United States District Court, D. Idaho
STATE OF IDAHO, DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND WELFARE, Plaintiff.
PRAVEEN K. KHURANA and JOHN W. PERRY, Defendants.
MEMORANDUM DECISION AND ORDER
C. Nye U.S. District Court Judge
March 13, 2018, Defendant Praveen Khurana removed this action
from state court invoking this Court's jurisdiction. Dkt.
2. Khurana also filed an Application for Leave to Proceed in
Forma Pauperis. Dkt. 1.
Court undertakes a sua sponte examination of whether it has
subject matter jurisdiction over this case. Khurana does not
cite any provisions of the United States Code that would
allow him to remove this action, but simply states that the
original question is federal because it deals with
bankruptcy. Upon review, it appears that there are no
applicable code sections and that this Court lacks
jurisdiction. Therefore, the Court will REMAND the case to
state court for further proceedings. Khurana's Motion to
proceed in Forma Pauperis is DENIED AS MOOT.
Defendant Praveen Khurana removed this action from the
District Court of the Second Judicial District of the State
of Idaho, in and for the County of Nez Pearce, on March 13,
2018. In its Complaint, the State of Idaho, Department of
Health and Welfare (“the Department”), seeks to
set aside the transfer of certain assets.
Department alleges that an individual named Delores Adamson
(now deceased) fraudulently transferred real property without
adequate consideration to Defendants in order to receive
Medicaid benefits and that Adamson made these transfers
within the “lookback” period and are thus void.
The Department seeks to have the various deeds to these
properties set aside and declared null and void under Idaho
Court may sua sponte review removed actions to confirm that
federal jurisdiction is proper. See Snell v. Cleveland,
Inc., 316 F.3d 822, 824, 826 (9th Cir. 2002) (explaining
that a “court may raise the question of subject matter
jurisdiction, sua sponte, at any time”); Galvez v.
Kuhn, 933 F.3d 773, 775 n.4 (9th Cir. 1991) (holding
that the Court can raise defects in jurisdiction sua sponte,
whether the parties raise the issue or not). The
“burden of establishing federal jurisdiction is on the
party seeking removal, and the removal statute is strictly
construed against removal jurisdiction.” Prize
Frize, Inc. v. Matrix Inc., 167 F.3d 1261, 1265 (9th
Cir. 1999). Any doubt as to the right of removal is resolved
in favor of remand. Gaus v. Miles, Inc., 980 F.2d
564, 566 (9th Cir. 1992).
civil action brought in a State court of which the district
courts of the United States have original jurisdiction, may
be removed by the defendant or the defendants, to the
district court of the United States for the district and
division embracing the place where such action is
pending.” 28 U.S.C. § 1441(a). Federal courts have
original jurisdiction over an action if the citizenship of
the parties is completely diverse and the amount in
controversy exceeds $75, 000. 28 U.S.C. § 1332(a). The
citizenship of the parties is completely diverse if none of
the plaintiffs is a citizen of the same state as any of the
defendants. Caterpillar Inc. v. Lewis, 519 U.S. 61,
is not a citizen for diversity purposes and, absent a federal
question, the district courts are not possessed of
jurisdiction of suits by or against a state. Postal Tel.
Cable Co. v. Alabama, 155 U.S. 482 (1894); see also
Broadwater-Mo. Water Users' Ass'n v. Mont. Power
Co, 139 F.2d 998, 999 (9th Cir. 1944); Judicial Code
Sec. 24, as amended, 28 U.S.C.A. § 41(1).
“At the same time, however, [the U.S. Supreme Court]
has recognized that a political subdivision of a State,
unless it is simply the arm or alter ego of the State, is a
citizen of the State for diversity purposes.” Moor
v. Alameda Cty., 411 U.S. 693, 717 (1973). If confusion
still exists, the Court must determine who the real party in
interest is. Fed.R.Civ.P. 17(a).
on the Complaint, Plaintiff is the State of Idaho-or a
Department of the State of Idaho-and Defendants are both