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Patricia M. Bolhous, As Special Administrator On Behalf of Thomas H. v. Simon Property Group (Delaware) Inc. and Sdg Macerich Properties

October 23, 2012

PATRICIA M. BOLHOUS, AS SPECIAL ADMINISTRATOR ON BEHALF OF THOMAS H. ROWE, AND DOLORES M. ROWE, INDIVIDUALLY, PLAINTIFFS,
v.
SIMON PROPERTY GROUP (DELAWARE) INC. AND SDG MACERICH PROPERTIES L.P., A DELAWARE LIMITED PARTNERSHIP, DEFENDANTS.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Sara Darrow United States District Judge

E-FILED

Tuesday, 23 October, 2012 03:47:48 PM

Clerk, U.S. District Court, ILCD

ORDER

On December 8, 2011, Defendant Simon Property Group, Inc. ("Simon") filed a notice of removal with this Court. Shortly thereafter, this Court ordered Simon to file a supplemental jurisdictional statement establishing diversity jurisdiction. On December 20, 2011, Simon filed a supplemental jurisdictional statement that alleged the residence of the plaintiffs at the time of the alleged incident. Subsequently, and after being granted limited discovery, Plaintiffs filed an amended complaint on July 9, 2012, adding Defendant SDG Macerich Properties L.P. ("Macerich") to this case.

As set forth below, the Court finds that Simon has not properly alleged subject matter jurisdiction in its supplemental jurisdictional statement for failing to allege diversity of citizenship. The Court therefore ORDERS Simon to file a second supplement to its notice of removal with factual allegations, assuming they exist, that address the inadequacies described below. Simon has 14 days to comply with this order.

I.SUBJECT MATTER JURISDICTION

BASED ON DIVERSITY

28 U.S.C. § 1332(a)(1) states that "[t]he district courts shall have original jurisdiction of all civil actions where the matter in controversy exceeds the sum or value of $75,000, exclusive of interest and costs, and is between citizens of different states." Accordingly, the two requirements of diversity jurisdiction are (1) diversity of citizenship and (2) that the amount in controversy exceeds $75,000.

The party seeking to invoke federal jurisdiction bears the burden of demonstrating that the requirements for diversity are met. Smart v. Local 702 Intern. Broth. of Elec. Workers, 562 F. 3d 798, 802-03 (7th Cir. 2009). At the same time, in any case premised on diversity jurisdiction, this Court must independently determine whether the parties meet the diversity and amount in controversy requirements of 28 U.S.C. § 1332. Thomas v. Guardsmark, LLC, 487 F. 3d 531, 533 (7th Cir. 2007). In other words, the party invoking federal jurisdiction bears the burden of proof, but the Court must independently analyze jurisdiction even if it is not challenged.

A.Diversity of Citizenship Legal Standard

In order to satisfy the diversity of citizenship requirement, "complete diversity" must be established-no plaintiff and defendant can be a citizen of the same State. McCready v. eBay, Inc., 453 F.3d 882, 891 (7th Cir. 2006). A "naked declaration that there is diversity of citizenship is never sufficient." Thomas, 487 F.3d at 533. Rather, the citizenship of each party to the litigation must be identified. Id. Further, merely alleging residence, without alleging domicile, is insufficient to establish citizenship. See, e.g., Heinen v. Northrop Grumman Corp., 671 F.3d 669, 670 (7th Cir. 2012); America's Best Inns v. Best Inns of Abilene, 980 F. 2d 1072, 1074 (7th Cir. 1992) (per curiam).

For diversity jurisdiction purposes, the citizenship of a limited partnership is the citizenship of each of its members. See Thomas, 487 F.3d at 533-34. When a plaintiff is a representative of a decedent, the plaintiff's citizenship is the citizenship of the decedent at the time of his death; the citizenship of the representative is not relevant to a diversity analysis. 28 U.S.C. § 1332(c)(2); Lincoln Property Co. v. Roche, 546 U.S. 81, 93-94 (2005); Hunter v. Amin, 583 F.3d 486, 492 (7th Cir. 2009).

The citizenship of the parties at the time that the action commences is what counts for the diversity analysis (with the exception of the representative of the decedent-the citizenship of the decedent at the time of his death controls). Freeport-McMoRan Inc. v. K N Energy, Inc., 498 US 426, 428 (1991) (diversity of citizenship looks at the citizenship of the parties at the time the action was commenced); Hunter, 583 F.3d at 492 (citizenship of ...


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