Federal Court Remands to State Court Workers Comp. Claims against Tribal Insurer

Here are the materials in Mendoza v. First Santa Fe Insurance Services Inc. (D.N.M.):

1 Notice of Removal

1-2 Amended Complaint

6 Motion to Dismiss

8 Response

10 Motion to Remand

12 Reply in Support of Motion to Dismiss

14 Response to Motion to Remand

17 Reply in Support of Motion to Remand

42 DCT Order

Related case here.

Federal Court Remands Insurance Dispute Involving Eastern Band Cherokee Gaming Entity to State Court

Here are the materials in Gemini Insurance Company v. Harrah’s NC Casino Company LLC (E.D. N.C.):

Ninth Circuit Holds Removal of Suit to Federal Court Does Not Abrogate Tribal Immunity

Here is the opinion in Bodi v. Shingle Springs Band of Miwok Indians.

From the court’s syllabus:

The panel reversed the district court’s denial of a motion to dismiss claims under the Family and Medical Leave Act and California law on the ground of tribal sovereign immunity.

Following the Eleventh Circuit, the panel held that a federally recognized Indian tribe does not waive its sovereign immunity from suit by exercising its right to remove to federal court a case filed against it in state court. The panel concluded that the act of removal does not express the clear and unequivocal waiver that is required for a tribe to relinquish its immunity.

The panel remanded the case, leaving it to the district court to address on remand any remaining immunity issues.

Briefs here.

Federal Court Remands State Court Foreclosure Complaint against Narragansett Historic Preservation Office

Here are the materials in Feller v. Narragansett Indian Tribal Historic Preservation Office (D. Vt.):

1 Notice of Removal

12 Motion to Remand

13 Response

14 DCT Order

First Circuit Rejects Narragansett Interlocutory Appeal in Sovereign Immunity Matter (Waited Too Long to Appeal Denial of Motion for Reconsideration)

Here is the opinion in Luckerman v. Narragansett Indian Tribe:

CA1 Opinion

An excerpt:

Surveying the foregoing, a prior duty panel of this court cleared the underbrush by  dismissing as untimely any appeal from the denial of the Motion to Dismiss. Luckerman v. Narragansett Indian Tribe, No. 14-1106, Order at 1 (1st Cir. Aug. 29, 2014). That decision obviates the need to decide whether we would have had jurisdiction over an interlocutory appeal from the Motion to Dismiss. We do need to decide, though, whether we have appellate jurisdiction under the collateral order doctrine to review the only order before us: the denial of the untimely Rule 59(e) Motion. For the reasons described below, we conclude that the denial of the Tribe’s untimely Rule 59(e) Motion does not qualify as a collateral order that we may review prior to the end of the litigation in the district court.

Briefs here.

First Circuit Briefs in Luckerman v. Narragansett Tribe

Here:

Narrangansett Brief

Luckerman Brief

Narragansett Reply

Lower court materials here.

Massachusetts Gaming Claims against Wampanoag Tribe of Gay Head Survive Motions to Dismiss; Counterclaims Do, Too

Here are the updated materials in Commonwealth of Massachusetts v. Wampanoag Tribe of Gay Head (Aquinnah) (D. Mass.):

65 Massachusetts Opposition to Rule 19 Motion

67 Aquinnah-Gay Head Community Opposition to 11th Amendment Motion to Dismiss

71 Wampanoag Tribe of Gay Head Reply in Support of Rule 19 Motion

72 Wampanoag Tribe of Gay Head Reply in Support of Motion to Dismiss on Immunity Grounds

77 Massachusetts Motion to Dismiss

86 Massachusetts Officials Motion to Dismiss

87 Wampanoag Tribe Opposition to Massachusetts Immunity Motion

88 Massachusetts Reply

95 DCT Order Denying Motions to Dismiss

An excerpt:

This lawsuit involves a dispute between the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and a federally recognized Indian tribe concerning regulatory jurisdiction over civil gaming on Indian lands on Martha’s Vineyard. The Wampanoag Tribe of Gay Head (Aquinnah) and related entities have taken steps to commence commercial gaming operations on tribal lands without a license from the Commonwealth. The Commonwealth contends that operating gaming facilities without such a license would violate a 1983 settlement agreement that subjects the lands in question to state civil and criminal jurisdiction (and thus subjects them to state laws regulating gaming). Count 1 of the complaint alleges breach of contract, and Count 2 seeks a declaratory judgment.

The Commonwealth filed suit in state court on December 2, 2013. On December 30, 2013, the Tribe removed the action to this Court on the basis of federal-question and supplemental jurisdiction. See 28 U.S.C. §§ 1331, 1367. On August 6, 2014, the Court granted motions to intervene by the Town of Aquinnah and the Aquinnah/Gay Head Community Association (“AGHCA”). The Tribe has moved to dismiss the AGHCA complaint on the basis of sovereign immunity and for failure to state a claim upon which relief can be granted; it has further moved to dismiss all three complaints (with leave to amend) for failure to join the United States as a required party.

On October 24, 2014, the Tribe filed an amended answer that included a counterclaim against the Commonwealth and counterclaims against three third-party defendants (all of whom are officials of the Commonwealth). Plaintiff and third-party defendants have moved to dismiss the counterclaims on the grounds of sovereign immunity (as to the counterclaims against the Commonwealth) and failure to state a claim upon which relief can be granted.

For the reasons stated below, the motions of the Tribe will be denied and the motion of counterclaim-defendants will be granted in part and denied in part.

We posted motions to dismiss here. Materials on the state court removal and remand motions here. Complaint here.

Tenth Circuit Briefs in Harvey v. Ute Indian Tribe (Federal Removal; Tribal Jurisdiction)

Here:

Appellant Brief

Appellee Brief

Reply Brief

Lower court materials here.

California Valley Miwok Tribe Again Fails at Recovering Foreclosed Land

Here are the materials in Burley v. OneWest Band FSB (E.D. Cal.):

22 OneWest Motion to Dismiss

23 Opposition

24 Reply

31 DCT Order granting Motion to dismiss

An excerpt:

Plaintiffs Silvia Burley and the California Valley Miwok Tribe (“Miwok Tribe”) brought this action against defendants OneWest Bank, FSB (“OneWest”), Deutsche Bank National Trust Company (“Deutsche Bank”), and Meridian Foreclosure Service (“Meridian”) to recover title over land and damages in connection with the alleged wrongful foreclosure and sale of the plaintiffs’ real property. On August 26, 2014, this court issued an order (“Aug. 26, 2014 Order”) dismissing plaintiffs’ case for lack of subject matter jurisdiction and giving plaintiffs’ twenty days to file an amended complaint. (Docket No. 17.) Plaintiffs filed their First Amended Complaint (“FAC”) asserting claims under the Equal Credit Opportunity Act (“ECOA”), 15 U.S.C. §§ 1691, et seq., the Truth in Lending Act (“TILA”), 15 U.S.C. §§ 1601, et seq., and several state law claims essentially repeated from their original Complaint. (Docket No. 18.)

Prior proceedings are posted here.

Update in Massachusetts Suit over Gaming on Martha’s Vineyard

Here are the new materials in Commonwealth of Massachusetts v. Wampanoag Tribe of Gay Head (Aquinnah) (D. Mass.):

37 Aquinnah Community Association Motion to Intervene + Proposed Complaint

39 Town of Aquinnah Motion to Intervene

41 Wampanoag Opposition to Town Motion

42 Wampanoag Opposition to Community Association Motion

48 Town Reply

50 Aquinnah Reply

60 Tribe Motion to Dismiss

62 Tribe Rule 19 Motion to Dismiss

Prior posts here and here.