Hammond et al v. Mueller Prost LC et al
ORDER CONCERNING JURISDICTION:IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that by August 24, 2015, plaintiffs shall file an Amended Complaint that alleges facts establishing the citizenship of all parties to this action. IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that i f plaintiffs do not timely and fully comply with this Order, this matter will be dismissed without prejudice for lack of subject matter jurisdiction. IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that all other proceedings in this case are STAYED pending further Order of this Court. Response to Court due by 8/24/2015.. Signed by District Judge Charles A. Shaw on 8/17/15. (JWD)
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
EASTERN DISTRICT OF MISSOURI
DENNIS HAMMOND, et al.,
MUELLER PROST LC, et al.,
No. 4:15-CV-1213 CAS
ORDER CONCERNING JURISDICTION
This diversity matter is before the Court on review of the file following transfer to the
undersigned. The Eighth Circuit has admonished district courts to “be attentive to a satisfaction of
jurisdictional requirements in all cases.” Sanders v. Clemco Indus., 823 F.2d 214, 216 (8th Cir.
1987). “In every federal case the court must be satisfied that it has jurisdiction before it turns to the
merits of other legal arguments.” Carlson v. Arrowhead Concrete Works, Inc., 445 F.3d 1046, 1050
(8th Cir. 2006). Statutes conferring diversity jurisdiction are to be strictly construed, Sheehan v.
Gustafson, 967 F.2d 1214, 1215 (8th Cir. 1992), and the burden of proving all jurisdictional facts
is on the party asserting jurisdiction, here the plaintiffs. See McNutt v. General Motors Acceptance
Corp. of Ind., Inc., 298 U.S. 178, 189 (1936). “[T]he court may . . . insist that the jurisdictional facts
be established or the case be dismissed[.] Id.
In this case, plaintiffs’ complaint asserts that federal jurisdiction exists based on diversity
of citizenship. Complaint at 2, ¶ 6. Complete diversity of citizenship between plaintiffs and
defendants is required by 28 U.S.C. § 1332. Buckley v. Control Data Corp., 923 F.2d 96, 97, n.6
(8th Cir. 1991). “Complete diversity of citizenship exists where no defendant holds citizenship in
the same state where any plaintiff holds citizenship.” OnePoint Solutions, LLC v. Borchert, 486
F.3d 342, 346 (8th Cir. 2007). To establish complete diversity of citizenship, a complaint must
include factual allegations of each party’s state of citizenship, including allegations of any corporate
party’s state of incorporation and principal place of business. Sanders v. Clemco Industries, 823
F.2d 214, 216 (8th Cir. 1987); see 28 U.S.C. § 1332(a).
Different allegations, however, are required to properly plead the citizenship of a limited
liability company (“LLC”). “An LLC’s citizenship, for purposes of diversity jurisdiction, is the
citizenship of each of its members.” E3 Biofuels, LLC v. Biothane, LLC, 781 F.3d 972, 975 (8th
Cir. 2015) (quoted case omitted). Thus, for limited liability companies such as defendant Mueller
Prost LC, the Court must examine the citizenship of each member of the limited liability company
to determine whether it has diversity jurisdiction. See GMAC Commercial Credit, LLC v. Dillard
Dep’t Stores, Inc., 357 F.3d 827, 829 (8th Cir. 2004) (“GMAC”). For any members of LLCs that
are themselves liability companies, partnerships or limited partnerships, information concerning
their underlying members or partners must be alleged.1
Plaintiffs’ complaint alleges that defendant Mueller Prost LC is a limited liability company
organized under the laws of the State of Missouri with its principal place of business in Clayton,
Missouri, and thus is a citizen of Missouri. Complaint at 2, ¶ 2. However, “an LLC is not
necessarily a citizen of its state of organization but is a citizen of each state in which its members
are citizens.” GMAC, 357 F.3d at 829. The complaint contains no allegations concerning the
relevant jurisdictional facts about defendant Mueller Prost LC’s citizenship: the state(s) of which
each of its members were citizens at the time the complaint was filed, as required by GMAC.
In Carden v. Arkoma Associates, 494 U.S. 185, 195-96 (1990), the Supreme Court held that
for diversity purposes, the citizenship of a limited partnership is the citizenship of each of its
partners, both general and limited.
Plaintiffs’ complaint is procedurally defective because it does not contain sufficient
allegations of jurisdictional facts to establish the existence of diversity jurisdiction. Plaintiffs will
be required to amend their complaint to correct this defect, and will be granted seven (7) days to file
an amended complaint that alleges facts showing complete diversity of citizenship among the
parties. Plaintiffs’ failure to timely and fully comply with this Order will result in the dismissal of
this case without prejudice for lack of subject matter jurisdiction.
IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that by August 24, 2015, plaintiffs shall file an Amended
Complaint that alleges facts establishing the citizenship of all parties to this action.
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that if plaintiffs do not timely and fully comply with this
Order, this matter will be dismissed without prejudice for lack of subject matter jurisdiction.
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that all other proceedings in this case are STAYED pending
further Order of this Court.
CHARLES A. SHAW
UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
Dated this 17th day of August, 2015.
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