitan Life, 481 U.S.
at 63). Cf. Merrell Dow Pharms. Inc. v. Thompson, 478 U.S. 804, 813 (1986)
(“[T]he mere presence of a federal issue in a state cause of action does not confer
federal question jurisdiction.”).
To the extent Defendant argues that this court has federal question
jurisdiction simply because Plaintiffs quote or refer to federal statutes or case law
in their First Amended Class Action Petition, such a “mere reference . . . is not
sufficient to create federal question jurisdiction.” Kennedy v. Commercial Bank,
2012 WL 639014, at *2 (E.D. Mo. Feb. 27, 2010) (unreported) (citing I.S. v.
Washington Univ., 2011 WL 2433585, *5 (E.D. Mo. Jun. 14, 2011) (unreported)
(no federal question jurisdiction where state law claim for negligence per se
referred to the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), 42
U.S.C. §§ 1320d, et. al.); Taylor v. Lewis, 2011 WL 743747, *4 (E.D. Mo. Feb.
23, 2011) (unreported) (no federal question jurisdiction in claim for personal
injuries involving HUD lease); Henderson v. Jordan, 2009 WL 2168692, *2 (E.D.
Mo. July 17, 2009) (unreported) (no federal question jurisdiction where state law
breach of fiduciary claim referred to SEC regulations).
To the extent Defendant argues that because Plaintiffs’ claims are more
properly brought pursuant to federal law and have no basis under Missouri law,
Defendant cites no authority, and the court is not aware of any authority, to support
an argument that under such circumstances the well-pleaded complaint rule is not
Additionally, to the extent Defendant argues that in the “meal break context”
federal law provides a necessary element of Plaintiffs’ cause of action and that,
therefore, preemption applies, the Supreme Court holds that where “it appears that
some substantial, disputed question of federal law is a necessary element of one of
the well-pleaded state claims,” federal jurisdiction is not automatically conferred
on a federal court; “the presence of the federal issue as an element of the state tort
is not the kind of adjudication for which jurisdiction would serve congressional
purposes and the federal system.” Merrell Dow, 478 U.S. at 813-14 (holding that
Franchise Tax Board, 463 U.S. at 13, “did not purport to disturb the long-settled
understanding that the mere presence of a federal issue in a state cause of action
does not automatically confer federal-question jurisdiction”; and finding no federal
cause of action where plaintiff alleged federal statute as an element of its cause of
See also Kennedy, 2012 WL 639014, at *1 (rejecting defendant’s
argument that federal question jurisdiction existed because plaintiff’s claims
required “the resolution of substantial questions of federal law under the FLSA,”
where plaintiff brought no federal claims).
Additionally, Plaintiffs’ “incidental” reference to federal law does not
“convert [their] state claim[s] into a federal cause of action.” Carter v. Edgewood
Children’s Center, 2009 WL 383357, at *2 (E.D. Mo. Feb. 12, 2009) (unreported)
(where complaint alleged only one count, under Missouri Human Rights Act
(MHRA), Mo. Rev. Stat. § 213.055.1, but also contained statements that employer
violated Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. § 2000e et seq., court
asked pro se plaintiff to clarify under which act(s) she sought relief; court granted
remand when plaintiff said she intended to assert a claim only under the MHRA).
Although the Missouri statute upon which Plaintiffs rely for their claims that
Defendant wrongfully failed to pay them overtime, Mo. Rev. Stat. § 290.505.4,
provides that it “shall be interpreted in accordance with” the FLSA, there is no
authority that this provision federalizes causes of action asserting violations of Mo.
Rev. Stat. § 290.505.4. Cf. Morales v. Showell Farms, Inc., 910 F. Supp. 244,
(M.D. N.C. 1995) (“Even in the FLSA’s core area of protection - minimum wage
and overtime regulation - the FLSA does not completely preempt state laws but
only preempts them to extent that they are less generous than the FLSA.”).
The case upon which Defendant relies for the proposition that Plaintiffs’
cause of action is removable because it is really a FLSA matter, Breuer v. Jim’s
Concrete of Brevard, Inc., 538 U.S. 691 (2003), is distinguishable because in
Breuer the plaintiff alleged both state and federal claims; in the matter under
consideration, Plaintiffs allege only Missouri claims. Likewise, Grable & Sons
Metal Products, Inc., v. Darue Engineering & Manufacturing, 545 U.S. 308 (2005),
upon which Defendant also relies, is distinguishable because it involved a
contested federal issue regarding the validity of the Internal Revenue Service’s tax
lien, and that issue was substantial; in the matter under consideration there is no
substantial federal issue.
Other cases upon which Defendant relies are distinguishable because those
cases were based solely on the FLSA and they did not involve removal. See e.g.,
Hertz v. Woodbury Cnty., Iowa, 566 F.3d 775 (8th Cir. 2009) (suit filed in federal
court pursuant to FLSA for recovery of overtime pay); Barajas v. Acosta, 2012 WL
1952261 (W.D. Tex. 2012) (unreported) (suit filed in federal court under FLSA for
failure to pay minimum wage and overtime). In any case, authority upon which
Defendant relies from district courts of jurisdictions other than those within the
Eighth Circuit is not controlling, and, in this case, is no persuasive.6 See Hood v.
United States, 342 F.3d 861, 864 (8th Cir. 2003) (holding that at district court in
the Eighth Circuit is bound to apply Eighth Circuit precedent).
In conclusion, the court finds that Defendant has not met its burden to
establish that this court has federal question jurisdiction, and that, therefore, this
matter should be remanded to State court. See Iowa Lamb Corp, 871 F.3d at 1154;
Business Men’s Assurance, 992 F.2d at 182.
Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1447(c) (“An order remanding the case may require
payment of just costs and any actual expenses, including attorney fees, incurred as
a result of the removal.”), Plaintiffs seek attorney’s fees related to the removal and
remand of this matter. Plaintiffs argue that attorney’s fees should be awarded
because Defendant lacked an objectively reasonable basis for seeking removal.
Recently, in Convent Corporation v. City of North Little Rock Arkansas,
2015 WL 1881241, at *2 (8th Cir. Apr. 27, 2015) (per curiam), the Eighth Circuit
addressed the issue of when attorney’s fees should be awarded upon the district
court’s granting a motion to remand to state court. As relevant, the Convent court
Defendant cites Harper v. Massey Coal Servs., Inc., 2011 WL 322558 (S.D.W.
Va. Feb. 2, 2011) (unreported) (removal was proper where plaintiff alleged
violation of West Virginia wage and hour law and not violation of FLSA).
“An order remanding a removed case to state court ‘may require
payment of just costs and any actual expenses, including attorney fees,
incurred as a result of the removal.’” [Martin v. Franklin Capital
Corp., 546 U.S. 132, 134 (2005)]) (quoting 28 U.S.C. § 1447(c)). The
Supreme Court has instructed that “the standard for awarding fees
should turn on the reasonableness of the removal. Absent unusual
circumstances, courts may award attorney's fees under § 1447(c) only
where the removing party lacked an objectively reasonable basis for
seeking removal. Conversely, when an objectively reasonable basis
exists, fees should be denied.” Id. at 141 (citations omitted). This
rule notwithstanding, a district court “retain[s] discretion to consider
whether unusual circumstances warrant a departure from the rule in a
given case.” Id. . . . .
In determining whether the removing party lacked an
objectively reasonable basis for seeking removal, “the district court
‘do[es] not consider the motive of the removing defendant.’” Diaz v.
Cameron Cnty. Tex., 300 F. App'x 280, 281 (5th Cir. 2008) (per
curiam) (alteration in original) (quoting Valdes v. Wal–Mart Stores,
Inc., 199 F.3d 290, 292-93 (5th Cir. 2000)). “Rather, the court must
consider the objective merits of removal at the time of removal,
irrespective of the ultimate remand.” Id. (citing Valdes, 199 F.3d at
Clearly, it does not necessarily follow that an award of attorney’s fees
follows remand unless the defendant was objectively unreasonable in its removal.
Martin v. Franklin Capital Corp., 546 U.S. 132, 136-37 (2005) (rejecting plaintiff’s
argument that attorney’s fees should be awarded automatically on remand; §
1447(c) uses the word “may” rather than “shall,” and “‘may’ clearly connotes
discretion”). Rather, awarding attorney’s fees when a motion to remand is granted
remains within a court’s discretion. Id. at 139.
Upon defining its use of the term “discretion,” the Supreme Court holds that
“a motion to [a court’s] discretion is a motion, not to its inclination, but to its
judgment; and its judgment is to be guided by sound legal principles.” Id. (internal
quotation and citation omitted).
The court finds that Defendant did have an
objectively reasonable basis for removal. As such, the court finds, within its
discretion, that Plaintiffs should not be awarded attorney’s fees which they
incurred as a result of Defendant’s removal of this matter.
For the reasons stated above, the court finds that Plaintiffs’ Motion to
Remand (Doc. 6) should be granted; that Plaintiffs’ Motion for Attorney’s Fees
Under 28 U.S.C. § 1447(c) (Doc. 8) should be denied; and that this matter should
be remanded to State court.
IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that Plaintiffs’ Motion to Remand is
GRANTED (Doc. 6);
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that Plaintiffs’ Motion for Attorney’s Fees
Under 28 U.S.C. § 1447(c) is DENIED (Doc. 8);
Reconsideration and Dissolution of Court Order on Plaintiffs’ Emergency Motion
to Enjoin Defendant’s Contact with Putative Class Members is DENIED, as moot
(Doc. 14); and
IT IS FINALLY ORDERED that this case is remanded to the Circuit Court
of the City of St. Louis, Missouri.
An appropriate Order of Remand shall
accompany this Memorandum and Order.
Dated this 12th day of August 2015.
/s/ Noelle C. Collins
UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
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