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Patton v. ADESA Tex., Inc.

United States District Court, N.D. Texas, Dallas Division

December 4, 2013

CHRISTINA PATTON, Plaintiff,
v.
ADESA TEXAS, INC., ANESIA LONG and LUCIANNA AYCOCK, Defendants

Page 819

For Christina Patton, Plaintiff: Matthew R Scott, LEAD ATTORNEY, Kendall Law Group, Dallas, TX; Jamie Jean McKey, Javier Alejandro Perez-Afanador, Joe Kendall, Kendall Law Group LLP, Dallas, TX.

For Lucianna Aycock, ADESA Texas Inc, Defendants: Alicia Sienne Voltmer, LEAD ATTORNEY, Ogletree Deakins Nash Smoak & Stewart, Preston Commons West, Dallas, TX; Heidi Hartmann Harrison, Ogletree Deakins Nash Smoak & Stewart PC, Dallas, TX.

OPINION

Page 820

MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER

BARBARA M. G. LYNN, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.

Before the Court is the Motion to Remand [Docket Entry #5] filed by Plaintiff Christina Patton. After considering the parties' arguments and applicable law, the Court GRANTS Plaintiff's Motion.

I. PROCEDURAL HISTORY

Patton, a former employee of Defendant ADESA, filed suit against ADESA for discrimination under the Texas Commission on Human Rights Act (TCHRA). Patton also asserted claims for slander, defamation, tortious interference with existing contracts, and conspiracy against her co-workers, Anesia Long and Lucianna Aycock, claiming they falsely accused Patton of making racist remarks to have her terminated. See Pl.'s Orig. Pet at ¶ 19. ADESA removed, arguing the Court should ignore the citizenship of Long and Aycock because their joinder was improper and done solely to destroy diversity. Plaintiff contends this action should be remanded to state court because the joinder was proper and there is a lack of compete diversity between Patton and Defendants.

II. ARGUMENTS AND AUTHORITIES

A. Standards Governing Removal Jurisdiction

A party may remove a state case to federal court if the federal court would possess original subject-matter jurisdiction. 28 U.S.C. § 1441(a), 28 U.S.C. § 1445. A case removed on the basis of diversity jurisdiction may remain in federal court despite the presence of non-diverse defendants if the removing defendant

Page 821

shows that the non-diverse defendants were improperly joined. Salazar v. Allstate Texas Lloyd's, Inc.,455 F.3d 571, 574 (5th Cir. 2006). Removal jurisdiction raises federalism issues, so removal statutes are strictly construed in favor of remand. Jackson v. Wal-Mart Stores Tex., ...


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