United States District Court, S.D. Florida
ORDER ON MOTION FOR REMAND
BLOOM UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
CAUSE is before the Court upon Plaintiff Linda Johnson's
Motion for Remand, ECF No. , (“Motion”).
Defendant Leevers Supermarket, Inc. filed its Response, ECF
No. , (“Response”) to which Plaintiff did not
reply. The Court has considered the Motion, the Response the
record in this case and the applicable law and is otherwise
fully advised. For the reasons set forth below, the Motion is
Linda Johnson brings this negligence action, seeking damages
for personal injuries sustained in the Defendant's
supermarket from a slip and fall. ECF No. [1-1], Plaintiff
originally filed her complaint in state court on August 24,
2018 and the Defendant thereafter removed the case on May 13,
2019, ECF No. , (“Notice”), based on diversity
jurisdiction. Plaintiff now seeks to remand the case, arguing
that Defendant has failed to establish that the amount in
controversy exceeds $75, 000.00, and that the removal was
to 28 U.S.C. § 1441(a), any civil action brought in a
state court of which the district courts of the United States
have original jurisdiction, may be removed by a defendant to
the district court of the United States for the district and
division embracing the place where such action is pending.
removing defendant bears the burden of proving proper federal
jurisdiction.” Coffey v. Nationstar Mortg.,
LLC, 994 F.Supp.2d 1281, 1283 (S.D. Fla. 2014). A
district court has subject matter jurisdiction where the
parties are diverse and the amount in controversy exceeds
$75, 000.00. 28 U.S.C. § 1332(a). “Where, as here,
the plaintiff has not pled a specific amount of damages, the
removing defendant must prove by a preponderance of the
evidence that the amount in controversy exceeds the
jurisdiction requirement.” Pretka v.
Kolter City Plaza II, Inc., 608 F.3d 744, 752 (11th Cir.
2010); see also 28 U.S.C. § 1332(a). “To
determine whether this standard is met, a court first
examines whether it is facially apparent from the complaint
that the amount in controversy exceeds the jurisdictional
requirement.” Miedema v. Maytag Corp., 450
F.3d 1322, 1330 (11th Cir. 2006) (citation omitted),
abrogated on other grounds by Dudley v. Eli Lilly &
Co., 778 F.3d 909 (11th Cir. 2014). “If the
jurisdictional amount is not facially apparent from the
complaint, the court should look to the notice of removal and
may require evidence relevant to the amount in controversy at
the time the case was removed.” Id. (citation
removing defendant is not required to prove the amount in
controversy beyond all doubt or to banish all uncertainty
about it.” Pretka, 608 F.3d at 754 (citations
omitted). The use of reasonable inferences and deductions is
permissible to show the amount that is in controversy in the
case. See id. (discussing the difference between
reasonable deductions and inferences with “conjecture,
speculation, or star gazing”). However, district courts
narrowly construe removal statutes, and where a plaintiff and
defendant clash about jurisdiction, uncertainties are
resolved in favor of remand. Burns v. Windsor Ins.
Co., 31 F.3d 1092, 1095, (11th Cir. 1994),
superseded in part by statute, 28 U.S.C.
the time limit for removal is set forth in 28 U.S.C. §
1446(b), which provides in relevant part:
(3) [I]f the case stated by the initial pleading is not
removable, a notice of removal may be filed within thirty
days after receipt by the defendant, through service or
otherwise, of a copy of an amended pleading, motion, order or
other paper from which it may be first ascertained that the
case is one which is or has become removable.
to discovery requests-including responses to requests for
admission and interrogatories-constitute “other
paper” pursuant to the statute. Lowery v. Ala Power
Co., 483 F.3d 1184, 1212 n.62 (11th Cir. 2007) (citing
Wilson v. Gen. Motors Corp., 888 F.2d 779, 780 (11th
Cir. 1989) and Akin v. Ashland Chem. Co., 156 F.3d
1030, 1036 (10th Cir. 1998)) (additional citations omitted).
With these standards in mind, the Court analyzes the Motion.
Motion, Plaintiff argues that this case should be remanded
because Defendant has failed to establish that the amount in
controversy requirement has been met, and because the
Defendant' Notice of Removal is untimely. The Court
considers each argument in turn.