Monday, September 10, 2018

"Snap" Removal of Case to Federal Court Approved by Third Circuit Court of Appeals

In what some are calling the first federal appellate court decision on the issue, the Third Circuit Court of Appeals approved the practice of "snap" removals, the process by which Defendants remove cases filed in state court to federal court even before the Defendant has been served.  

The decision came down in the case of Encompass Insurance v. Stone Mansion  Restaurant, No. 17-CV-1749 (3d Cir. Aug. 22, 2018) (Op. by Chagares, J.).  

According to an article entitled “‘Snap’ Removal Given Green Light by Third Circuit” by Max Mitchell in the August 30, 2018 edition of the Pennsylvania Law Weekly, snap removals most often occur in cases where there are no multiple Defendants.   Such snap removals occur when Defendants get wind of a lawsuit that has been filed before they have been fully served by the Plaintiffs. This is typically accomplished by the Defendant by monitoring the electronic dockets.   Once they learn of the suit, Defendants then seek to remove the case to federal court arguing that, since they have not yet been “properly served,” they are not yet barred from removing the case.   
 
As noted, this procedural strategy has been approved by the Third Circuit in this decision, which can be viewed online HERE.
 

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