Search This Blog

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Rodriguez v. AT&T Mobility: Preponderance of Evidence Standard Applies to Defendant Removing Class Action under CAFA

In Standard Fire Ins. Co. v. Knowles, ___ U.S. ___ (2013) (discussed here), a unanimous United States Supreme Court held: (1) a plaintiff in a putative class action may not defeat federal jurisdiction under the Class Action Fairness Act (CAFA) by stipulating that he or she will not seek to recover more than $5 million; and (2) a district court should look beyond the four corners of the complaint to determine the amount in controversy.

In Rodriguez v. AT&T Mobility Services LLC, ___ F.3d ___ (9th Cir. 8/27/13), the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals held that, in light of Standard Fire, a "defendant seeking removal of a putative class action must demonstrate, by a preponderance of evidence, that the aggregate amount in controversy exceeds the jurisdictional minimum." Slip op. at 14. 

The Court thus overturned its prior decision in Lowdermilk v. U.S. Bank National Association, 479 F.3d 994, 999 (9th Cir. 2007), which held that a removing defendant must establish the amount in controversy to a legal certainty. 

The opinion is available here

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.