United States District Court, S.D. Alabama, Southern Division
SAMUEL L. ROLLASON, et al., Plaintiffs,
ITX, LLC, et al., Defendants.
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
F. MOORER UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
before the Court is Plaintiffs' Motion to Remand
Unitrin Auto and Home Insurance Company Case to Baldwin
County Circuit Court. Doc. 9, filed January 18, 2019.
Plaintiffs request the Court remand this action pursuant to
28 U.S.C. § 1447 to the Baldwin County Circuit Court.
Id. at 1. Also pending before the Court is Defendant
ITX, LLC's (“ITX”) Motion to Dismiss
(Doc. 2, filed November 15, 2018), in which Defendant ITX
requests the Court to dismiss, pursuant to Fed.R.Civ.P.
12(b), Plaintiffs' state law claims because they are
preempted by the Carmack Amendment to the I.C.C. Termination
Act, 49 U.S.C. § 14706. Having considered the motions
and relevant law, the Court finds the motion to remand is due
to be denied and the motion to dismiss is due to be granted
in part and denied in part.
ITX removed this matter to this Court from the Baldwin County
Circuit Court on November 15, 2018, pursuant to 28 U.S.C.
§§ 1441 and 1446, based on diversity and federal
question jurisdiction. See Doc. 1 at 1. In
Plaintiffs' Amended Complaint, they bring claims of
breach of contract (Counts 1 and 6), negligence and
wantonness (Count 2), misrepresentation (Count 3),
suppression (Count 4), and bad faith (Counts 5 and 7) against
Defendants All State Van Lines Relocation, Inc. (“All
State Van Lines”); ITX; Relo Van Lines, LLC
(“Relo”); and Unitrin Auto and Home Insurance
Company (“Unitrin”). Doc. 1-1.
November 15, 2018, Defendant ITX filed its Motion to Dismiss
(Doc. 2) to which Plaintiffs filed their response (Doc. 10)
and Defendant ITX filed its reply (Doc. 13). On January 18,
2019, Plaintiffs filed their motion to remand and supporting
brief (Doc. 9) to which Defendant Unitrin Auto and Home
Insurance Company filed its opposition (Doc. 12). The motions
are fully briefed and ripe for review and the Court finds
oral argument unnecessary.
STANDARD OF REVIEW
Motion to Remand
Federal courts have a strict duty to exercise jurisdiction
conferred on them by Congress. Quackenbush v. Allstate
Ins. Co., 517 U.S. 706, 716, 116 S.Ct. 1712, 1720, 135
L.Ed.2d 1 (1996). However, federal courts are courts of
limited jurisdiction and possess only that power authorized
by the Constitution and statute. Kokkonen v. Guardian
Life Ins. Co. of Am., 511 U.S. 375, 377, 114 S.Ct. 1673,
1675, 128 L.Ed.2d 391 (1994); Burns v. Windsor Ins.
Co., 31 F.3d 1092, 1095 (1994). Defendant, as the party
removing this action, has the burden of establishing federal
jurisdiction. See Leonard v. Enterprise Rent a Car,
279 F.3d 967, 972 (11th Cir. 2002) (citing Williams v.
Best Buy Co., 269 F.3d 1316, 1318 (11th Cir. 2001)).
Further, the federal removal statutes must be construed
narrowly and doubts about removal must be resolved in favor
of remand. Allen v. Christenberry, 327 F.3d 1290,
1293 (11th Cir. 2003) (citing Diaz v. Sheppard, 85
F.3d 1502, 1505 (11th Cir. 1996)); Burns, 31 F.3d at
1095 (citations omitted).
Motion to Dismiss - Fed.R.Civ.P.
to Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(b)(6) a defendant may move to dismiss a
complaint on the basis that the plaintiff has failed to state
a claim upon which relief may be granted. See Fed.
R. Civ. P. 12(b)(6). To survive a motion to dismiss, a
plaintiff must plead “only enough facts to state a
claim to relief that is plausible on its face.”
Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 570, 127
S.Ct. 1955, 1974, 167 L.Ed.2d 929 (2007); see also
Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678, 129 S.Ct. 1937,
1949, 173 L.Ed.2d 868 (2009) (“To survive a motion to
dismiss, a complaint must contain sufficient factual matter,
accepted as true, to ‘state a claim to relief that is
plausible on its face.' [Twombly, 550 U.S.] at
570, 127 S.Ct. [at] 1955. A claim has facial plausibility
when the plaintiff pleads factual content that allows the
court to draw the reasonable inference that the defendant is
liable for the misconduct alleged. Id. at 556, 127
S.Ct. [at] 1955.”). Since a Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(b)(6)
motion questions the legal sufficiency of a complaint, in
assessing the merits of a Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(b)(6) motion, the
court must assume all the factual allegations set forth in
the complaint are true. See, e.g., United States v.
Gaubert, 499 U.S. 315, 327, 111 S.Ct. 1267, 1276, 113
L.Ed.2d 335 (1991); Powell v. Lennon, 914 F.2d 1459,
1463 (11th Cir. 1990); but see also Iqbal, 556 U.S.
at 678, 129 S.Ct. at 1949 (“[T]he tenet that a court
must accept as true all of the allegations contained in a
complaint is inapplicable to legal conclusions. Threadbare
recitals of the elements of a cause of action, supported by
mere conclusory statements, do not suffice.
[Twombly, 550 U.S.] at 555, 127 S.Ct. [at]
1955.”). Moreover, all factual allegations are to be
construed in the light most favorable to the plaintiff.
See, e.g., Brower v. County of Inyo, 489 U.S. 593,
598, 109 S.Ct. 1378, 1382, 103 L.Ed.2d 628 (1989). Obviously,
therefore, a district court may not resolve factual disputes
when adjudicating a motion to dismiss. Page v. Postmaster
Gen. and Chief Exec. Officer of the U.S. Postal Serv.,
493 Fed.Appx. 994, 995 (11th Cir. 2012) (citing, among other
cases, Lawrence v. Dunbar, 919 F.2d 1525, 1529 (11th
Cir. 1990) (indicating that, under Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(b)(6), the
existence of disputed material facts precludes a district
court from granting a motion to dismiss)). “‘When
considering a motion to dismiss . . . the court limits its
consideration to the pleadings and all exhibits attached
thereto.'” Thaeter v. Palm Beach Cty.
Sheriff's Office, 449 F.3d 1342, 1352 (11th Cir.
2006) (quoting Grossman v. Nationsbank, N.A., 225
F.3d 1228, 1231 (11th Cir. 2000) (per curiam)); see also
Reese v. Ellis, Painter, Ratterree & Adams, LLP, 678
F.3d 1211, 1215-16 (11th Cir. 2012) (“Because the Ellis
law firm's dunning letter and enclosed documents were
attached to the Reeses' complaint as an exhibit, we treat
them as part of the complaint for Rule 12(b)(6)
DISCUSSION AND ANALYSIS
the motion to dismiss and motion to remand both address the
preemption of Plaintiffs' claims by the Carmack
Amendment, the Court will first address Plaintiffs'
motion to remand to analyze whether the Court has
jurisdiction over this matter.
Motion to Remand
Plaintiffs' motion to remand, they present in five (5)
paragraphs different arguments in support of their motion,
which the Court will address in turn. The Court notes
Plaintiffs neither cite to any legal authority to support
their arguments nor explain how their arguments address this
Court's jurisdiction,  so the Court will construe their
arguments to the best of its abilities. Additionally, insofar
as Plaintiffs do not challenge this Court's subject
matter jurisdiction, their motion to remand is untimely
pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1447(c) because their motion was
filed sixty- four (64) days after the notice ...