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Smart v. Kenan Transport, LLC

United States District Court, S.D. Georgia, Statesboro Division

June 26, 2015

CRAIG SMART, Plaintiff,
v.
KENAN TRANSPORT, LLC, Defendant.

ORDER

WILLIAM T. MOORE, District Judge.

Plaintiff Craig Smart has filed a complaint in this Court that seeks damages based on Defendant's alleged negligence. (Doc. 1.) In the complaint, Plaintiff attempts to invoke this Court diversity jurisdiction. (Id. ¶ 14.) However, the jurisdictional allegations contained in the complaint are insufficient to establish complete diversity between the parties.

The party invoking this Court's diversity jurisdiction bears the burden of adequately pleading complete diversity between the parties. See 28 U.S.C. § 1332; Ray v. Bird & Son & Asset Realization Co., 519 F.2d 1081, 1082 (5th Cir. 1975)[1] ("The burden of pleading diversity of citizenship is upon the party invoking federal jurisdiction, and if jurisdiction is properly challengel, that party also bears the burden of proof."). For tie purposes of diversity jurisdiction, a limited liability company ("LLC") is a citizen of every state in which any of its members are citizens. Rolling Greens MHP, L.P. V. Comcast SCH Holdings L.L.C., 374 F.3d 1020, 1021-22 (11th Cir. 2004). The Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals has been explicit in addressing the proper method to allege sufficiently the citizenship of an LLC: "a party must list the citizenships of all th members of the limited liability company." Id. at 1022.

In this case, the complaint does not include a list of the individual members, along with their citizenship, of Defendant Kenan Transport, LLC. Rather, the complaint simply states that none of the members of Kenan Transport, LLC are Georgia residents and Kenan Transport, LLC's principal place of business is in Ohio." (Doc. 1 ¶ 11.) The complaint relies on these allegations to advance the general conclusion that "there is complete diversity of citizenship between Plaintiff and Defendant." (Id. ¶ 14.)

However, the general allegation that no member of Defendant is a Georgia citizen is insufficient for Plaintiff to carry its burden of establishing complete diversity between the parties. See Ray, 519 F.2d at 1082. Accordingly, Plaintiff is DIRECTED to file an amended complaint within fourteen days from the date of this order. As noted above, the amended complaint must properly allege diversity in this case by including the names and citizenships of each member of Defendant, thus allowing the Court to confirm that it possesses jurisdiction to entertain this case.

SO ORDERED.


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