Judge Ted Stewart – Motion to Dismiss granted for lack of jurisdiction

2006 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 83310

NICOLINA PHIBBS, MACHELL PHIBBS, and JUSTIN HALL, Plaintiffs, vs. ST. MARKS HOSPITAL AT SALT LAKE CITY; ST. MARKS HOSPITAL IN ATLANTA, GEORGIA; and JOHN and JANE DOES, Defendants.

Case No. 2:06-CV-922 TS

November 6, 2006

Pro se plaintiffs brought negligence and medical malpractice claims against two hospitals, one located in Utah and one located in Georgia, as well as various John or Jane Does (addresses unknown)

The Court ruled that it “does not have subject matter jurisdiction over this case because there is no federal question and there is a lack of complete diversity between Plaintiffs and Defendants.”

“The allegations of the Complaint are that two of the Plaintiffs and one of the defendants, St. Marks Hospital at Salt Lake City, are all citizens of Utah. Therefore, there is not complete diversity. Accordingly, the Complaint must be dismissed for lack of subject matter jurisdiction.”

The Court noted that “the heading for the Complaint lists the name of the court as the ‘Third Judicial District Court in and for Salt Lake County.’ It appears that the Complaint may have been mistakenly filed in this federal court instead of in the State of Utah’s Third District Court. The present dismissal is without prejudice to filing the Complaint in an appropriate state court.”

The Court also acknowledged that “the Court must construe [pro se] pleadings liberally and hold their submissions to a less stringent standard than formal pleadings drafted by lawyers.” Hall v. Bellmon, 935 F.2d 1106, 1110 (10th Cir. 1991).

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