Ninth Circuit Affirms Dismissal of Individual Claims Where Plaintiff Received an Offer of Judgment for More Than Amount He Was Entitled to Recover

by charlesjung

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The United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit affirmed a dismissal of individual claims in a class action for lack of subject matter jurisdiction, were the named plaintiff received an offer of judgment for more than he was entitled to recover.  Marschall v. Recovery Solution Specialists, Inc., No. 08-55247, 2010 WL 3937992 (9th Cir. Oct. 5, 2010) (slip op.).

Plaintiff Carl N. Marschall appealed pro se from a district court’s judgment dismissing his action brought under the federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (“FDCPA”) and the California Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (“Rosenthal Act”).  Id. *1.  Reviewing de novo, the Ninth Circuit found that the district court properly dismissed Marschall’s individual claims against Recovery Solution Specialists, Inc. (“RSS”) for lack of subject matter jurisdiction because RSS’s offer of judgment was for more than Marschall was legally entitled to recover. Id. (citing 15 U.S.C. § 1692k(a); Cal. Civ. Code §§ 1788.17 and 1788.30(b); Chang v. United States, 327 F.3d 911, 919 (9th Cir.2003) (case is moot where there remains “no effective relief … for the court to provide”)).

The Ninth Circuit also affirmed dismissal of the class claims against RSS because Marschall had a “reasonable opportunity to file a motion for class certification but failed to do so.” Id. (citing C.D. Cal. R. 23-3; Ghazali v. Moran, 46 F.3d 52, 53 (9th Cir. 1995) (per curiam) (“Only in rare cases will we question the exercise of discretion in connection with the application of local rules.”)).

Judges and Attorneys

Before Circuit Judges Barry G. Silverman, Consuelo Maria Callahan, and N.Randy Smith.

Appeal from the United States District Court for the Central District of  California, James V. Selna, District Judge, Presiding. D .C. No. 8:07-cv-00726-JVS-AN.

Carl N. Marschall appeared pro se.

Ronald N. Sarian, Esquire, Astor & Phillips, Francisca Minghao Mok, Esquire, McDermott Will & Emery, Los Angeles, CA, for Defendants-Appellees.

By CHARLES JUNG

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