Derby et al v. Thompson
Plaintiff: City of Derby Connecticut, Water Pollution Control Authority and City of Derby
Defendant: Melvin Thompson
Counter Defendant: Tower DB IX Trust
Case Number: 3:2021cv01180
Filed: September 3, 2021
Court: US District Court for the District of Connecticut
Presiding Judge: Kari A Dooley
Nature of Suit: Real Property: Foreclosure
Cause of Action: 28 U.S.C. ยง 1444
Jury Demanded By: None
Docket Report

This docket was last retrieved on September 20, 2021. A more recent docket listing may be available from PACER.

Date Filed Document Text
September 20, 2021 Case remanded to State Court Judicial District of Ansonia-Milford. (Fanelle, N.)
September 15, 2021 JUDICIAL PROCEEDINGS SURVEY - FOR COUNSEL ONLY: The following link to the confidential survey requires you to log into CM/ECF for SECURITY purposes. Once in CM/ECF you will be prompted for the case number. Although you are receiving this survey through CM/ECF, it is hosted on an independent website called SurveyMonkey. Once in SurveyMonkey, the survey is located in a secure account. The survey is not docketed and it is not sent directly to the judge. To ensure anonymity, completed surveys are held up to 90 days before they are sent to the judge for review. We hope you will take this opportunity to participate, please click on this link: https://ecf.ctd.uscourts.gov/cgi-bin/Dispatch.pl?survey (Fanelle, N.)
September 9, 2021 Opinion or Order Filing 7 SUA SPONTE ORDER OF REMAND. In this action, Defendant attempts to remove a foreclosure case from the Connecticut Superior Court. Federal courts have subject matter jurisdiction over only matters in which a federal question is raised or there is diversity of citizenship. See 28 U.S.C. 1331, 1332. Federal question jurisdiction exists where the action "aris[es] under the Constitution, laws or treaties of the United States." 28 U.S.C. 1331. "[A] suit 'arises under' federal law... 'only when the plaintiff's statement of his own cause of action shows that it is based upon [federal law].'" Vaden v. Discover Bank, 556 U.S. 49, 60 (2009) (quoting Louisville & Nashville R. Co. v. Mottley, 211 U.S. 149, 152 (1908)). Diversity jurisdiction exists only where there is complete diversity of citizenship between the parties and the amount in controversy exceeds $75,000. 28 U.S.C. 1332(a). Here, there is no basis for federal question or diversity jurisdiction. The underlying complaint sounds only in foreclosure, and "it is well settled that judgments of foreclosure... are fundamentally matters of state law." Muong v. Fed. Nat. Mortgage Ass'n, No. 13-cv-06564 (KAM), 2013 WL 6667374, at *2 (E.D.N.Y. Dec. 16, 2013) (collecting cases). Moreover, it is clear that the notice of removal is based on the Defendant's counterclaims, and federal jurisdiction cannot be predicated on actual or anticipated defenses or counterclaims. See Vaden, 556 U.S. at 60. Furthermore, diversity jurisdiction is also lacking. A case may not be removed to federal court if the "defendant[ ] is a citizen of the State in which such action is brought." 28 U.S.C. 1441(b)(2); accord Wells Fargo Bank, National Association v. White, No. 3:17-cv-00858 (VAB), 2018 WL 650372, at *2 (D. Conn. Jan. 31, 2018) ("A state court case is not removable, however, based solely on diversity jurisdiction if any defendant is a citizen of the state in which the action is brought.") (citing 28 U.S.C. 1441(b)(2)); U.S. Bank Tr., N.A. for Wells Fargo Asset Sec. Corp. v. Walbert, No. 3:17-CV-00991 (CSH), 2017 WL 3578553, at *3 (D. Conn. Aug. 18, 2017) ("Because Defendant appears to be a citizen of Connecticut, and has not alleged that he is a citizen of any other state, and Connecticut is the state in which the civil action is brought, the foreclosure action is not removable.") Here, the case was commenced against the Defendant in Connecticut Superior Court, and the Defendant is a citizen of the state of Connecticut. In addition, a notice of removal generally must "be filed within 30 days after the receipt by the defendant... of a copy of the initial pleading... or within 30 days after the service of summons upon the defendant... whichever period is shorter." 28 U.S.C. 1446(b)(1). That the state court action was filed in 2019 therefore renders the Defendant's notice of removal untimely. See U.S. Bank Nat'l Ass'n v. Berkowska, No. 3:12-cv-597 (JBA), 2013 WL 12303038, at *1 (D. Conn. Jan. 3, 2013) ("[T]he statutory time limit is mandatory and absent a finding of waiver or estoppel, federal courts rigorously enforce the statute's thirty-day filing requirement.") (quotation marks and citation omitted). And even in those circumstances where a later removal period is contemplated, see 28 U.S.C. 1446(b)(3), a case is not, save for special circumstances not present here, removable on the basis of diversity jurisdiction more than one year after the action is filed in state court, see id. 1446(c)(1). Again, this foreclosure action was filed in 2019. For all of these reasons, this case is ordered remanded back to the Connecticut Superior Court, Judicial District of Ansonia-Milford. Royal Ins. Co. v. Jones, 76 F. Supp. 2d 202, 204 (D. Conn. 1999) ("a court lacking subject matter jurisdiction over a removed action must remand that action to state court sua sponte or on motion"); see also United Food & Commercial Workers Union, Local 919, AFL-CIO v. CenterMark Props. Meriden Square, Inc., 30 F.3d 298, 301 (2d Cir. 1994) (recognizing that lack of subject matter jurisdiction may be raised sua sponte by the court and that "[w]here jurisdiction is lacking... dismissal is mandatory."). The Clerk of the Court is directed to: (1) remand this matter to the Connecticut Superior Court, Judicial District of Ansonia-Milford, pursuant to 28 U.S.C. 1447(c), and (2) close this case. Signed by Judge Kari A. Dooley on 9/9/2021. (Banker, Joshua)
September 8, 2021 Filing 6 NOTICE TO COUNSEL/SELF-REPRESENTED PARTIES : Counsel or self-represented parties initiating or removing this action are responsible for serving all parties with attached documents and copies of #5 Counterclaim filed by Melvin Thompson, #2 Order on Pretrial Deadlines, #4 Protective Order, #1 Notice of Removal filed by Melvin Thompson, #3 Electronic Filing Order Signed by Clerk on 9/8/2021. (Attachments: #1 Standing Order on Removed Cases)(Freberg, B)
September 7, 2021 Filing 5 COUNTERCLAIM against City of Derby Connecticut, Water Pollution Control Authority, Tower DB IX Trust, filed by Melvin Thompson.(Freberg, B)
September 3, 2021 Opinion or Order Filing 4 STANDING PROTECTIVE ORDER Signed by Judge Kari A. Dooley on 9/3/2021.(Freberg, B)
September 3, 2021 Opinion or Order Filing 3 ELECTRONIC FILING ORDER FOR COUNSEL - PLEASE ENSURE COMPLIANCE WITH COURTESY COPY REQUIREMENTS IN THIS ORDER Signed by Judge Kari A. Dooley on 9/3/2021.(Freberg, B)
September 3, 2021 Opinion or Order Filing 2 Order on Pretrial Deadlines: Amended Pleadings due by 11/2/2021 Discovery due by 3/5/2022 Dispositive Motions due by 4/9/2022 Signed by Clerk on 9/3/2021.(Freberg, B)
September 3, 2021 Filing 1 NOTICE OF REMOVAL by Melvin Thompson from J.D. of Ansonia-Milford, case number AAN-CV19-6033771-S,. (Attachments: #1 State Court Complaint)(Freberg, B)
September 3, 2021 Filing fee received from Melvin Thompson: $ 402.00, receipt number 783540 (Freberg, B)

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Plaintiff: City of Derby Connecticut
Represented By: Jenna Cutler
Represented By: Vincent M. Marino
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Plaintiff: Water Pollution Control Authority
Represented By: Jenna Cutler
Represented By: Vincent M. Marino
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Plaintiff: City of Derby
Represented By: Jenna Cutler
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Defendant: Melvin Thompson
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Counter defendant: Tower DB IX Trust
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