United States District Court, S.D. Alabama, Southern Division
KATHERINE P. NELSON, UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
action is before the Court on sua sponte review of
its subject matter jurisdiction. This action, originally
filed by Plaintiff Zina Jones (“Plaintiff”), was
removed to this Court from the Circuit Court of Mobile
County, Alabama, by Defendants Marriott International, Inc.
and Sabrina Le (“Defendants”) under 28 U.S.C.
§ 1441(a). (See Doc. 1). In the Notice of
Removal (Doc. 1), Defendants allege diversity of citizenship
under 28 U.S.C. § 1332(a) as the sole basis for the
Court's subject matter jurisdiction. See 28
U.S.C. § 1446(a) (“A defendant or defendants
desiring to remove any civil action from a State court shall
file in the district court of the United States for the
district and division within which such action is pending a
notice of removal…containing a short and plain
statement of the grounds for removal…”).
as here, a case is removed from state court, “[t]he
burden of establishing subject matter jurisdiction falls on
the party invoking removal.” Univ. of S. Alabama v.
Am. Tobacco Co., 168 F.3d 405, 411-12 (11th Cir. 1999).
Accord, e.g., City of Vestavia Hills v. Gen.
Fid. Ins. Co., 676 F.3d 1310, 1313 (11th Cir. 2012)
(“The removing party bears the burden of proof
regarding the existence of federal subject matter
jurisdiction.”). “A defendant may remove an
action to a district court that would have original
jurisdiction if complete diversity between the parties exists
and the amount in controversy exceeds $75, 000.”
City of Vestavia Hills, 676 F.3d at 1313 (citing 28
U.S.C. § 1332).
undersigned finds that the Notice of Removal fails to
sufficiently demonstrate that the amount in controversy
“exceeds the sum or value of $75, 000, exclusive of
interest and costs…” 28 U.S.C. § 1332(a).
To meet the amount in controversy requirement, the removing
defendant must demonstrate that the amount in controversy
likely exceeds the court's jurisdictional threshold:
Where the complaint does not expressly allege a specific
amount in controversy, removal is proper if it is facially
apparent from the complaint that the amount in controversy
exceeds the jurisdictional requirement. If the jurisdictional
amount is not facially apparent from the complaint, the court
should look to the notice of removal and may require evidence
relevant to the amount in controversy at the time the case
was removed ... A conclusory allegation in the notice of
removal that the jurisdictional amount is satisfied, without
setting forth the underlying facts supporting such an
assertion, is insufficient to meet the defendant's
Williams v. Best Buy Co., 269 F.3d 1316, 1319-20
(11th Cir. 2001).
Complaint does not contain a demand for a specific sum. (Doc.
1-1 at 3-8). Defendants claim that it is apparent from the
face of the Complaint, “[g]iven the nature of the
claimed permanent personal injuries, psychological injuries,
loss of enjoyment of life, and the demand for punitive
damages[, ]” that the amount in controversy requirement
is satisfied. (Doc. 1 at 10). These allegations, however, do
not make § 1332(a) requisite amount in controversy
“facially apparent” from the complaint. See
Williams, 269 F.3d at 1318; See also Collinsworth v. Big
Dog Treestand, Inc., 2016 WL 3620775 at *1, *3 (S.D.
Ala. June 29, 2016)(finding general listing of categories of
damages did not satisfy amount in controversy
consideration, no later than Wednesday, April 25,
2018 Defendants must file and serve any
briefing and evidence deemed necessary to show that §
1332(a)'s requisite amount in controversy is satisfied,
or that some other basis for subject matter jurisdiction
exists in this action. Should Defendants fail to timely file
any supplemental materials, or should the additional
materials fail to satisfy the Defendants' burden of
demonstrating subject matter jurisdiction, the undersigned
will enter a recommendation to the Court that this action be
remanded to state court for lack of subject matter
jurisdiction under 28 U.S.C. § 1447(c).
 “It is . . . axiomatic that the
inferior federal courts are courts of limited jurisdiction.
They are ‘empowered to hear only those cases within the
judicial power of the United States as defined by Article III
of the Constitution, ' and which have been entrusted to
them by a jurisdictional grant authorized by Congress.”
Univ. of S. Ala. v. Am. Tobacco Co., 168 F.3d 405,
409 (11th Cir. 1999) (quoting Taylor v. Appleton, 30
F.3d 1365, 1367 (11th Cir. 1994)). Accordingly, “it is
well settled that a federal court is obligated to inquire
into subject matter jurisdiction sua sponte whenever
it may be lacking.” Id. at 410. “[A]
court should inquire into whether it has subject matter
jurisdiction at the earliest possible stage in the
proceedings.” Id. See also Arbaugh v. Y&H
Corp., 546 U.S. 500, 514, (2006) (“[C]ourts,
including this Court, have an independent obligation to
determine whether subject-matter jurisdiction exists, even in
the absence of a challenge from any party.”).
 The Complaint also names a number of
fictitious defendants. The undersigned's use of
“Defendants” in this order refers to defendants
Marriott International, Inc. and Sabrina Le, who join in
removal of this action. Though the Notice of Removal's
“Removing Defendant” section lists only Defendant
Marriott International, Inc. the Notice of Removal was filed
on behalf of both Marriott International, Inc. and Sabrina
Le. Accordingly, the undersigned is satisfied that all
defendants have joined in the removal. See 28 U.S.C. §
1446(b)(2)(A) (“When a civil action is removed solely
under section 1441(a), all defendants who have been properly
joined and served must join in or consent to the removal of
 “Williams filed a complaint in
the State Court of Fulton County, Georgia, alleging that she
tripped over a curb while entering one of Best Buy's
retail stores and sustained injuries as a result of Best
Buy's negligence. In addition to permanent physical and
mental injuries, the complaint alleges that Williams incurred
substantial medical expenses, suffered lost wages, and
experienced a diminished earning capacity. The complaint then
alleges that Williams will continue to experience each of
these losses for an indefinite time into the future. For
these injuries, the complaint seeks general damages, special
damages, and punitive ...