FSM SUPREME COURT TRIAL DIVISION
Cite as Island Homes Constr. Corp. v. Pohnpei Transp. Auth.
12 FSM Intrm. 128 (Pon. 2003)

[12 FSM Intrm. 128]

ISLAND HOMES CONSTRUCTION
CORPORATION, INC.
Plaintiff,
 
vs.
 
POHNPEI TRANSPORTATION AUTHORITY,
Defendant.
 
CIVIL ACTION NO. 2001-015
 
ORDER ALLOWING CASE TO PROCEED IN NATIONAL COURT
 
Andon L. Amaraich
Chief Justice
 
Decided: September 30, 2003

APPEARANCES:

For the Plaintiff:          Salomon Saimon, Esq.
                                    Law Offices of Saimon & Associates
                                    P.O. Box 1450
                                    Kolonia, Pohnpei FM 96941
 
For the Defendant:    Marstella Jack, Esq.
                                   Assistant Attorney General
                                   Pohnpei Department of Justice
                                   P.O. Box 1555
                                   Kolonia, Pohnpei FM 96941

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[12 FSM Intrm. 129]

HEADNOTE

Jurisdiction ) Diversity
     It is well established that diversity is determined as of the commencement of the action. Once diversity jurisdiction attaches, or vests, it is not defeated by later developments, such as a party's later change of domicile or the dismissal of a party due to partial settlement. Island Homes Constr. Corp. v. Pohnpei Transp. Auth., 12 FSM Intrm. 128, 129 (Pon. 2003).

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COURT'S OPINION

ANDON L. AMARAICH, Chief Justice:

     On August 15, 2003, the parties filed a joint brief requesting that this Court continue to exercise jurisdiction in the above-referenced matter notwithstanding the fact that the party whose citizenship gave rise to this Court's jurisdiction (based on diverse citizenship, FSM Const. art. XI, 6(b), has been dismissed from the case. The remaining parties allege that the "statute of limitation would become an issue" if this case were dismissed by the national court and the parties were required to re-file it in state court.

     It is well established that diversity "is determined as of the commencement of the action." Etpison v. Perman, 1 FSM Intrm. 405, 414 (Pon. 1984). Once diversity jurisdiction attaches, or vests, "it is not defeated by later developments," id., such as a party's later change of domicile or the dismissal of a party due to partial settlement. See also Jack H. Friedenthal, Mary Kay Kane & Arthur R. Miller, Civil Procedure 28-29 (1985) ("In determining whether diversity of citizenship exists, the critical moment is the time at which the suit is commenced. . . . The rationale for this rule is the practical necessity of having a definite and easily ascertainable bench mark for determining whether jurisdiction has been established.")

     Diversity of citizenship existed at the time this action was filed in the national court. Accordingly, the Court hereby grants the parties’ request that the above-referenced action proceed in national court.

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