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Paintball Players Productions, LLC v. Majesco Entertainment Company

UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE DISTRICT OF NEW JERSEY


October 11, 2012

PAINTBALL PLAYERS PRODUCTIONS, LLC PLAINTIFF,
v.
MAJESCO ENTERTAINMENT COMPANY,
DEFENDANT.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: William J. Martini, U.S.D.J.:

OPINION

This matter comes before the Court sua sponte upon review of its docket. For the reasons set forth below, the Court will DISMISS the Complaint WITHOUT PREJUDICE for lack of subject matter jurisdiction.

"The Court begins its analysis, as it must, with the threshold issue[] . . . of subject matter jurisdiction." Tullet Prebon, PLC v. BGC Partners, Inc., No. 9-5365, 2010 WL 2545178, at *3 (D.N.J. June 18, 2010). It is Plaintiff's burden to establish that jurisdiction. Rothberg v. Marger, No. 11-5497, 2012 WL 1883505, at *2 (D.N.J. May 21, 2012). Because Plaintiff has failed to meet its burden, the Court will sua sponte dismiss the Complaint. See Woodall v. Geist, No. 9-4975, 2010 WL 1838433, at *4 (D.N.J. May 5, 2010); see also Fed. R. Civ. P. 12(h)(3) ("If the court determines at any time that it lacks subject-matter jurisdiction, the court must dismiss the action.").

The Complaint asserts exclusively state law claims under the Court's diversity jurisdiction. See 28 U.S.C. § 1332. Diversity jurisdiction requires "complete diversity," which means that no plaintiff and defendant can be citizens of the same state. Zambelli Fireworks, Mfg. Co. Inc. v. Wood, 592 F.3d 412, 419 (3d Cir. 2010). According to Plaintiff Paintball Players Productions, LLC, Defendant Majesco Entertainment Company is a Delaware corporation that has its principal place of business in New Jersey. Compl. ¶ 8. It follows that Majesco is a citizen of both Delaware and New Jersey for purposes of diversity jurisdiction. See 28 U.S.C. § 1332(c)(1). Paintball Players purports to be a "company" owned by Greg Hastings, "founded in 2003 and incorporated under the laws of the State of Washington." Compl. ¶ 7. This information is not sufficient to establish citizenship for purposes of 28 U.S.C. § 1332.

As a limited liability company, Paintball Players takes on the citizenship of each of its members. Zambelli, 593 F.3d at 420. If Mr. Hastings is the only person or entity with an ownership interest in Paintball Players, then Plaintiff's citizenship is determined by Mr. Hastings's domicile. Id. at 419. Plaintiff does not say where Mr. Hastings is domiciled. If others have ownership interests in Paintball Players, their citizenship must be considered, as well. Id.

Accordingly, the Court will sua sponte DISMISS the Complaint WITHOUT PREJUDICE.

WILLIAM J. MARTINI, U.S.D.J.

20121011

© 1992-2012 VersusLaw Inc.



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