Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

BOLAND v. BANK SEPAH-IRAN

August 8, 1985

WILLIAM F. BOLAND, Plaintiff, against BANK SEPAH-IRAN (New York Agency), Defendant; CHARLES W. BOYLE, Plaintiff, -against- BANK SEPAH-IRAN (New York Agency), Defendant


The opinion of the court was delivered by: EDELSTEIN

OPINION AND ORDER

EDELSTEIN, District Judge:

 Defendant has moved to dismiss these consolidate diversity actions for lack of subject-matter jurisdiction, pursuant to Fed. R. Civ. P. 12(b)(1). The court has not addressed the motion because this case was improvidently removed from state court. In the context of considering whether to remand or dismiss this case, the court finds that United States *fn1" courts have subject-matter jurisdiction over plaintiffs' claims. The case is hereby remanded to the state court.

 FACTUAL AND PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND *fn2"

 Plaintiffs are citizens of the United States and defendant Bank Sepah ("Sepah") is an Iranian corporation with an agency in New York. In January 1975, plaintiff William F. Boland (Boland) was hired as operations manager by Bank Sepah's New York agency. He was later promoted to assistant managing director. Plaintiff Charles W. Boyle (Boyle) was hired as operations manager by Bank Sepah's New York agency in January 1978.

 After Ayatollah Khomeini and the Revolutionary Party took power in Iran in February 1979, the administration of Bank Sepah was replaced. Plaintiffs allege that the new bank administration, together with the "Islamic Revolutionary Committee of New York" (the "Committee"), sought to terminate their employment without cause. To that end, on March 30, 1979, the members of the Committee drew up a written report (the "Report") that accused plaintiffs of embezzlement and conspiracy, recommended their dismissal, and proposed that only Iranians be hired in the future. The Report was apparently circulated in New York and Iran. Boland was discharged on April 17, 1979 and Boyle on April 26, 1979.

 On January 19, 1981, as part of the settlement of the Iranian hostage crisis, *fn3" the United States and Iran agreed to create an international arbitral tribunal of the Hague ("the Tribunal") for settling pending claims of the nationals of both countries against the government of the other. The Tribunal was given jurisdiction over claims arising out of debts, contracts, expropriations, and other measures affecting property rights. Declaration II, Article II, P 1. Claims in excess of $250,000 were to be filed by the claimant's government; claims for lesser amounts were to be filed by the claimant himself. Declaration II, Article III, P 3. All claims had to be filed by January 19, 1982. Id. P 4.

 In November 1979, plaintiffs Boland and Boyle each brought five causes of action against Bank Sepah in New York State Supreme Court. *fn4" The claims for "abusive discharge" were dismissed. The claims for breach of employment contract were brought before the Tribunal by the State Department, pursuant to Declaration II, Article III, P 4, and subsequently stayed by the state court pending their resolution in the Hague.

 Arguing that only the Hague Tribunal could rule on plaintiffs' remaining tort claims--courts 4 and 5, Sepah brought motions to dismiss these claims for lack of subject-matter jurisdiction. These motions were denied. Defendant moved for and was granted reargument. Upon reargument, the State Supreme Court affirmed its prior decision. On appeal, the Appellate Division, First Department, affirmed the orders of the Supreme Court. Also, defendant's motion for summary judgment before the State Supreme Court was denied.

 Plaintiffs' tort claims were removed to this court pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1441(d). This court finds that the removal was improvident and the case is consequently remanded.

 DISCUSSION

 I. The Petition for Removal

 A district court may remand a case to state court if at any time before final judgment it is found that the case was improvidently removed. 28 U.S.C. § 1447(c); Martin v. Wilkes-Barre Publishing Co., 567 F. Supp. 304 (M.D. Pa. 1983). In determining whether to remand, the district court should construe the removal statute strictly against removal and in favor of remand and give weight to the extent to which the action had progressed before the state court. Shamrock Oil Corp. v. Sheets, 313 U.S. 100, 108-109, 85 L. Ed. 1214, 61 S. Ct. 868 (1941); Corporacion Venezolana de Fomento v. Vintero Sales, 629 F.2d 786, 790 (2d Cir. 1980), cert. denied, 449 U.S. 1080, 66 L. Ed. 2d 804, 101 S. Ct. 863 (1981); Martropico Compania Naviera, S.A. v. Perusahaan Pertambangan Minyak Dan Gas Bumi Negara (Pertamina), 428 F. Supp. 1035, 1037 (S.D.N.Y. 1977). Failure to comply with the time limitations for removal constitutes an improvident removal. Irving Trust Co. v. Century Export & Import, 464 F. Supp. 1232 (S.D.N.Y. 1979).

 Section 1446 (b) title 28 of the United States Code requires that the petition for removal be field within thirty days of receipt of the initial pleading. Defendant received the complaint on December 17, 1981. Defendant's Petition for Removal. The petition for removal was not ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.