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Dan Leahy v. I-Flow Corporation

December 21, 2010

DAN LEAHY,
PLAINTIFF,
v.
I-FLOW CORPORATION, ET AL., DEFENDANTS.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Cooper, District Judge

NOT FOR PUBLICATION

MEMORANDUM OPINION

The plaintiff, who is a New Jersey citizen, brought this action in New Jersey state court against, among other defendants, the defendant Astrazeneca LP ("ALP") to recover damages pursuant to state law for personal injuries suffered from medical products. (Dkt. entry no. 1, Rmv. Not., Ex. A, Compl.) The defendants removed the action to this Court pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § ("Section") 1332. (Rmv. Not.) The Court will remand the action.

BACKGROUND

I. Legal Background

A. Partnership's Citizenship

A partnership is deemed to be a citizen of each state in which each partner comprising the partnership is deemed to be a citizen. Zambelli Fireworks Mfg. Co. v. Wood, 592 F.3d 412, 419-20 (3d Cir. 2010). For instance, if one of the partners comprising a partnership is deemed to be a citizen of, among other places, New Jersey, then the partnership itself is deemed to be a citizen of, among other places, New Jersey as well.

B. Jurisdiction

A defendant "may remove an action on the basis of diversity of citizenship if there is complete diversity between all named plaintiffs and all named defendants" under Section 1332. Lincoln Prop. Co. v. Roche, 546 U.S. 81, 84 (2005).

C. Fraudulent Joinder

A plaintiff bringing an action in state court against more than one defendant commits "fraudulent joinder" if naming a defendant who is not of diverse citizenship solely to defeat removal under Section 1332. Brown v. Jevic, 575 F.3d 322, 326-27 (3d Cir. 2009); In re Briscoe, 448 F.3d 201, 215-19 (3d Cir. 2006); Batoff v. State Farm Ins. Co., 977 F.2d 848, 851-54 (3d Cir. 1992); Boyer v. Snap-On Tools Corp., 913 F.2d 108, 110-13 (3d Cir. 1990); Abels v. State Farm Fire & Cas. Co., 770 F.2d 26, 29-34 (3d Cir. 1985). For example, a plaintiff who is a New Jersey citizen may not name a New Jersey citizen among the several defendants named in a state court action for the sole purpose of denying the defendants the opportunity to remove the action to federal court under Section 1332.

II. Factual Allegations

A. ALP's Citizenship

ALP is a partnership. (Rmv. Not. at 7.) One of the partners comprising ALP - KBI Sub, Inc. - is deemed to be a citizen of, among other places, New Jersey. (Id.) Thus, ALP itself is deemed to ...


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