Woodmen of the World Life Insurance Society v. Lowery
ORDER TO SHOW CAUSE that plaintiffs are hereby directed to show cause, on or before 5/6/2016, why this action should not be dismissed for lack of subject matter jurisdiction.Ordered by Chief Judge Laurie Smith Camp. (CCB)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE DISTRICT OF NEBRASKA
WOODMEN OF THE WORLD LIFE
ORDER TO SHOW CAUSE
DAVID A. LOWERY,
This matter is before the Court on the Court’s own Motion.
Plaintiff filed an
Application to Confirm Arbitration Award (Filing No. 1) on February 11, 2016. The
Monroe County Sheriff’s Office served the Application on Defendant on March 23, 2016
(Filing No. 9). Defendant has not responded to the Application.
Plaintiff asserts that the Court has subject matter jurisdiction to consider its
Application under Section 9 of the Federal Arbitration Act (“FAA”), 9 U.S.C. § 9.
However, Plaintiff has not alleged a factual basis for this court to exercise subject matter
jurisdiction. Section 9 “confers no federal jurisdiction, but instead requires ‘an
independent jurisdictional basis.’” CMH Homes, Inc. v. Goodner, 729 F.3d 832, 835 (8th
Cir. 2013) (quoting Hall St. Assocs., LLC v. Mattel, Inc., 552 U.S. 576, 581–82 (2008)).
It appears that the arbitration award concerns commissions that were paid to an
insurance agent pursuant to a contract that is governed by Nebraska law, and that the
amount of the award is only $2,702.32, plus $500 for fees and expenses. The total
claimed is less than the jurisdictional amount required under 28 U.S.C. § 1332.
Even in the absence of a challenge from any party, courts have an independent
obligation to determine whether subject matter jurisdiction exists. Sac & Fox Tribe of
the Mississippi in Iowa, Election Bd. v. Bureau of Indian Affairs, 439 F.3d 832, 836 (8th
Cir. 2006). Accordingly, the Court orders Plaintiff to show cause why this action should
not be dismissed pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(h)(3).
IT IS ORDERED that the plaintiffs are hereby directed to show cause, on or
before May 6, 2016, why this action should not be dismissed for lack of subject matter
Dated this 20th day of April, 2016.
BY THE COURT:
s/Laurie Smith Camp
Chief United States District Judge
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