United States District Court, N.D. Georgia, Atlanta Division
BROADSTONE MAPLE, LLC doing business as Broadstone Court Apts., Plaintiff,
DADA INGRAM, and All Other Occupants, Defendants.
OPINION AND ORDER
WILLIAM S. DUFFEY, JR. UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
matter is before the Court on Magistrate Judge Linda T.
Walker's Final Report and Recommendation 
(“R&R”), which recommends remanding this
dispossessory action to the Magistrate Court of Fulton
10, 2017, Plaintiff Broadstone Maple LLC, doing business as
Broadstone Court Apts. (“Plaintiff”), initiated a
dispossessory proceeding against Dada Ingram
(“Defendant”) in the Magistrate Court of Fulton
County, Georgia.The Complaint seeks possession of premises
currently occupied by Defendant and seeks past due rent, fees
August 3, 2017, Defendant, proceeding pro se,
removed the Fulton County Action to this Court by filing her
Petition for Removal and an application to proceed in
forma pauperis (“IFP Application”).
Defendant appears to assert that there is federal subject
matter jurisdiction because there is a question of federal
law in this action. Defendant claims that Plaintiff violated
the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, 15 U.S.C. §
1692, and the Universal Commercial Code. (Petition for
Removal  at 1-2).
August 28, 2017, Magistrate Judge Walker granted
Defendant's IFP Application. (). The Magistrate Judge
then considered, sua sponte, whether there is
federal subject matter jurisdiction over the action removed.
The Magistrate Judge found that federal subject matter
jurisdiction was not present and recommended that the Court
remand the case to the Magistrate Court of Fulton County. The
Magistrate Judge found that the Complaint filed in Magistrate
Court asserts a state court dispossessory action and does not
allege federal law claims. Because a federal law defense or
counterclaim does not confer federal jurisdiction, the
Magistrate Judge concluded that the Court does not have
federal question jurisdiction over this matter. Although not
alleged in the Petition for Removal, the Magistrate Judge
also considered whether the Court has subject-matter
jurisdiction based on diversity of citizenship. The
Magistrate Judge found that Defendant failed to allege any
facts to show that the amount in controversy exceeds $75,
000. The Magistrate Judge concluded that the Court does not
have diversity jurisdiction over this matter and that this
case is required to be remanded to the state court. There are
no objections to the R&R.
conducting a careful and complete review of the findings and
recommendations, a district judge may accept, reject or
modify a magistrate judge's report and recommendation. 28
U.S.C. § 636(b)(1); Williams v. Wainwright, 681
F.2d 732, 732 (11th Cir. 1982), cert. denied, 459
U.S. 1112 (1983). A district judge “shall make a de
novo determination of those portions of the report or
specified proposed findings or recommendations to which
objection is made.” 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1). With
respect to those findings and recommendations to which
objections have not been asserted, the Court must conduct a
plain error review of the record. United States v.
Slay, 714 F.2d 1093, 1095 (11th Cir. 1983), cert.
denied, 464 U.S. 1050 (1984).
does not object to the Magistrate Judge's finding that
Plaintiff's Complaint does not present a federal question
and that the amount in controversy does not exceed $75, 000.
The Court does not find any plain error in these conclusions.
It is well-settled that federal-question jurisdiction exists
only when a federal question is presented on the face of a
plaintiff's well-pleaded complaint and that the
assertions of defenses or counterclaims based on federal law
cannot confer federal question jurisdiction over a cause of
action. See Beneficial Nat'l Bank v. Anderson,
539 U.S. 1, 6 (2003); Holmes Group, Inc. v. Vornado Air
Circulation Sys., Inc., 535 U.S. 826, 830-32 (2002). The
record also does not show that Plaintiff and Defendant are
citizens of different states, or that the amount in
controversy exceeds the statutory threshold of $75, 000.
See 28 U.S.C. § 1332(a); Carter v. Butts
Cty., Ga., et al., 821 F.3d 1310, 1322 (11th Cir. 2006)
(quoting Steed v. Fed. Nat'l Mortg. Corp., 689
S.E.2d 843, 848 (Ga.Ct.App. 2009)) (“[U]nder Georgia
law, ‘[w]here former owners of real property remain in
possession after a foreclosure sale, they become tenants at
sufferance, '” and are thus subject to a
dispossessory proceeding under O.C.G.A. § 44-7-50, which
“provide[s] the exclusive method by which a landlord
may evict the tenant”); Fed. Home Loan Mortg. Corp.
v. Williams, Nos. 1:07-cv-2864-RWS, 1:07-cv-2865-RWS,
2008 WL 115096, at *2 (N.D.Ga. Jan. 29, 2008) (“[A]
dispossessory proceeding under Georgia law is not an
ownership dispute, but rather only a dispute over the limited
right to possession, title to property is not at issue and,
accordingly, the removing Defendant may not rely on the value
of the property as a whole to satisfy the amount in
the Court lacks both federal question and diversity
jurisdiction, this action is required to be remanded to the
Magistrate Court of Fulton County. See 28 U.S.C.
§ 1447(c) (“If at any time before final judgment
it appears that the district court lacks subject matter
jurisdiction, the case shall be remanded.”).
foregoing reasons, IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that
Magistrate Judge Linda T. Walker's Final Report ...