DG5353

Slander Claim, Federal Court

8 posts in this topic

I am currently amending a complaint in Federal Court and I would like to include a slander claim. I want to include the slander claim. I have read up that:

 

"You cannot file in federal court unless you are a resident of a different state than where the business is located. This is known as diversity jurisdiction. Because there is no federal question/federal law (defamation is a state cause of action), the only way you could get in federal court is if you and the employer are from different states and your claim is for more than $75000."

 

I live in New Jersey, work in New Jersey but the people I am suing is the labor union that committed the slander. They are located in New York city. Can I sue them in federal court and if I can, under what law. Thank you for any help in advance.  

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Being as you hadn't given us any details about why you are suing and why you are adding to an existing claim, it is difficult to guide you. If you do not have an attorney, you need one.

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I apologize, I am new to this site and that was a mistake not including that. 

 

I want to sue for slander because the party during a membership meeting made many false statements including I am stupid, I file claims that always amount to nothing when in fact I had a illegal suspension overturned when I was working on the executive board of this same union. I am currently not on the executive board. They made many of these statements in anger because they were pissed I filed a title Vii discrimination claim against them. 

 

I am amending the claims to title 1 because one I did not file my pleading within the time frame after my right to sue letter and many of my claims fall under the lmrda members bill of rights. I am amending because we are trying to prepare our joint case management and they filed a pre-motion to dismiss address the defects in my claims. To fix my defects I am amending my pleading for the first time. I wanted to include this recent incident into the amended pleading. 

 

Thank you for your time. 

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I don't know who "they" are, but comments made in a meeting regarding genuine differences of opinion are not slander. No doubt "they" do not agree that your claims have merit and the belief that you are not bright is purely opinion. That one claim some time in the past might have had merit does not change this. It is also not clear what damages you suffered as a result.

 

If you missed the deadline to file a claim you can't just repackage said claim under a different name.

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further to what has been posted, if the union has offices in your state, NJ, then you lack diversity jurisdiction for federal court.

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the claim was supposed to be filed under title 1 as I was waiting to exhaust internal procedures before filing. The pleading was filed incorrectly, it was always a issue that fell under title 1 bill of rights but the pleading was filed incorrectly. I had someone originally write my pleading by the pleading was fatally flawed. I am amending to file the claims under the proper title. Are you saying that I cannot do that with a amended complaint? 

 

to @doucar They do not have offices in New Jersey, only in New York. 

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7 hours ago, DG5353 said:

I am currently amending a complaint in Federal Court and I would like to include a slander claim. I want to include the slander claim. I have read up that:

 

"You cannot file in federal court unless you are a resident of a different state than where the business is located. This is known as diversity jurisdiction. Because there is no federal question/federal law (defamation is a state cause of action), the only way you could get in federal court is if you and the employer are from different states and your claim is for more than $75000."

 

I live in New Jersey, work in New Jersey but the people I am suing is the labor union that committed the slander. They are located in New York city. Can I sue them in federal court and if I can, under what law. Thank you for any help in advance.  

 

The rule in federal court is that two different claims against the same defendant can be joined together but if the two claims are unrelated then the federal court must have federal jurisdiction over each claim separately in order to hear each of them. See Federal Rule of Civil Procedure (FRCP) 18 and Hurn v. Oursler, 289 U.S. 238, 53 S. Ct. 586, 77 L. Ed. 1148 (1933).

 

Your slander claim is a state law claim that is not related to the Title VII federal discrimination claim. That means that in order to join the state law claim to the Title VII case you must meet the requirements for diversity jurisdiction. The requirements for federal diversity jurisdiction are set out in 28 U.S.C. § 1332 as follows:

 

“(a) The district courts shall have original jurisdiction of all civil actions where the matter in controversy exceeds the sum or value of $75,000, exclusive of interest and costs, and is between--
     (1) citizens of different States;
     (2) citizens of a State and citizens or subjects of a foreign state, except that the district courts shall not have original jurisdiction under this subsection of an action between citizens of a State and citizens or subjects of a foreign state who are lawfully admitted for permanent residence in the United States and are domiciled in the same State;
     (3) citizens of different States and in which citizens or subjects of a foreign state are additional parties; and
     (4) a foreign state, defined in section 1603(a) of this title, as plaintiff and citizens of a State or of different States.”
 
As you are suing a union, you and the union must be citizens of different states for you to meet diversity jurisdiction. Most unions are organized as corporations. The rule for a Corporation is that it is considered a citizen of every state in which it is organized and in the state where it has its principal offices. 28 U.S.C. § 1332(c)(1). So even though the union has no offices within the state, if it is incorporated in NJ then you would not meet the requirements for diversity jurisdiction because you and the union would be citizens of the same state.
 
The other main requirement for diversity jurisdiction is that you must be able to state that the damages in your slander claim exceed $75,000. You have not indicated that you have suffered any amount of financial loss from the alleged defamation, let alone that it exceeds $75,000. From the description of your slander claim, I do not think you could plausibly claim that it is worth more than $75,000. Unless you can point to real damages from the slander that total more than $75,000, you will not meet diversity jurisdiction and in that case you would have to bring the slander claim in a separate state court lawsuit.
 
 
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On 4/19/2017 at 3:11 PM, DG5353 said:

I live in New Jersey, work in New Jersey but the people I am suing is the labor union that committed the slander. They are located in New York city. Can I sue them in federal court and if I can, under what law. Thank you for any help in advance.

 

The statute for diversity jurisdiction is 28 U.S.C. section 1332.  It requires that no plaintiff be a citizen of the same state as any defendant and that the amount in controversy be in excess of $75k.  It appears you are a citizen of NJ.  Without doing any more research than a google search, it appears that a labor union is a citizen of every state of which any member is a citizen.  Are you a member of the union in question?  It appears you are.  If so, you probably cannot properly plead diversity.  You mentioned that you are amending a complaint.  Are there other causes of action that DO arise under federal law?  It seems that maybe there are.  If so, you may be able to include the slander claim under supplemental jurisdiction.  32 U.S.C. section 1367.

 

 

On 4/19/2017 at 4:00 PM, DG5353 said:

I am amending the claims to title 1

 

Title 1 of what?

 

 

On 4/19/2017 at 4:00 PM, DG5353 said:

I am amending because we are trying to prepare our joint case management and they filed a pre-motion to dismiss address the defects in my claims.

 

Who are "we"?

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