Gordon v. Steele Case Brief

Summary of Gordon v. Steele

Facts: Medical malpractice case. Plaintiff Gordon was raised in Erie, PA, received medical treatment in PA. Action brought after Gordon moved to Idaho to attend Mormon college where she rented an apartment and returned only for medical treatment and legal matters.

Procedural History: Case filed in Western District of Pennsylvania (federal court). Defendant moved to dismiss due to lack of diversity claiming Gordon was resident of PA. Briefed to trial court.

Issue: Whether a college student’s residence in Idaho qualifies as diversity for federal jurisdiction in a PA case when she rents an apartment in Idaho, holds a PA drivers license, expresses a desire not to return to PA, and lived in Idaho at time suit was brought?

Holding: A student’s desire to live in another jurisdiction where she rents an apartment and desires to remain there is sufficent for federal diversity jurisdiction.

Judgment: Defendant’s motion to dismiss complaint denied.

Reasoning: Gordon lived in Idaho when case was filed, she wanted to remain there as evidenced by her limited return travels and her spoken desire to remain in Idaho. Her subjective intent is sufficient. She has the required diversity of sec. 1332.



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