United States District Court, N.D. Alabama, Southern Division
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
VIRGINIA EMERSON HOPKINS, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
Introduction and Procedural History
11, 2018, Defendant removed Plaintiff Willie Chamblin's
(“Mr. Chamblin”) state court case to this Court
on the basis of diversity and federal question jurisdiction
(arising under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of
1974 (“ERISA”)). (Doc. 1 at 2 ¶ 6;
id. at 3 ¶ 8). Pending before the Court are a
Motion To Remand Case Back to State Court (doc. 13) (the
“Remand Motion”) and a Motion for Preliminary
Injunction (doc. 14) (the “PI Motion”) filed by
Mr. Chamblin on May 21, 2018. Mr. Chamblin is representing
Chamblin claims in his Remand Motion that remand is
appropriate because Defendant did not remove his case within
thirty days of when it was originally filed. (Doc. 13 at 1).
Pursuant to his PI Motion, Mr. Chamblin “seeks relief
through this injunction to move forward with the case from
encountering any further financial hardship and continued
decline in health.” (Doc. 14 at 2). Mr. Chamblin also
indicates that “opposing counsel needs to be
restrain[ed] from any further advancement in the case until
it is heard by the court.” (Id. at 1).
Finally, Mr. Chamblin complains about Defendant's
unwillingness to settle as causing him “continued pain
and suffering.” Id. On May 22, 2018, Defendant
opposed both motions. (Docs. 15, 16).
Subject Matter Jurisdiction
state courts, federal tribunals are bodies of limited
jurisdiction, meaning that the grounds for the Court's
jurisdiction over the claims asserted by the plaintiff must
be present at the time the complaint is filed and must be
obvious on the face of the complaint. Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a). The
law is clear that Defendant, the party seeking to invoke
federal jurisdiction in this case, has the burden to
demonstrate that the Court has subject matter jurisdiction.
See McNutt v. General Motors Acceptance Corp., 298
U.S. 178, 189 (1936) (“They are conditions which must
be met by the party who seeks the exercise of jurisdiction in
his favor. . . . [and a]s he is seeking relief subject to
this supervision, it follows that he must carry throughout
the litigation the burden of showing that he is properly in
court.”). When a case is removed, “[t]he
existence of federal jurisdiction is tested as of the time of
removal.” Ehlen Floor Covering, Inc. v. Lamb,
660 F.3d 1283, 1287 (11th Cir. 2011) (citing Adventure
Outdoors, Inc. v. Bloomberg, 552 F.3d 1290, 1294-95
(11th Cir. 2008)).
“a federal court has an independent obligation to
review its authority to hear a case before it proceeds to the
merits.” Mirage Resorts, Inc. v. Quiet Nacelle
Corp., 206 F.3d 1398, 1400-01 (11th Cir. 2000).
Consequently, the Court cannot ignore jurisdictional concerns
even if the parties have none.
Preliminary Injunctive Relief
preliminary injunction is an extraordinary remedy which
should only be granted if the moving party clearly
establishes: (1) a substantial likelihood that he will
prevail on the merits; (2) a showing that he will suffer
irreparable injury unless the injunction issues; (3) proof
that the threatened injury to him outweighs whatever damage
the proposed injunction may cause the opposing party; and (4)
a showing that the injunction, if issued, would not be
adverse to the public interest.
v. Adams, 808 F.2d 815, 818-19 (11th Cir. 1987) (citing
Johnson v. U.S. Dep't of Agriculture, 734 F.2d
774, 781 (11th Cir. 1984)); see also United States v.
Lambert, 695 F.2d 536, 539 (11th Cir. 1983) (similar);
McDonald's Corp. v. Robertson, 147 F.3d 1301,
1306 (11th Cir. 1998) (similar); Kaisha v. Swiss
Watch International, Inc., 188 F.Supp.2d 1350,
1353 (S.D. Fla. 2002) (similar).
moving party carries the burden of persuasion to clearly
establish each of these four elements. United States v.
Jefferson County, 720 F.2d 1511, 1519 (11th Cir. 1983);
see also Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts, B.V. v.
Consorcio Barr, S.A., 320 F.3d 1205, 1210 (11th Cir.
2003) (similar); McDonald's Corp., 147 F.3d at
1306 (similar). When analyzing the first two elements,
“[t]he review ‘require[s] a delicate balancing of
the probabilities of ultimate success at final hearing with
the consequences of immediate irreparable injury which could
possibly flow from the denial of preliminary
relief.'” Schiavo ex rel. Schindler v.
Schiavo, 403 F.3d 1223, 1241 (11th Cir. 2005) (initial
alteration added) (quoting Siegel v. LePore, 234
F.3d 1163, 1178 (11th Cir. 2000) (en banc)).
a motion for a preliminary injunction is “the exception
rather than the rule[.]” Lambert, 695 F.2d at
539 (citing Texas v. Seatrain International, S.A.,
518 F.2d 175, 179 (5th Cir. 1975)). A district court's order
granting or denying a motion for preliminary injunction is
reviewed on appeal for abuse of discretion.
McDonald's Corp., 147 F.3d at 1306; see also
Buckeye v. Baker Cellulose Corp., 856 F.2d 167, 169
(11th Cir. 1988) (similar) (citing Jefferson County,
720 F.2d at 1519).
order for a preliminary injunction to issue, the nonmoving
party must have notice and an opportunity to present its
opposition to the injunction.” Four Seasons,
320 F.3d at 1210 (citing Fed.R.Civ.P. 65(a)(1)). Sufficiency
of notice “is a matter left within the discretion of
the trial court.” United States v. Alabama,
791 F.2d 1450, 1458 (11th Cir. 1986). The notice requirement
“implies a hearing in which the defendant is given a
fair opportunity to oppose the application and to prepare for
such opposition.” Granny Goose Foods, Inc. v.
Teamsters, 415 U.S. 423, 434 (1974). “[T]he
underlying principle of giving the party opposing the
application notice and an adequate opportunity to respond is
carefully honored by the courts.” Four
Seasons, 320 F.3d at 1210 (internal quotation marks
omitted) (quoting 11A Charles A. Wright, Arthur R. Miller
& Mary Kay Kane, Federal Practice and Procedure
§ 2949 at 215). The decision to determine the
appropriate amount of notice is left to the district
court's discretion. Four Seasons, ...