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Edward D Jones & Co., LP v. American National Insurance Co.
United States District Court, D. South Carolina, Aiken Division
December 10, 2019
Edward D. Jones & Co., L P, a Missouri limited partnership, Plaintiff in Interpleader,
American National Insurance Company, a Texas corporation; Transamerica Premier Life Insurance Company, an Iowa corporation; Leslie Gorman, a South Carolina individual; Teressa Gorman, a South Carolina individual; Chris McNally, a South Carolina individual; John Does 1-50, Tommy Sherlock, third-party defendant. Defendants. American National Insurance Company, a Texas corporation, Cross-Claimant,
Leslie Gorman, a South Carolina individual, Cross-Defendant. Leslie Gorman, a South Carolina individual; Teressa Gorman, a South Carolina individual; Chris McNally, a South Carolina individual; Cross-Claimants,
American National Insurance Company, a Texas corporation; John Does 1-50; Transamerica Premier Life Insurance Company, an Iowa corporation, Cross-Defendants. Leslie Gorman, a South Carolina individual; Teressa Gorman, a South Carolina individual; Chris McNally, a South Carolina individual; Counter-Claimants,
Edward D. Jones & Co., LP, a Missouri limited partnership, Counter-Defendant, American National Insurance Company, a Texas corporation, Third-Party Plaintiff.
January 2, 2019, Plaintiff Edward D. Jones & Co., LP,
(“Edward Jones”) filed a Complaint for
Interpleader against the above-captioned Defendants. (ECF No.
1.) The matter before the court is Edward Jones' Motion
to Dismiss and Compel Arbitration as to Defendants Leslie
Gorman, Teressa Gorman, and Chris McNally's Counterclaims
(ECF No. 33).
Jones claims that “subject matter jurisdiction exists .
. . because the Complaint is [an] Interpleader [, ] Edward
Jones has in its custody or possession property of the value
or amount of $500 or more, and two or more adverse claimants
named as defendants are . . . of adverse citizenship.”
(Id. at 3 ¶ 9 (citing 28 U.S.C. §§
1335, 1332 (2005)).) Section 1335 provides:
The district courts shall have original jurisdiction of any
civil action of interpleader or in the nature of interpleader
filed by any person, firm, or corporation, association, or
society having in his or its custody or possession money or
property of the value of $500 or more, or having issued a
note, bond, certificate, policy of insurance, or other
instrument of value or amount of $500 or more, or providing
for the delivery or payment or the loan of money or property
of such amount or value, or being under any obligation
written or unwritten to the amount of $500 or more, if
(1) Two or more adverse claimants, of diverse citizenship as
defined in subsection (a) or (d) of section 1332 of this
title, are claiming or may claim to be entitled to such money
or property, or to any one or more of the benefits arising by
virtue of any note, bond, certificate, policy or other
instrument, or arising by virtue of any such obligation; and
(2) the plaintiff has deposited such money or property or has
paid the amount of or the loan or other value of such
instrument or the amount due under such obligation into the
registry of the court, there to abide the judgment of the
court, or has given bond payable to the clerk of the court in
such amount and with such surety as the court or judge may
deem proper, conditioned upon the compliance by the plaintiff
with the future order or judgment of the court with respect
to the subject matter of the controversy.
28 U.S.C.A. § 1335.
jurisdiction requires complete diversity of parties and an
amount in controversy in excess of $75, 000, exclusive of
interest and costs. See 28 U.S.C. Section 1332(a).
Complete diversity of parties in a case means that no party
on one side may be a citizen of the same state as any party
on the other side. See Owen Equip. & Erection Co. v.
Kroger, 437 U.S. 365, 372 (1978). The court has
diversity jurisdiction over this case because Edward Jones
has sufficiently pleaded that it and the above-captioned
Defendants are citizens of different states and that the
amount in controversy exceeds $75, 000. (See ECF No.
1 at 6 ¶ 27 (“Edward Jones continues to hold . . .
FACTUAL AND PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND
Jones, a financial services firm, claims that it is in
possession of $342, 762.00 to which each Defendant has
declared an interest. (Id. at 2.) Edward Jones
alleges that Defendants American National Insurance Company
(“American National”) and Transamerica Premier
Life Insurance Company (“Transamerica”) issued
life insurance policies naming its clients, Defendants Leslie
Gorman, Teressa Gorman, and Chris McNally (the “Gorman
Defendants”), as beneficiaries. (Id. at 4.)
Specifically, Edward Jones alleges the following transactions
1. In March 2017, American National issued a check on a
policy payable to Defendant Leslie Gorman in the amount of
$149, 588.75, which she deposited into her account at Edward
2. In June 2017, Defendant Leslie Gorman transferred $28,
000.00 from her account to an account held by Defendant
3. In August 2018, Defendant Transamerica issued four death
benefits checks totaling $85, 008.59 payable to Defendants
Leslie Gorman and Chris McNally;
4. In November 2018, Defendants Chris McNally and Teressa
Gorman, acting with power of attorney for Defendant Leslie
Gorman, deposited the $85, 008.59 into their Edward Jones
5. In November 2018, Defendant Teressa Gorman, acting with
power of attorney for Defendant Leslie Gorman, deposited a
Bank of America cashier's check in the amount of ...