Munoz v. U-Haul International, Inc. et al

Filing 7

ORDER granting 1 Motion/Application for Leave to Proceed in forma pauperis; ORDER denying without prejudice 6 Motion to Amend. Amended Complaint deadline: 11/13/2020. Signed by Magistrate Judge Brenda Weksler on 10/14/2020. (Copies have been distributed pursuant to the NEF - JM) Modified text on 10/14/2020 (SLD).

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Case 2:20-cv-01412-GMN-BNW Document 7 Filed 10/14/20 Page 1 of 5 1 2 UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT 3 DISTRICT OF NEVADA 4 *** 5 Jonathan Muñoz, 6 7 8 Case No. 2:20-cv-01412-GMN-BNW Plaintiff, ORDER v. U-Haul International, Inc., et al., 9 Defendants. 10 11 12 Presently before the Court is Plaintiff Jonathan Muñoz’s motion to amend. ECF No. 6. 13 Muñoz moves to proceed in forma pauperis. ECF No. 1. Muñoz submitted the affidavit required 14 by 28 U.S.C. § 1915(a) and LSR 1-1, showing an inability to prepay fees or costs or give security 15 for them. Id. Muñoz’s request to proceed in forma pauperis, therefore, will be granted. The Court 16 now screens Muñoz’s amended complaint (ECF No. 6) as required by 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2). 17 For the reasons discussed below, Muñoz fails to sufficiently allege any basis for federal 18 19 question jurisdiction. See 28 U.S.C. § 1331. Therefore, the Court will deny Muñoz’s amended 20 complaint without prejudice and with leave to amend. 21 I. BACKGROUND 22 23 24 Muñoz filed a complaint under two Nevada statues against U-Haul International, Inc. (“UHaul”), Storage @ Summerlin Lake Mead (“Storage”), and Repwest Insurance Company (“RIC”).1 ECF No. 1-1 at 2-4. Muñoz seeks a declaration that the arbitration agreement he 25 26 27 1 Muñoz brings this action based on NRS 597.995 and NRS 686A.310, which govern arbitration agreements and insurance settlements. Nev. Rev. Stat. § 597.995, § 686A.310. 28 Page 1 of 5 Case 2:20-cv-01412-GMN-BNW Document 7 Filed 10/14/20 Page 2 of 5 1 entered into with U-Haul is unenforceable. Id. at 3. Muñoz also alleges Defendants 2 misrepresented his insurance coverage. Id. at 4-5. Muñoz seeks damages for stolen property, 3 which is not covered by Muñoz’s insurance policy. Id. at 4. 4 5 6 Judge Navarro previously reviewed Muñoz’s first complaint and found that this Court appears to lack jurisdiction. ECF No. 4. Judge Navarro noted that Muñoz alleges that the Court has diversity jurisdiction, but Muñoz also alleges there is not complete diversity of citizenship 7 between the parties. Id. This is so because Muñoz alleges that both Muñoz and Defendant Storage 8 9 are citizens of Nevada. Id. Judge Navarro ordered Muñoz to file a notice explaining how this 10 Court has subject matter jurisdiction or a notice of voluntary dismissal. Id. Muñoz then filed an 11 amended complaint to address subject matter jurisdiction. ECF No. 6. Muñoz now appears to 12 allege that the Court has both diversity jurisdiction and federal question jurisdiction. See id. at 1. 13 14 II. DISCUSSION A. Subject Matter Jurisdiction 15 16 17 1. Diversity Jurisdiction “Federal district courts are courts of limited jurisdiction, possessing only that power 18 authorized by Constitution and statute.” K2 Am. Corp. v. Roland Oil & Gas, LLC, 653 F.3d 1024, 19 1027 (9th Cir. 2011) (quotation omitted). Federal district courts have original jurisdiction over 20 civil actions in diversity cases “where the matter in controversy exceeds the sum or value of 21 $75,000” and where the matter is between “citizens of different States.” 28 U.S.C. § 1332(a)(1). 22 “Section 1332 requires complete diversity of citizenship; each of the plaintiffs must be a citizen 23 24 of a different state than each of the defendants.” Morris v. Princess Cruises, Inc., 236 F.3d 1061, 25 1067 (9th Cir. 2001). Federal courts have the jurisdiction to determine their own jurisdiction. 26 Special Inv., Inc. v. Aero Air, Inc., 360 F.3d 989, 992 (9th Cir. 2004). 27 28 Page 2 of 5 Case 2:20-cv-01412-GMN-BNW Document 7 Filed 10/14/20 Page 3 of 5 A corporation is a citizen of a state where (1) it is incorporated, and (2) where it has its 1 2 principal place of business. 28 U.S.C. § 1332(c)(1). Principal place of business “refers to the 3 place where a corporation’s high-level officers direct, control, and coordinate the corporation’s 4 activities . . . which will typically be found at its corporate headquarters.” Hertz Corp. v. Friend, 5 559 U.S. 77, 78 (2010). 6 7 In his amended complaint, Muñoz alleges that “U-Haul and [RIC] are domiciled within the State of Arizona.” ECF No. 6 at 3. Muñoz does not address Defendant Storage’s citizenship. 8 9 10 See id. Here, Muñoz is a citizen of Nevada, and therefore, he is required to show that each 11 defendant is a citizen outside of Nevada to establish diversity jurisdiction. See ECF No. 4 at 1; 12 ECF No. 1-1 at 1-2. Specifically, Muñoz must show that each defendant is incorporated outside 13 14 of Nevada and has its principal place of business outside of Nevada because each defendant is a corporation. See Hertz Corp. v. Friend, 559 U.S. 77, 78. 15 16 17 Muñoz has not demonstrated that this Court has diversity jurisdiction. While Muñoz alleges that U-Haul and RIC are domiciled in Arizona, he fails to show that they are incorporated 18 outside of Nevada and have their principal place of business outside of Nevada. See ECF No. 6 at 19 3. Furthermore, Muñoz did not address Storage’s citizenship in his amended complaint. See id. 20 Therefore, the Court cannot conclude that Muñoz is a citizen of a different state than each 21 defendant. Additionally, Muñoz has not alleged that there is more than $75,000 in controversy in 22 his amended complaint. See id. Therefore, Plaintiff has not sufficiently alleged that the Court has 23 24 25 26 27 diversity jurisdiction. 2. Federal Question Jurisdiction Federal district courts have “jurisdiction of all civil actions arising under the Constitution, laws, or treaties of the United States.” 28 U.S.C. § 1331. 28 Page 3 of 5 Case 2:20-cv-01412-GMN-BNW Document 7 Filed 10/14/20 Page 4 of 5 1 However, Muñoz’s amended complaint does not allege any claims under a federal statute, 2 the Constitution, or a United States treaty. See ECF No. 6. Muñoz’s amended complaint broadly 3 suggests that existing federal insurance statutes do not adequately protect consumers. See id. at 4- 4 5. And while Muñoz suggests more consumer protection is needed to protect fundamental rights, 5 Muñoz does not state how defendants violated his rights under any existing federal law. See id. 6 7 Therefore, Muñoz fails to sufficiently allege any basis for federal question jurisdiction. See 28 U.S.C. § 1331. 8 9 If Muñoz wishes to further amend, he must explain why this Court has subject matter 10 jurisdiction. Muñoz must show (1) that he is a citizen of a different state than each defendant, or 11 (2) that he is moving under a federal statute, the Constitution, or a United States treaty. 12 13 14 B. Amendment Muñoz is advised that if he files an additional amended complaint, the first amended complaint (ECF No. 6) no longer serves any function in this case. As such, if Muñoz files a 15 16 17 second amended complaint, each claim and the involvement of each defendant must be alleged sufficiently. The Court cannot refer to a prior pleading or to other documents to make plaintiff’s 18 second amended complaint complete. The amended complaint must be complete in and of itself 19 without reference to prior pleadings or to other documents. 20 III. CONCLUSION 21 IT IS THEREFORE ORDERED that Muñoz’s application to proceed in forma pauperis 22 (ECF No. 1) is GRANTED. Muñoz will not be required to pay the filing fee in this action. 23 24 25 26 27 Muñoz is permitted to maintain this action to conclusion without the necessity of prepayment of any additional fees or costs or the giving of a security for fees or costs. IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that the clerk of court must file Muñoz’s amended complaint (ECF No. 6). 28 Page 4 of 5 Case 2:20-cv-01412-GMN-BNW Document 7 Filed 10/14/20 Page 5 of 5 1 2 IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that Muñoz’s motion to amend (ECF No. 6) is DENIED without prejudice. 3 IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that if Muñoz’s wishes to amend his complaint, he must do 4 so by November 13, 2020. A failure to file an amended complaint by this deadline will result in a 5 recommendation that this case be dismissed. 6 DATED: October 14, 2020. 7 8 9 10 BRENDA WEKSLER UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 Page 5 of 5

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