Commercial LitigationJeffrey G. Weil and Kathryn A. Young, The Legal Intelligencer
Who Has Burden to Prove Jurisdictional Amount in CAFA Cases?
In a recent case, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit addressed the Class Action Fairness Act (CAFA)'s amount in controversy requirement. In Hoffman v. Nutraceutical, No. 13-3482, slip op. (3d Cir. March 27, 2014), the Third Circuit affirmed the district court's denial of the plaintiff's motion to remand the case back to state court. The court held that the CAFA jurisdictional requisites, including the amount in controversy requirement, were satisfied and supported federal jurisdiction. Embedded in the decision is an interesting operational assumption: Instead of the burden being on the defendant to prove that the CAFA amount in controversy requirement had been met--as is true in most CAFA cases--the burden was placed on the plaintiff to show that the jurisdictional amount had not been met.