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Class Action

CAFA Law Blog - Information, cases and insights regarding the Class Action Fairness Act of 2005 CAFA Law Blog - Information, cases and insights regarding the Class Action Fairness Act of 2005

The CAFA Law Blog is an online resource for information, cases and insights regarding the Class Action Fairness Act of 2005, or “CAFA.”

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Last Entry: January 26, 2015 at 07:00:55

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Potential for Recovery in Excess of Jurisdictional Minimum is Not Sufficient to Establish Amount in Countroversy, Which

Posted on September 22, 2014
Perritt v. Westlake Vinlys Co., LP, 2013 WL 6451774 (M.D. La. Dec. 9, 2013). A District Court in Louisiana granted the plaintiffs? motions to remand holding that the mere potential for recovery in excess of the jurisdictional minimum was not sufficient to establish the amount in controversy, and that the defendants must show that it [...

An Unnamed Defendant Is Not A Party For Purposes of the ?At Least 1 Defendant? Requirement for the Local Issue Controversy Exception

Posted on September 19, 2014
Quicken Loans v. Alig, 2013 WL 6671618 (4th Cir. Dec. 19, 2013). The Fourth Circuit vacated an order of remand, holding that an unnamed defendant is not a party to the litigation, and thus, it was improper for the District Court to aggregate the unnamed defendant in a group for the purposes of the ?at [...

Eighth Circuit Math 101: One + One + One = One Mass Action under CAFA

Posted on September 19, 2014
Atwell v Boston Scientific Corp., 2013 WL 6050762 (8th Cir. Nov. 18, 2013). In this appeal, the Eighth Circuit ruled that when three cases each with less than 100 members were joined together before a common judge for the purposes trial, it becomes a mass action for the purposes of CAFA...

Affirmative Defenses Have No Role in Determining the Amount in Controversy

Posted on September 16, 2014
Smith v. Manhattan Club Timeshare Association, Inc., 2013 WL 1955882 (S.D.N.Y. May 10, 2013). In this action, a District Court in New York held that affirmative defenses asserted on the merits could not be used to cut down the amount in controversy even where the complaint itself discloses the existence of a valid defense...

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Defendants Concrete Evidence Defeats Remand

Posted on September 12, 2014
Fielder v. Penn Station, Inc., 2013 WL 1869618 (N.D. Ohio May 3, 2013). In this case, the plaintiff made a purchase at Penn Station, Inc., a shop located inRocky River,Ohiousing his credit card. The defendant Heartland Payment Systems, Inc. processed credit card purchases for Penn Station, Inc...

District Courts Have Authority to Stay Remand Orders in Order to Facilitate Appeal

Posted on September 11, 2014
Raskas v. Johnson & Johnson, 2013 WL 1818133 (E.D. Mo. April 29, 2013). In this action, a District Court in Missouri held that it had authority to stay its own remand order. The plaintiffs brought an action under the Missouri Merchandising Practices Act...

A Removing Party Should Identify Statutes That Permit Attorney?s Fees

Posted on September 08, 2014
Otay Hydraulics, Inc. v. Safety-Kleen Systems, Inc., 2013 WL 1773955 (C.D. Cal. April 25, 2013). In this matter, the plaintiff brought an action in the Los Angeles County Superior Court alleging that the defendant breached contracts with its California customers by charging unauthorized fuel surcharges and excessive fees...

Lemy v. Direct General Finance Co., 2014 WL 903371 (11th Cir. March 10, 2014).

Posted on September 01, 2014
Lemy v. Direct General Finance Co., 2014 WL 903371 (11th Cir. March 10, 2014). The Eleventh Circuit upheld the District Court?s denial of motion to remand, finding that when the percentage of recovery from a foreign defendant far exceeds the percentage of recovery from the local defendant, then significant reliefis notbeing sought from the local [...

Vogle v. Archstone Communities, LLC, 2014 WL 463532 (C.D. Cal. Feb. 5, 2014)

Posted on August 29, 2014
Vogle v. Archstone Communities, LLC, 2014 WL 463532 (C.D. Cal. Feb. 5, 2014) A District Court in California refused to exercise federal jurisdiction by aggregating the claims against two defendants. The District Court found that, under CAFA, aggregation of claims against the defendants is permitted only when the defendants were one legal entity, and there [...

Western District of Kentucky Analyzes CAFA?s Jurisdictional Requirements And Exceptions In Order Denying Remand

Posted on August 27, 2014
Brown v. Paducah & Louisville Ry., Inc., 12-00818, 2013 WL 5273773 (W.D. Ky. Sept. 17, 2013) In this case, a Kentucky district court held that defendants in a putative class action arising out of a train derailment satisfied their burden of establishing CAFA?s minimal-diversity and amount-in-controversy requirements...

Dissent in Dart Cherokee Basin Operating Co., LLC v. Owens Paves Way For Third Supreme Court CAFA Decision

Posted on August 26, 2014
Dart Cherokee Basin Operating Co., LLC v. Owens, 730 F.3d 1234 (10th Cir. 2013), cert. granted, 134 S.Ct. 1788, 188 L.Ed. 2d 757 (2014) In this appeal, four circuit judges ? Judges Hartz, Kelly, Tymkovich, and Phillips ? dissented from the Tenth Circuit?s refusal to grant rehearing with respect to a Tenth Circuit panel?s previous [...

Local Controversy Exception, Not Home State Exception Wins the Day

Posted on August 19, 2014
Vodenichar v Halcon Energy Properties Inc., 733 F.3d 497 (3d Cir. Aug. 16, 2013). In this action, the Third Circuit affirmed the remand of the case based on a local controversy exception rather than the applying the home state exception as the basis for the district court?s remand...

Approved Settlement of Federal and State Wage Claims Did Not Implicate CAFA

Posted on August 15, 2014
Juvera v. Salcido, 2013 WL 6628039 (D. Ariz. Dec. 17, 2013) A District Court in Arizona granted approval to a $157,000 settlement holding that the Settlement Agreement reflected a fair and reasonable resolution of wage issues in the action. Current and former cashiers who were employed with the defendants brought this action alleging violations of [...

Ninth Circuit?s Lowdermilk?s Legal Certainty Standard is Irreconcilable with Standard Fire

Posted on August 14, 2014
Rodriguez v. AT&T Mobility Services, LLC, 2013 WL 4516757 (9th Cir. Aug. 27, 2013). The Ninth Circuit?s decision that Lowdermilk?s imposition of the legal certainty standard was clearly irreconcilable with Standard Fire is a boon to defendants seeking to remove cases to federal court under CAFA...

Setting the Edges: Defending Against Plaintiff End Runs Around CAFA

Posted on August 13, 2014
Edward S. Sledge, IV & Christopher S. Randolph, Jr., Setting the Edges: Defending Against Plaintiff End Runs Around CAFA, 80 Def. Couns. J. 178 (April 2013). In this article, Edward S. Sledge, IV, a shareholder at Maynard, Cooper & Gale, P.C. in Birmingham, Alabama, discusses the abusive practice that has allowed plaintiffs? attorneys to evade [...

Probation Company is not a Government Entity for the Purpose of CAFA

Posted on August 12, 2014
McGee v. Sentinel Offender Servs., LLC, 2013 WL 2436658 (11th Cir. June 6, 2013). A question arose before the Eleventh Circuit if a probation company is a government entity so that it could not assert federal jurisdiction under CAFA. The Eleventh Circuit held that the probation company who is contracted by the state for services [...

Amount in Controversy Need Not Be Proved to Absolute Certainty

Posted on August 08, 2014
Stephenson v. Consolidated Rail Corp., 2013 WL 1750005 (D.N.J. April 23, 2013). The plaintiffs brought this class action in the Superior Court of New Jersey, Gloucester County, alleging that huge quantities of toxic, dangerous, and ultra-hazardous substances were released when defendants bridge collapsed and train derailed...

Ambiguity Goes In Favour Of The Non-Removing Party

Posted on August 06, 2014
Salazar v. Avis Budget Group, Inc., 2013 WL 1728275 (S.D. Cal. April 23, 2013). Plaintiffs, a group of mechanics, filed a putative wage-and-hour class action in the Superior Court of California, San Diego County. Defendants quickly removed the action to the District Court under CAFA, and plaintiffs then filed their First Amended Complaint (?FAC?)...

Only Concrete Evidence Can Keep a Defendant?s Case Afloat Under CAFA?S Legal Certainty Standard

Posted on July 02, 2014
Bell v. Home Depot U.S.A., Inc., 2013 WL 1791920 (E.D.Cal. April 26, 2013). As amended by CAFA, 28 U.S.C. 1332(d) vests district courts with original jurisdiction of any civil action in which the amount in controversy exceeds $5,000,000, the aggregate number of proposed plaintiffs is 100 or greater, and any member of the plaintiff [...

Forum Shopping May Not Qualify as Bad Faith

Posted on May 23, 2014
Deaver v. BBVA Compass Consulting & Benefits, Inc., 2013 WL 2156280 (N.D. Cal. May 17, 2013). The U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Florida determined whether the Supreme Court?s recent decision in Standard Fire Insurance Company v...

District Court Can Stay Its Remand Order Pending Appeal

Posted on May 22, 2014
Dalton v. Walgreen Co., 2013 WL 2367837 (E.D. Mo. May 29, 2013). Staying its remand order to facilitate the defendant to prefer an appeal, the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri held that it had jurisdiction to reopen the case for the limited purpose of staying the remand order, because to hold [...

Appellate Court Opinion in a Wholly Separate Case Does Not Reset the 30-Day Removal Window

Posted on May 21, 2014
Brown v. MHN Government Services, Inc., 2013 WL 2321509 (W.D. Wash. May 28, 2013). The U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington held that a recent Supreme Court opinion in a wholly separate case does not reset the 30-day removal window under 28 U...

Limited Liability Companies Are like Corporations for Purposes of Determining Citizenship under CAFA

Posted on May 20, 2014
Heckemeyer v. NRT Missouri, LLC, 2013 WL 2250429 (E.D. Mo. May 22, 2013). The U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri held that Congress chose to treat limited a limited liability company (?LLC?) like a corporation for purposes of determining citizenship under CAFA; thus, an LLC is deemed to be a citizen of [...

Facts Outside of the Complaint and Notice of Removal Are Irrelevant for Deciding CAFA Jurisdiction

Posted on May 19, 2014
Owens v. Dart Cherokee Basin Operating Co., LLC, 2013 WL 2237740 (D. Kan. May 21, 2013). The U.S. District Court of Kansas has held that reference to factual allegations or evidence outside of the complaint and notice of removal is not permitted to determine the amount in controversy...

Smith v. Honeywell International, Inc., 2013 WL 2181277 (D.N.J. May 20, 2013)

Posted on May 16, 2014
Smith v. Honeywell International, Inc., 2013 WL 2181277 (D.N.J. May 20, 2013). The plaintiffs sued defendants, PPG Industries, Inc. (?PPG?) and Honeywell International Inc. (?Honeywell?), alleging that the chromium ore processing residue (?COPR?) used by the defendants to fill in residential and commercial areas in Jersey City exposed the class members to hazardous materials which [...

Spillman v. RPM Pizza, LLC, 2013 WL 2286076 (M.D. La. May 23, 2013)

Posted on May 15, 2014
Spillman v. RPM Pizza, LLC, 2013 WL 2286076 (M.D. La. May 23, 2013). The plaintiff brought an action under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) on behalf of a class of persons who received automated telephone calls to their cellular phone numbers made by or on behalf of the defendant, RPM Pizza, LLC or one [...

The Supreme Court?s Knowles Ruling Is Not ?Other Paper? Within the Meaning of 28 U.S.C. 1446(b)(3)

Posted on April 08, 2014
Henry v. Michaels Stores, Inc., 2013 WL 2208070 (N.D. Ohio May 20, 2013). The District Court held that the Supreme Court?s recent opinion in Standard Fire Insurance Co. v. Knowles, 133 S. Ct. 1345 (2013), is not an ?other paper,? which could make a previously un-removable case removable under 28 U...

Is A Continuing Tort An ?Event Or Occurence? Under CAFA?s Mass Action Provisions?

Posted on March 18, 2014
Eleanor Abraham, et al v. St. Croix Renaissance, Group, L.L.L.P., 719 F.3d 270 (3d Cir. 2013). In this appeal, the Third Circuit held that CAFA?s phrase ?an event or occurrence,? as it appears in the mass-action exclusion, is not limited to something that happened at a particular moment in time...

Citizenship, not Residency bring cases to Federal Court

Posted on March 17, 2014
Villa v. United Site Servs. of California, Inc., 2013 WL 2436605 (N.D. Cal. June 4, 2013). District Judge Jon S. Tigar, writing for the Northern District of California remanded an action for failure to establish minimal diversity, holding that the relevant inquiry for determining whether minimal diversity exists is the citizenship of the parties, which [...

Amount in Controversy adequately supported by Defendant?s Affidavit

Posted on March 14, 2014
Turnage v. Old Dominion Freight Line, Inc, 2013 WL 2950836 (N.D. Cal. June 14, 2013). The plaintiff, truck driver, brought a wage and hour action in violation of California Labor Code, and Industrial Welfare Commission Wage Orders. The plaintiff also brought a representative claim under the Private Attorney General Act, and a cause of action [...

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