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Hanna v. Illinois Dep't of Financial & Professional Regulation

IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE NORTHERN DISTRICT OF ILLINOIS EASTERN DIVISION


July 20, 2007

EDWARD HANNA, PLAINTIFF,
v.
ILLINOIS DEPARTMENT OF FINANCIAL & PROFESSIONAL REGULATION, DIVISION OF INSURANCE, DEFENDANT.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Milton I. Shadur Senior United States District Judge

MEMORANDUM ORDER

Edward Hanna ("Hanna") has just filed this action against the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation, Division of Insurance ("Department"), seeking to invoke federal jurisdiction under 42 U.S.C. §1983 ("Section 1983"). But Department is an arm of the State of Illinois (and is not a separate suable entity), and it was definitively established nearly two decades ago that neither a State nor any of its agencies is a "person" suable under Section 1983 (Will v. Mich. Dep't of State Police, 491 U.S. 58 (1989)). That being so, federal subject matter jurisdiction is absent here, a matter that this Court is obligated to raise sua sponte (see, e.g., Cook v Winfrey, 141 F.3d 322, 325 (7th Cir. 1998)).

Accordingly both Hanna's Complaint and this action are dismissed for lack of subject matter jurisdiction. This dismissal does not of course affect the possibility that Hanna may be able to bring his claim in a state court of competent jurisdiction (a subject on which this Court expresses no view).

20070720

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